Sleeping With Your Motorcycle; You Know You Want To

With the increased popularity of adventure bikes, so increases the need for good camping gear suitable for your motorcycle excursions. You want gear that is lightweight and compact so you can pack all you need without exceeding your bike’s maximum weight rating or your storage capacity. Looking at tents, the same criteria for backpacking fits the bill for motorcycling. It must be lightweight, but strong and waterproof, and pack into as small a package as possible. What separates your adventures from a backpacker, however, is the availability to park your motorcycle in the tent with you — protected from the weather and safe from prying eyes — while you sleep. Not all of my picks for best motorcycle camping tents let you do that; things like ease of assembly, quality and creature comforts took first priority.

(Continue reading for my picks for the five best motorcycle camping tents.}

0Big Agnes Seedhouse SL10

5 Best Motorcycle Camping Tents Exterior Products
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If your adventures are solo or you only need to provide shelter for yourself, Big Agnes makes the Seedhouse SL1 tent in Titanium Green for $279.95. With a large D-shaped door, excellent ventilation, quick setup and waterproof nylon, the Seedhouse SL1 packs up into a roll 4 inches by 17 inches that weighs just over two and a half pounds.

That’ll fit quite readily in a saddlebag or strapped across your handlebars. It’s a three-season tent with reflective guylines and tent webbing so it is easy to find when making your way back from a midnight nature call. The Seedhouse SL1 has two interior mesh bags to stow your gear, and has gear loops installed to accommodate the accessory overhead gear hammock or the Big Agnes Entertainment Center loft.

Seedhouse SL1 Specifications:
Seasons: three-season
Design type: Free-standing
Sleeping Capacity: 1
Fly / footprint pitch weight: 1 pound 10 ounces
Average minimum weight: 2 pounds 2 ounces
Average packaged weight: 2 pounds 9 ounces
Maximum width: 43 inches
Maximum length: 113 inches
Sleeping Bay: 90 inches x 43 inches
Vestibule area: 5 square feet
Vestibules: 1
Head height: 38 inches
Foot Height: 16 inches
Doors: 1
Floor fabric: Lightweight silicone treated nylon rip-stop with a 1,200 mm waterproof polyurethane coating
Rainfly fabric: Lightweight silicone treated nylon rip-stop with a 1,200 mm waterproof polyurethane coating
Pole material: TH72M aluminum
Packed size: 4 x 17 inches
Groundsheet: sold separately

0MSR ELIXIR™ 20

5 Best Motorcycle Camping Tents Exterior Products
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More than likely, your bike adventures include a friend, and the folks at Mountain Safety Research have you covered. The MSR Elixir 2 is a freestanding, lightweight two-person tent for $249.95. Easy to assemble, the Elixir 2 weighs in at just under six pounds and folds up into a 7- by 20-inch bundle to fit in a storage bag or bungee to the backrest.

With a bathtub-style floor and taped-seam rainfly, you’ll stay warm and dry in this three-season shelter. It has two doors and two vestibules, which means you don’t have to climb over your companion to get in or out. If assembly isn’t your strong suit, the Elixir 2 features color-coded poles, clips and webbing to get you set up quickly, and interior pockets give you places to stow your gear. Of the tent choices on my five-best list, the Elixir 2 is the only one that includes the additional groundsheet.

Elixir 2 Specifications:
Seasons: three-season
Design type: freestanding
Sleeping Capacity: 2
Rainfly Weight: 1 pound 10 ounces
Average minimum weight: 4 pounds 10 ounces
Average packaged weight: 5 pounds 13 ounces
Maximum width: 110 inches
Maximum length: 84 inches
Floor Area : 29 square feet
Sleeping Bay: 84 inches x 50 inches
Vestibule Area: 17.5 (8.75 + 8.75) square feet
Tent Volume: 45 cubic feet
Peak height: 40 inches
Doors: 2
Floor fabric: 70 taffeta nylon 3,000 mm Durashield polyurethane & DWR
Rainfly fabric: 68D ripstop polyester 1,500 mm Polyurethane & DWR
Canopy Fabric: 40D ripstop nylon
Mesh Type: 20D nylon micromesh
Number of poles: 2
Pole material: 7000 series aluminum
Packed size: 7 inches x 20 inches
Groundsheet: Included

0Hilleberg Staika0

5 Best Motorcycle Camping Tents Exterior Products
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I couldn’t possibly have a "best tent" list without a Hilleberg representative. The Hilleberg Staika is a dome-style, freestanding two-person tent and it is the only four-season tent on my list for those of you whose adventures include snow. (Ural sidecar riders, I’m looking at you.) It’s also the most expensive tent on the list at $945.

You get what you pay for, though, and Hilleberg tents have weathered the worst Mother Nature has to offer even on the Arctic tundra so I’m confident it can handle the weather anywhere an adventure bike can go. Among the non-garage tents on the list, the Staika is the heaviest at almost nine pounds, but it is spacious and stable. For all its sturdiness, the Staika folds up into a manageable 8- by 22-inch bundle — quite doable for onboard storage compartments or bungeed to your backrest.

Staika Specifications:
Seasons: Four-season
Design type: Dome, Freestanding
Sleeping Capacity: 2
Minimum Weight: 7 pounds 8 ounces
Packed Weight: 8 pounds 13 ounces
Maximum width: 55 inches
Maximum length: 90 inches
Sleeping Bay: 90 inches x 55 inches
Vestibule area: 9.7 square feet
Vestibules: 2
Peak height: 43 inches
Doors: 2
Outer tent fabric: Kerlon 1800
Number of poles: 3
Pole material: Aluminum
Pole diameter: 10 mm
Pegs: 16 Y-Peg
Packed size: 8 inches x 22 inches
Groundsheet: sold separately

0Lone Rider Mototent0

5 Best Motorcycle Camping Tents Exterior Products
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You want to sleep with your motorcycle, now admit it. The three-season Mototent from the folks at Lone Rider houses up to two people and your motorcycle and still has room for your gear and an ample "patio" area where you can sit and relax or cook out of the weather. A color-coded pole system helps you set this up quickly. The 51-inch-wide motorcycle bay is wide enough for full-size adventure bikes and attached hard cases.

At 12 pounds, this is the lighter of the two garage tents but at 9 inches by 24 inches, it is the larger bundle when folded up. Still, if it takes up too much room in a storage case, bungee it to the backrest. I like the 6-foot-plus ceiling height, and with four doors and two vestibules, you won’t have to climb over your companion. As an added bonus, you can detach the inner tent and use the outer tent as a large garage for doing maintenance and repairs on your bike. The Mototent can be yours for $499.00.

Mototent Specifications:
Seasons: three-season
Design type: Tunnel, Non-freestanding
Sleeping Capacity: 2
Weight (poles, fly, inner tent, guy lines, stuff sacks): 12 pounds
Maximum width: 94.5 inches
Maximum length: 163.4 in
Sleeping Bay: 94.5 x 55 inches
Motorcycle Bay: 94.5 x 51.2 Inches
Vestibules: 2
Peak height: 74.8 inches
Doors: 4
Floor fabric: Ultra light, Rip-stop, Fire-Retardant CPAI84, 10 000 mm waterproof coating, 190T Nylon
Rainfly fabric: Ultra light UV-Resistant, Rip-stop, Fire-Retardant CPAI84, 10 000 mm waterproof coating, 210T Polyester
Inner Tent fabric: Breathable Material, Fire-Retardant CPAI84
Pole material: Aircraft Grade Aluminium 7001-T6
Pegs: 19 Aircraft Grade Aluminium 7001-T6
Packed size: 9 inches x 24 inches

0Redverz Atacama Expedition Motorcycle Tent0

5 Best Motorcycle Camping Tents Exterior Products
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The folks at Redverz offer my last "best-list" pick with the Atacama Expedition Motorcycle Tent in green or yellow for $499.00. Another "sleep with your bike" tent, the garage bay is 36 inches wide — not as wide as the Mototent, but wide enough for a lot of bikes out there. An improvement over prior versions of the model, the Atacama has mosquito netting, and the 10-inch bathtub floor keeps you dry. At over 14 pounds, this is the heaviest tent on the list. However, it does fold down to a manageable 9- by 21-inch bundle. The sleeping area in the Atacama holds up to three people and is spacious enough to accommodate full-size cots and all your gear. Three people and four doors means no climbing over your bunk mates.

Atacama Specification:
Seasons: three-season
Design type: Hoop Design, Non-freestanding
Sleeping Capacity: 3
Fly / footprint pitch weight: 6 ounces
Average minimum weight: 14 pounds
Average packaged weight: 14 pounds 6 ounces
Maximum width: 102 inches
Maximum length: 195 inches
Sleep Area : 54 square feet
Sleeping Bay: 92 inches x 95 inches
Motorcycle Bay: 102 inches x 36 inches
Vestibule area: 58 square feet
Vestibules: 1
Peak height: 77 inches
Doors: 4
Floor fabric: Rip Stop Nylon 70D 190T 10,000 mm
Rainfly fabric: Coated ripstop nylon 68D 210T 4,000 mm
Inner Tent fabric: 75D 190T/P breathable
Mosquito Netting: Mesh B3
Number of poles: 3
Pole material: Aluminum 7001 T6, shock cord
Pole diameter: 11mm (2) 9.5mm (1)
Packed size: 9 inches x 21 inches
Groundsheet: sold separately and recommended
What do you think?
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