In case you missed it last week, we introduced Light Speed Outdoors and their beach essentials. Today I wanted to share with you about a couple of their tents, built for families (6 people). Right away I need to make the disclaimer that these tents are NOT lightweight. They’re built for backyard or car camping. We had the opportunity to try them both out this summer and then had company test them too. What can I say? Our backyard “guest room” has a rocking view.
Mammoth 6 Person Tent ($159.99): 3 season; definitely enough room for 6 people on their own sleeping pads; sets up in seconds thanks to the Light Speed Outdoors hub system; integrated rain cover; small vestibule for shoes, etc.
Ample 6 Person Tent ($159.99…cheaper on Amazon): 3 season; room enough for two inflatable mattresses or 6 people on their own sleeping pads; hub system + traditional poles on the sides make this tent lower, but wider than the Mammoth; separate rain fly and larger awning.
I am not going to sugar-coat things – I was really REALLY skeptical when I first tried the tents out. I am so used to my lightweight backpacking ones that I felt a little bit like I was cheating on them. These tents are affordable (well under $200), have a TON of space and I was worried they weren’t for the “serious camper”. However, we’ve put both tents through some pretty intense storms, which they fared very well in. And the integrated hub really does make set up very easy for me to do on my own. I’ve come to really appreciate the quality of them and do recommend them.
Personally, I prefer the Ample for the following reasons:
- Does a little better in wind because it is shorter
- I like the configuration a bit better (rectangular vs. square)
- While the Mammoth actually did very well in rain, I like the ability to choose whether or not I am using the rain fly
- I really like having windows in a tent and being able to see out easily
BUT, if you’re a tall person and/or like to be able to stand up fully in a tent, the Mammoth is probably what you would prefer.
What I’m not so Crazy About:
There is one big flaw I see in the design of the tents, which is more of a personal issue than anything else. Because the hub system is integrated, you can’t hang the tent up to dry. This really only matters in two instances:
- When you have to pack up in the rain and want to avoid setting it up again when you get home
- Trying to get the bottom dry before you pack it away <– my big issue
It’s not a deal-breaker, but something that I hadn’t thought of before I used them.
I also have to note that our first Mammoth tent we had to send back – I tried to set it up in the wind (not a great choice on my part) and when it was folded in with the wind a little bit the poles snapped. Not something you can replace on these sort of tents. The LightSpeed Outdoors customer service is awesome and they sent me a replacement right away, however. I would just take caution and know that these poles (especially around the hub) aren’t as flexible as more traditional poles.
The BEST air mattress I’ve ever used:
Like I said, our “guest room” is a tent in our backyard. It’s not perfect, but just adds to the full Yellowstone experience for visitors…
That said, one perk of camping in the warmth of summer is being able to use an air mattress for backyard or car camping (in cooler weather, you lose too much heat from the air space between you and the ground and I don’t recommend it).
We’ve slept on a lot of air mattresses, and I usually loathe them to be honest. I’d rather sleep on the floor in most cases.
However, the LightSpeed Air Mattress coupled with their foam topper (this is key), is incredibly comfortable. Their patented stabilizer system means you can adjust the level of firmness AND not be rolling into the other person. I like it so much that I took it on a couple camping trips I did this summer, and I would have never EVER brought an air mattress before.
Win a Last Blast of Summer Camping Set-Up from LightSpeed Outdoors!
We want one of you (especially if you have a lot of people to camp with!) to win a prize package from LightSpeed Outdoors. Just because school started does NOT mean the camping season is over!
One of you will win:
- Ample 6 Person Tent
- Light speed Outdoors inflatable mattress
- Light speed Outdoors foam topper
As usual, please use the Rafflecopter Widget below to enter to win. The winner will be emailed and announced on this post in the Rafflecopter Widget. Have questions? Please don’t hesitate to contact me at mountainmamatales(at)gmail(dot)com so I can help! This giveaway is open to the U.S. only.a Rafflecopter giveaway
Light Speed Outdoors generously provided us this gear in order to facilitate this review. However, as always, the opinions expressed here are completely and honestly our own. A few of these links are affiliates. Thank you so much for clicking through them to make your purchases – it helps offset the cost of this blog in a (VERY VERY) small way! You can find my full disclosure here.
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