Shopping Discussion

Camping Gear - Canadian Tire vs more specialized store

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[OP]
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Aug 17, 2008
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Camping Gear - Canadian Tire vs more specialized store

Hi all:

Just wondering if anyone can shed light on quality difference between camping tents of, say Canadian Tire ($50-100 for 4 person tent) and Sport Chek or Live Out There ($400+).

I'm looking to do some family car camping with wife and daughter. Would Canadian Tire gear suffice? I imagine it'd be a few times during the summer..

Guess same quality question goes for sleeping bags. Big cost difference depending on company.
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hvargas wrote: Just wondering if anyone can shed light on quality difference between camping tents of, say Canadian Tire ($50-100 for 4 person tent) and Sport Chek or Live Out There ($400+).

I'm looking to do some family car camping with wife and daughter. Would Canadian Tire gear suffice? I imagine it'd be a few times during the summer..

Guess same quality question goes for sleeping bags. Big cost difference depending on company.
Depends on the brand. Tents - you could likely get by with a Coleman, same with your basic camp equipment. Sleeping bags are temperature rated, so the lower the temperature rating the warmer they are. Canadian Tire is okay for all that stuff, but if you have Costco membership, make sure you check out their camping area now. I got some of their self-inflating camp mats last year and their tent looks pretty good too.
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[OP]
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Aug 17, 2008
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ALLCAPS wrote: Depends on the brand. Tents - you could likely get by with a Coleman, same with your basic camp equipment. Sleeping bags are temperature rated, so the lower the temperature rating the warmer they are. Canadian Tire is okay for all that stuff, but if you have Costco membership, make sure you check out their camping area now. I got some of their self-inflating camp mats last year and their tent looks pretty good too.
Yeah, I've actually been examining the Costco gear online. May have to go in and check it out in person and renew my membership if anything...

Thanks!
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^If you can, check out MEC as well. Their price for quality is very good and better than CT stuff.
But yes, for car camping you'll get by with CT stuff. A lot of the price difference is for the weight and size, since lesser weight and smaller is always ideal for backpackers. In your case, it doesn't really matter. For 2-3 sessions a season, you won't break anything
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My addiction is backpacking. I try to read and update my gear and equipment every year. Into my collection I have a couple of Hilleberg Tents (+$600 the cheapest one). Saying this I can certainly tell you that your family will be fine with a Coleman Tent from Canadian Tire. Just make sure you get a comfortable air mattress and the tent is tall and wide enough to fit the mattress.

Have handy a towel to dry the walls from the tent at night IF they get sweaty and open a little bit a window so the air circulate and avoid the walls to sweat.

In case it rains add a tarp in angle on top of you tent for extra waterproofing. Nothing worse to wake up in the middle of the night with a leaking tent.

Let me know if you have more questions will be happy to help you out.
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ToDealHunter wrote: My addiction is backpacking. I try to read and update my gear and equipment every year. Into my collection I have a couple of Hilleberg Tents (+$600 the cheapest one). Saying this I can certainly tell you that your family will be fine with a Coleman Tent from Canadian Tire. Just make sure you get a comfortable air mattress and the tent is tall and wide enough to fit the mattress.

Have handy a towel to dry the walls from the tent at night IF they get sweaty and open a little bit a window so the air circulate and avoid the walls to sweat.

In case it rains add a tarp in angle on top of you tent for extra waterproofing. Nothing worse to wake up in the middle of the night with a leaking tent.

Let me know if you have more questions will be happy to help you out.
I love backpacking and shopping for gear as well. Do you have a portable saw to recommend?
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Jan 16, 2008
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Here are the air mattresses that costco had in store right now. The smaller one is self inflating and the larger one comes with a pump.

http://imgur.com/a/33x0e
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LyGuy wrote: I love backpacking and shopping for gear as well. Do you have a portable saw to recommend?
Silky pocketboy and Bahco Laplander (green handle) are my favorite.
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I'll take a look into them thanks
[OP]
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Thanks everyone!

Going to check out MEC tomorrow morning. Their prices are decent, especially when you find something on sale :D I'll check out Costco this weekend.
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If your in the GTA and can wait a while, Coleman usually has their warehouse sale in Mississauga in early June and there is usually some pretty good deals on tents and other gear.Just a word of advise, if you go, go on the first day and line up a minimum 2 or 3 hours early as it gets quite packed.
[OP]
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nicry1 wrote: If your in the GTA and can wait a while, Coleman usually has their warehouse sale in Mississauga in early June and there is usually some pretty good deals on tents and other gear.Just a word of advise, if you go, go on the first day and line up a minimum 2 or 3 hours early as it gets quite packed.
Awesome! Thanks for the heads up. Found a Kijiji ad for it: http://www.kijiji.ca/v-outdoor-lighting ... 1069595408

Seems like it'll be June 12/13 in Brampton. I'll definitely try to check it out for further camping gear but I'm hoping to pickup the basics for the long weekend.
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hvargas wrote: Awesome! Thanks for the heads up. Found a Kijiji ad for it: http://www.kijiji.ca/v-outdoor-lighting ... 1069595408

Seems like it'll be June 12/13 in Brampton. I'll definitely try to check it out for further camping gear but I'm hoping to pickup the basics for the long weekend.

Coleman is an excellent brand for camping. We have a Coleman tent and it holds up grat in the wind and rain.
I have tried some of the cheaper brands at CT and it has been a hit and miss....mostly miss. Even after sealing, I would still get leaks. Set up was not always easy (Colemans are very easy to set up. Usually in 10mins).

MEC and Sail are very expensive and unless you are doing some serious backpacking, you do not need to buy what their products.
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I bought my first tent at MEC, packs light, cost a bunch of money but is great. However, once I was married and had kids it was too small. We now have a Coleman tent and after 8 years of use, its still pretty good and we have used it quite a lot. One pole has duct tape on it and we've had to waterproof the seams, there are some tiny leaks but overall, its been great. It weight a lot though, and packs a lot bigger than my MEC tent but its totally fine for car camping and we have taken it on a canoe trip.

That said, we all have MEC sleeping bags rated to about -15 and we love them and they're easy to pack.

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