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High Gear Venture 2 tent - review

These days when touring on the bike we need something extremely compact and light so we have a Venture 2 tunnel style tent made by High Gear, exclusive to the now widespread outdoor supplies chain Go Outdoors. It was good and cheap, two words that don't often go together, and so perfect for our limited budget whilst getting ready for our first trip to the Isle of Man!

It uses only two poles which are both the same size so no confusion during construction, and has a small but useful porch area (enough space for our muddy shoes and bike panniers anyway). It has a vent at the rear with a velcro tab which can be propped open for better airflow and the door can be rolled up and secured out of the way on a nice day. Being a tunnel style it's structure and rigidity relies heavily on good pegging but it does create a very strong and stable tent. In fact ours survived when many others didn't during the near-hurricane that flattened camp sites all across the Isle of Man when we were staying! Our only advice is to walk around and re-tighten the guy lines in both the morning and evening to stop any sagging and flap.

Inside the 'bedroom' is toggled to the outer skin and gives a nice dry space to sleep in with the usual fly netting to allow good air flow but keep out any unwelcome visitors. We find we both have plenty of elbow room which is surprising for a tent labelled as a 2 person (usually we have to go for a 3 person for any comfort!), and so have no worries about touching the sides and getting wet whilst sleeping provided that the guy ropes remain tight. There is a handy pouch on either side for personal items like phones, and plenty of room above and below our feet to keep some more things like our bags - again pleasantly surprising since we're both quite tall. 

Overall it's a very bright space to be inside, even when cloudy, though it does mean that you'll likely be awakened early by the sun unless you have a way of covering your eyes. Perhaps though it's mainly because we're so used to sleeping in the total darkness of Waki with our black-out blinds. Plenty of light for reading a book unaided on a rainy day!

Unfortunately the same Venture 2 tent is no longer available from Go Outdoors however it has been replaced with the Lombok 2 tent by Freedom Trail in a slightly different colour scheme. As much as I love the nice bright green on ours, the design itself is the most important aspect since it works so well and thankfully that has been kept the same. See below for the link to take you to the Go Outdoors website:

Go to Go Outdoors> 

Looking for a different style? Check out our guide to common tent styles for some helpful points.

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Sarah is an artist and writer with a lifetime interest in camping and survival techniques.

Living the #vanlife since before it was a hashtag and touring on two wheels with her husband Ryan, they have a wealth of camping and motorcycling knowledge to share, and know a thing or two about packing light! read more

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