Sep 8, 2008 at 3:20 am #1231061
I'm almost ready to buy a Warmlite tent, either a 2R or 3R, but something has been brought to my notice. There is a ground level 'guttering' made of mesh at the ends. Seemingly this is to allow any condensation to escape into the ground.I'm worried that any water pooling under the tent after rain, or snow melt, could enter here. Have any Warmlite owners had a problem with this?Sep 8, 2008 at 6:05 am #1450418
@foodLocale: Colorado Rockies
The ground level mesh is for bottom to top airflow to reduce condensation. It is high enough the ground water does not enter.Sep 8, 2008 at 6:31 am #1450419
I'm not meaning the low mesh vents Richard, i'm aware of them. I've read that there is also a mesh 'gutter' running along the floor/wall intersection at the single-wall ends, to allow any condensation to drip into the ground.
I would like to hear if anyone has had a problem with standing water entering there.Sep 8, 2008 at 12:30 pm #1450453
Yes, standing water would have no trouble coming in through the ground level mesh. But without this mesh, water would quickly accumulate when you enter/exit the tent since the vestibule opens right onto the tent floor. It's a balancing act between keeping the rain out versus keeping ground water out. As I recall, the Warmlite is not a true bathtub floor either, so water can also enter via floor seams around the edges. Best to avoid pitching it in a pond!!!Sep 8, 2008 at 1:00 pm #1450466
You're getting me more worried now Allison. I've often woken to find standing water under my tent due to a nightime downpour or snowmelt. As every tent i've used has had a bathtub floor, this hasn't been a problem. This doen't sound like a practical choice for a wet climate, yet folk do use them in wet climates, and love them!Sep 8, 2008 at 3:17 pm #1450495
Well I hike in some very wet climates and I don't like the WarmLite at all. It's not just the leaky floor, but the lack of insect netting on the door, the poor ventilation (which Stephonson's blames on the user), and that it gets incrediby hot. It's really more of a winter tent than a wet/warmer weather tent IMHO (it's like sleeping in a plastic bag in summer temps). But as you know everyone has a different perspective on what makes a good tent. They are light, wind stable if pitched properly (and the wind doesn't shift too much) and Warm…the side window option is a nice feature too.Sep 8, 2008 at 3:41 pm #1450503
I reckon i could live with a lot of those things Allison. I only intend to use it as a cold weather / winter tent. I didn't even know about the mesh 'gutter' in the tent until recently. There is no mention of it on the website. Someone on another forum told me about it. He has used a 2R in very wet conditions, Alaska, NW Pacific coast etc, and loves the tent. He said you just have to be aware of it and choose your site carefully. He hasn't had any problems with water coming in. If water coming in is a major problem i might pass, as i can't afford to get a wet down bag in winter. Like i said earlier, snow melt and saturated ground are common in Scotland.
It's a lot of money to spend on something, if it leaks.Sep 8, 2008 at 4:30 pm #1450517
You might be better with something like a Double Rainbow with bathtub floor. It's a pretty solid design, and adding the optional inner makes it nearly a double skinned tent. Much better in the rain and insect department, and cheaper too! Just make sure it also has the ridgeline grommets that allow you to add your trekking poles/sticks for extra support in gales…
Or take a punt on the WarmLite. You can always resell it here if it doesn't work out…
No matter what tent I take, I always carry a bivy bag too. You never know when your camp side will turn into an impromptu river!Sep 8, 2008 at 4:31 pm #1450518
Martin RyeBPL Member
@rye1966Locale: UKSep 9, 2008 at 12:44 am #1450566
I've done just that.:)Sep 9, 2008 at 11:32 am #1450624
My 2R & 3R Stephenson tents work very well in alpine conditions; both have side windows so keeping cool is not a problem, be that as it may, when exposed to mountain sun I do take them down during the day as they are very easy to set up when I come back during the day. When pitching on snow I have never experienced any spring/summer melt getting into the tent and I never picked a tent site in a depression where water would run down hill into a tent let alone cause a problem with a Stephenson. Stephenson tent floors do not leak. Whether or not one has insect netting on the front door, the door still has to be opened to get in and out and the fact that Stephenson ops for double zippers on the front door for storm strength continues to be overlooked. I have never had a problem keeping insects at bay by just opening one half of the front door just like I would do if it was insect netting. I camp/climb in the Cascade Mountains Washington State all four seasons; the Stephenson’s work great in that environment as does my Hilleberg which is also an excellent tent manufacturer.Sep 9, 2008 at 12:19 pm #1450625
NmSep 9, 2008 at 12:46 pm #1450628
Thanks for the advice guys. I've ordered a 2R. It seems to have everything i want in a winter tent. I plan on using it on high, exposed mountain pitches, so its ability to handle high winds will be tested!Sep 9, 2008 at 12:59 pm #1450632
>I have never had a problem keeping insects at bay by just opening one half of the front door just like I would do if it was insect netting.
I don't understand this statement. You open the door but the insects don't come in?? Or am I misunderstanding your post.
Agreed that site selection will prevent most problems with the mesh floor panel, but when you go hiking in areas that can get over a metre of rainfall in 24 hours, and then the biting midges and mosquitos come out in their billions, the seemingly small things like mesh floor, lack of rain-protected entry, and no netting over the door can become very big things (when the whole hillside becomes a waterfall for instance)! As an alpine tent I think it's a very good design, especially considering the weight. We struggled with it in more tropical conditions…Sep 9, 2008 at 1:21 pm #1450635
How do you Warmlite users cook when it's very wet or there's a lot of insects – does anyone cook in theirs? If so what with?Sep 9, 2008 at 1:30 pm #1450636
I obviously haven't used it yet, but bugs wont be a problem in winter. I can't remember the last time i actually cooked in the porch of a tent, so i'll get around that. As for groundwater, i've contacted 2 people who use one in the UK, and only once has water entered the tent with one of them. That was down to bad site selection, and they thought it would have been worse in a 'normal' tent.
I can't wait to try it! :)Sep 9, 2008 at 2:12 pm #1450639
I've commented before that an ideal modification to a Warmlite with side windows would be to remove (or add a zipper to) the mesh of one of the windows. This would allow you to cook, AND enter the tent without letting water in. Lacking this MOD you just have to cook outside. No way you would cook in a Warmlite as-is.
Site selection will solve swamp problems most of the time. Those hopefully rare times when you don't have a choice you just have to survive a miserable night.
I remember one of the worst nights I had was when we were stuck, lost in a white-out and deluge on a ridge in a chain of mountains called "The Dragon's Teeth". The name says it all…in the end the only place flat enough to pitch a tent (there were three of us) was in the middle of a small tarn! You can't carry a tent that will cover all conditions you might ever meet, but the WarmLite is not a bad compromise.
What colour did you get??Sep 9, 2008 at 2:21 pm #1450640
Hi Allison. I've ordered one with light blue ends and navy blue centre. I thought about getting the wind stabilizers, but didn't. I figured if it was going to get that bad, i may as well have an exciting night! :)Sep 9, 2008 at 2:26 pm #1450643
Did you get the side windows??
Agrred RE: wind stabilizers. If things got that bad I would take the tent down and use it as a bivy bag! Worry about the condensation when the crisis has gone.
PS: That night in the tarn we actually stayed dry! This was many moons ago when lightweight tensts were unheard of. We had a three person JanSport with a bombproof bathtub floor. The floor was just high enough to keep out the water, and we managed to pave a narrow stone path from the door to solid ground. If we had been in a Warmlite (or any silnyon floor for that matter) it would have been a different story…but with the use of GPS perhaps I'll never be in that situation again!Sep 9, 2008 at 2:30 pm #1450644
yes you have thanks – I've contacted a specialist company (www.scottishmountaingear.com) and just need to get the tent sent up to them so they can give me a price.
Mine's yellow and blue! With the windows. And not yet used, although I might use it in 2 weeks on a trip to Scotland – it's the Warmlite or Gatewood Cape.
I'd still be interested to know what others do about cooking in the tent tho.Sep 9, 2008 at 2:43 pm #1450648
Martin RyeBPL Member
Peter I walked with a Backpacker recently who used a 2c and cooked in the tent no problem. Go ask him at the site I listed above, and if you look at my blog report you'll see his tent in use and how he used trekking poles to hold the door up as a cover as well – Alan is a clever chap and knows his stuff. I might get one soon as well. Giving it some serious thought.Sep 9, 2008 at 2:46 pm #1450649
I never bothered with the side windows Allison. Like i said, it's a winter tent for me. The daylight hours can be short here in winter, so if it's daylight, i'm walking. I can't see a need for the windows in the dark. One of the reasons for getting this tent was to push the limits a wee bit more. It is said to have fantastic wind stability, and i hope to get some more exposed pitches with it.
I'll use other shelters for other times of year.Sep 9, 2008 at 2:52 pm #1450651
@rcaffinLocale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
> I'd still be interested to know what others do about cooking in the tent tho.
I use a bit of ply to support the stove. Beats hell out of cooking outside – it was doing about 80 kph out there with snow.
CheersSep 9, 2008 at 3:09 pm #1450652
Martin, the trekking pole trick is one we often use with our Nallo too. Would you need to get the double zipper on the Warmlite to make this feasable? The nice thing about a Nallo (or similar design) is that you CAN cook in the vestibule without opening it…a nice option when the wind is blowing like Roger mentions. Just hold your breath :)Sep 9, 2008 at 3:24 pm #1450654
Martin, Mike and Allison: thanks that's all ace information. I think I might hold back on the alteration for now and carry two bits of ply – one for the cooker, one my hot pot – I'm forgetful and am likely to take a pot of the cooker and pot in on the tent floor. So big thanks Roger too – it all suddenly makes sense!
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