One of the people’s favorite leisure activities is camping. What is there not to love about it? You get to get away for a while, nobody is bothering you, and chances are you are going to a location where there is no signal so nobody from work can stress you with this and that. Camping is one of those things you do when you want to escape from your everyday life and go to a secluded place to recharge your batteries.
While I love camping and going up into the mountains, there are a few things that I hate. Maybe not hate because it is a strong word, but let’s just say that there are some things that I dislike. For one, I do not like bugs. Mosquitos, in particular. You may laugh right about now because camping and bugs go hand in hand. However, I use repellents and all that. The other thing I dislike is sleeping on the ground. For some reason, sleeping in a sleeping bag on the ground is something I cannot deal with. I used air mattresses, and that was ok. But that was until I discovered truck bed tents. They are amazing. I still get to sleep in a tent in the middle of nature, but the sleeping on the ground thing is out of the picture.
- The advantages and disadvantages of truck bed tents
- Features to look for in a truck bed tent
- What are the best truck bed tents?
- My recommendation
The advantages and disadvantages of truck bed tents
I have to say that a truck bed tent is such a simple solution for people who are like me and hate sleeping on the ground. There are plenty of benefits you can enjoy if you go for such a product, and here are my favorites:
You get to sleep off the ground – this would be a ‘doh!’ moment. A truck bed tent is installed in the back of the truck. You get to sleep at a height that coincides with the one of your truck. Nothing is going to crawl beside you, and you will sleep better for it.
It is warmer – usually when you go camping, and the weather is not so nice, or if you go somewhere at a higher altitude, the ground is cold. I know that some sleeping bags are very well insulated and all, but nothing compares to sleeping off the ground. Furthermore, the back of the truck has metal that easily gets warm if it is sunny outside. That way, if you are a sensitive person who catches a cold easily, you will be safe from that and be able to enjoy your escapade.
Truck bed tents go with almost any truck you may have – one of the concerns you have right about now is that you do have a truck, but the bed tent may not be compatible. Rest assured that chances are that it is. Manufacturers know that trucks are built differently, which is why they created a truck bed tent for everyone. Usually, before you order such a product, you need to insert the truck model so that you receive a tent that goes with it perfectly.
They are easy to install – personally, I have no idea how to put up a tent. However, a truck bed tent comes with instructions. You do not need to have been a girl/boy scout to know how to install. Also, manufacturers have built these products so that you can put them up easily in just a matter of minutes.
Along with the benefits, there are a few things that may not be as great about truck bed tents. Personally, I think there is only one that needs to be taken into consideration. If you want to use such a tent, you need to be able to reach the camping spot with your truck. Trucks are versatile vehicles, and they can climb a little. However, if you go up in the mountains and there is no road where you want to set up camp, you cannot use the truck tent. You have to go the old-fashioned way.
Features to look for in a truck bed tent
Now that you know why you need a truck bed tent, we need to cover the ‘how to buy one’ part. Going for the first product is usually a bad idea, and you need to take a few moments to analyze the product you want. There are a few things you need to consider before hitting the buy button, and they are as follows:
This is the first thing you need to check out because if you cannot cross this off the list, there is really no point in looking at something else. Most manufacturers produce truck bed tents that are compatible with the most common model. If you have a not-so-common truck model, you need to search a little bit more. However, I am sure you are going to find one that suits your truck just fine. After all, most vehicles have pretty much the same length and width.
When it comes to the size of the truck bed tent, you need to know two things: the length of the bed and the height of the tent. Tall people will need a bed over 6.5 feet, but 8-feet truck bed tents are available. The height, however, does not have such an impact. After all, you use the tent just for sleeping, and in case it rains. You do not have to sit up straight, so if it is a little low, I guess it is ok. The length of the bed and tent, however, matters. You do not want to sleep with your feet outside the tent, do you?
The reason I think this is important is that everyone cares deeply about their vehicles and they do not want to see them damaged. Take a look at the straps of the product you wish to buy, and make sure that there are no extra plastic pieces on it that could scratch your car. After all, you do not want to damage it just because of a tent, do you?
Nobody wants to spend hours setting up a tent in the middle of nowhere. That is why my advice is to find a truck bed tent that comes with easy and clear instructions. That is why you should read dome truck bed tent reviews online to see what other people think of the products they bought. That way you will know for sure.
Other things like waterproof canvas and zipper doors are pretty much self-explanatory, which is why decided not to discuss them.
What are the best truck bed tents?
Looking for the best truck bed tent may not seem the easiest task because there are so many of them. However, as long as you use the information provided above, you should be able to make the right choice. If not, you can go for one of the products presented below. I am sure you are going to like at least one of them.
Kodiak Canvas Truck Bed Tent
The Kodiak model is the first product that caught my eye because it has a reasonable price (for a truck bed tent, which does not come cheap generally) and some excellent features. It is made of Hydra-shield material, a 100% cotton duck canvas that is incredibly durable, but at the same time, it is light, breathable, and of course, watertight. Rain has no chance of penetrating it.
The tunnel-shaped design maximized the interior. The height of this tent is 5 feet, which by my standards is high enough. If you drag the truck’s tailgate down, the tent can be expanded, and you can use that space. It is a simple, but useful feature. The door is D-shaped, and it is pretty large with high-quality YKK zippers. The entry is covered, and you have two convenient pockets where you can store whatever gear fits.
As for the rest, the Kodiak truck bed tent comes with a sturdy, ¾-inch steel tube frame that connects to the clamp-on rails. The rails are easy to mount on your truck, and they will be as secure as possible. The tent also features five windows for better ventilation and provides cab access through a window at that end. This truck bed tent is not designed to withstand massive snow accumulation, but other than that, it is an excellent product that I am sure you will enjoy. Compatibility should not be an issue since, according to the manufacturer, this model can be installed on most trucks.
Check the product at https://amzn.to/3Flr9Ii
Rightline Gear Full-Size Standard Truck Bed Tent
The truck bed tent from Rightline Gear is also a product that you may be interested in. Before buying this model, you need to insert some information about your vehicle to make sure that it fits, but I love the fact that you can do that. That way, you do not end up with a tent that is incompatible with your vehicle. You can also check the product’s Application Guide under Technical Specification to confirm.
The tent from Rightline Gear has a floorless design that allows you to set it up without removing the gear from the bed. It is made of heavy-duty, highly durable water-resistant fabric with taped seams that will make the interior watertight. The straps are heavy-duty, and the buckles are made of nylon so that they do not damage your truck’s finish. The poles of the frame and the pole pockets are color-coded for an easy and fast setup.
The Rightline tent comes with two large side windows, but if you want, you can cover them by placing another layer of canvas on top. If you open the tailgate of the truck, you can extend it. In fact, a part of the tent can be placed underneath the tailgate for a more secure setup. As for size, you can go for the 5.5-foot bed or the 8 feet. Furthermore, the tent comes in formats suitable for mid-size trucks, full-size, and compact. It is impossible to not find the right one for you.
Check the product at https://amzn.to/3ZXRcNm
Leoneva Truck Tent with Carrying Bag
Last but not least, the model from Leoneva is yet another excellent option that you may find suitable for your truck. It is available in the 5.5-feet and the 6.5-feet formats, and it can be installed on numerous models of trucks. One of the reasons I chose this model is that it is among the cheapest truck bed tents you can find. Even so, it does not lack what you need.
The tent is made of durable and water-resistant canvas. The heavy-duty straps and the nylon buckles will not do any damage to your truck. The poles are made of fiberglass, and the seams are taped for an airtight truck bed tent. This model is very easy to assemble, and you should be able to do it in a matter of minutes. The manual provides clear and easy instructions.
As a bonus, you will also receive a carrying bag, which I find very useful. It is lightweight, and just like with the two previous products, you can leave the truck’s tailgate open for more space. I am sure you will enjoy this model very much. It may be cheap, but it still provides the features that make such a product one of the best.
Personally, I would choose all three of them. However, since I need to pick just one, I think I will go with the Rightline Gear Full-Size Standard Truck Bed Tent. It has all the right features, it is not exaggerated when it comes to cost, and it is big enough. I think it is one of the best truck bed tents you can find in this price range.
I really recommend camping. It is so quiet and peaceful. Unfortunately, I do not have as much time as I wished to do it. Even so, you should know that the place where you are sleeping while camping can make the difference between a good and a bad experience. One of the truck tents above will improve your experience for sure.
Updated on March 13, 2023