When I travel, alone or with my wife, I like a roomy tent. No pup tents for me, unless I’m biking or backpacking. If I’ve got the trunk space, a spacious tent is item one. The Kelty Mach 4 is unique and is just right for car camping.
First thing you’ll notice is NO poles. Instead, open the handy carrying case and you’ll discover…a handpump! That’s right, this thing blows up. Not like the Air Dome in Minneapolis, but rather a series of air tubes take the place of poles to hold the tent erect.
To erect the tent, first stake down the four corners. On my first attempt, I couldn’t determine which were the corners. After studying the photograph of the tent, I realized the orange lines all run across the tent in the center. That left just four obvious corner points.
Now it’s time to pump. With just a couple pumps from this dual action pump, the tent is upright. Pretty amazing. Deflating is just as easy.
I love the space you get in both the tent and the vestibule. The doors are high enough that anyone can enter comfortably. You also have enough room to set up standard height table and chairs inside for dining if you like.
I had some issues with the one tube kinking every so often, but a quick stretch of the tube put it right back into position.
Check for more information on the Kelty Mach 4 at http://kelty.com.
Doug Bardwell, based in Cleveland, OH, writes about travel destinations, photography and tech topics across the country and around the world at DougBardwell.com. Feel free to drop him a line at firstname.lastname@example.org with suggestions for future stories. To get his stories delivered to your inbox, click the RSS feed or the "Subscribe" button above or follow him on Facebook , Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+. To read Doug’s disclosure notice, click here. For travel ideas in Cleveland and around the world, check his Calendar of Events. To see his travel photo collection, see BardwellPhotography.com.