The Happy Camper: Review of Eureka’s NoBugZone

Kevin Callan dishes on his favourite bug shelter for the "biting season."

Credit: Kevin Callan

Eureka Canada’s new bug shelter, the NoBugZone, is an absolute must for camping this Spring. The mosquitoes and blackflies are out and they’re bloodthirsty.

Eureka came out with a bug shelter system a few years back. It was originally made for the campground, equipped with aluminum poles for easy setup. I purchased one, without the poles, and it became a revolutionary piece of camp gear for me in the backcountry ever since.

Their original bug shelter was called the “VCS Parawing Shelter System.” It’s a regular rain tarp with a fine mesh netting attached to the four walls. It uses no-see-um netting, which makes the price is a little high but far more effective against “punkies.” The netting is attached to the four walls by plastic clips, making it possible to detach that section and just pack the tarp along during less-buggy conditions.

A new model was released last year: Eureka NoBugZoneIt combines the tarp and bug mesh, eliminating the plastic clips (and a good chunk of weight—weighs in at 2.5 kg/5.5 lbs). It has three zipper sliders per door that allow use with a camp hammock when tied off to trees. There’s also added tarp tie-offs, three per tarp edge, all reinforced; and internal gear rings allow you to set up a clothesline. You can use tie-back loops to hold back the bug mesh when you just want to use the shelter for shade or rain.

I wouldn’t set foot in the woods in early spring without a bug shelter. It gives you a place to escape the bugs after a long day on the trail or the water. Thinking back, my regular canoe mates teased me to no end the first time I brought the bug shelter along on our annual spring fishing trip. They said I was a sissy. However, when the bugs got really bad and I went inside the bug-proof shelter to cook dinner in peace, they pleaded with me to be allowed in.

Payment was a shot of whisky each.

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