The Kampa Kielder 5 air tent is a very practical, family- and beginner friendly tent that’s easy to pitch and has plenty of space inside. In this review I wanted look at the details and how the Kampa Kielder 5 compares to other 5 person tents.
Kampa Kielder 5 Air Tent Review
The Kampa Kielder 5, along with its smaller sibling the Kielder 4 are exclusive to Winfields Outdoors and they have been on the market for a couple of years now (at least).
In this Kampa Kielder 5 Air tent review I am covering the following topics;
- Who is the Kampa Kielder 5 for?
- Ease of transport, pitching, pakcing up
- Dimensions, layout
- Living Area
- Fabrics, weather protection
- Summary, alternatives to consider
Who is it for?
Thanks to its inflatable beams, large internal space and the quality of the materials used the Kampa Kielder 5 is recommended for couples and small families, beginners and more seasoned campers alike. It’s one of the cheaper ones amongst the mid-range air tents, but some of the features can only be found on much more expensive tents, so I would equally recommend the Kielder 5 to those who do expect quality for the money paid, but don’t want to dig too deep in the family budget. With the bundle deals available, it is easy to grab a bargain.
Ease of transport, pitching
The Kampa Kielder 5 comes in a 75 x 44 x 42cms carrybag that weighs almost 27 kgs. This is slightly above average for a 5-person air tent, but there’s a reason for that: the flysheet is much thicker and heavier than what you can call usual for a 5-person tent in this price range. Still, it is not too heavy, and it’s slightly smaller than a 6-person air-tent for example. (What’s more important, is that you can put the tent back into the bag when you have rolled it up.) The stakes come in a separate bag, the pump is also in the bag, the tent itself is rolled up tightly and banded up. The bag fits into the bot of a smaller car and you still have enough space for other camping gear.
Keep in mind, that any extras that you might buy in a bundle (or separately), will come separately – so footprint, carpet, vestibule will come on top of the standard carrybag.
Pitching is easy, even for someone who has never seen an inflatable tent before. If you have got a footprint, pitching the tent starts with laying and pegging the footprint down first. The tent itself rolls out easily, you only need to ensure that the beams are somewhat straight and the air can flow into them freely along their entire length.
The package includes a handpump with a psi gauge. The air valves are pretty standard, the nozzle fits easily. Pumping up the beams is not hard work and does not take long, but if you’d like to increase the speed of pitching the Kampa Kielder 5 you might want to consider an electric pump – Kampa has one that I can fully recommend – you just set the psi and watch the tent inflating.
You have 4 air beams to inflate, and then there’s one pole to strech out the front canopy.
The guylines are bright, but sadly, the pegs are made of plastic so I recommend getting some proper ones, if you know you are going to use the Kielder 5 frequently, or at places that are prone to more sever weather (especially wind).
Pitching takes around 25 minutes, but with a it of practice and the help of you partner it can be easily reduced to 15 minutes.
Packing away is even easier, the only thing needs practicing is the part where you roll up the tent to ensure it fits in the bag.
The Kampa Kielder 5 is somewhat middle gound, in terms of size. There are bigger tents, of course, yet, there will rarely be a situation where you’d find that the Kielder 5 is small. Without the vestibule, the Kampa Kielder 5 is 580 cms long, which is already a good indicator of the space inside. It is 345 cms wide, so it is only few centimetres short of being a size of a 6-person tent. The overall size of the footprint is 20 square metres.
In terms of height / headroom, there are tents that have more headroom on paper, yet, the Kielder 5 does not perform poorly in this section. The internal height is around 2 metres that slightly declines towards the back of the tent. But even in the bedrooms you will find around 175-180 cms of internal height, which is more than enough to stand upright with no issues.
In terms of the layour, the Kielder 5 is a tunnel tent. The bedrooms are in the back, the living area is situated in the middle, while the main entrance is through the porch. There is also one side door.
The bedrooms are in the back of the tent, situated next to each other. There is a master bedroom that, on paper, is big enough for three adults but we have seen that this is not always the case. The smaller bedroom is a double bedroom. There’s 65 cm allocated per head in each bedroom – this is not too bad but there are tents that are more generous with the bedroom space.
More importantly, you can fit three single mattresses / camping beds in the bigger bedroom, so it really can accomodate 3 people. However, I imagine, the Kampa Kielder 5 will be most ideal for a family with 3 kids, where the parents sleep in the smaller bedroom.
In terms of versatility, the divider between the bedrooms can be removed easily, so you can have one big bedroom if you’d like.
The bedrooms are made of a darker polyester fabric, but they are not ‘black out’ bedrooms.
You can access the living room through the side door or through the main door from the porch. The living room is decent, almost 9 square metres without the porch. That’s plenty of space for having a couple of chairs, a table and an organiser, and still have some space to move around. Although, it might prove a bit small if you do have 3 kids.
The Kampa Kielder 5 Air feels bright, the windows are huge, and the light grey colour of the flysheet helps a lot too. The windows have curtains that you can close full or half.
The side door has full mesh to keep the bugs out.
There’s only one cable entry point so you need to be smart with the orientation of the Kielder 5, or get a really long extension cable.
I’d say that a carpet is a must, it just raises to comfort level of the living room and also protects the ground sheet.
The groundsheet at the main entrance can drop flat, but quite annoyingly there’s a gap between the groundsheet and the door where cold / water / anything can get in. You can either diy some velcro on it to close the gap, or attach the vestible that comes with its own groundsheet and protects the main entrance from the elements.
Apart from that gap that seems like a design flaw, there are plenty of air vents to help maintain a steady airflow across the tent.
The canopy extends as far as a metre above the entrance, which is around average if not slightly larger than average in this price range. It provides a shelter above the main entrance, and it also has its own ground sheet that can be rolled up (the rest of the tent has sewn-in groundsheet). I recommend adding the vestibule to your order for the reasons discussed above.
As mentioned above, the canopy has a fibreglass pole.
Fabrics, weather protection
This is one area where the Kampa Kielder 5 is way ahead of its competition. The flysheet is made of polyester, but it’s much thicker than other – more expensive – tents usually have. The codename for it is 150D Weathershield fabric, it is also fire retardant and UV Protected.
Sadly, the description somewhat lacks the details on the product page…unless it is a fabric made specifically for Winfields Outdoors / Kielder range, it must be the WeatherShield PRO 150D (as the cheaper WeatherShield is only 75D thick). It also means – although it is not detailed by Winfields Outdoors – that the flysheet has 6000mm HH rating (which is sort of tells you how waterproof the flysheet is) and UPF50+ UV protection (you can’t get any better).
More info and explanation on HH rating and others, plus a little comparison chart of tent fabrics of different makers in this post: Tent materials, fabrics, specifications and all the acronyms. FAQ.
The groundsheet is fully sewn-in and the seams are taped to make sure that no water gets in. The groundsheet’s heaviness is 130 g/m² and also has a waterproof coating that has a 10,000 mm HH rating which is outstanding not just in this price range, but across the entire market.
The weakest point of the Kampa Kielder 5 seems to be the plastic stakes, so one recommended upgrade would be getting these metal stakes.
Despite the great fabrics, condensation may build up on the inside wall of the flysheet in colder weather. That’s pure physics, as polyester does not have great thermal properies. This is something you’ll have to live with, although this ultra quiet dehumidifier or this Kampa camping heater may help a bit.
Summary – Kampa Kielder 5 Air Tent Review
The Kampa Kielder 5 has many great features that even more expensive tents don’t have. It beats the competition easily, and could be the perfect companion for couples and smaller families. The living area is decent, the bedrooms are above average, the bundle price is very tempting.
There are very few tents that are worth considering as an alternative. It may be worth having a look at the Lichfiled Eagle Air 5 or the Outdoor Revolution Airedale 5.0S (OutdoorWorldDirect, WinfieldsOutdoors). But you’ll see that these are either smaller, or otherwise inferior to the Kampa Kielder 5; or they are more expensive. Or both.