The Walkthrough Tour: Design and Features
The Wenzel Big Bear Tent is a 2-room family tunnel-dome tent designed to provide floorspace and headroom and to shed wind and rain.
The floorplan is 14' wide by 9' deep by 6' high.
A single Dutch D door leads into the tent body. The door rolls back to the side and ties off to secure open.
The upper panel of the door is a screen window with a roll-down storm flap.
The Dutch D door has 2 zippers: one, which travels along the top and side of the door and a second, which travels along the bottom.
Zipper flaps channel keep rain from running directly over the zipper track.
Inverted U shaped arch windows on each side wall have storm flaps, which roll down to open the screen. The flaps tuck into pockets at the bottom of the windows to allow a breeze through the tent.
A removable, hanging divider curtain partitions the tent from front to back into a larger and a smaller room. The divider attaches inside the tent body where the tent wall meets the hoop pole to the left of the door.
2 hanging pockets, 1 on each side of the back wall offer a storage space for small items to each room.
An e-port on the wall to the left of the door offers access for an electrical cord.
A brow pole extends from the pole frame over the front door and suspends the rainfly to form an awning over the entryway. The front window can be left partially open in vertical rain.
The 117 square feet of floorspace is rated to sleep up to 9.
The Wenzel Big Bear Tent should comfortably sleep 4-5 adults.
A 1000 Denier polyethylene tarp floor protects the floor of the tent from wet ground.
The Big Bear Tent features a uniquely designed Versifly, which is attached to the center section of the tent and covers ceiling mesh on the 2 adjacent sections. The red rainfly draws away from the outer two sections towards the center section and ties off. This exposes the ceiling mesh to improve ventilation or for stargazing. The Versifly allows tent campers to quickly open up ceiling vents without having to remove the rainfly.
The Big Bear weighs 18 lb.
In Wind And Rain
The Big Bear is designed to shed a moderate amount of wind, if it is pitched side into the wind.
The 3/4 rainfly hugs the upper tent body and shouldn't catch wind.
The 6' height allows most campers to stand inside the tent, but reduces the wind profile a bit to improve wind performance.
The front window is partially covered by the canopy over the door, which allows it to be left partially open in vertical rain.
The side windows are on slanted walls and must be sealed in the rain.
The rainfly overhangs the ceiling mesh by a good margin; As long as the zipper flaps protect the tracks, the tent should perform in moderate wind-driven rain.
The rainfly and wall fabric are coated to be waterproof to 600mm HH.
Campetent rates the Wenzel Big Bear Tent for moderate wind and rain.
In Warm And Cool Temperatures
The Versifly allows campers to quickly retract the rainfly from the ends of the tent to increase ventilation on very warm evenings.
The Big Bear has only 3 windows, one in the front door and one on each side wall. There are no windows on the back wall. In light wind, campers should face the tent into the wind.
On rainy days the tent will need to be largely shut up and may become stuffy.
There are no floor vents to ventilate the lower tent body. Windows can be left open, but unless there is a breeze, the lower tent body may become stuffy on very warm and hot still nights.
With 2 non-closable ceiling mesh panels, the tent will not retain heat very well on cool evenings. The 3/4 rainfly will reduce heat loss a bit. With warm sleeping gear, the Big Bear should be tolerable on moderately cool evenings.
Campetent rates this tent for warm and moderately cool temperatures.
With Sleeping Equipment
The peak of the Big Bear Tent is 6' high, so tall campers may have to stoop a little to get around.
The divider curtain can be hung to partition the inner tent into a smaller and a larger room for separate sleeping spaces.
The smaller room of the Big Bear is approximately 5' wide by 9' deep, tapers at the end, and will only hold a twin mattress or a single cot. 2 campers on self-inflating pads should be able to occupy this space.
The large room is about 9' wide by 9' deep, tapers at the end, and will hold a queen mattress or 2 cots comfortably.
3 tent campers should be able to sleep here on self-inflating pads.
The single entry door on this large tent may suit it more to larger parties of tent campers who are comfortable with a lot of contact with each other.
Conclusion: The Wenzel Big Bear Tent offers a tunnel-dome design to better shed wind and rain. The unique Versifly easily retracts from the ends to expose ceiling mesh for better ventilation on non-rainy days.
Disclaimer: Please note that Campetent does not own this product. Campetent has striven to provide accurate information for readers, but cannot guarantee that every detail is accurate. Tent campers should double check the info above against product literature.
This tent is not rated for wind. It has a limited warranty that covers defects in materials and workmanship. As with all tents, campers should carefully examine the features, materials and workmanship and make sure they are satisfied before purchasing or using the tent.