Jun 3, 2012 at 11:45 am #1290641
Eric MollBPL Member
I'm new here, but I've been reading every once in a while for some time. I'm looking for suggestions for a sub-2 lb solo tent that I could get for under $300. I'm 6 ft 2 but width shouldn't be an issue. I'd like to take this tent for some extended journeys like the wonderland trail in July and maybe even the Colorado and Pacific Crest Trails sometime in the future. What do you think would best meet these needs?
EricJun 3, 2012 at 11:52 am #1883563
Mary DBPL Member
@hikinggrannyLocale: Gateway to Columbia River Gorge
Sub 2-lb., solo, under $300: I believe that will cover four out of the seven solo tents at tarptent.com. Two more are only an ounce or two over two pounds. IMHO, they are good tents; I own three although none are solo models. Sixmoondesigns.com has two solo tents that also fit your criteria. There are probably others, but that's enough to let you start looking.Jun 3, 2012 at 12:00 pm #1883570
I will second that emotion.
I just used the Tarptent Notch on the West Coast Trail for a week and it performed flawlessly. There is nothing that I would change and now feel a bit spoiled. Two vestibules, two doors, double walled for well under 2lbs. I am your height but wide of shoulder and I had plenty of room even with gear inside with me. For 3 season treks, I believe there to not be a better overall solo tent.Jun 3, 2012 at 12:12 pm #1883576
Daniel CoxBPL Member
@cohikerLocale: San Isabel NF
In addition to Mary's advice, I'd suggest identifying what features you 'need' in a tent. Things like internal volume, vestibules, ease of egress/ingress, weather capabilities etc.
with $300 to spend you're really only missing out on the custom made Cuben Fiber stuff. Most all of the tents from the usual suspects around here are less. Try looking at TarpTent, Six Moon Designs, LightHeart Gear. Mountain Laurel Designs too but there's a wait period while they make it.
Watch Gear Swap for a while and you'll some other good options.
I have a Six Moon Designs Lunar Solo that I really like and would fit your criteria, but is of course not the only option.Jun 3, 2012 at 1:01 pm #1883591
Eric MollBPL Member
Thanks for all the advice. I do have many options. Tarptent notch looks nice!
One question: when looking for an tents how valuable is the free standing functionality. It seems to add weight, but is it worth it or are lighter trekking pole supported tents just as stable? Also, last summer I hiked the JMT, but sometimes just set my current 3 person free-standing tent up on very hard surfaces. Can these UL tarptents, etc work in such situations?Jun 3, 2012 at 1:14 pm #1883598
On the west coast of Vancouver Island, you pitch on the sand. I have never used a freestanding tent there and have had no issue at all with non freestanding. I actually prefer it.Jun 4, 2012 at 12:16 am #1883779
Mike WBPL Member
@skopeoLocale: British Columbia
>> On the west coast of Vancouver Island, you pitch on the sand. I have never used a freestanding tent there and have had no issue at all with non freestanding. <<
I've never used tent pegs there :)
A stick through the loop and a rock on top works fine when you are pitching in sand or on rock. Doesn't matter if it's free-standing or not.
Hey, Family Guy… it's been wet here. Did you get any sunshine? How did the Notch make out with blowing sand (not an issue if it rained all the time)? I like the look of the Notch… appreciate any feedback from somebody that has used it out here. Did you yo-yo?Jun 4, 2012 at 3:36 am #1883792
John DonewarBPL Member
@newtonLocale: Southeastern Texas
It's not a freestanding tent but the Lightheart Gear Solo would probably fit your other requirements.
The weight and price is on par with the Notch.
Here is the link to the Lightheart Gear web site.
NewtonJun 4, 2012 at 7:16 am #1883817
@packpackLocale: Cumberland Plateau
+1 For the Six Moon Designs Skyscape. The Scout is $125 for 33.5 oz and the Trekker is $225 for 24 oz. I love mine.Jun 4, 2012 at 7:59 am #1883830
"Hey, Family Guy… it's been wet here. Did you get any sunshine? How did the Notch make out with blowing sand (not an issue if it rained all the time)? I like the look of the Notch… appreciate any feedback from somebody that has used it out here. Did you yo-yo?"
we got lucky!! A bit of rain @ Cribs in the early evening until morning, but just a couple of light 'spurts' around Carmanah. We finished a little early and torrential rain the next day!
Notch worked very well. You can actually lower it so the fly is almost right to the ground and also lower just one side to minimize blowing sand. But I did seek out natural wind breaks for that. Condensation was minimal as I kept it pitched fairly high. One night I had a bit more than expected even despite the wind but the temps had dropped to 3C from about 18C. Yeouch. Was not expecting those temps. In the morning I detached the inner (a 45 second process) and packed it away from the outer. With the outer still standing, I wiped it down and then shook it out. It was almost dry at that point. I packed it in my front pocket and by mid morning it was dry. The next night, I set up the outer first and clipped in the inner faster than another setting up his tarp.
If one wants a true double walled, outer pitch first, fully modular, UL design, I can't think of a better option available at this point.
It will be interesting to see if Henry tries out a 2 person version, although the SS2 is probably ideal.
Oh – and no Yo-Yo this time. We started south to north, spent some time at Carmanah and NitNat and then ended up in Bamfield at the hotel. We took a boat back to the Port Renfrew and did some whale watching and looked at the 'trail' from an alternative angle. Did you know there is a sail boat ship wreck not far from NitNat that happened in 2007? It can't be accessible by boat because of the tidal shelf and can't be seen from the trail. But from the ocean side, it is sitting there on the beach……
You are very lucky to live out there. I simply love it.Jun 4, 2012 at 8:55 am #1883847
Mike WBPL Member
@skopeoLocale: British Columbia
Thanks for the info on the Notch. I've been looking seriously at that shelter and was wondering about the blown sand issue because Henry also offers a high fabric side option for the inner tent for the Notch (1 oz extra weight). I currently use the Fly Creek and Copper Spur because I like the high sides on the inner tents. The BA tents are far from perfect, so I'm always looking for a better/lighter solution. I was thinking I might go for the higher side option on the Notch but am wondering if I really need it.
Glad to hear the weather wasn't terrible for your trip on the WCT. It's been very wet and cold around here this year. I was thinking of heading for the mountains (out your way) this summer but my son wanted to do the WCT, so I'm booked for the first week of August. You are right, we are pretty lucky to have easy access. We will drive to Renfrew, drop the car and take the bus to Pachena and walk back to the car.
Unfortunately, the crazy reservation system isn't any easier for us locals. We were booking for the busiest weekend of the summer (Aug long weekend in BC) and so I was on the system at midnight on June 1st (that's when they release the new openings for the month of August). By 12:20 A.M. the entire month of August was booked (except for a few spots at the end of the month). Crazy!!!
I hadn't heard about the sail boat wreck. I've never taken the boat ride but have heard that it's a fun trip.Jun 4, 2012 at 9:04 am #1883850
Mike – sorry, I was going to add this: My buddy had a Notch as well on that trip but with the 'solid' inner. The fabric feels the same as what the Hubba HP's had. Very nice. He seemed to get a bit of sand inside as well but I suspect it was the result of kicking it in when entering the shelter. The only place I had any sand was where I had seam sealed.
I am going to order a solid inner for the cooler shoulder season months. That reminds me, I need to talk to Henry!
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