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Coleman Tenaya Lake Tent Review 

Coleman Tenaya Lake Tent Review

There are many known facts about tents but one is particularly true out of them all – as your family grows, so will your tent space needs. Making a big, spacious tent which can fit a whole family (or even more) is a hard task, but the guys over at Coleman have nailed it pretty well. The Tenaya Lake 8 person tent features an awesome design, sturdy construction, lots of useful features, and most importantly – can fit your whole family without too much hassle. 

Our Verdict: There are many tents on the market currently, that claim they offer plenty of storage space, but none can compete with this model by Coleman. If storage space is a major priority for you, then this is definitely the tent to buy. You’ll be hard pre

Product Overview And Features

This is a tent that has it all. Not only can it accommodate up to eight campers, easily, it also comes with a closet, complete with a hanger bar and shelves. Need a tent that allows you and your family and friends to stay organized during a longer camping trip? This Coleman tent delivers.

Aside from the built-in closet, which is one of the biggest selling points this tent offers, it also features the patented Fast Pitch design. According to the manufacturer, the Fast Pitch design allows you to set up this massive tent in under ten minutes, which is pretty impressive.

The tent is also designed to withstand inclement weather conditions, thanks to the inverted seams and welded floor design.

Spacious, offering plenty of storage space, this tent is designed to withstand whatever mother nature can throw at it.

But can this tent really deliver everything the manufacturer promises it can?

As with the NEMO Wagontop Tent, this model is truly a beast when it comes to handling large quantities of campers. It actually fits 8 people as advertised, although it might feel just a little bit too cramped inside in those occasions. Still, no worries, as the great ventilation can handle all that with ease.

Let’s dive deeper into all the individual traits that make this tent unique now.

The Built-in Closet

A feature which makes this tent stand out the most is its closet. You won’t find a large built-in closet on any tent in this price range. If you’re tired of living out of your backpack every time you go camping, then this closet will be a huge selling point for you.

This exclusive feature makes the stay in this model feel like staying at home. That closet can be used for all your gear you bring along. It also has a hanger bar for wet clothes to dry out there or just for the regular clothes of your family. It sits inside the tent but doesn’t eat up too much of the interior space. In other words, it adds practicality to this already functional tent. 

Construction And Dimensions

It is important to mention that there are two variations of this tent: one that can fit eight people, and another one which is more suitable for 6 people. Usually those numbers are slightly exaggerated by companies in order to sell their products easier, but Coleman have been quite honest about the capacities of their tents. The Tenaya Lake 8 person tent really fits eight people, although we recommend having a maximum of 6 inside if you want to feel any level of comfort. 

Even if you are a smaller group, we suggest going for the bigger tent, since there will always be place to store your items, and the difference in weight isn’t that significant. 

In terms of headroom, the Lake Tenaya wins over the other Coleman 8-person tents. A fully grown, 6ft. Man can stand up inside the tent without hitting his head in the tent’s ceiling. 

In terms of internal room we mentioned that there is plenty of space. Even so, there is a room divider in case people want a little more privacy inside this apartment-like tent. 

Another great structural aspect of the tent is the hinged door. It makes entering and exiting the tent way easier and is truly a blessing in disguise for elderly and kids since its big and easy to open or close. 

The roof of the tent is made mainly of mesh materials which makes stargazing during nighttime an amazing option for your family. With your purchase, you will get a rainfly which covers the entire roof in case of rainy weather. The rainfly doesn’t cover the sides but there really isn’t any need for that since they are already nicely waterproof. More on that in a second.

Weather Resistance Properties

Need an all-season tent, one that allows you to enjoy the great outdoors year-round?

This is basically a 3+ season tent therefore can withstand both hot and cold environments fairly well. Some of the weatherproofing solutions implemented in this tent are:

  • A sturdy frame consisted of fiberglass poles and strong guy lines which can withstand heavy winds 
  • Inverted seams which add to the overall water and wind resistance
  • A zipper cuff on the front door to safeguard the door’s elements
  • A welded floor to prevent tent floodings. 

One thing we haven’t really hit on is the nice ventilation on this tent. It has a whopping amount of windows (seven) along with a mesh rooftop. These windows allow for a better airflow in the tent preventing the tent from heating up or gathering too much moisture.

Tent Setting Up

Most campers can agree that one of the worst parts of camping involves pitching the tent and breaking it down again. Coleman has solved this problem by coming up with an innovative design that will allow you to quickly set up or break down this large tent, easily and quickly.

What makes this tent a truly instant tent is its fast-pitch mechanism. The top poles are pre-attached and the hubs are part of a nice color-coded system. The insta-clip arrangements and snag-free suspensions on them are another thing that facilitates your set up process. We tried setting up the tent only by following its instructions manual and we did it in slightly less than 9 minutes. 

The roof of the tent is really easy to set up. You need to secure the center star with the roof ties and extend the poles in order to connect them with the side brackets. They are all color coded so you won’t find it hard to match them accordingly. There are six rows of clips on the roof which you need to connect to their corresponding poles. After that the roof is done and you can move on with the uprights. 

The uprights are color coded as well. Connect all the poles to their matching joint and bottom grommet and fasten the side clips. That is basically when your tent will be ready. All there will be left for you to do is thread the poles through the front door so that it can swing open. Same needs to be done with the gear closet. 

If you are curious about what are the rest of our top 5 tents for this year, head over to our Buyer’s Guide!

Other Cool Features

Packed up, the Tenaya Lake 8-person tent takes far less space than you’d think. Even better, it comes in a carry bag in the form of a wheel system, making it extremely easy to carry around. 

Tents usually have black guy lines. Now, anyone who says that he hasn’t tripped over those is either lying or has never been out camping. Luckily, this model has reflective (and luminescent) guy lines which can always be seen and therefore avoided. 

Now it’s time to see this tent’s pros and cons. 


  • Easy to set up
  • Very spacious
  • Great ventilation properties
  • Mesh rooftop allowing for stargazing
  • 2x2ft Closer which allows plenty of storage
  • Fairly priced


  • Can be heavy to carry around even though it has a wheel system
  • The rainfly can feel rather short in horizontal rains (with heavy winds)
  • It is water resistant but not entirely waterproof from its walls as per our tests
  • The Fiberglass poles can snap under some pressure 
Coleman Tenaya Lake Tent Conclusion and Rating

Camping Product Rating: (5/5)

Coleman Tenaya Lake Fast Pitch Cabin Tent

The design team at Coleman has clearly outdone themselves with the Tenaya. Considering how highly functional, easy to use, and spacious this tent is, we really feel that the design team has paid attention to what consumers want and need in a large tent designed for those longer camping trips in a variety of weather conditions and environments.

If you want a truly family-friendly tent which can withstand most of what’s thrown its way opt for this model. It is capable of providing shelter for up to 8 people and has an air ventilation properties which are suitable to handle all those people inside it. The closet area and the hinged door are nice little additions to the overall great package you are getting for a rather great price. We gave this tent a 5 out of 5 star score.


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Coleman Tenaya Lake 8-Person Tent
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Written by Kenneth Craig

Kenneth is an avid camper and amateur survivalist who has been passionate about wild places his whole life. Ken loves taking new camping gear out in the woods and putting it through the "Ken Test". Favorite place to be: Glacier National Park in MT.

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