Durston X-Mid 2P Review
Sep 19, 2021 at 7:12 pm #3727785jscottBPL Member
@bookLocale: Northern California
“We like ours! Can pitch low to ground, or high. ”
To me, this is an important feature. I’m guessing that Dan’s being a PNW hiker made him emphasize this. All of these tents look storm worthy to me.Sep 19, 2021 at 9:01 pm #3727793Dan DurstonBPL Member
@dandydanLocale: Canadian Rockies
Melissa: The floor is probably okay but hard to say for sure. The floor is a 20D fabric that is fairly light but not as light as some tents that use 10-15D floors. We sleep in ours with our dog with never an issue, but if the dog was scratching hard on the floor and/or had sharp claws then damage may occur. Overall, it’s probably fine but it’s something to watch.
George: The 1P came out a year before the 2P and it was the first tent I ever designed, so I’ve learned a lot since then – much of which is reflected in the 2P when it came out a year later. A lot of the updates that the 1P is getting now are things that the 2P already had, such as reducing the fly-inner gaps to fit in a larger inner, improved fabric patterning for a tighter pitch, connections to the pole handles to anchor the floor, and the new pocket style at the inner peaks. So the 2P was ahead of the 1P and now the 1P is catching up with the second gen design in a few months.
Of course we are also innovating further with the new 1P design (e.g. new side panel guyouts, revised design at the peaks) but many of these changes are being incorporated into the 2P as well. For example, the upcoming batch of the 2P has new side panel guyouts as well. So we won’t have substantial enough changes to the 2P to call it a new generation in the near future, but we are making continual improvements. We make improvements for almost every batch, so that will continue.Sep 20, 2021 at 12:06 am #3727798Dave NBPL Member
Great review. Really enjoyed the discussion on poles by Rex and Dan in the comments. Like Rex, I don’t hike with poles so I find myself having to consider additions for these interesting and innovative offset tents.Oct 7, 2021 at 12:50 am #3729030DirtNapBPL Member
Love my 1P. Over 100 nights in it. Zero floor wear with just polycro use. The upcoming changes to give more room will be a welcome thing. On mine the mesh sags a bit and the pockets are only minimally useful. I had peak damage but it hasn’t leaked a bit. I wish the door tie ups were closer to the peak as I just can’t get mine to hold. Also can be a little tough to tell where your head will be in pitch situations when you need your head to be uphill. The “clocked” inner makes it hard to get your head placement in sloppy sites right, so I marked the approximate head location with tape on the fly with tape. We had a flash flood situation in the Fitzpatrick (Winds) this summer and the tent did amazingly well. Zero moisture inside even though there was a mudflow that ran underneath the tent. I’ll be watching for the pro model.Oct 9, 2021 at 8:16 pm #3729309Dan DurstonBPL Member
@dandydanLocale: Canadian Rockies
Glad you’re loving the 1P. The next gen 1P launching in a few months is updated all over, so it largely addresses the critiques you note (e.g. it has different pockets, beefier peaks, and we’ve moved the door tie ups a few inches up so they hold better) in addition to being roomier inside.
The first Pro model is a 2P but we hope to follow that with a 1P before too long.Oct 11, 2021 at 2:18 am #3729385Richard D.BPL Member
@legkohodLocale: Eastern Europe / Caucasus
Does anyone have experience using the tent without the inner? It looks like up to 4 people could fit in quite nicely. How would you compare the livability for 4 people vs., say, an MLD Supermid (without its inner)?
One other question, for Dan. Based on the logic of your article on volume efficiency, why not make the base a perfect square and make it a 2/3-person shelter? Seems like adding 14” to the shorter side would add 10-11” to the width of the inner. I’d guess the added weight would be just 100 g.
I look forward to getting ahold of one of these in the next batch…Oct 12, 2021 at 4:52 pm #3729488d kBPL Member
I’m also very seriously considering one of these. It would be my first DCF shelter, if so. I’m hoping that the floor area/headspace will be as wide as possible, for 2 person use.Jan 25, 2022 at 6:39 pm #3738121
I live on an exposed bluff 200 ft above the Pacific Ocean in Northern California. A perfect place to test the X-Mid 2P Dan Durston tent. But not really a good place to pitch a tent. Except for the great views!
A little data… average rainfall is 58 inches a year), wind speed gusts up to 65 mph, humidity (90-100 percent), and temps 35-47 deg F
The only thing that I did that was a little special was to use titanium nail tent pegs. And I used two guy lines for each of the two tent peaks. The ground base was made up of compacted crushed river rock. Once the pegs were set, they did not have to be reset. And I left the peak vents open. The near constant breeze helped mitigate condensation. Also, I pitch the tarp so that it is a few inches off the ground. This helps mitigate condensation.
Setting up this and other tents in winter taught me the importance of having a taught pitch. Use the appropriate stakes, ironwire, and the right knots. Once the tarp was pitched, I was ready for the storm. Windy, wet, cold, humid. Perfect! Predicted wind gusts were between 40 and 65 mph. Being stout of body and weak of mind, I was caught unaware. Only once. Gust almost knocked me over. Really a nice challenging storm.
This storm was something less than one of our Great Coastal Gales. But for gale force storms, I do my camping inside. Last year, I set the X-Mid 2P up on the bluff for 3 weeks.
Trekking pole tents are really not designed for high wind speeds. But the X-Mid 2P did just fine for wind speeds in the 40-65 mph range. No damage of any kind was detected.
I really like the tent. I enjoy how easy it is to set up. Especially in the summer, when I only use 4 corner pegs and a couple of tent door pegs.
And I just purchased the X-Mid Pro 2. This, like almost all my equipment, once lightly used and tested, goes to a good cause. Backpacking family members.Jan 25, 2022 at 8:30 pm #3738131DirtNapBPL Member
William N, that’s some great beta! For what it’s worth, I’ve been hit by every kind of weather including snow in my one person and it has done admirably. I even had a pseudo flash flood in the wind Rivers last year and everything inside staid dry even though there was a river of mud running underneath 75% of my tent. I think this design is amazing. I believe in it so much that I got the new version of the 1P and ordered my first dyneema tent this week with the 2P. I’m game planning a pack rafting loop in Greenland for next year and I trust this design fully. I never stake more than the corners and the doorways and it has not failed me yet. Over 150 nights thus far.Jan 26, 2022 at 11:10 pm #3738248
Here are a couple of additional comments. I used two guylines at the two peaks (4 guylines total) because I was watching the pole supported peaks move around during really good sized gusts. Storm warning predictions were for wind gusts in the range of 40-65 mph. From first principals, it is clear that these peak guylines will take some load off of the sidewalls of the tarp. I will go a bit further, and speculate that this addition will make the X-Mid almost as storm worthy (whatever that means) as some four season free standing tents. (I am waiting for some stalwart to test my speculation). May I suggest an exposed bluff, about 10,500 ft elevation, preferably eastern side of the Rockies. And definitely during a severe winter storm. But please have a good extraction backup plan. I know of a least one person who tested a tent under these conditions. If you don’t do this, now and again, you really don’t know your limits. Or your equipment’s limits.
I used 12 or 14 titanium nail stakes to secure my X-Mid. Which would add about 6-7oz to the tent’s overall weight. I am tempted to speculate that a bit heavier tarp fabric might bring this tent into the full 4 season category. But, again, I have drifted outside of Dan’s more mainstream target.
I plan to storm test the X-Mid 2P Pro when I get it. But may have to wait till next winter for proper storm conditions. Photos next time.Nov 23, 2022 at 2:16 pm #3766092Chris KBPL Member
William, thanks for sharing your testing. I understand the tent did not fail, but how much flapping was there? Did the panels move around much?Nov 23, 2022 at 11:42 pm #3766121
I did get what I consider to be a pretty good taut pitch. But it took me a while to get to my final configuration. (You will notice from the attached photo that I used two guylines at each ridge pole. I pitched this X-Mid2 up this summer, and added the additional ridge pole guylines for this photo op.)
Returning to the Winter Storm test… during setup, I noticed the ridge poles moving around more than I liked. The extra guylines at the ridgepoles fixed that. And I kept tightening the guylines until there wasn’t any perceived flapping. What follows are a couple of disclaimers. I do come from a very technical background. But I did not measure wind speed. But for a few days of this test, wind speeds were predicted to be in the 40-65 mph range. I am aware that it is very easy to over estimate wind speeds. But I believe the speeds were in this range. I misspent years of my youth riding a Bultaco Matador all over the Santa Cruz Mountains. I had it geared down, and it topped out at 60 mph. Shamefully, I also owned a Norton Commander 850. And lived life a bit in the fast lane. So I got pretty good at what it feels like for wind speeds up to about a 100 mph. During those three days when the high speed gusts were predicted, I believe that they many of the gusts were at or above 65 mph. So, getting back to rigging, I tightened until I couldn’t perceive any flapping. And my experience in setting up this (or any tent) for winter conditions like this was nil. Example of this? I only know how to tie two knots. A Bowline and a Taught Line Hitch. That’s what I used. Again, I did keep adjusting until I got what I considered to be a really taught pitch.
In summary. The Durston X-Mid 2p survived. With no observable damage. And I managed to mitigate any flapping. Having said this, I admit, again, to subjective judgement. When I first rigged this tent, there was noticeable flapping. Adding the peak guylines and tightening every guyline resulted in virtually eliminating any flapping. For the observed wind speeds. I spent a few hours every couple of days inside the tent. But was not continuously in the tent over a three week period.Nov 24, 2022 at 12:27 am #3766122Roger CaffinBPL Member
@rcaffinLocale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
a Norton Commander 850
Oh, very nice. Very nice!
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