We all like our own space and our own front door, and that applies when camping. The Gelert Mongoose 2 2-person tent has a porch and entrance on each side, so there is no need to clamber over your mate to go for a pee! This tent pitches inner-first, and the inner can be used on its own in hot climates. While the features are clearly of benefit to social harmony, the price is kind to your wallet too.
The Gelert Mongoose 2’s two fibreglass poles slide through half-length sleeves on the outside of the inner, with clips finishing the task. This is a far easier method of fitting poles than having to slide them through full-length sleeves, as the sleeves that link the fibreglass sections inevitably snag or come apart during the process. The pegs are steel and weigh in at 473g, which adds a lot to the load. But at least they don’t bend like some lighter pegs. The flysheet is draped over the top and tensioned with adjustable quick-release clips at the corners, and suddenly the two side porches provide storage for gear. The outer doors roll to the top and are secured in two places to prevent them dangling down. Each camper can now enter the tent from a separate direction and sort their gear.
On the hill
The tent pitches easily and those twin porches are a real bonus. The outer doors don’t get double zips, so you can’t open them from the top, for example to increase ventilation. But they do stay rolled up well. Also, much of the inner tent is mesh to allow lots of airflow, while reducing weight. There is also a vent on the outer in front of each pole, so good airflow can be achieved. The two porches are not huge, but each is fine for one person’s gear. Get inside and the headroom is good under the highest pole, but it does taper down at the ends steeply. But again those two porches and entrances makes the living space very useable. The large, flat roof panel can come into contact with the inner quite easily when the wind gets up. As the inner is mostly mesh if condensation does form on the roof it could be a problem. But there really is a lot going for this tent. Its space is ideal for two, it has generally good features and the weight could be skimmed down a little by changing the pegs to a lighter alloy version and taking fewer with you: ten of them are not actually needed.
Design 2-pole tunnel
Pole shock-corded fibreglass
Inner breathable polyester
Outer PU-coated polyester, 1500 hydrostatic head
Internal dimensions length 260cm; width 140cm; height 100cm
Packed size 17x50cm
Packed weight 2900g
Made in China
Stores in the UK 200+
Stockist details – tel. (01766) 510300; www.gelert.com
Verdict: The Gelert Mongoose 2 2-person tent is a good price, with twin porches and twin entrances, and ventilation through the inner. But it’s heavy; the inner pitches first; fibreglass poles; not the most stable; more heavy pegs than needed. In summary, it’s an excellently vented tent with good living space for two campers, but others are more stable so it’s best kept to sheltered sites.
Review by Graham Thompson
First published in Trail magazine August 2009