Coleman Montana 8 Person Tent Review

3/5

Our Verdict

The Coleman Montana Elite 8 is a lighted tent with a maximum capacity of 8 people. We recommend it for campers looking for a large tent for car camping with a family or a small group of friends.
 

Pros

Hinged door.
Angled windows keep rain away.
Homey awning also helps keep rain away.

Cons

Leaks a little.
Only 6’2 at the absolute center.

As someone who comes from a large family and loves camping, I understand the struggles of the hunt for a large tent.

I’m also part of a laid-back, fun-loving friend group who enjoy the outdoors—the two demographics cross over when it comes to finding the perfect first tent.

You’re probably not looking for anything fancy, and definitely nothing that takes forever to set up. You want to get right to relaxation and fun—so let’s dig deep into our Coleman Montana 8 person tent review and see if it delivers.

The Coleman Montana 8 person tent is a simple starter tent and budget buy, but with a handful of more premium features, like a hinged door. It fits three queen size mattresses and can sleep eight, but it’s better with six. Excellent for large families and friend groups.

About the Product

Who’s It For?

The Coleman Montana 8 person tent is for big families, big friend groups and big fun. It’s your most basic type of tent but blown up to house 8 people, serving as an excellent shelter for sleeping and talking your way through the night.

Families would benefit gratefully from the tent—especially families with lots of little ones. The setup is simple enough so the smallest ones won’t get bored, and it’s easy enough for the bigger little ones to help out.

As far as first tents go, this is a fantastic budget buy that’ll let you try out the joys of camping as a family. If the kids hate it? No worries, it’s not like the tent was a huge investment. Maybe the parents can whip the tent out on a kid-free weekend with friends.

For friends, this tent is also excellent. The Coleman Montana isn’t so plain that’d turn avid-campers away from it, but it’s not too basic so it won’t turn off newbie campers in your friend group, either.

The experienced and seasoned campers in the group fight over its simplicity? No problem, the tent is spacious enough for you to stand and sulk on opposite sides of it.

You won’t be able to stay quite as far apart when night falls, but sleep on the mattresses on opposite sides of the tent and keep four to six non-arguing friends between you.

Features and Benefits 

Although plain, there are a few excellent features and benefits this tent has to offer that’ll serve the six to eight of you well. Others aren’t so wonderful, but you can remedy the issues with a few additional purposes.

Durability: What Can It Withstand?

If you intend to make camping a frequent activity, this tent won’t last too long. A year, two or three if you’re lucky, but eventually, something will tear the fabric or buckle the poles. At this price, it wasn’t made to be a decades-long camping buddy.

Customers have had mixed experiences with its durability in the time they’ve had it. Some claim the fabric is lightweight but shockingly durable, and they’ve had no negative experiences. Others say it’s no good in the wind.

There are also several reports of leaks, so it’s not so durable when rain hits; consider sealing the seams, waterproof-spraying the fabric and getting a tarp to help the rainfly.

If you have your heart set on the Coleman Montana tent range but don’t love what you hear about this one, the Coleman Montana 6-person tent holds up better in wind and rain. This is likely due to its more compact size.

Want to stick with the 8 person tent? Go camping in summer and in an area that lacks strong winds. Feel free to check out the rest of this Coleman Montana 8 person tent review before deciding.

Size: How Many Fit Inside the Tent?

The Coleman Montana 8 person tent can easily fit eight in the day time. Pull out a few chairs—maybe beanbags for kids—and sit around, chatting if you’re not in the mood to venture outside.

Its center height is tall enough to have you skip the chairs and stand around instead—just make sure you’re under 6’2. 

By night, it’s a different story.

You can fit 8 people in the tent on 3 queen sized airbeds and two singles, but it’ll be more comfortable without the singles. So really, it’s more of a 6 person tent—still plenty of space for a large family or friend group.

Group of three friends with a guitar outside a tent

Setup: Can You Do It Alone?

This is quite a large tent, so the setup will go faster with two people. Don’t worry if only one in your party knows how to set up a tent, though. You can still get it done.

If we’re being honest, some customers state they’ve had a tent that was easier to set up. Still, with the snag-free continuous pole sleeves and the pin and ring system, setup shouldn’t take more than 15 minutes for an experienced camper.

For less experienced campers, it may take a little longer, but you can get your family to help you and make it a fun activity.

Features: What Does This Simple Tent Have to Offer?

There are a few features for efficiency and to help you stay dry, and others that make various types of access easy. 

Awning

We’ve admitted it’s not the most waterproof tent in the world, but the awning will help keep you dry inside the tent. It’s part of the rainfly and sits above the hinged door.

The awning is a clever inclusion on the Coleman Montana 8 person tent as the door is half mesh. It’s easier for the rain to wiggle through this, especially when it’s heavy.

A more angled awning would be better for keeping the rain out, but you could dangle a tarp from it to boost the awning’s aid. It’d be a pain to cover the whole door with a tarp—what if you need to go use the bathroom?—but hanging a tarp in front of it lets you exit freely. Duck around the tarp, simple as that.

Angled Windows

The angled windows are more efficient at keeping things dry inside the tent. Unless the rain is shooting off the ground, you’re pretty safe from mishaps.

Some customers may not like the angled windows of the Coleman Montana 8 though—they don’t let in much light, and ventilation could be better. But in rainy climates, I’d rather have a dry floor than a sun-soaked tent interior.

E-Port

If you can’t sleep or are trapped inside the tent by daytime rain, the e-port is an excellent inclusion.

Run an outdoor extension cable to your car, and don’t forget the car adapter. Now you can:

  • Charge your phone.
  • Power your laptop for movies.
  • Get some string lights working in the tent.
  • Power an electric heater if it’s chilly.

Although a fantastic convenience, the opportunity for electrical power inside is really more for creating cozy scenarios for bonding with your loved ones.

Or creating another argument with your friends—you’ve settled the tent debate, but now who picks the movie? 

Hinged Door

A feature that sets the Coleman Montana 8 apart from other simple tents is the hinged door. Rather than zipping yourself in and out all the time, you can swing the hinged door open and bound out into the wilderness with vigor.

This makes carrying small children and small animals out of the tent much easier. It also adds a homey feel to your tent—after a long day of outdoor activities, you get to swing your door open, kick off your shoes and dive right into bed.

If you’ve had a frustrating day, enough to make a person mad, the hinged door makes it possible to remove some of the rage that a tricky or stuck zipper would bring, too.

Social Proof

We’ve admitted to the good and the bad; now what about the proof? Let’s look at customer comments that back up what our review claims about the 8 person Coleman Montana tent.

We have this tent. It’s very spacious, good ventilation, amazing view (when the fly is off), but it does leak a bit in some storms. We were in a fairly small storm that only dropped three or four inches of rain, and there was probably a cup of water in the tent. We sprayed it though, and now it’s fine. Definitely a good purchase.

This camper had a leak but was able to control it with waterproofing spray. Aside from that, no issues!

I bought mine 2 years ago, and I like it quite a bit. My only problems (which led me to buy a different tent this week) is that it’s not quite deep enough to fit my cot without it touching the sides. It’s 7ft deep, and my cot is about 7ft too. It’s also not quite tall enough for me to stand up straight in (except in the exact center), but I’m 6ft 2in.

These won’t be problems for most people though. I’m just a huge person who likes big camping gear.

The only other problem I had was with the “hinged” door. It works pretty well, but the velcro didn’t always catch for me. I think magnetic strips would work better.

Otherwise, it’s great. Mine has stayed bone-dry in the middle of a huge downpour, although maybe some water could get in if there was a lot of wind too.

This camper had a better rain experience with the 8 person Coleman Montana tent. Although if you’re super tall, the camper notes your head will be on the ceiling. They also note that the door could be better.

I have this tent; got it as a gift. I would say it’s good for what it is. I am 6’3” and have no issues moving around in it. Very spacious, especially for your family. You won’t have any issues fitting a tall queen air mattress in it. I haven’t used it in the rain, so I can’t speak to how it holds up during rain/storms.

Contrasting the last camper, this camper who’s even taller had no issues moving around the tent and found it good for what it is—that being a budget, beginner tent.

Alternatives

The Coleman Montana 8 isn’t the tent for everyone. That’s fine! Consider these other 8 person capacity tents similar to the Coleman Montana 8:

Coleman 8-Person Instant Cabin Tent

As swift as it goes by, 15 minutes of setup is too much for some. Plus, 6’2 center height isn’t enough for taller folk.

This instant tent pops up to 6’7 in 60 seconds and has a privacy screen inside as well as the same patented welded floors as the Coleman Montana 8 tent.

Here’s how the tents differ, the instant cabin has:

  • Less floor space.
  • More height.
  • Faster assembly.
  • Higher price.
  • Larger windows.

Check it out here.

Wenzel 8-Person Klondike Tent

If you liked the tent above but find it too pricey, here’s a more affordable alternative to the Coleman Montana 8 person tent. 

There’s a divider inside letting you create two separate sleeping areas. If you use the screen room, there’s a third private place to sleep.

It’s definitely a personal-privacy-focused tent. Although, you’ll need tarps to cover the windows and screen room, so you have privacy from the outside too.

Here’s what this has that the Coleman Montana 8 tent doesn’t:

  • Screen room.
  • Interior dividers.
  • Large windows that let in light.
  • Extra ventilation.

See it here.

TETON Sports Mesa Canvas 8-Person Tent

If your group falls in love with camping and wants a sturdier tent to withstand the years, here’s one that’ll work well. It’s canvas, which lasts longer than typical tent material.

Setup is fast and easy, doors and ceilings are tall, and there’s easy access for power too.

What the Coleman Montana tent lacks in comparison:

  • Tough outer material.
  • Extra-large awning.
  • Two doors, extra wide.
  • Loft and wall organizers.
  • A hefty price tag.

Check this tent out here.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is the Coleman Montana Tent Waterproof?

The Coleman Montana tent is decently waterproof, but customers had some leaks. They solved it with waterproofing spray.

Is This a Good Tent for Eight People?

Yes, this is a good tent for eight people and is larger than many alternative tents of a similar capacity. That said, you’ll be more comfortable with six occupants.

Is It Easy to Carry?

Yes, this tent is easy to carry and comes with an expandable carry bag. Weight-wise it’s a little over 20 pounds, which isn’t too much for a capable adult.

How to Setup the Coleman Montana

Go solo or grab a friend, and do the following:

  • Lay the tent out on flat land, door facing the direction you want the entrance to be.
  • Stake the tent.
  • Assemble and slide the poles through the sleeves on the tent.
  • Stretch the tent taught until it stands free and large.
  • Attach the rain fly.

What’s the Difference Between the standard and Elite Montana?

The Elite Montana tent comes with a tri-setting light.

Staked Out

The Coleman Montana is an excellent tent for six to eight people in dry conditions. Treat it well, and it works in rain, too.

It’s nothing fancy, a total starter tent with a few extra-desirable features. It gets the job done as a shelter for large groups of family and friends.

Model sizes

Alternatives

Technical specs

Price: $
Doors: 1
Weight: 24.5 lbs
E-Port: Yes
Comfort Capacity: 5-6
Width: 16'
Length: 7'
Height: 6.2'

Disclosure

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

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