Today we will be taking a look at Coleman’s 8 person Evanston dome tent.
A perfect tent for family camping or any large groups, it is a well-reviewed tent that not only gives you a large sleeping space, but also an additional screen room.
Giving you additional space to sit and enjoy the outdoors without the nasties getting in the way, or if you’re rained off, a place to set up the card table.
One of the best selling 8 person tents on the market, and today we will show you why.
Unveiling the good, the great and the small thing that annoys us!
With a lot of cool features, and good word of mouth, is it worth the asking price?
We break it all down for you with our in-depth review.
Evanston 8 Person Camping Tent Review
Our First Thoughts
This is an attractive looking tent with an equally attractive price from Coleman, a company with a proven track record of creating quality outdoor products.
With a large main tent, it also has a secondary screen room that can be used as a bug-free environment to enjoy the outdoors.
It sets up fast and is a fully waterproofed model that features Coleman’s Weathertec system to keep you dry on the wettest of days.
Designed for large groups or family camping, there is a lot to like about this model that mixes ruggedness with functionality.
Important Specs at a Glance
Main Tent: 15 x 12 feet (180 sq. ft.)
Screen Room: 10 x 5 feet (50 sq. ft.)
6 ft. Center height
Up to 8 People
15 Minute Setup Time
Tent & Rainfly – Polyester
Poles – Fiberglass
28“ L x 11“ W x 10“ H
Weathertec Features + Rain Fly
1 Year Limited Warranty
Overview of Features
- Relatively Quick Setup
- Can Fit Multiple Mattresses
- Tall Center Height For Easy Maneuvering
- Additional Screen Room for Bug-Free Camping
- Includes Coleman’s Weathertec System
- Rain Fly Provides Window Awnings
- Interior Storage Pockets
- Multiple Venting Points for Increased Airflow
- Includes Storage/Carrying Case
What We Love – Our Top 3 Features
GOLD QUALITY – Say Goodbye To Bugs
The exterior screen room is the crown jewel of this tent. Fully surrounded by no-see-um mesh, you are 100% protected from any bugs getting into this room at any time of day. It is also designed with its own floor, which is a nice bonus as a lot of tents with screen rooms do not include a floor in this area. It makes it so you won’t be walking directly on the ground, and also keeps bugs from crawling in from underneath the tent.
The mesh ceiling becomes a fully protected roof when the rain fly is attached, which gives you added flexibility to use this room even when the weather isn’t co-operating. Leaving the rain fly off leaves you unprotected against drizzle, but is perfect for the nights when you want to stargaze.
While the main tent is plenty large, having this additional space allows for multiple uses. Most people will set up camping chairs and a cooler for relaxing with a few bevvies, but you can also set it up as a kitchen/eating area, storage room, or even as a secondary bedroom. Of course, if you are using it as a bedroom it will have to be in warmer seasons, and preferably on clear nights.
SILVER FEATURE – 15 Minutes To Shelter
Coleman claims this free-standing dome tent will take a short 15 minutes to set up, and if you are an experienced camper, you can probably get it pitched even quicker than that. Unpacking it from its case you will need to assemble the poles, which clip together, and thread them through the tent’s canopy to give it its dome shape.
Once that is done you can stake it down with the provided hardware. The last step is to attach the rainfly to the corner mounting points, and then stake out the guy lines.
This will give it a taut shape to eliminate the tent from sagging, while giving it an aerodynamic structure to stand up to wind.
Fast-pitch tents are becoming more and more popular as they provide less fussing about, while allowing more time to relax. With a lot of people camping on long weekends and showing up to their campsite on a Thursday or Friday night, anything that helps cut down on setup time in pitch black conditions is always welcome.
BRONZE HIGHLIGHT – Dry Inside When It’s Wet Outside
Eliminating wet weather from entering your tent is imperative if you want to use it on days that are anything but sunny. Coleman is one of the only companies that use a plethora of superior waterproofing features on their tents, which is known as their Weathertec system.
In addition to a waterproof rainfly, the Weathertec features work together to create a moisture-proof interior. Inverted stitches and taped seams keep water from leaking through potential “weak” points in the tent’s construction. Additionally, the zippers have covers over them for the same reason.
The poles are sturdy enough to keep the structure from blowing over during stormy conditions, and the tent’s bathtub floor is welded shut, keeping ground moisture from seeping in. Reinforced corner points provide additional ruggedness and longevity for the floor.
Further to the fly being waterproof, it has taped seams and also provides awning support over the structure. With the screen room and windows shielded, rain is directed away from large entry points to keep you dry inside.
Main Overview – Breaking Down Every Detail
Triple Season Use
This tent was designed for use in 3 of the 4 seasons. Due to the lightweight canopy, and heavily-featured mesh throughout, you will be very cold if you try to use this in winter conditions. While the main tent zips up, you may want to still dress warm on cool nights or bring a small heater along with you. Warm days and nights is where this tent excels most, as you can leave the windows open and stargaze when the rain fly isn’t attached.
Go With The Flow
With a lot of no-see-um mesh, you get a good amount of airflow throughout this tent. The back wall is completely mesh, so the rain fly will have to be attached if you want some privacy, whereas the side windows of the tent can be zipped up. Covering these points will not only keep you protected from the rain, but also regulate the amount of air that is cycling through the cabin. Additionally, the screen room has plenty of air entering it, with the main tent’s D door having a built-in window to increase cross-ventilation.
Identifies As Polyfiberglass
Coleman uses a mixture of polyester fabrics with fiberglass poles. Polyester provides a durable but lightweight canopy and rain fly that breathes and stands up well to wind. It also retains its shape when it gets wet, and provides good UV protection during daylight hours. Fiberglass poles give it a sturdy and strong frame that is flexible enough to support its dome construction, while protecting it against wind gusts that could potentially knock it down.
Easy Up, Easy Go
This model is meant for fast setup, and fast break down. This is especially handy if you are using it a family camping tent, and the kids are being quite unruly and impatient. With it up and running in a matter of minutes, you will have a shelter that can be enjoyed sooner than later. When you are ready to head home, it breaks down just as quick, and repacks easily into its storage case.
Anyone Can Use
Coleman has designed this tent to cater to functionality. An easy and relatively quick setup, good venting, superior waterproofing, lots of space, and lightweight materials so you won’t break your back getting it to and from your campsite.
Most Asked Questions – We’ve Got You Covered
Does the Screen Room have Zip-Up Wall Flaps?
The screen room does not have zip-up flaps on the walls. It has a large T screen door for easy entry, with the side walls and ceiling also comprised of mesh. The tent floor is solid polyester fabric, and the rain fly provides cover for the screen room during rainfall.
Can the Main Tent be Divided into Rooms?
The main tent is a single space with no divider curtain. If you are handy and ambitious, you could probably rig something up, but Coleman does not provide a divider curtain.
What Size Footprint Does this Tent Require?
The main tent requires a 16 x 20 ft tarp, while the screen room can use a 8 x 10 ft footprint. Make sure you keep the footprint fully contained under your tent floor, as rain water will pool and potentially seep in if the footprint is larger than your tent dimensions.
How Many Mattresses Can you Fit in this Tent?
The 180 square foot main tent is capable of fitting 2 queen mattresses, or 3-4 twin mattresses. Of course, this depends on how many people are camping and how much extra room you need to move around comfortably.
Our Final Thoughts
The only downside we can see is that it would be better if the screen room had more side-coverage, only because the rainfly that secures over the top doesn’t fully cover the whole meshed screen room area. However, if you can position the tent in such a way to avoid this, you can keep the tent dry at all time. A tarp or canopy also works wonders.
For the price Coleman is asking, this is an excellent all-round tent for group camping that provides a lot of value with its large interior, screen room, quality construction and waterproofing features.