The better quality of tent that you can justify, the more comfortable you will be if it rains. In fine weather anything will be ok, but when it turns nasty that is when a good tent is of real benefit.
If i was camping with a bunch of people i'd find the biggest dome tent i could get and use it as my 20kg of luggage whilst splitting my personal gear up amongst the rest of my group. (Ive chosen the sleep easy option so don't have to carry a tent). A larger tent sure makes life more comfortable and i have a Geo 6man family tent from Rays Outdoors that would be perfect. Not an expensive tent by any means (i think about $500 on sale) but has heaps of room for all and sundry and of course can be used after the event.
I'd visit my local tent shop and have a look at what they have to offer. Aluminium poles are a huge advantage in high winds as they are more rigid and DO last longer than fibreglass (you pay for it though). As also are 4 pole dome tents rather than the 2 pole variety. Also see the tent erected prior to purchase and look to see that the inner skin is well away from the outer shell as most tents leak because the two layers touch and cause the water to come through (unless the tent is a really cheap one). If you can push the tent and it wobbles even when pegged down, think of what a bit of rain and wind would do to it.
My hiking tent (Sierra Designs 3 man Dome) probably cost me about $1000 but has so far lasted over 10 years and has withstood some conditions that have seen cheaper tents reduced to a mass of broken fibreglass and nylon.
Take along a garbage bag and leave your gear outside at night for more room.
And importantly; stretch the floor of your tent out as tightly as it will allow and peg it down firmly. This will allow your tent to be in its best possible configuration to handle adverse weather conditions. It only takes apout 5 mins extra but could mean the difference between a wet and dry night.
Last edited by Renegade
on Fri 22 Jul 2005, 11:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.