This REI Base Camp 6 Tent is a semi-freestanding solid 3-season tent with aluminum poles, nicely ventilated, with 2 doors and 2 very useful vestibules.
Key features & benefits
- Dome tent.
- 2 Doors.
- 2 Vestibule.
- Aluminum poles.
- Roof vents.
- Floor vents.
- Many wall pockets.
What this REI Co-op Base Camp 6 Tent is about
When you see this tent without the fly, it looks very different than when it is with the fly. The picture below reveals that this is a very simple dome, but do not overlook the extra poles that create no less than 7 cross points. So indeed, this is a simple and symmetric dome with a square base, but this is also an exceptionally strong one.
The inner tent is fully freestanding. However, you have a full-coverage fly that creates two asymmetric vestibules. To be functional, the vestibules must be staked. So strictly speaking this is not a freestanding tent. I have included it in my list of tents with a full-coverage fly. For a dome tent, this is a very tall structure with a 74 inches (188 cm) peak height.
The doors & vestibules
I mentioned the two vestibules and they are completely different. You have seen the larger one in the top picture above. As you realize, it has an extra support pole for itself. The back side is with a D-shaped door and the vestibule is much smaller, see it in the picture:
The inner doors are with mesh in the upper sections, and they have panels as well, see the picture above. You can keep them with mesh only all the time because they are deep under the fly and completely protected.
This tent has an incredible number of storage pouches, you have them directly above the floor and also higher on the canopy. The picture below shows how some of them look. Those close to the floor are on all sides of the tent.
The picture below shows also some pockets that are completely above the head, here you can store the doors when you unzip them completely. You also have the top point to attach a lantern:
The inner tent has mesh on the top area, you have seen it in the picture without the rain fly above. Both doors are also with closable mesh sections.
But they have added two triangular closable mesh sections close to the floor. You have inner zippered panels so you can regulate the amount of air circulation, and if you feel cold you can close them. You can see how one of them looks from inside and from outside:
In addition to this, you have 2 fly vents with Velcro tabs and stiffeners. They are matched with zippers on the inner canopy so you can pop them up from inside. One of the zippers is visible in the picture above on the left. So all is done as it should be, there is nothing one could object to this design.
Please see more in this video:
There are 4 poles for the inner dome plus one for the vestibule, and this is aluminum. All is color-coded for an easy setup. Note that you have long sleeves for the poles, this is good to distribute pressure in the case of strong winds. The usual grommets are at the tent’s base.
The fly is polyester resistant to stretching and they claim it is resistant to UV rays as well, they do not provide its denier value or waterproof rating. I think that the rating is 1500 mm, not much but you do not need more. The floor fabric is a very durable 150D coated polyester Oxford, and it is a bathtub design, you can see it in the pictures as the green part that raises from the ground. The waterproof rating should be the same.
The zippers are quality YKK #8 on the rainfly and on the doors. Those on windows and vent access zippers are #5. You also have a heavy-duty storage sack with a shoulder sling. A full set of stakes, guylines, and tighteners, is included, as well as a pole-repair tube, a pole bag and a stake bag.
There is the REI Co-op Base Camp 6 Footprint built for this tent and it can be ordered separately.
Who is it for
Regarding the weight, the tent weighs 20 lb 10 oz (9.36 kg) so this is quite heavy. The packed size is moderate (L x D) 24 x 11 inches (61 x 28 cm). So you need a vehicle for transportation.
Regarding the area, the tent is officially for 6 users. For this you have the inner area of 83.7 ft² (7.78 m²) and two vestibules that add 27 + 17 ft² (2.5 + 1.6 m²). So the total protected space per person is 21.3 ft² (2 m²) and this looks good. But for real camping, I see it best suited for parents with a maximum of two kids.
Regarding seasons & climate, they describe it as a 3-4 season tent and they are right. The tent’s frame is incredibly strong with so many intersection points, and the structure is very aerodynamic. So although it is quite tall, it can withstand a lot of pressure.
You have seen that the floor vents are closable if you feel cold, and you can keep them open in a warm environment. The same holds for the panels on the doors. This is a versatile construction.
Regarding the price, it is steep so if you are on a budget it can be a tough decision. But there is no doubt this is a high-quality tent, worth the investment.
- Official capacity: 6-person.
- Weight: 20 lb 10 oz (9.36 kg).
- Overall dimensions: 156 x 110 in (396 x 279 cm).
- Floor dimensions: 110 x 110 in (279 x 279 cm).
- Floor area: 83.7 ft² (7.78 m²).
- Vestibule area: 27 + 17 ft² (2.5 + 1.6 m²).
- Total protected space: 127.7 ft² (11.9 m²).
- Total protected space per person: 21.3 ft² (2 m²).
- Peak height: 74 in (188 cm).
- Packed size (L x D): 24 x 11 in (61 x 28 cm).
- Poles: aluminum.
Final thoughts, rating, pros & cons
In the summary of this REI Base Camp 6 Tent review, I wish to stress again that this is a tent for almost all seasons and for practically any weather conditions. You have two large vestibules protected with its full-coverage fly so you have plenty of space for your gear. For smaller items you have a plethora of inner wall storage pouches, to keep things organized and off the ground. Fully recommended.
This tent scores well in almost all of my rating criteria so naturally, the overall rating is very high:
If you need more tents of this type, please check under the category Dome tents. Check this Wenzel Tamarack 6 Person Dome Tent if you want a dome tent without a vestibule. See also this nicely ventilated Eureka Kohana 6 Person Family Camping Tent.
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