Sep 9, 2013 at 1:38 am #1307458
christopher smeadBPL Member
@hamsterfishLocale: San Jose, CA
I've been using a flycreek UL1 for a few years now and love it. However the weight savings of the zpacks Hexamid is super tempting.
Here's my 2 big concerns
1. Is it impossible to set up on granite? All those guy out points seem like a challenge in less than ideal camp spots.
2. Is it stable in high winds?
-ChrisSep 9, 2013 at 1:55 am #2023234
Franco DarioliBPL Member
There are trekking pole supported tents that only need 4 stake points to work and there are "freestanding " tents that need 12.
So it isn't about trekking poles vs tent poles, it is about specific designs.
(sorry I can't help you with the specific tent you are asking for although I have pitched a couple of those…)Sep 9, 2013 at 2:18 am #2023235
Justin BakerBPL Member
@justin_bakerLocale: Santa Rosa, CA
"Is it impossible to set up on granite? All those guy out points seem like a challenge in less than ideal camp spots."
It probably wouldn't be possible to support a trekking pole on flat granite unless you jammed it in between a few rocks. If you can find some dirt, then you can use rocks as guy out points.
I find a flat tarp to be the best option for really crazy and uneven sites. If you experiment around you can adapt a flat tarp to almost anything.Sep 9, 2013 at 7:45 am #2023287
Greg MihalikBPL Member
Hexamid Solo+ here.
I often set up on slabs, not by choice, but because they are the only choice at the moment.
I have Long lines with a fixed loop on all points, that terminate at a LineLock on the tent body. I form a lose loop and "lasso" a rock, then stack more on top. The long lines give you flexibility on location, and avert stacking rocks into the tent body.
Define High Winds… 60mph in a saddle? I doubt it. 30 mph in an alpine meadow? – yep. If you can pitch in the trees it will handle any storm.Sep 9, 2013 at 9:15 am #2023324
I'll also add, since it was brought up, that the trekking pole support for a hexamid on granite is not an issue as it's under pretty good tension. Long guy lines, or even the stock specified lengths have worked fine for me burried under rocks. The hexamid has been surprisingly flexible in setting up on all kinds of unfavorable terrain.Sep 9, 2013 at 10:40 am #2023357
Lose or break a trekking pole and you can easily substitute a stick or hang from a tree or overhead line tied to rock walls etc. Note that this is not true every where but it is where I hike. Lose or break you tent poles and the fun begins. I would rather have a trekking pole supported shelter. I always bring extra parachute/bear bag cord.Sep 9, 2013 at 11:54 am #2023380Sep 9, 2013 at 12:13 pm #2023387
J RBPL Member
I have a Lightheart Gear Solo, and the design makes the structure incredibly strong. First, trekking poles are a lot thicker and stronger than tent poles. Second, on a design like the Lightheart has, the poles effectively form a rigid "arch" structure (together with a small ridge pole) that is incredibly strong. I pitched on granite throughout Yosemite this summer, you do need to find a few rocks that are the right size, but I would have wanted to stake out even a free-standing tent in some of the winds I had.Sep 9, 2013 at 6:44 pm #2023513
@dafiremedicLocale: Southern California
I've used trekking poles as support on rock slabs a number of times. I usually just find a few heavy rocks, about as heavy as they can be and still carry them to the tent site, and tie off to them. I do that anyway when the ground is too soft for tent stakes. You just need to use alternate tie offs. Kind of inconvenient, but I haven't yet failed to find something to tie off to.
Regarding the issue of breaking a trekking pole, this usually isn't an issue if you are with other people and they aren't using all of their poles. If solo, it can be an issue, especially if above the treeline and the weather is looking bad. The Hexamid Solo only uses one pole anyway, so you would still have another to use if one of yours broke. The duo uses two, but if you are with another person, you would have 2 extra just in case.Sep 9, 2013 at 9:22 pm #2023593
Sam FarringtonBPL Member
@scfhomeLocale: Chocorua NH, USA
You don't have to go to "all those guy points" with every trekking pole design.
At least three of the cottage companies now make variations of the original Wanderlust Nomad design, improved by the use of a spreader bar at the top that attaches to 2 trekking poles. Two or four stakes then pull out the corners, depending on whether the floor is diamond or rectangle shaped. Some of the companies also make them in Cuben. Suggest you check the cottage sites, make a list, and then search on BPL for reviews or posts of the models, and contact the companies if necessary for details. This would not be such a task if BPL still did extensive comparison reviews of tents like it used to. Passing work on to the consumer seems to be the order of the day.
Issues with these tents include:
-The flat walls on the canopies that limit head room away from the central part of the tent, but you already have that in the Fly Creek, and BPL posters don't seem to have much problem with that.
-Less than a taut pitch on some models that are not well tailored. A flapping and ballooning tent will not be very good in the wind, and sagging can make already limited head room very unpleasant.
-Limited life on the Cuben models – depends on how much use they get, and how well the seams are constructed. If you can get it on these tents, a high hydrostatic head silnylon would make a better floor because the elasticity of the fabric resists abrasion well. Some like the stiffness of thicker Cuben for a floor, but IMO that is not a problem if a silnylon floor is pulled fully taut at all corners.
Reading posts and reviews should help to resolve the issues. One longtime member of BPL dislikes these tents because you have to install the trekking poles inside the tent, which can be tedious, at least until you get the 'hang' of it. But don't let a search for the perfect be the enemy of the good. Nimblewill Nomad has done many thousands of miles with tents of this design and speaks of them very favorably.
I should also note that tents of this design type are not fully double walled like the Fly Creek, but are more of a hybrid, depending on how the maker has tweaked the design. However, the posts I've read suggest that condensation in these tents is much less of a problem than on a single wall design. Perhaps some users will comment here on your thread.Sep 10, 2013 at 7:55 am #2023659
Samuel what is the third company that puts out the variation of the wanderlust lightheart,six moons and ?Sep 10, 2013 at 9:03 am #2023670
Jennifer MitolBPL Member
@jenmitolLocale: In my dreams....
I've had three trekking pole tent/shelters now and ill never, ever go back to a dedicated pole design.
The tarp tent stratospire 1 is awesome, stronger and sturdier than any standard pole tent I've ever used, including the fly creek.
My current cuben duomid has a solo inner net inside – so for 20 oz or so I get a huge double wall shelter with the sweetest vestibule I've ever seen. And it too is solid as ive ever used. Love love love it.
And here I had to use some of those "deadman" anchor set ups for the corners because i couldnt get stakes in the ground (but I was able to get a few ti hooks in the ground for the pull outs)Sep 10, 2013 at 10:14 am #2023692
Eric BlumensaadtBPL Member
@danepackerLocale: Mojave Desert
Do not be fooled by a tent's "footprint". Often the long canopy slopes on tents leave much of the footprint unuseable, as much as one foot on those sides. Loot also at door protection from the elements when it is opened.
Look at the Tarptent Notch and Six Moon Designs Skyscape for the best in hiking pole supported tent design. The Skyscape has an optional "porch" to protect the door and give a shelter for safe cooking. That tent in silnylon (for cost reasons) with a Cuben fabric "porch" is a good combo.Sep 10, 2013 at 11:33 am #2023718
Eric out of curiosity what tent are you referring to as not having usable space? How much of it is not usable?Sep 11, 2013 at 11:10 pm #2024216
Sam FarringtonBPL Member
@scfhomeLocale: Chocorua NH, USA
You got me. Thought I'd seen another, but can't find it now. Must be just the two you mention.Sep 12, 2013 at 12:26 am #2024219
Franco DarioliBPL Member
Eric out of curiosity what tent are you referring to as not having usable space? How much of it is not usable?
OK, I'm not Eric but I'll give you a very simple way to work it out for yourself.
Take a look at the slope of the wall and have a guess at the angle of it or work it out from the specs..).
Now trace that angle on a wall starting from the floor.
Get your mat and sleeping bag and slide it towards that corner.
Keep in mind that in most cases the fabric will cave in so give yourself a bit more clearance for this.
here is an example :
At that sort of angle you lose about one foot .
You would lose considerably less if using a very thin mat.Sep 12, 2013 at 8:59 am #2024286
Thanks Samuel I just wanted to know if there was something out there I was missing as I kinda like this style of tent I own a LH solo I use now and then. And thank you Franco and I do kinda understand the problems with mids but I also see how sloping sidewalls and pointy peaks shed wind better and I feel that getting in and out in the rain is not near as important as a shelter staying up in the wind and the rain without damage. Funny how all designs have their good and bad points. It would really be cool to have a debate with all the cottage or lightweight tent designers why they build what they do and the pros and cons of designsSep 12, 2013 at 9:18 am #2024295
Mids are awesome:
Just kidding. Love the DuoMid.Sep 12, 2013 at 11:38 am #2024330
Stephen MBPL Member
@stephen-mLocale: Way up North
Nice pic of my sl3-.Sep 12, 2013 at 1:06 pm #2024352
LOLSep 13, 2013 at 8:03 am #2024505
Ross BleakneyBPL Member
To me, the biggest advantage of free standing tents over trekking pole tents is convenience. Once you assemble a trekking pole tent, it is a pain to move it. You can do it, but it is just a lot harder. I still prefer using trekking pole tents (because they tend to be lighter and stronger) but I miss the convenience of the free standing tents. Basically, I spend a lot more time scoping out my spot, to make sure it makes sense. I now use a clear plastic tent footprint for that purpose. With a free standing tent, I can just pick the whole thing up and move it a bit if I discover something about the original location I don't like.
To add to the inconvenience, a lot of trekking pole tents work best in one direction (relative to the wind) while many free standing tents do not. This means that if you have a bit of a slope, you may be forced to sleep at an awkward angle (e. g. a slope from left to right) to avoid the wind hitting you from the wrong side.
One last advantage to free standing tents is that they tend to be tolerant of stake (AKA peg) failures. You can have a dome tent supported by one stake. If you are in the tent, you can usually get by with all of the stakes being out. With a free standing tent, generally speaking, you are in trouble if one stake comes loose. Of course, if it is really windy, then you will want to use guy lines on a dome tent, in which case you are in pretty much the same boat as the pole tent person.Sep 13, 2013 at 8:45 am #2024513
Dale WambaughBPL Member
@dwambaughLocale: Pacific Northwest
Many free standing tents will stay up with a stake failure, but the flys rely on quite a few for good tension. The Flycreek has what, like 11 stakes? I got rid of a Seedhouse because it used 12. The old 2-pole dome designs could get by with just enough stakes to keep them from blowing away and were truly free standing. If the fly ties into the ends of the poles, you have it made.
I've spent the last week in an MSR Missing Link and the basic pitch is 6 stakes and can add 5 more fore extreme conditions. It would need short loops on the corners and rocks to pitch on granite. I'm in the trees 99.99% of the time.
My Gatewood Cape uses 6 stakes and one pole. With either tent, it would be easy to improvise with a tree branch.
I agree that non-free standing tents are weak on stake failure, but you pretty much know when you sink the stake. A stake plus a rock on the main guy lines is pretty stout.
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