Posted by Roman on August 13, 2004:
|Make and Model:||Eureka Kahuna|
|Review:||We purchased our first Eureka directly from them in Binghamton, NY nine years ago after being disappointed with two other major brands. It was twice as expensive as our other tents, but the design and quality were so far ahead of the others that it was well worth the cost. During these past 9 years, we were never disappointed with the Eureka but it began to become brittle after so much use. We camp four to six times a year through-out New England. It was natural that we looked into another Eureka. Initially, however, I wasnít thrilled with the models I found. The Kahuna wasnít listed. So, I started looking at other, high-end brands. We only needed room for two or three but my wife is a bit claustrophobic and prefers more room than less so a "family" size tent was required. I was also looking for a tent that had a good rain fly, good ventilation, easy setup, waterproof floor, and straight walls which were not "exposed" to the weather. So many tents have side walls that splay out from under the rain fly at a steep angle. This invites water under heavy rain. To keep this review to short, it came down to another Eureka or the Paha Que tent. (http://www.pahaque.com/)|
Eventually I discovered the Eureka Kahuna (it was just being introduced here at the time) at the same time I found the Paha Que tent, a new brand to me. I did a side by side comparison and, after comparing the prices and features, decided to go with the Kahuna. I also purchased mine from Barre, VT for $299. The Paha Que was pushing $500. Also, I didn't like the awning of the PaHa Que tent. That's not to say I was thrilled with the Eureka one but it does work.
The Kahuna was a complete departure from ďnormalĒ setup. The four, shock corded poles were HUGE. They do snap right together, however, and are of the highest quality material I can imagine. Setup for this tent was a bit of a challenge. As mentioned in another review, the instructions basically stink. I hate to use that word but itís really true. I understand that they have been improved but I havenít seen them. I set my Kahuna up in the late Fall, just before the snow here in New England. It took me a good 30 minutes to figure out how to erect it and I put the wrong poles in the first time. After that initial failure, it was easy to see how quickly it can be done. I did it by myself but Iíd recommend making it a two person job. It is a large tent. I love the fact that the rain fly is attached to the tent body. Itís unique. Also, ventilation through the numerous windows is wonderful. And, since it has both the front and rear doors (both large ďDĒ types) there is no worrying about getting it on your site facing the proper way. In addition, the sleeve that the front and back poles fit through act as hugeÖ.and I mean seriousÖrain gutters. In a deluge, no water will come in the doors. This is a great design and that theme runs through the entire tent. Shedding water is what this tent does best. Any tent can be great in good weather. Itís when bad weather hits that you find out just how good a tent is.
On our first outing this year, it rained amazingly hard but we were dry as toast the entire time. This was a first for us. Even our other Eureka eventually got damp through the walls. The Kahuna simply will not.
The only criticism I have of this tent is the same I had with the others I looked at. I wish more design had gone into putting on a good awning. The awning is there and it can be erected with poles, but itís not great although it does shed water. Maybe Iím just used to the fantastic awning our old Eureka had. In any event, the one on the Kahuna does work but isnít the most effective awning Eureka might have installed.
So, I would recommend that you check this tent and compare it to the other one Iíve mentioned. Iíd recommend that you try to see one erected if you can. And, remember, this is new EXO technology so your idea of tents will change after getting a Eureka Kahuna. Iím very happy with ours and would purchase one again.