After dragging the family around numerous camping shops we eventually took the plunge and purchased a Coleman Weathermaster 6XL to replace our trusty Vango tent. It was an expensive purchase so did it live up to expectations?
Why we chose the Coleman Weathermaster 6XL
The Coleman Weathermaster 6XL ticked all the boxes on my must-have list, this included;
Air-beam technology (so I could pitch the tent on my own)
An enclosed front port
Black out bedroom pods
Zipped curtains between the bedroom pods
Comfortably big enough for 4 people
This tent is huge – and not just when pitched! I had only seen it on display in the showroom before purchasing and hadn’t looked at the packed size. I was shocked when the box arrived! The packed dimensions are 78 * 58 * 53cm. This is a family tent and you will need a family sized car to transport it. We have a large estate and it still fills over half the boot, so it is worth taking this into consideration.
Having said that the Coleman Weathermaster does come in a very sturdy bag with roller wheels so that does help with transportation.
This is a high spec tent with lots of little features to help make family camping more enjoyable, this includes;
- XXL Bedrooms – 70cm per person
- HH – 4500 waterproofing
- Blackout Bedrooms – for added darkness in lighter mornings
- Hinged door makes entry / exit easier – barrier free access
- Fire retardant fabrics
- Airflow with mesh doors – reduces condensation
- Cable entry point for a mains electrical unit
- Sewn-in groundsheet
- Ventilation points help keep tent cooler
- Double layer mesh doors
I chose an air beam tent as I struggled to pitch our old pole tent on my own. So I was very keen to see if the air beam technology lived up to the hype. An air beam tent uses tubes of air that you inflate with a pump rather than traditional poles.
I have pitched the Coleman Weathermaster four times now, twice completely on my own and I am very impressed. The tent comes with a footprint (groundsheet) which really helps with positioning, so peg that down first. Then position the tent over the footprint, matching up the corners and peg those out with the metal stake pegs.
It is then time to inflate. Rookie error, make sure the valves are on the beams are in the correct position (out) before you start otherwise there is a lot of wasted effort! Starting with the rear most beam, you use the high volume pump to inflate the beams to around 6psi.
There are 5 beams to inflate and this does take a reasonable amount of effort, especially as the pressure inside the beam increases. But it is still easier than trying to thread poles through sleeves and getting it to stand up right. Once you have a beam inflated it will support itself.
Once you have all the beams inflated you will find the tent is in the correct position and you can peg out the rest, making sure all the doors are fully zipped up before you start.
It takes a couple of attempts to work out the best system, so I would definitely recommend a practice pitch in the garden first. I wouldn’t necessarily say it is any quicker to pitch compared to a pole tent but it is possible to do on your own. Which with a family sized pole tent is impossible.
The Coleman Weathermaster 6XL is a six man tent. It is a tunnel design and has three, spacious double bedrooms at the rear of the tent. The bedroom pods are all blackout which we love. Means the kids don’t wake up at the crack of dawn! Two of the bedroom pods have a zipped divider which when un-done creates a larger room. The third pod can be removed completely to create extra space in the living area. The bedrooms are all XXL, allowing 70cm per person, which easily accommodates a standard inflatable bed.
The living space is very comfortable and has four large windows with blinds. We also purchased the carpet which adds a touch of luxury! The doors are large and have mesh ventilation. The ventilation throughout the tent is excellent, with various options to make camping in hotter temperatures more comfortable. The doors also offer barrier free entry which is great, especially when camping with kids.
At the front of the tent there is a large, zipped, porch area. This fully enclosed space is great to use for cooking and storage.
The Coleman Weathermaster 6XL really enhanced our family camping experience and lived up to all of our expectations. The air beam technology is excellent, made pitching the tent far easier and the tent is much more stable in strong winds.
This truly is a family sized tent with comfortably enough room for everyone. The blackout bedrooms help to ensure a decent nights sleep and the ventilation is excellent. We look forward to many more camping adventures!