Tent Showcase: Outwell Monterey 4
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RRP on date added:
Living area groundsheet:
4 (more 4 berth tents)
Average User Rating:
8/10 from 1 reviews
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1 Reviews of the Monterey 4
By: Bridgeywidge Reason: I own(ed) one Made in: 2012 Rating: Date: 06/08/2012
(I think mine is a 2012 model although it could be 2011 - although I don't think there is any difference.)
I bought this as a weekend tent after viewing the 5-berth model and thinking it felt solid and kind of 'right' - offering a similar feel to traditional frame tents.
With just two of us, the 5-berth version would have been too unwieldy for short trips and so I settled on the 4-berth, purchasing the footprint and carpet alongside, and then independently the separate front extension.
About the tent.
If you ignore the instructions Outwell provides, then it is straightforward to pitch. I managed to put it up on my own initially, but it's easier and safer with two (it's quite a tall tent and the steel poles are surprisingly heavy). We found that if you peg out the back, then fit the front metal poles and pins, and the front canopy fibre-glass pole, then pull the tent upright and guy down these from the front, you can then slot in the the remaining metal pole and rear fibre-glass pole with ease.
The tent has a SIG, and the innertent can be pitched 'all-in-one' saving a bit of time on site for weekend getaways. The inner tent sleeps four in two areas separated by a zipped divider. You could squeeze in four people on SIMs or on two small double airbeds, but it would be cosy and you need to be quite 'close' too, as the bedroom is made of white fabric, which makes it rather transparent. We removed the divider to create one large, spacious, airy bedroom with room to walk around - quite a luxury. The white fabric - although letting in morning light - did give the tent quite a colonial air, reminding me somewhat romantically of muslin drapes or mosquito nets in the Tropics.
The inner tent also features the 'universal inner tent' option - namely one side can be unzipped and dropped to create more living/storage room. But, the doors are only single-skin with a mesh upper section, rather than the double-skin-doors I had expected on a tent of this price. At the front of the inner tent there is a useful built-in storage/organiser.
The living area is OK - enough room for a small table and two chairs and to store your food and crockery etc but, four might find it a squeeze or end up sitting in a row facing out!
If there are more than two of you, or two plus a small one, I'd go for the 5-berth as the living area would be much more comfortable.
There are two big windows either side of the living area, one of which doubles as a door with a full-length mesh curtain. This door can be guyed out as a canopy.
The front door can be completely opened out, should you have good enough weather, or just opened up half-way. There is also another zippable mesh panel at the top of this door across the full width providing more ventilation. The zips on the front door were quite stiff and we have experienced a bit of tightness across the opening despite moving the poles and pegs. Maybe we need to perfect our pitching precision.
The rainsafe canopy is a nice feature and one which attracted me to the tent. It worked well-enough in the wet but also created a cosiness when sitting out at night.
The tent comes with Outwell's collection of pegs, which are a step up from the skewers often supplied.
I'm not sure the velcro guy tidies are really useful or a bit of a pain, and the wind-stabiliser system hasn't been put to use - yet.
The tent, despite a steamy weekend weather-wise, and some considerable rain, didn't seem to suffer from condensation, maybe due to the plentiful ventilation: across the inner tent backs and flysheet vent at the rear, above the inner tent doors, above each side window, and then across the front.
The tent carpet was surprisingly slippy on the groundsheet - which came as a disappointment. I had expected a more grippy backing and more softness (I believe there has been a change in spec :-().
Moving onto the extension.
This has been a bit more tricky and the jury's still out.
In theory, a great bit of kit for extending the living area and for cooking under when the weather isn't so hot. But, here's my gripe: the illustration on the instructions and the photo on the labels and online, and the video online, all show the Monterey 5 tent and extension. The 5 has three metal poles and positions the extension differently due to this.
I have attempted to put up the extension twice - and not been happy either time. Either it doesn't fit and Outwell have sold me a dud - just sizing down to fit rather than re-designing it - or I am doing something wrong. It shouldn't be rocket science and I'm not a novice.
I have posted on here about this issue and emailed Outwell but, after one reply (giving me just the same instructions) I've emailed again. Currently, I give the extension an 'Unclassified' as it's not quite doing what it should. I didn't bother putting it up this weekend.
(Incidentally, there are two slice marks on the fabric of the extension pole bag, and stitching on the bag is fraying: I can't be bothered with the hassle of sending it back, but this is also not what I expected from a supposed quality supplier.)
All in all, it's a bit like the curate's egg - good and bad in parts.
The tent is good but not great: a couple more feet in the living area and a darker inner tent roof and double-doors with mesh and fabric, would have bumped up my score.
The extension - not sure yet if it's a dud or a dude.
4 from 4 people found this review helpful, was it helpful to you?
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A more compact size all-round to sister model the Monterey 5. Monterey 4 is a 4 persons tent with a 2+2 Universal Inner tent with two doorways and a central divider. The Monterey 4ís prominent Front Canopy offers the same weather-protection qualities as the Rain-safe Doors on other Outwell tents. Factor in a 4,000 mm hydrostatic head for the Outtex 4000 flysheet with fully taped seams and the latest Outwell Wind Stabilizer System and you see this is a real high-performance tent. There is no shortage of Outwell heritage and innovation in this tent, either, thanks to an additional side door, super-size windows with Toggle-up Curtains, Duratec Poles, pre-attached Luminous Guylines and more.
Type of tent: Three room tunnel tent
Sleeps people: 4
Flysheet: Outtex 4000 (75D 100% polyester taffeta) with taped seams
Inner tent: Breathable 100% polyester
Groundsheet: Sealed Ground System
Rooms: 2 bedrooms 1 living room
Poles: Steel poles 19/22 mm, Duratec fibreglass 12.7 mm
Floor: Double-coated 100% polyethylene, 10.000 mm hydrostatic head
Pitching way: Flysheet first or as one
Pack size flysheet: 75 x 35 cm
Weight flysheet kg: 22.6
Recommended for: Feature-packed and for families of up to four, who want a tent that is packed with Outwell innovation.
Large rain-safe front vent
Front wall can be opened completely or half or less
Organiser pockets and mesh pockets in the inner tents
Fully seam-sealed flysheet for maximum protection
Reinforcement patch on all stress points
Adjustable pegging points and luminous guylines
Heavy duty Outwell zips
... there may be more info on their website
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