The Coleman Octagon Blackout 8 was supposed to be traveling with me to lots of festivals this year but instead we are now enjoying our own back garden festivals and family camping trips in style.
The Coleman favourite now boasts its trademark BlackOut Bedroom® technology as well as additional UV protection. I honestly cant tell you enough what a game changer this is. I would never go back to a non-blackout tent now after reviewing our Coleman Pinto Mountain Plus last year. Before the Pinto the kids would usually wake with the birds at 4am every morning. Every camper knows bedtime goes out the window on holiday so getting an extra few hours in the morning is a godsend and stops a day of whining tired children. The Coleman Octagon BlackOut 8 is just as good at keeping the light out until a more earthly hour.
The Coleman Octagon BlackOut 8 is an eight-sided tent with 360° views. It’s basically like living in a fabulous gazebo. I’ve always wanted a Tepee but the lack of windows and reported chilly-ness at night has put me off. The Octagon Blackout 8 offers all the benefits of ample living space, can block up to 99% of daylight but has climate control too. Making it 5°C cooler during the day and 1°C warmer at night. I can vouch for the cosines too. We were snug as a bug, and as a family of four we had loads of space.
It does say you can get 8 in but I would only recommend this capacity for friends sharing at a festival. I personally like to have a bit of space for all our camping gear and room to stretch out on my blow-up mattress! The full-height headroom means you could get some of those fab double camping bunks though to further utilise the space.
Getting it up
Now I’m not a tent novice but I was quite apprehensive about putting up this shaped design. As with all Coleman tents we’ve had, the instructions are conveniently sewn into the bag on waterproof material, and were really easy to follow. There was only 8 poles, and to be honest once I’d looked at the first two and then the colour coded poles I didn’t even use it. We put the inner up first and then the fly sheet over the top all in about 15 minutes! My sister who had volunteered to help was even impressed as past tents have all taken about 20 or more minutes to set up.
The pack size is 85 x 35 x 35 cm so the rectangle fits snuggly into your car boot. The Coleman Octagon BlackOut 8 does have a total weight of 29.8 kg but the integrated wheels on the carrier make it easy to move. In my opinion it comfortably sleeps 4-6 people, and as previously stated would say that 8 people would be more for festival use. Having said that though my friend and fellow blogger Ruth, from Rock n Roller Baby, has the ‘baby’ version which she managed to squeeze her family of 5 into.
To be specific the sleeping area of the Coleman Octagon BlackOut 8 is 15.7m² and very versatile. I think it all depends on how you intend to use the tent.
The Coleman Octagon BlackOut 8 has a lot of cool features. One of which is the amazing full-height rigid hinged door. No more slithering like a snake for me and getting my hair stuck or fighting with bags. It’s a ‘proper door’ which is awesome, especially for the night-time loo nipping.
Although my two aren’t babies anymore we’ve always camped with them. The Additional UV protection by Coleman® UV Guard™ with a rating of SPF50 is very reassuring. Napping is a way of life for babes, so having that excellent protection against the suns ultraviolet rays just makes camping with little ones that bit easier.
As with our Coleman Pinto, the Octagon 8 has a sewn-in groundsheet so no leaks or wet gear and the taped flysheet keeps bugs out too. In fact you can remove the flysheet altogether and have a meshed gazebo for your summer barbecues and parties.
There’s some great pockets for bits and bobs on the walls. The optional divider means you can separate your glamping bedroom from your gear if you wish. Or you can just open the whole space out.
It feels so sturdy. Made with 19mm poles this self supportive tent design is not going anywhere fast. We’ve not even really used the guy ropes yet as the weather has not been bad enough to warrant their use for this tough tent. The only draw back with this is the tent is quite heavy but the bag is on wheels and has a rigid plastic bottom. The wheels are a handy feature to have so transporting your tent to your pitch shouldn’t be a problem like it has been for us at festivals like Camp Bestival.
I absolutely love it! The speed at which you can put it up, the shape and 360 degree look out (I’m very nosy). The absolute blackout, well I know it states 99% but I’ve never seen any other tent on the market that makes it so dark. The shape is perfect for festivals and it would only take up one pitch. The open-plan design feels really roomy and it has good head clearance. It’s a really versatile little number and I’m going to enjoy taking it out on other trips this summer. My thanks to Coleman for letting me test it out and report to you lovely lot.
Want to know more?
Visit the Coleman website for all their tents and camping essentials. One of my essentials for any camping trip is the Campingaz stove we’ve had for a few years. The Coleman Octagon BlackOut 8 is available in most camping stores. Plus, I know you can get a reduction in Go Outdoors if you are a member!
Edit : currently sold out at Go Outdoors so head here!
Happy Camping Crumblers.
Disclaimer; The Coleman Octagon BlackOut 8 was gifted for the purpose of review but as always the words are my own.