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If you’ve been camping for a long time, then you probably know what a truck topper or a truck tent is.
On the flip side, if you’re relatively new, you may have never heard of a truck topper or tent before.
So what exactly is this mysterious piece of camping equipment?
To keep it as simple as possible, a truck topper is a ‘tent’ or ‘compartment’ that attaches to the back of an SUV or pickup truck.
The great thing about truck toppers is they allow you to camp in your car or truck without having to stay at a campsite, giving you more freedom and saving you money.
Truck camping is a form of camping that you might really enjoy (or car camping). You can read about the different types of camping here.
In this article, we are going to look at the 9 best truck toppers for camping and answer your most popular questions.
Our 8 Best Truck Toppers For Camping
Best Center Height – Napier Sportz Truck Bed
Most Spacious – North East Harbor Universal SUV Camping Tent
Best Weather Protection – Napier Backroadz Truck Tent
Best Floorless Design – Rightline Gear Truck Bed Tent
Best Topper Awning – Sportz Avalanche Truck Tent III
Quickest Setup – Offroading Gear Truck Bed Tent
Most Accessories – North East Harbor Pickup Truck Bed
Best For Mosquito Prevention – Guide Gear Full-Size Truck Tent for Camping
If you’re looking for a truck tent with extra room, then the Napier Sportz Truck Bed is a great option. It has space for up to two people, making it perfect for couples who are looking to get away for a few days.
The center height of this truck tent is 172cm, so depending on your height, you may be able to stand up and move around when inside.
Furthermore, this truck tent comes equipped with multiple storage pockets, allowing you to keep your personal belongings and electrical devices safe. It also has a gear loft, in case you want to store bigger items.
In addition, attached to the ceiling is a hook where you can hang a lantern, clothes, or a flashlight, allowing you to illuminate your tent when it’s dark.
Just because this tent attaches to the back of an SUV doesn’t mean it isn’t well equipped with the latest safety features.
It includes a rainfly, rain flaps, and an optional awning to keep you safe, dry, and comfortable in all weather conditions.
Considering we’ve done nothing but say great things about this truck tent, you may begin to wonder if there are any downsides.
Unfortunately, there is one…
Nothing too serious though.
The only thing we discovered is that it can be a little harder to set up than a regular tent; however, when you get the hang of it, it becomes second nature.
- Enough room for two people
- Mutliple storage pockets
- Gear loft
- Lanter hook
- Includes rainfly
- It is a little more difficult to set up than a standard tent
If you’re going to be camping with a large group of people and want to stay close to your car, then this is the tent for you, as it has a maximum sleeping capacity of 6-people.
If you’re camping with less than 6-people, we still recommend picking up this tent as it will provide plenty of extra space, allowing you to store equipment and other personal belongings.
Furthermore, you have the added option of disconnecting this tent from your vehicle and using it on solid ground, as it also doubles up as a normal tent, similar to what you would find on a campsite.
Inside the tent are a variety of different features you’d expect to find in a standard tent, such as storage pockets and a ceiling hook, allowing you to hang a lantern or flashlight when it’s dark.
In addition, it also includes a storage bag, making for easy transportation and storage.
The only issue we found is it doesn’t include any instructions; however, setting it up is pretty self-explanatory if you’ve been camping for a while.
On the flip side, if it’s your first time setting up a tent, it may prove a little difficult and take longer than usual.
Before we get into reviewing the Napier Backroadz Truck Tent, let’s first talk about an often overlooked benefit…
With every purchase, Napier has promised to plant one tree, helping to combat climate change.
Anyhow, let’s get into the review…
The Napier Backroadz Tent is designed to be used with pickup trucks, so some SUVs may not be compatible with this truck tent.
To check if this tent is compatible with your vehicle, you can have a look at the chart in the product description.
This tent has got everything you need to make your camping experience as stress-free as possible. It includes a spacious interior that can fit up to two adults, making it great if you’re camping as a couple.
The tent itself is able to withstand the elements, thanks to the storm flaps and rainfly provided.
Inside is a gear loft and pocket, allowing you to store your personal belongings and electrical devices. There are also two mesh windows and a large door, helping to keep the tent well-ventilated while providing an easy access point.
Furthermore, this tent comes with color-coded poles and sleeves, making setting it up as easy as riding a bike.
So what about the downsides?
The only thing we found was that the rainfly would benefit from being a little bigger; however, it won’t cause any water to leak into the tent.
- Tree planted with every purchase
- Great for couples
- Gear loft
- Colored coded poles
- Rainfly could be a little bigger
If you’re looking for a truck tent that is easy to set up and doesn’t require you to remove your personal belongings from the back of your truck, then this is the one for you.
It has a floorless design, so the floor of your SUV acts as the tent floor. This shouldn’t make too much difference as you can still use sleeping bags or an air mattress to soften the area.
Furthermore, setting up this tent is easy thanks to the color-coded poles that allow you to see where each pole connects. It’s so easy, even a beginner can do it!
In addition, it’s designed to be able to withstand the weather. It has protective straps and buckles, keeping it secured to your truck when it’s windy outside.
It also comes with a rainfly, helping to keep you dry if it’s raining outside.
If you’re going to buy this tent, then you’re going to need to choose the correct size for your vehicle. To do this, you need to check your truck’s year, make, and model.
Next, you need to measure your truck’s bed by hand and then select the right size based on this measurement.
- Floorless design
- Color-coded poles
- Protective buckles and straps
The Sportz Avalanche Truck Tent is one of the best tents for people who have an unhealthy addiction to their phones. It features a rear access window, allowing you to pass a cable into the tent and charge your electronic devices.
With that being said, it may be a good idea to buy a portable camping generator.
The rear access window also allows you to use the back of your truck as storage and be able to access it while in the tent, which is great if you don’t want to fill up your tent with unnecessary equipment.
The inside of the tent is also equipped with some storage options if the back of your truck is full. You’ll be able to store personal belongings in the gear loft located on the ceiling, as well as the storage pockets on either side of the tent.
Theirs also a small hook attached to the gear loft where you can hang a lantern or flashlight, helping keep your tent illuminated in the dark.
So what are the downsides of buying this tent?
We found that it can be a little difficult to set up for beginners. This is because the design is a little different from a regular tent; however, once you’ve done it a few times, it becomes a lot easier.
- Can access the back of your truck from this tent
- Gear loft
- Storage pockets
- Lantern hook
- Can be a little difficult to set up at first
If you’ve got a truck with a 6.5’ bed, then this is the truck topper for you. It fits nearly all 6.5’ bed pickup trucks and is super easy to set up, thanks to the color-coded poles.
It’s also worth mentioning that Offroading Gear offers this tent in a 5.4’-5.6’ option in case you have a smaller truck bed. In addition, you’ll have the option to choose whether you want an awning included in your purchase.
We recommend including the awning as it will direct water away from the tent, as well as keep you dry when entering and exiting.
Furthermore, if privacy is of concern to you, then you’ll be glad to hear that this tent has multiple windows that can be zipped up, shielding you from public view.
These windows also provide great ventilation and will keep you cool in the Summer months. They are also made of mesh, so you won’t have to deal with mosquitos entering your tent.
Similar to the previous option on this list, the Offroading Gear Truck Bed has a rear access window, allowing you to access the back of your truck, which is great for storage purposes.
What about the cons of this truck bed?
After reading what previous customers had to say, we discovered that the instructions could be clearer; however, it shouldn’t be too much of a problem as you have the color-coded poles to guide you.
- Easy setup
- Multiple sizes options
- Includes awning
- Good privacy
- Rear access window
- Set up instructions aren’t very clear
The great thing about the North East Pickup Truck Bed is it has a good center height, providing you with more headroom and space to move around.
It doesn’t give you enough headroom to stand up fully.
Furthermore, it gives you great protection from the elements thanks to the high-quality rainfly included. The floor is also fully waterproof, so you won’t have to worry about water leaking from underneath the floor.
This truck topper fits most regular truck beds that measure between 72″-73″ (6′-6’1″), which is considered the standard size for most SUVs.
Inside the tent is a gear pocket where you can store your personal belongings such as keys, wallets, mobile phones, and tablets.
There is also a hook attached to the ceiling, where you can hang a lantern, flashlight, or even clothes that need to dry.
When you’ve finished with this truck topper, you can store it in the carry bag included, making for easy transportation and storage.
How about the downsides?
We couldn’t find anything at fault with this tent; however, it would be better if it had an awning.
- Good center height
- Protection for the elements
- Includes rainfly
- Gear pocket
- Storage bag included
- Doesn’t have an awning
The Gear Guide Truck Tent is suitable for vehicles measuring between 79-81″ with the tail gate down; therefore, it’s important to measure your truck bed before buying this tent, otherwise, you could end up wasting your money.
Anyway, let’s get into the review…
This truck topper is big enough to hold two adults, making it great for couples that are looking to spend a weekend away from the kids. The spacious design also means you’ll have plenty of room to store equipment and move around once inside the tent.
Furthermore, this tent is made with a waterproof coating, helping to keep you dry when it’s raining. In addition, you’ll also get a rainfly included with your purchase, which is essential in heavy rain.
The two windows on this tent are made from mesh, helping to keep mosquitos and other nasty insects away.
So what about the negatives of this tent?
We couldn’t find any issues with the tent; however, we recommend setting it up at home beforehand, so you have an idea of how it’s done.
- Holds two adults
- Spacious design
- Waterproof coating
- Rainfly included
- Keeps mosquitos away
How To Choose The Best Truck Toppers For Camping
To get the best deal possible, we advise choosing a truck topper/tent based on the recommendations below…
If you’re going to be out there in the wilderness, theirs a probability that you’re going to encounter some rain while in your truck topper/tent.
It’s important to choose one that is water-resistant, otherwise, you could end up ruining your camping experience.
Most modern truck toppers/tents come with a rainfly to keep you protected in harsh weather; however, it’s always worth double-checking.
Size And Space
Depending on how many people you intend to travel with, you may require a different size truck tent.
Most standard truck tents have enough room for two adults, so they are great for couples.
Some are bigger and can fit up to six people, like the North East Harbor SUV Camping Tent.
It’s also worth checking the center height of the truck topper you’re looking to purchase.
The center height determines how much headroom you’ll have in the tent. For most people, this isn’t an issue; however, some people like to be able to stand up and move around on foot.
What Are The Different Types Of Truck Toppers?
There are two main types of truck toppers you’re most likely to find on the market these days.
The first is a large compartment that you connect to the bed of your SUV, providing shelter and a place to sleep when it’s raining.
On the flip side, you have truck tents. Truck tents look exactly like a standard tent; however, they attach to the bed of your SUV or truck, allowing you to sleep off the ground and in the safety of your own vehicle.
If you’re going to be camping, we recommend sticking with a truck tent as they are more geared towards camping.
Can You Use A Truck Tent On The Ground?
It depends on the truck tent. Some truck tents can be used on the ground, where as others cannot.
For example, if the truck tent your looking to purchase has a floorless design, then you’re only going to be able to use it on your truck.
If it comes with a tent floor, in some cases, you may be able to use it on the ground without any problems.
What Is The Best Type Of Heater For A Truck Topper?
If the truck tent you purchase has rear window access, then we recommend getting a standard car heater that you can plug into the car outlet.
On the flip side, if you haven’t got rear window access but have a source of electricity, then an electric heater would be a more suitable option.
We recommend the Portable Electric Space Heater if you’re looking for a high-quality and budget-friendly option.
Conclusion And Final Verdict
Getting a truck topper is the best way to experience a camping trip without the need to be stationed at one specific campsite.
The type of truck tent you choose is going to depend on a lot of different factors; however, for us, we would go for the Napier Sportz Truck Bed as it allows you to stand up when inside.
We hope this article has helped you choose the best truck topper for camping and if you have any questions, drop a comment below and we will get back to you as soon as possible.
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