Showing 1 of 5 conversations about:
samscholes
21
Sep 24, 2016
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Looking for some advice on a lightweight backpacking tent. Please weight in and vote too. Thanks!
Sep 24, 2016
KitCarson61
105
Oct 5, 2016
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Don't go by polls to determine the best tent for you. Nothing against the BA Copper Spur...I own one and use it at least once a year, but... When looking for a new tent, here's a list of what I look for first: 1) How large a tent do I need? 1person, 2person...? Will I need to have my gear inside the tent with me or can it stay in a vestibule? 2) Do I need a freestanding tent? Will I or might I be in areas where I might not be able to put a stake into the ground? 3) What season(s) will this tent be used for? 4) Will I be camped in windy areas or on ridge-tops where the wind may be blowing hard? 5) Can I use my trekking poles to set up the tent to save weight? 6) Do I need a tent with a floor or will a tarp or tarp-like, floorless tent be OK? 7) Are bugs a problem where I'm going? How much bug netting do I need? How much ventilation will I need? 8) Fabrics make a difference. Do I need something as lightweight (and expensive - see #9) as Cuben Fiber? Yes, Silicone treated nylon fabrics are almost always lighter weight than the standard ripstop nylon used in most tents, but can I be gentle enough with it if it's one of the lighter weight (20d-30d) nylons used or will the added durability of ripstop nylon be worth carrying an extra 6-12 ounces? 9) How much am I willing to spend? These are most of the questions I think about when choosing a tent. I generally use a 1man tent these days. I used to carry a two man tent just to have the extra room inside the tent, but am now unwilling to carry the extra weight. The only time I'll carry a two man tent any more is when I need a freestanding tent for just myself in which case I carry that Copper Spur UL2 mentioned above (it can in no way be considered a 2man tent, but rather a slightly, yes only slightly, roomy 1man tent) or if two of us are really going to sleep inside the tent I carry my SixMoonDesigns Lunar Duo Outfitter (which weighs within a couple ounces of the Copper Spur, but has more than twice the livable room in it). For my non-freestanding 1man tent (which is 90% of the time) I carry my SixMoonDesigns Skyscape Trekker which comes in at well under 2lb WITH TENT STAKES AND GROUND CLOTH! Once I'm in camp, the water filter comes out of the pack, the cook kit comes out of the pack, the food comes out of the pack (and gets hung), the tent comes out of the pack and gets set up, the sleeping bag and pad go into the tent along with my bag-o-clothes and the pack's empty. The now empty pack then goes either under the foot of my bag or under the head of my bag, wherever it's needed to level me out and I have more than enough room inside to sit up and move around if needs be as well as the area in the triangle of the floor above my head for my hat which holds the contents of my pockets and camera. Shoes and water bottle go in the vestibule overnight and I'm set.
Oct 5, 2016
KitCarson61
105
Jan 19, 2017
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Are you looking for a one-man, two-man, more, person tent? Freestanding or not? Do you use trekking poles? What type of weather must it endure? I'm sure we'd all be happy to chime in with some suggestions if we had at least that much info.
Jan 19, 2017
C_Elegans
11
Feb 15, 2017
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My reply to Rango45 here mentions three different tent size options, not just the UL solo one. Even the "four man" Mountainsmith is among the most lightweight and packable of its class, given my practical durability + flexible, hot weather ventilation-with-privacy requirement. Smart shopping can get that price down near a hundred bucks, which is unbeatable, I think.
I had considered the Kelty 2-person Salida frequently offered here as a knock-about, multi-use option to spread out the wear and tear factor at a low cost ; but the Genesee just seemed like much more tent in numerous ways for 2 or 4 wheeled camping, or just hanging out (and sleeping) in the back yard, in my case. It's also still available in green citron (?) as the Equinox 4. The Morrison is Mountainsmith's 2-person version of similar design, which I think may up the durability and mfr. backup factor over that of the Kelty. Ledge has a similar ultra affordable design competing with the Morrison, also widely well reviewed; but I think that one may be discontinued, though still on sale at a good discount.
There are, of course, more technically sophisticated freestanding tents out there that could save a few more ounces, still, than the ones I chose. But there are trade-offs. Massdrop has already offered several attractive options of that ilk. I liked what I saw of the 2-person model from Big Sky offered here previously. I'd consider something like that or one fairly similar from Tarptent, et.al., to supplant the BA Jack Rabbit if I felt enough need either to shed even more ounces... or just to have augmented bragging rights in certain circles ;>). Resist the impulse to over-buy sophistication in a tent until you have your perfect pack and sleeping combination, at whatever that has to cost. I'm pretty confident in the weather handling ability and general comfort level of each of my own three acquisitions, maximum cost, just a bit under $200. Good luck.
Feb 15, 2017
C_Elegans
11
Feb 15, 2017
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Thank you for all your advice, coming from experience! This is very helpful to me. BTW, I think I've outlined most of my own circumstances for needing a tent, and I wonder if you could recommend the best mix (?) and sizes of lighter weight, upscale tent stakes to make my life just that much easier, applied across my three current options and perhaps, to some future non-freestanding UL model, as well. A well conceived, optimal strategy, in other words for camping from shore (sea kayaking) to woodlands. I don't expect to be somewhere far up a windy mountain, though!
Feb 15, 2017
KitCarson61
105
Feb 15, 2017
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For loose soils, my favorites are the MSR Groundhog stakes (and minis) and other "Y" stakes. The looser the soil, the longer you want them to be, but be careful around roots and rocks as I've snapped a couple heads off of them. For harder ground, titanium shepherd's hooks.
Feb 15, 2017
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