With dark rest tents surging in popularity, we’re taking a look today at the well-known Ozark Trail 6 Person Dark Rest Instant Cabin Tent.
It’s aimed at smaller families, groups, or couples for 3 season camping, performing best in hot conditions.
Blackout tents are known for their ability to obstruct any light from getting inside to get a great night’s sleep, or nap during the day.
It’s important for these kinds of tents to also have great circulation, as the all-black interior can absorb heat easily.
As the blackout effect is one of the biggest selling points, we want to dissect every feature of this tent so you can see if it’s truly worth your money.
The luring quality is that it is an instant pitch tent, alleviating the hassle of setting up for an hour, reducing to minutes.
Continue reading to discover the detailed specs, our top-rated features, and an overall review.
Ozark Trail 6 Person Dark Rest Cabin Tent Review
Our First Thoughts
For a small family of 3 or a couple, this is a safe and comfortable tent to go for. We feel that the full black interior lining of this tent is a very smart design aspect, as it’s constructed to eliminate a high amount of light.
It’s certainly an affordable option for those on a budget. Even with the lower price, it has a steadfast construction that’s reliable for light to moderate winds. It has a sort of cabin shape with a dome roof, and there seems to be a lot of floor space.
Even though it’s made for 6 people, 2 or 3 people is the optimum amount in order to leave room for storage of gear. It’s not too heavy considering it is built for a medium-capacity, so it may be possible to take backpacking if you share the weight with others.
While this certainly isn’t a tent for off-road rugged camping, it’s a great choice for casual camping in moderate conditions.
Important Specs at a Glance
120“L x 108“W x 66“H
Instant Set-Up with Pre-Assembled Frame
Polyester, Mesh, Vinyl
Steel Stakes & Tent Poles
43“L x 8“W
Overview of Features
- Dark Rest Technology
- 3-Layer Roof
- 10 Minute Set Up
- Full Mesh Roof
- Water Resistant Rainfly
- Mesh Windows
- Wall Storage Pockets & Top Gear Loft
- Electric Cord Access
- Roof Panels to Adjust Sunlight
- Carry Bag Included
What We Love – Our Top 3 Features
We’ve summarised our top 3 favorite parts about this tent, so you can get an idea of the standout features that make this different from the other instant dark rest tents for sale today.
GOLD QUALITY – Blackout Technology
Our first chosen feature is the innovative Dark Rest Technology that is exclusive to Ozark Trail. It’s one of the best things about this tent because it blocks out a lot of sunlight. We love this because it allows you to rest and nap during the day, without worrying about light getting in and waking you up.
With various panels found on the ceiling, we appreciate that you can customize the light levels at any time. They act as skylights. If you don’t want things completely dark during the day, like if you’re chilling or reading a book inside, you can keep a panel open.
SILVER FEATURE – Good Ventilation
Every tent needs a high amount of air circulation, but with blackout tents, this is one of the most important features to have. As the whole interior is covered in black fabric, the various mesh windows and ground vent are crucial for providing airflow.
This ground vent is hooded, which means that you can keep it open, even when it rains. This provides improved ventilation and sucks cold air from the ground to flow throughout the tent.
The roof also has mesh, in fact, each panel is completely screened. When both the fly and internal black sections are removed, you can stargaze at night and stay protected from bugs.
BRONZE HIGHLIGHT– 3-Layered Roof
The triple layering comes from the interior blackout panels, the mesh roof, and the outer rainfly. Not only do these 3 sections give protection, but they can also help to trap in a little more warmth than usual. We still think this tent won’t work well in colder conditions, but this element can be very handy for cold nights.
The layers also make this tent much more versatile than your average cabin model for 6-people. You can choose when light can enter, when you want complete darkness, and when you need shielding against light rain. You’re not limited to just one or two options.
Main Overview – Breaking Down Every Detail
The Dark Rest Technology is definitely a distinguishing feature of this tent. It keeps out a fair amount of sunlight, which can come in handy on a camping trip more often than you might think. As we mentioned, it’s perfect for when you want to sleep during the day. While you might think you’ll be full of energy and doing activities every day, sometimes it’s nice to relax and regain some energy.
Although you may think the deep black fabrics will cause a heat overload, the ventilation and special material used in this tent ensure that things stay cool during the day.
It’s easy for a model like this to trap all the warmth inside, so it’s important to leave the windows and roof open during the daytime.
Another benefit of dark technology is that you’re able to watch the stars in a lot more detail than if you were to use a regular tent. Turn off any source of light like torches and phones and leave the mesh roof open to gaze at the wonders of the sky.
Worried about a build-up of heat? This tent has some great options for ventilation. There are 3 large windows all panelled with mesh, plus the roof is meshed, so when removed you can enjoy some stargazing on a clear night.
Improved air circulation can be found with the lower ground opening. It has a hood over it to shield from moisture, so things can stay dry inside. It’s located at the back, so you can place the sleeping bags or mattresses in that area to get the most out of the airflow.
One thing to keep in mind is the plastic vinyl panels on the flysheet. If you’re relying on air circulation from the ground vent, it may be difficult for the air to escape from the roof when it’s closed off.
This can cause some condensation, so think about this if you’re going to a location that’s known for rain. The fly does sit slightly above the mesh windows, but the walls slope down so it might not be a good idea to keep those open while it rains.
Set Up & Storage
The assembly is standard that you will find with tents that aren’t instant or pop-up. It can take anywhere from 10 to 30 minutes, depending on your experience. It comes with poles, stakes, and guylines that you must feed through the sleeves and secure down. This gives it a very sturdy build.
Weighing 20 lbs, it’s not as heavy as some others on the market with the same capacity. You could probably get away with taking it backpacking as long as you have others to share the load.
We believe this quality is what makes this tent stand out from other 3-season editions. While it has a full-mesh roof, there are black fabric panels inside that you can zip open or close, and also the outer rainfly. You can preserve warmth quite well or get a nice breeze through the exposed ceiling.
Unfortunately, there is no labeled waterproof rating that comes with this tent. We’d say it rests probably around 600mm, so don’t take it in heavy rainfall, just to be safe. Though, with the triple layers, it seems there is good protection against light to medium showers.
Most Asked Questions – We’ve Got You Covered
Is It Really That Dark?
It blocks out about 90% of light. At night time, it gets very dark inside, much more than a normal tent.
How Warm Does It Get Inside?
The Dark Rest Technology fabric is designed to stay cool during the day, but we do recommend trying to keep the mesh windows open for increased airflow when it’s very hot outside.
Our Final Thoughts
Overall, this Ozark Trail 6 Person Dark Rest Tent is very efficient at keeping things blacked out inside for a night of better sleep.
You’re getting fantastic value based on the lower-end price, and it offers quite a good amount of space inside. A small family, group, or couple can comfortably camp inside during 3-seasons.
You’re getting triple layers for colder weather, which is something you won’t find a lot at this price.
Another thing that we love is that you can customize the light levels when you’re inside. For casual and experienced campers alike, we think the sturdy structure and high level of darkness inside make this an awesome 6-person tent.