Tent for motorbike camping wanted, also tips!!

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*Dusty*

Tenderfoot
Oct 21, 2011
95
1
N Ireland
Hi there,

I've a bit of a road trip planned for late August to Silverstone on the motorbike to watch the MotoGP. I'm in need of suggestions for a tent for myself, although there are three of us going we are bringing one each as we all want our own space. I'd like something with a porch/living area where 3 of us could sit in the event of a rainy evening and enjoy a beer and a burger in relative comfort and dryness.

Problem is, I don't want to spend a massive amount of money as the thing is unlikely to be used again and so I've been looking at these few,

http://www.grasshopperleisure.co.uk/coleman-cortes-4-man-expedition-tent-3854-p.asp

https://www.decathlon.co.uk/arpenaz-41-family-tent-4-man-id_8294502.html

This one's looking like a contender

https://www.decathlon.co.uk/arpenaz-4-family-tent-4-man-id_8322425.html

I don't have much experience with Decathlon tents, bar having used a base seconds as a portable shelter from time to time and it's been dead on. Can anyone offer any other recommendation?

Beyond that, it'll be my first road trip of any real duration on a motorbike having always only done ride outs which end up at a McDonalds midday then home to comfort by evening! I'll be riding from Northern Ireland via Dublin ferry to Holyhead then across Snowdonia, possibly diverting briefly via the Mach Loop then on to Whittlebury Campsite which is beside the racetrack. I know there's a beer tent and pub within 5 minutes walk and Tesco is 10 minutes drive away so we won't be stuck for anything we may have forgotten but with regards to the riding part of it, anything I should think about before setting off? I know it'll be a long day being the best part of 400 miles.

thanks all!
 

bopdude

Full Member
Feb 19, 2013
2,902
160
55
Stockton on Tees
You say you'll all be taking your own tents, if so I would go for a smaller tent for yourself and a tarp as cooking / living area, just a thought.
 

sunndog

Full Member
May 23, 2014
3,532
453
derbyshire
if you are taking a tent each with one of them (yours) being a group shelter i'd just go for the biggest you can comfortably fit on your bike
You wont need a lot of gear and you can share it out between you....one of you carries any cooking stuff, while another takes your chair cos you've got the big tent sorta thing.

Any of those you linked to will do the job. The coleman will be the easiest to carry obviously but being able to stand up in a group shelter is luxury.....plus you might fit your bike in it lol

What bike and luggage are you using btw?
I'v toured on everythjng from a drz400, through a bandit, to a vmax. 400 miles is good old way on any bike
 

decorum

Full Member
May 2, 2007
5,064
10
Warwickshire
I've a bit of a road trip planned for late August to Silverstone on the motorbike ...

... I'm in need of suggestions for a tent for myself,

... although there are three of us going we are bringing one each as we all want our own space. I'd like something with a porch/living area where 3 of us could sit in the event of a rainy evening and enjoy ...

Problem is, I don't want to spend a massive amount of money as the thing is unlikely to be used again and so I've been looking at these few,


https://www.decathlon.co.uk/arpenaz-41-family-tent-4-man-id_8294502.html
Big bike? :yikes: Bike trailer? :rofl:

SWMBO uses the same tent. It's alright but it's not compact. Nor is it light in weight.

It would certainly give you space for three to sit in reasonable comfort ~ scroll down and click to view the customers pictures. It'll give you an idea of the size ;)
 

*Dusty*

Tenderfoot
Oct 21, 2011
95
1
N Ireland
if you are taking a tent each with one of them (yours) being a group shelter i'd just go for the biggest you can comfortably fit on your bike
You wont need a lot of gear and you can share it out between you....one of you carries any cooking stuff, while another takes your chair cos you've got the big tent sorta thing.

Any of those you linked to will do the job. The coleman will be the easiest to carry obviously but being able to stand up in a group shelter is luxury.....plus you might fit your bike in it lol

What bike and luggage are you using btw?
I'v toured on everythjng from a drz400, through a bandit, to a vmax. 400 miles is good old way on any bike
Yup, parking the bike inside had crossed my mind but it might leave it tight for three of us to sit and chat.

I'm on a Triumph Daytona 600, it's a sports bike but comfortable as sportsbikes go. I have Oxford sports panniers and a big old sports holdall, which has a rubberised inner. Plan is to fit everything inside drybags then pack them all into the sports holdall along with tent and whatever else can be squeezed in and rest it across the back of the bike. Liberal application of cargo straps and a bungee net to hold it all down, anything which I'll need quick access to will be in a small rucksack on my back. I'm thinking a flask, money, licence, tickets, some snacks, that kind of idea and it will double up as my daysack when we're over there. We're going for 5 days including travel time so need clothing to do that length of time.

As far as loading the bike goes, I think as long as gear weighs less than a smallish person then the handling shouldn't be too bad if weight is evenly balanced side to side.

There are three of us going, although one doesn't have his bike or licence yet he's working on it and as a last ditch resort he will drive over in his Citroen Berlingo Van into which all of our gear will be stuffed which is kind of a worst case for him, best case for us scenario!
 

decorum

Full Member
May 2, 2007
5,064
10
Warwickshire
Thanks, the weight isn't really an issue but a trailer could be done :You_Rock_
I'm still trying to work out where you'd strap it, what you'd strap it on to and remain able to get your leg over and ride :yikes:

That said, I'm not a biker and could be very wrong ~ I've seen some phenomenal luggage strategies applied by bikers ;)


Happy to do a couple of pics if it'd help you plan and move forward.
 

sunndog

Full Member
May 23, 2014
3,532
453
derbyshire
Your gear wont weigh nearly as much as a pillion but you'll know its there.

Two things i find when touring.
If you are loading over the pillion seat make yourself a back rest. Try and have the holdall sitting so you can lean right back and stretch your back out at traffic lights and such. Its almost as good as getting off to stretch your legs

A rucksack gets annoying fast. i doubt you will enough room for the holdall and the rucksak without it pushing you forwards in the seat, putting more weight on your wrists, and hindering movement in general....plus no traffic light back stretching lol

A tank bag looks ugly as sin but is far better for when you're on the bike, moves some weight forwards, and gives far better acces to stuff you'll need on the ride

I bought one of these as a second for a tenner at a BMF rally about 7 years ago and its still going strong

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/FRANK-THO...hash=item1e7648f022:m:mqWObFDosBLoR0gF70J6Wog

I use it as a tank bag when fully loaded but mainly as a tail pack for day rides. It expands enough to fit a large shelled full face helmet and has rucksak straps to use as a daypack. I'd highly reccomend something similar rather than a rucksack
 

sunndog

Full Member
May 23, 2014
3,532
453
derbyshire
I'm still trying to work out where you'd strap it, what you'd strap it on to and remain able to get your leg over and ride :yikes:

That said, I'm not a biker and could be very wrong ~ I've seen some phenomenal luggage strategies applied by bikers ;)


Happy to do a couple of pics if it'd help you plan and move forward.
I can fit two 45ltr panniers, a 110ltr holdall, and a 40ltr tankbag on my bike without effecting its usability at all really
 

*Dusty*

Tenderfoot
Oct 21, 2011
95
1
N Ireland
I'm still trying to work out where you'd strap it, what you'd strap it on to and remain able to get your leg over and ride :yikes:

That said, I'm not a biker and could be very wrong ~ I've seen some phenomenal luggage strategies applied by bikers ;)


Happy to do a couple of pics if it'd help you plan and move forward.
thanks for the offer but I think I should be ok with a couple of bags. I will post up pics of the setup though, I will be doing some dry runs of attaching all to the bike.
 

*Dusty*

Tenderfoot
Oct 21, 2011
95
1
N Ireland
Your gear wont weigh nearly as much as a pillion but you'll know its there.

Two things i find when touring.
If you are loading over the pillion seat make yourself a back rest. Try and have the holdall sitting so you can lean right back and stretch your back out at traffic lights and such. Its almost as good as getting off to stretch your legs

A rucksack gets annoying fast. i doubt you will enough room for the holdall and the rucksak without it pushing you forwards in the seat, putting more weight on your wrists, and hindering movement in general....plus no traffic light back stretching lol

A tank bag looks ugly as sin but is far better for when you're on the bike, moves some weight forwards, and gives far better acces to stuff you'll need on the ride

I bought one of these as a second for a tenner at a BMF rally about 7 years ago and its still going strong

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/FRANK-THO...hash=item1e7648f022:m:mqWObFDosBLoR0gF70J6Wog

I use it as a tank bag when fully loaded but mainly as a tail pack for day rides. It expands enough to fit a large shelled full face helmet and has rucksak straps to use as a daypack. I'd highly reccomend something similar rather than a rucksack
Fair points, I can bring the rucksack packed away I suppose. Tank bags are very handy to be fair and the backrest idea is very good, thanks for that. The big hold-all I have should be perfect actually as long as the soft stuff is packed closest to my back!
 

baggins

Full Member
Apr 20, 2005
1,428
180
45
Coventry (and up trees)
Tents are the biggest bug bare on a bike, as i found on bigger tents, the poles were always too long unless you strap them across the top of the panniers. Have a look for tents with shorter packed lengths.
And don't be planning on sleeping too much down there. Last time i camped at Silverstone (for BSB), it was a real party atmosphere, all night long, so god knows what it'll be like for the MotoGP. But it'll be a great weekend.
 

*Dusty*

Tenderfoot
Oct 21, 2011
95
1
N Ireland
Tents are the biggest bug bare on a bike, as i found on bigger tents, the poles were always too long unless you strap them across the top of the panniers. Have a look for tents with shorter packed lengths.
And don't be planning on sleeping too much down there. Last time i camped at Silverstone (for BSB), it was a real party atmosphere, all night long, so god knows what it'll be like for the MotoGP. But it'll be a great weekend.
i suppose it'll be ok for a bit of escapism!!

i think with the width of the two panniers taken into account I should have space for most tents although I am trying to keep it to 60cm or so lengthwise.

Any suggestions for a folding chair which packs small?
 

bobnewboy

Settler
Jul 2, 2014
935
355
North West Somerset
I've been using a Vango Hydra for rallies and weekends away on the bike for a bit over 20 years, and its still in good nick. It's supposed to be a 2-man tent, but that would be a squeeze even without bike gear. I suppose its not easy to find one these days either. I tend to put nearly everything in a large rolltop drybag on the way out, and strap the tent on the outside if wet on the way back.

Cheers, Bob
 

Squidders

Full Member
Aug 3, 2004
3,853
14
44
Harrow, Middlesex
I'd be inclined to buy a tent for you and a tarp that could be rigged between the bikes to share space under.

If you were to get a big tarp, it could go some way to covering the bikes its tied to. Just stick a pole up in the middle and you'd have a decent sized shelter... I'm thinking 4.5m x 4.5m tarp.
 

gonzo_the_great

Forager
Nov 17, 2014
199
44
Poole, Dorset. UK
The Khyam instant-up tents are great for bike/car camping. I am referring to the ones with the pre-threaded fibreglass poles and latch system.
I found that riding a fared bike in the rain, you stayed dry as long as you were moving. It was when you were at camp and trying to set up the tent that you got wet. The instant erect tent allowed you to get under cover reasonably quickly. (39seconds is my record so far. That is from bag in hand, to pitched enough to get in.)
They are also pretty robust and double skinned. Mine has been very waterproof in some pretty intense (in-tents) rain.

The ground sheets on these tents are just thin flysheet nylon, so I usually use a builders tarp as a ground protector.