Campervans and tents and festival storms

Last weekend I went to Camp Bestival. Unusually for me I didn't take a tent! I fulfilled a bit of a bucket list dream and hired a gorgeous and retro VW campervan called Molly. She is pink! DD and I had an exhilarating drive, (exhilarating is the polite way of saying terrifying) from Sussex to Dorset. Old campers have no power steering (obviously) and a top speed of about 60mph (downhill with a good wind.) They take a while to get used to after driving a Fiat Panda I can tell you!

So the first hour was punctuated by swearing, giggling and screams, but once we were out of the country lanes and filled with petrol and on our way it was fine, Molly and I quickly became firm friends. VW Campers are great little campers for just 2 of you and real solid little things, Molly had no trouble with driving across fields uphill, and once parked up she was a glorious little home for 4 days of the festival.

It turned out to be a good year to choose to take a camper van, because the wind started to increase on Saturday and some tents didn't make it through to the evening. By Sunday morning, many tents had ripped, collapsed, lost guy ropes and generally been destroyed. Molly had been rocking and shaking in the wind too, so while I'm pretty sure our canvas tents Wilfrid and Lord Lichfield would have stayed strong (they have both weathered pretty fierce storms over the years) it was still nice to be snug as a bug in a VW!
I wondered how the tents had been faring though, once a tent lover always a tent lover, and so I asked twitter for information on the state of play.
 A huge amount of random data flooded in and I have used it to create a totally abstract and unscientific chart or two to show which tents do best in a storm. I only asked about tents still standing, so I have no idea if equal numbers of the tents mentioned also broke! And I have no idea of the number of each tent we started with, Vango might have won purely because 90% of the tents on site were Vangos! But whatever, here are the charts for your perusal.

From twitter conversation several tents got a thumbs down, but in each case the marketing team on twitter were really quick to offer help, advice and refunds, so kudos for that - and it was a big old storm!

To me it looks like an old fashioned bell tent is the best option if you can both afford it, and be bothered to lug it around (they are heavy). Pegging your tent correctly and keeping guy ropes taught is also high on the list for surviving a storm (use the correct tent pegs for the conditions). Smaller tents (heightwise) often cope better in a storm, the tents we saw collapsed tended to be large tunnel tents that had been 'side on' to the wind.

I'd love to have any comments below, did your tent survive the Camp Bestival storm of 2018? Let us know!

and if you fancy trying your luck at Camp Bestival in 2019 you can find out more here
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