Over the Easter holidays, I went camping in Pembrokeshire in Wales. It’s a beautiful part of the world and a lovely place to go camping. As we were camping for a few days we took and pitched the roomy Coleman Rocky Mountain 5 tent.
I hadn’t been to Pembrokeshire before and really loved it there. It was similar to Cornwall but even more rural and the beaches much, much quieter!
I’ve already written about our trip to Skomer Island but other things which were really awesome were climbing to the top of Carn Llidi and getting an amazing view of Whitesands Bay. Visiting little local pubs like the Swan Inn, Littlehaven and the Druidstone, Druidstone Haven and exploring places like St David’s Cathedral and the many desolate beaches.
Inside the Rocky Mountain 5, I had brought all of my favourite camping gear and a few new pieces to review. I love unpacking the car, putting up your tent and building a little home inside your tent – I just wish packing it all away was as fun!
Coleman Pack-Away Table for 4 Review
The first new piece of gear which I had brought with me was the Coleman Pack-Away Table for 4. This is a really intelligently designed piece of camping kit. When I tell you that the folded package (which contains everything) is a mere 90 x 30 x 9cm and weighs in at just a smidge over 10kg, you wouldn’t think that you can turn it into a full size dinning table and seating for four people!
The outside of the case is in fact the table top itself. You un-clip the sides of the case and it opens out wide and reveals the two benches. Two straps hold the benches firmly in place and stop them knocking about when you are travelling. With the benches removed, you can see the four legs which attach to the table. These are also held nicely in place with plastic clips. The whole package doesn’t waste a centimetre of space and is very impressive.
The construction of the legs is really nice, in each corner there is half of a leg which is firmly attached to the table top. You just pull this out and the whole construction suddenly starts to look like a table! You then grab those half legs which were attached to the inside of the table, and these just push into the existing legs. This gives you a full height table similar to what you have at home. The table legs go together very securely with internal clips which hold them in place.
You can then flip the whole table over and a latch on each side of the table top holds it all together. The table top is made from a sort of melamine feeling plastic. This feels very tough and is nicely wipe clean, meaning that spillages are easily dealt with – great if you’re a messy cook like me! It even has a nice pattern which makes it a little bit prettier than most camping furniture.
The benches are even easier to assemble. You simply flip them over and pull out the legs which are attached together in pairs. There are no latches or extra bits to clip in – that’s it! Despite being very light, when you sit on these benches they feel very strong and I wouldn’t be worried about them bending or breaking one bit!
The seats have removable, padded fabric covers, this makes maintenance a breeze. The padding makes them really comfortable and I’ve sat on them for ages when eating or playing games without the slightest bit of bum-ache! I think the benches and the table are at a great height and whereas some camping furniture feels like children’s furniture and is not really the proper size for adults – this table and bench are no different in size to what you may have at home.
I’ve been very impressed with the quality of the construction as although the whole thing is very light weight, being made from aluminium, it is also very, strong and very stable. To have designed something that packs up so small whilst maintaining a strong, sturdy and durable nature is very impressive. I really like the Coleman Pack-Away Table for 4 – I love how it works when out camping and how solid it is but I also love how small it packs away and how little room it takes up in my car and in my shed!
You may notice a few more of my favourite pieces of camping gear in these photos:
- Coleman Twist+ 300 Led Lantern And Cht+ 100 Headlamp
- Campingaz Powerbox Plus 28l 12/230v Electric Cooler
- Coleman Maxi Comfort Bed Raised King
- Festival Double Sleeping Bag
Coleman Bungee Chair and Festival Kickback Chair Comparison Review
Another two items of camping kit which I’d like to review are the Bungee Chair and the Festival Kickback Chair both from Coleman. These chairs are quite different and I thought I’d compare the two so that you can decide which one would best suit you.
The first thing to notice about the two chairs is that the Coleman Bungee Chair is quite a lot larger than the Festival Kickback Chair. This is true when they are packed and unpacked but especially when they’re in their carry bags. I much prefer the small portable size of the packed away Kickback Chair.
Both chairs unfold easily and don’t require any form of instructions to use for even the first time. They’re very simple and easy to fold and unfold. You can see that the Bungee chair gives a slightly higher and more upright seating position. This is something that’s really down to personal preference but some people will really like the Kickback’s laid back and slouchy style whereas the Bungee’s more upright position makes it comfortable for hours of sitting and can make getting in and out of the chair a lot easier.
The Coleman Bungee chair also has arms which the Kickback is lacking which is another thing to take into consideration. It has a much larger back and supports all the way from your lower back to your neck. The back of the Bungee is made from a mesh fabric which allows air to travel through keeping your back cool on hot days. Coleman have this feature in a version of the Kickback called ‘Kickback Breeze’ so keep your eye out for that if that’s something that tickles your fancy.
Where the Bungee gets its name is from the elasticated sections which connect the back to the frame. These springy sections allow the backing to fit to the contours of your own back. This makes it very comfortable for sitting in for long periods of time. Don’t worry though although the back section is sprung, it is still firm and offers plenty of back support.
Another final plus on the Bungee’s list is the cup holder. It has a cup holder which spins out from underneath the seat. I like this feature as it makes it quite discrete and you don’t know it is there when you’re not drinking. A cup holder is really an essential feature for me when camping so I was disappointed to only see this on one of the chairs (especially to be lacking from the one called ‘festival’!)
I really like the small fold down size and laid back comfort of the Coleman Festival Kickback Chair, it is the perfect chair to take anywhere that you have to carry it there. The Coleman Bungee Chair on the other hand is a beast which I wouldn’t want to have to carry any major distance. In return for its stature you get a very supportive, uber comfortable chair that you could sit in all day. It also has additional features like a ventilated back, arm rests and a drinks holder. If I was going out for the day or to a festival I would definitely take a Kickback but If I was going for a longer camping trip, I’d take the Bungee as it is definitely worth the extra space it takes up in the car.