Monday, April 22, 2013

The Tent to End All Tents

23 April 2013

This really was a crazy but actually brilliant tent!

So the tent starts all folded up.  There’s an internal metal framework sort of like a fan, and the nylon tent over that.  There’s a solid base on both the top and bottom of the “fan” so that when closed it covers the tent, and when opened it creates a solid foundation to hold up the tent.  The ladder slides down to hold up the extended, folded out part of the tent (as well as going up and down, since the base of the tent is now about 6 ft above ground).

There’s a mattress that is stuck to that solid base, and it automatically unfolds.

The door and windows, as well as the “door” opposite the entrance door, have mosquito netting and nylon covers that we tied up to maximize the airflow, since this is summer here in the Northern Territory.  Or, they can be tied down for cold nights or during rains.

There’s a waterproof cover that unzips on three sides and then hangs over the passenger side of the car – when the tent is folded up, the cover keeps everything all tidy and closed up, with webbing straps that go over the whole thing.

Brilliant, isn’t it?  And look how roomy inside!

I’ll admit it was fairly comfortable.  The worst part was trying to get out and down in the middle of the night for a bathroom run.  Richard managed to go down the ladder facing forward (which really is easier for exiting from the tent).  I usually backed out of the tent to go down the ladder while holding onto the ladder – but that meant wiggling out of the tent to my bellybutton, at which point my legs could dangle down and reach the ladder.  Yes, graceful image, huh?

The other great part of being in the roof tent was that we were closer to the birds waking up each morning in the trees – I spent this morning watching the cockatoos preening before flying off, because, well, cockatoos know how pretty they are, and they don’t go out until those feathers are all in perfect array.

Anyway, that was our tent. 

Next blog – adventures in the tent!


  1. That's really neat how the tent opens up and sits on top of the car like that. When you talked about the tent before I couldn't imagine sleeping on top of the car. It's much roomier inside than I thought it would be. That's so cool that you got to wake up and watch the cockatoos preening before they flew off!

  2. Pretty amazing when you think about it, isn't it?

  3. This is indeed great! I'm pretty much impressed with this kind of tent. I think this is a perfect camping tent there will be less hassle in moving things from car to camping site. I really like this. Thanks for sharing!

  4. What brand of tent is this? Also, where do you park your car to avoid trouble? Thanks!!! :)

    1. Sorry, we rented the car with the tent on top - so I really have no idea what brand the tent was. We mostly stayed overnight in campgrounds (with entrance fees) - but when we were driving around Australia, we'd park in whatever town and just walk around for a while. Never had any problems.