Which motorcycle tent is best?
Anyone who is fond of traveling, exploring and vacationing on two wheels will know of the difficulties brought about by bad weather, fatigue, breakdowns and trying to find a suitable place to stay for the night. A motorcycle tent allows riders to be self-sufficient and fully prepared for whatever the journey has in store while providing a safe place to store bikes and equipment.
Similar to regular tents, motorcycle tents are available in many shapes and sizes. Some are designed for a solo rider with minimal equipment, whereas others are much larger for multiple occupants and vehicles. The Coleman Hooligan Backpacking Tent is a solid choice with a large vestibule that can store a single bike. It is available in two sizes for three or four persons and can be set up in 10 minutes.
What to know before you buy a motorcycle tent
The primary consideration with any tent is size. Motorcycle tents need to have the right capacity for the number of occupants and additional storage space for their bikes and equipment. Most motorcycle tents have a dedicated area at the front or back to keep the bike away from prying eyes without hampering the sleeping quarters. At the same time, they need to be lightweight and compact when packed away so as to not cause a hindrance when strapped to the bike.
The material of the tent plays a vital role in durability, weather resistance and weight. Tents are classified as one, two, three or four seasons, with four-season tents being the strongest and most weatherproof but subsequently the heaviest. If you are planning a summer trip, then a two-season tent is probably sufficient.
Modern tent materials such as nylon and polyester are lightweight and provide good protection against wind and rain; however, they can tear easily and may get damaged when moving the motorcycle in and out. Cotton and canvas are more hard-wearing but do increase the overall weight.
What to look for in a quality motorcycle tent
Inclement weather can be the downfall of any motorcycle trip; therefore, having a tent that is quick and easy to set up will allow you to get yourself and your bike under shelter as quickly as possible. Pop-up tents are the quickest to erect but tend to be quite bulky when packed.
Freestanding tents are a good choice as they require no staking to the ground. Larger tents for more than two people often have several inner rooms, which can make pitching them in poor weather difficult and time-consuming.
Many tents are available with a host of extra features, such as removable fly sheets, mosquito nets, front porches, built-in groundsheets and multiple storage areas. Bear in mind that the more features a tent has, the heavier and more expensive it will be.
Care and storage
With correct care and storage, a good quality tent can last for many years. After your trip, it’s a good idea to clean the tent with a damp cloth and allow it to dry out thoroughly. Ensure that all the necessary pegs, poles and ropes are clean and packaged correctly, ready for your next journey.
How much you can expect to spend on a motorcycle tent
There are many tents for two to four persons that can accommodate a single bike within the $100-$200 price range. For a larger model with room for two bikes, expect to pay up to $500.
Motorcycle tent FAQ
Can I use my regular backpacking tent for a motorcycle trip?
A. The main advantage between a motorcycle tent and a regular one is the storage compartment for the bike. If you don’t need your bike to be out of sight or protected from the elements, then, essentially, you can use any tent you like.
I have a big bike. Are all motorcycle tents the same size?
A. Not all motorbike tents are the same size, and this goes for the sleeping quarters as well as the bike storage area. It is vital that you check the measurements of the bike and the tent’s capacity to ensure a good fit.
What’s the best motorcycle tent to buy?
Top motorcycle tent
What you need to know: Available for three or four persons, this tent can be erected in 10 minutes and has a large vestibule at the front.
What you’ll love: It has a waterproof floor, a removable rainfly and multiple storage pockets. It weighs just over 7 pounds when packed away.
What you should consider: Large bikes may not fit in the compact vestibule.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Top motorcycle tent for the money
What you need to know: This roomy tent has sleeping quarters for two people, a large motorbike storage area and two porches.
What you’ll love: It is made of lightweight, waterproof polyester with a thick built-in groundsheet. It has three zippered doors and a weatherproof back window.
What you should consider: As a larger tent, it isn’t very compact when packed away.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Worth checking out
What you need to know: This roomy, three-season tent can be used for two persons with bikes or for up to six persons without.
What you’ll love: It is well made from PU-coated polyester and has heavy-duty, 14-millimeter poles. It is tall enough to stand in and has two large windows and vents on the top.
What you should consider: The footprint for the front storage area is sold separately.
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Chris Gillespie writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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