This Tent Could Radically Alter Your Camping Holiday Plans

The SmithFly Shoal Tent | Courtesy SmithFly
The SmithFly Shoal Tent | Courtesy SmithFly
Photo of Peter Ward
Tech Editor19 October 2017

Camping is an excellent fall activity in the United States, but there are a few rules to follow. One of those is to find a good spot to pitch your tent, something that can be a challenge at times. But a new type of tent is extending campsite options significantly.

The shoal tent, made by Smithfly, lets you pitch your tent on water. As the company’s website says: “The world is your waterbed.”

The tent consists of an inflatable floating raft, with a tent on top. There are no pesky tent poles to contend with, and when inflated it can stand up to high winds. The raft body has three air chambers; two in the lower tube and one in the structure. The floor is 6 inches thick, and doubles as an air mattress.

SmithFly Shoal Tent | Courtesy SmithFly

The shoal tent isn’t cheap, however. The kit includes a storage bag, patch set, and manual foot pump, but costs around $1,500. Smithfly is taking pre-orders and the product will be available in December 2017 or January 2018.

If floating on water doesn’t take your fancy, then there a number of other weird and wonderful tent options out there. The Cocoon Hanging Tree tent, for example, suspends you in the air inside a cozy looking pod.

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Meanwhile, if you’re worried about storms, you can always opt for a lightning proof tent. Finnish designer Kama Jania created a tent that could withstand a lightning strike. The Bolt tents have a grounding device that captures the electricity from lightning and channels it away from those inside.

And for those who are taking their tents to musical festivals, there’s always the Bang Bang tents, which harness solar power to play music, flash lights, and charge your devices.

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