Are you a seasoned camper? Can you wield your tent pegs and guy ropes with ease? Or are you a little bit wary of the whole ‘great outdoors’ experience?
I am going to quietly raise my hand at the last question. We have flirted with the idea of camping. We even went as far as buying a second-hand tent a few years ago with the intention of using it. We did. For one night. In the garden. Then the weather turned into the usual Great British summertime and the tent has been gathering dust in the garage ever since.
The reality of a family holiday in the summer holidays, however, is an expensive one. When there are five or six of you, it really makes it expensive to go anywhere and the really shocking thing is that to holiday in some areas of the UK is almost as expensive as the cost of going abroad.
So this year, camping was well and truly back on the table. I love the idea of camping, getting back to basics, no screens or devices, enjoying some quality time in the great outdoors. But my husband and I aren’t the most practical of people, so the idea of us both wrestling with a tent with our children looking on and laughing (and probably videoing the whole thing) is not such an idyllic one.
So Blacks set us a challenge. They have launched a new campaign called ‘characters of the campsite‘. In a world where lots of people camp, some in fully equipped campsites and others in the wilderness, each type of campsite has its own characters. There is the wild camper, the family camper and the festival camper.
Whilst I would love to say that I am a wild camper or a festival camper as it sounds far more hip and happening, I am slap bang in the family camper category. In fact, very comfortably in the totally hapless and unprepared family camper category.
So back to the challenge, Blacks sent us an amazing family camper tent, the Eurohike Rydall 600 6 Person Tent. Reading the spec, it looked perfect for us. Suitable for six people with plenty of space and easy to put up, it ticked all of our boxes. The idea was to see how quickly we could get the tent up and ready for use.
How hard could that be?
This weekend, the sun was shining and for once there was no threat of rain, so we did our test run to see how quickly we could do it. Bearing in mind this was the first time we had ever erected the Eurohike Rydall 600 or even looked at the instructions.
Could we build it? Yes, we could. Tah-da!
We built it in just over 30 minutes. I didn’t think that was too bad. Previous tents have taken a lot longer. It is actually a really easy tent to build. The tent itself is all attached, the inner and outer and the groundsheet and this makes it a lot easier to erect. The three tent poles are colour coded which also helps and the trickiest part was putting the pins in the bottom of the poles. It really does need two people to put up three would be helpful. But in all honesty, if we can put it up fairly easily, the more seasoned camper would find it a breeze.
Once up, this really is the perfect family tent. It has lots of space. At the back, there are two bedrooms with a toggled divider and they are darkened which is perfect to avoid the light in the mornings. The bedrooms have zip doors which can be opened and tucked into a corner pocket. There are also storage pockets in the bedrooms. In terms of space, you could easily fit six people into the two bedrooms in sleeping bags but with air beds, we found there was space for two in each bedroom, so five at a push.
The living area is really spacious and thanks to two door ways and windows, you can open up and there is lots of light inside. The windows even have ‘curtains’ which can be fixed at different heights. A few chairs and a small table would fit nicely into the living area. There are also lots of storage pockets which are really handy to keep the smaller things organised and it is tall enough to stand up in. There is high and low level ventilation.
Once built, the males of the house couldn’t wait to get in there for the night and they spent a happy night camping out in the garden. All three agreed that it looked great and was a much better size for us as a family. They all slept like logs and my husband particularly liked the darkened bedrooms as they all slept in until nearly 10 am which would not have happened with a lighter tent. There will be plenty of space for us all when we take it camping in a couple of weeks. The biggest plus of the Eurohike Rydall 600 is how easy it is to put up. Thirty minutes is amazing and hopefully, after we have done it a few times, it will be much quicker too.
I have no doubt that I will share our first proper camping experience later this month but now I am off to see if I can take the tent down as quickly as we put it up.
We were sent the Eurohike Rydall 600 tent as part of the Black ‘Characters of the Campsite’ campaign. All images and opinions are our own.