Park of the magic of EAA AirVenture (“Oshkosh”) is camping out next to the light aircraft in which one flew in. We figured that we’d get some good sleep between 8 pm when the airport officially closes via NOTAM (for the event; ordinarily this is a 24-hour airport) and 7 am when it opens again. It turns out that the warbirds go on “dawn patrol” at around 6:00 am, however, and earplugs are no match for the sound of 50 T-6 and P-51 Mustangs departing from a runway that is 500′ away.
Here’s a review of the Coleman Dark Room 6-man tent that we used…
Plus: There was a thunderstorm one night with 40 mph winds and heavy rain. The high profile of the tent makes it vulnerable to the wind, but we stayed inside and braced ourselves against the corners so the tent did not collapse. Only a bit of rain came through the door seams. Exceeded expectations for a $99 Costco purchase ($155 at Amazon).
Minus: there are plastic rings at the four corners of the tent that are critical to pitching. One of these broke in half during the first pitch. They are about 1/5th as strong as they should be (my last tent was LL Bean and lasted for 15+ years). We managed to get things working (sort of) with an extra stake.
Additional minus: Coleman was not easy to reach by phone for support. After 15 minutes of hold time and a 5-minute conversation, they sent an email demanding various photos, including one of the receipt (but who keeps paper receipts from Costco when the Costco computer stores them?). I responded to this asking “Do you really need a receipt?” and they didn’t reply. So I contacted them again via chat. They actually do demand the receipt before sending out any components. So now it is time to take the entire mess and dump it at Costco because it is basically useless without the 25-cent ring that broke and that Coleman won’t replace.