I recently had the opportunity to take out Cabela’s Alaskan Guide 4 Person Tent on a camping trip to Father Hennepin State Park on Mille Lacs Lake. We had used the tent a couple of times previously around the house and at my wife’s dad’s cabin and had really enjoyed it. This time we spent a little more time with the tent and found it to be a most excellent tent.
Setting Up The Tent
When you pull the tent out for the first time you will find that it is rather confusing looking at all of the poles, steaks and tarps. If you haven’t ever seen the tent assembled, this is going to be a daunting experience. Maybe my tent was an anomaly, but one knock I had against the tent is that it did not come with any assembly instructions. This is one tent that I would have welcomed them with open arms.
Once you do figure out how to put together the six pole frame, putting on the tarp and securing any tie downs is easy and straight forward. My first time setting up the tent it took me a bit over 30 minutes, every time after has taken 15-20.
Features Of The Alaskan Guide Tent
The Alaskan Guide has many features that make it a man among boys in the tent department. First, the fabric is all 100% waterproof. The floors are made with 3000mm thick abrasion-resistant oxford nylon material, so you will not be ripping this any time soon. The rain cover is made of 2000mm thick material and is equally durable. In this tent you have water protection from above and below.
The Alaskan Guide Tent boast a six pole frame that really makes this tent solid. Honestly, you would not believe how sturdy this tent is when set up. The frame is built to withstand strong winds and harsh weather and it definitely looks like it can (I have read reviews that say they have stayed in the tent with 80mph winds). With the pole material you have two options, the first is the fiberglass option if you are looking to save some money (about $70). The second option is to go for the aluminum poles. This will save you about 17% in total weight on the tent, which is already on the heavy side, so saving a few pounds will be well appreciated.
The Alaskan Guide Tent has a D frame design that causes it to be exposed to less wind and rain while allowing for easy entry and exit as well as good ceiling height. The tent also has a vestibule off the front of the tent which we have found incredibly useful. We have stored shoes and other supplied outside in the vestibule and they have stayed perfectly dry, yet out of our way in the tent.
Overall we have fallen in love with this tent. While we have not done any Alaskan style camping trips we have brought this along on many of our camping trips and use it for the kids to sleep in when they do not want to sleep in the camper (or when they bring a friend along).
This tent would be a bit to heavy to pack on a hiking or canoeing trip and we do not plan on bringing it on our Boundary Waters trip although we would love to.
While the price is high, this is a tent that you should be able to use for the next 20 years. If you plan on taking it to campgrounds, private or state, this is a tent that you will be happy with, has plenty of room and is not too hard to set up or take down. My favorite part is that while in this tent I do not fear winds or rain the way I have with tents in the past. Plan on this tent being a long term purchase. You can purchase the Alaskan Guide Tent right from Cabela’s.