The REI Flash Air 1 Tent entered our gear review queue last week, so we took it on its maiden voyage Sunday to become familiar with it.
This is a 1-person, hybrid-wall (single/double) tent that can be pitched with a single trekking pole.
- Stake-out points: 2 in front, 2 in rear, 1 vestibule
- Guyline options: rear peak strut, back side, peaks (2), front top (2), rear top (2).
- Weight: 20 oz (minimum)
- I found it to be surprisingly roomy, but I’m not a big guy. The pad in the photo is a 20×72 Uberlite.
- With all of the guylines attached, wind resistance is excellent for a 20 oz tent, but not in a conventional way. It buffets a lot in high winds, so the structure moves quite a lot. However, it doesn’t seem to flap excessively, and it remains well-tensioned. In addition, high winds don’t seem to deliver much force back to the tent stakes (I’m guessing here, I’ll try to verify with our guyline force measurement sensors later). Instead, the structure’s resiliency (sort of akin to elasticity) distributes the brunt of the forces. The slightly bendy stock vertical pole hooked into the arch pole probably helps with this. Maybe a trekking pole would make this a “stiffer” structure but that *may* actually cause more flapping. We’ll see!
- Lack of structure means you can’t pull a lot of tension force into the guylines without disrupting the shape negatively.
- The 100-pound dog won’t fit into the vestibule very comfortably.
Available now at REI for $249.
Acknowledgments: Thanks for taking the photos, Stephanie (my wife). I’m grateful to be social distancing with you during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Questions? Hit me up in the forum below and I’ll do my best to answer them based on what I know so far about it.
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