Tent “Extras” to Consider

hTents are a pretty important piece of gear to have when you’re hitting the trails for an overnight trip. While they may not be an absolute necessity when climate permits, it’s still good to have a reliable tent at home. In the past, we’ve discussed some of the major points of interest when considering purchasing a new tent, but today we’ll dive a little deeper and look at some of the potential extra features that you’ll notice on some tent models.

Factory Taped Seams

Many tents have clear tape bonded to the seams. These taped seams provide improved water resistance, but they’re not necessarily fully waterproof.

Bathtub Floor

Also known as a tub floor, tents with this feature offer floor construction that extends several inches up the sides of the tent before connecting with the walls of the tent. Bathtub floor tents usually have seams that are usually taped or sealed to prevent leaks, as well. The elevated seams also offer better protection in heavy rain.

Fast Pitch Setup

This feature allows you to pitch the rainfly, poles, and footprint without the canopy, which essentially creates a bare bones shelter that will shave weight during backpacking trips. Obviously, this type of setup is not ideal for very rainy, windy, or buggy conditions.

Shock-Cord Poles

These common multi-section tent poles are held together by a thin, internal, elastic bungee cord that keeps the pole sections together. This also makes assembling them much easier.

Color Coding

Poles and clips that are color coded make it easier to match a tent pole with the corresponding clips for proper alignment while pitching the tent.


Hammock-like accessories, known as Gear Lofts, attach to the interior roof of a tent, and keep clothing and other lightweight items out of the way without taking up more room in the tent. Nowadays you’ll also find Jingle-Free Zippers, which are zippers with pull tabs made of fabric instead of metal and cut down on noise during a windy night. Lastly, you can also find tents with Reflective Points, which are small reflectors that boost your tent’s visibility at night, making it easier to locate with a flashlight in the dark.

Not everyone will want every bonus feature listed above, but they will appeal to some. Once you narrow your tent options down to your basic needs, you can start being a little more picky and narrow the list even further with the consideration of the extras we’ve covered today.