My Dad and I go camping a lot and everywhere we go people ask us about our cotton tent so I thought I had better write a little about it on my Web Site.

Our Nordic inspired tipi is used by professionals in the most extreme conditions; it has been used in several arctic expeditions and had extensive use in the Scandinavian North Country. Tentipi is designed and made in Sweden especially for the harsh Arctic winters so my dad and I felt it would be suitable for our many 4 season camping expeditions in The Lake District  Scotland and Wales, the one we have is a Tentipi Safir 7 CP kåta (formerly this tent was called the Tentipi Varrie 7 CP) The flysheet is made using breathable Cotpolinex P (Cotpol T4 fabric Cotton and Polyester blended) with edging of Super polyamide Pine Green material at the bottom. We also use a freestanding Eldfell Pro (Size 7) Stainless Steel wood burning stove in the tent, which means in no time at all we can transform the interior into a lovely snug home from home on those cold wet and windy nights of which we have many in this country, the tent heats up really quickly with the right wood in the stove we also do all our cooking on it which is handy, the stove gives out so much heat that we have to keep the 3 mosquito netted storm flaps at the bottom of the Nordic tipi open most of the time otherwise you will be cooked right out of the tent or end up getting heat stroke, we now have a drying rack that fits round the top of the tent which is great for drying wet clothes ready for the next day.

The two main reasons we use this style of tent are that it can be erected and taken down both in about 10 minutes and even I can put it up using one hand with almost no help from Dad as it only has one central pole in the middle of the tent.
The other reason we love this tent is you can use it with an open fire in the centre preferably using a fire box so as not to scorch the ground and opening up the top vents or as we do with our old faithful Eldfell wood burning stove, because the fire is enclosed and it uses a sectional chimney it doesn’t get Smokey inside the tent as all the smoke goes up through the chimney it feels like you are in a log cabin when the stove is alight, because we go wild camping in remote locations in the middle of nowhere this tent has proved to be no problem in exposed or hostile environments, on very cold nights Dad will keep the stove going all night which can be done quite simply as when it is hot the stainless steel stove glows in the dark, it also has an air vent which opens and closes so you can get an idea of how the fire is doing inside without opening the fire door. I actually enjoyed crawling out of my warm sleeping bag in the mornings to stoke the fire and then I get back whilst the tent warms up.

One thing to bear in mind if you are thinking of buying one of these impressive looking Nordic tipis is everywhere you go the tent attracts a lot of interest especially when we have the stove alight and smoke is wafting out of the chimney, people want to take a tour and look inside to see how the stove works it’s interesting talking to people about the tent but sometimes it can get a little much when you have had a hard day outside all day and are tired out. It means of course we have to keep the tent tidy at all times ready for visitors unexpectedly dropping by which is not a bad thing.

I think if my Dad was selling these tents he probably could have sold 10 over the last three years sometimes people will come back several times and ask specific questions about the tent or stove and my Dad has to demonstrate how things work especially when they see just how much of a comfortable environment we are living in compared to a nylon tent, he doesn’t mind he is very patient about the whole thing and lets people try things out. I guess if I was thinking of buying something like this I would prefer to talk to an experienced user rather than a sales person, we do spend weeks at a time living in the wilds of Britain so we have learnt over time what works for us and what doesn’t.

I thought I had better include a couple of photographs of the top of the tent the first one has the top vents closed, you can see the cords on the left these can be used to open and shut the vents without getting out of your sleeping bag, how good is that.

The second photograph shows the top vents open which means you can lie in bed and look at the stars.

All About Me
What Katy did
Tentipi UK

Photographs by my dad
Click photographs to enlarge

Our Tentipi is the nearest one the other one is an older Varrie 7 CP without the stove.

Me inside our Tentipi Safir 7

The Eldfell 7 Wood burning stove in action

Our Tentipi Safir 7 at Glen Nevis
with Ben Nevis in the background

All cosy in the tent at night in the Lake District

The Eldfell stove and chimney

Late evening in our Tentipi Safir 7

The Tentipi is probably the easiest tent to errect and the manufacturers say it can be done in 3 minutes, I would take 10 minutes, here are my instructions. 

Use a tent peg to position the mounting cross where the centre of the Nordic tipi is to go, put the measuring cord over the tent peg, following one of the seams of the mounting cross. Stretch the measuring cord so that it lies loose on the ground and put a tent peg where the red mark is on the measuring cord. Do this a further 7 times symmetrically in a circle leaning the pegs outwards. Now unfurl the tent and locate the door in a position where desired, away from the wind's direction. Place the ground rings over the tent pegs and hammer them down. Then, assemble the central pole and push it under the tent by the door. Locate the cup at the top of the Nordic tipi and push the central pole inside it, fold the top open, raise the tipi and place the central pole in the centre. If the ground is wet or soft place the central pole on a piece of wood or flat stone, zip the door up and tighten all the ground straps so that the fabric becomes taut. Adjust if necessary.