lightweight camping gear
So, I can't carry a whole lot of extra weight on my bike, so I'm looking for some lighter weight camping gear.
I have an extralight sleeping bag.
But, I'm looking for a sleeping pad and a tent (2 person)
I like the Thermarest Pro-Lite 4 for a sleeping pad and Nemo Morpho AR tent--it's rated two person, but works well as 1+gear. Reviewed in last month's ON. There are lighter tents out there, though. Depends on your needs.
I'd recommend [URL="http://www.coleman.com/coleman/colemancom/detail.asp?product_id=9180A705"]Coleman's 2 person Sundome tent[/URL] (7' x 5'). It packs up very compactly in a provided carrying case. I think the packed weight is @ 6 lbs.
I'd purchased one en route to the West Bend rally at a Dick's Sporting Goods for @ $32 and have been so happy with it, I haven't even used my LL Bean 3-person tent at all this season. I've used it in the rain and have stayed dry as a bone. Great value for the price.
Lightweight Camping Gear
I would recommend the Mountain Hardware Lightpath series of tents. I bought mine on sale last fall for $120. More money, yes. But its great! I was camping in the middle of a wicked thunderstorm and never a drop of water came in the tent. Packs down really small too.
As far as a camping mat is concerned, I haven't been able to find a good one that is comfortable that will pack small like I want. Sorry, no help there.
A company named Catoma makes small tents for the military and fire services. They have tents from a small 1 person (around 3 pounds) to larger 4-6 person tents. Their web site breaks down the tents into backpacking, firefighting, tactical and motorcycle. They can be expensive, but no more than REI or similiar companies. I have a couple of their tents and they have out-lasted Coleman and similiar tents by several seasons. Well worth a look.
Their web side is [url]www.catomaoutdoor.com[/url]
Just check out the lightweight backpacking gear section of your outdoor store.
Or check out web stores like Campmor, REI, MEI, etc.
Most all of it translates nicely to packing and storing for motorcyle camping. Just remember you can usually make some trades for comfort since you don't have to carry it on your back.
[QUOTE=GDWallace;375569]A company named Catoma makes small tents for the military and fire services. They have tents from a small 1 person (around 3 pounds) to larger 4-6 person tents. Their web site breaks down the tents into backpacking, firefighting, tactical and motorcycle. They can be expensive, but no more than REI or similiar companies. I have a couple of their tents and they have out-lasted Coleman and similiar tents by several seasons. Well worth a look.
Their web side is [url]www.catomaoutdoor.com[/url]
That Switchback tent looks very nice. Can you comment on their set-up system?
I just got back into motorcycle camping after a long time away. As far as a tent and mattress goes I decided on an REI camp dome 2 tent $99.50 @ REI. This is a 2 person (actually 1 person + gear). Used it a couple of times, sets up easy and provides some privacy compared to the mesh ultra light tents (weighs about 5 lbs) . For a mattress I went with an insulated air chamber mattress. It fits my sleeping bag system (Big Angus) takes about 3 minutes to inflate but its lighter and packs smaller than any thermarest. Good luck with your search.:thumb
Ditto on the therma-rest pad. Great! Tent - Eureka Apex 2 sets up easy and is a good tent. Survived Gilette's storms. Did not get wet at al. If you look around, you can get it for around $79.00. If you want a good kot, a great one is the [url]www.go-kot.com[/url]. Is $99.00 and folds up small. For $200.00 plus, you can get one that folds up really, small and only weighs about 2 pounds. Have it and been though that. The go-kot is the way to go.Check out which tent in the past forums. There is some excellent information. A three person tent doesn't weigh much more than a 2 person if any and you have more room for equipment. THE KOT IS GREAT BECAUSE IT GETS YOU OF THE GROUND. You actually get a great night's sleep with a kot.
I second the Eureka Apex line. I have owned several and found them to be a good buy for the money. Check Campmore for specials!!!
I used a Thermarest for years and got lured into the Big Agnes line. I bought the 30degree rated bag-a blend of down and polyfill. It has a pocket for an insulated blow-up matress --Air Core (I think)- that works far better than a Thermarest. I have slept better and warmer on this than on all the years on a Thermarest. Google the Big Agnes Web Site
Only down side is inflating it. They sell a foot actuated pump that does a good job but Wal Mart sells a power inflator--battery, 110 V or 12V --that is great. I found that the internal battery dies after about a weeks worth of use, so then I use the 12V adaptor plugged into the bike.
Think of motorcycle camping as backpacking on two wheels. Head to the backpacking section of any reputable camping store or [url= http://www.campmor.com/outdoor/gear/Home_]campmore[/url] or [url= http://www.rei.com/]rei[/url] online shops for example.
2 man tent? Are you camping alone or with someone? The one variation between backpacking and motorcycle camping is some of the motorcycle associated gear. If you are touring two up look for a 3 man tent.
Check out the big agnes pads and bags, maybe not the cheapest but quality and the pad is really SMALL AND COMPACT. When combined witha BA bag super comfy, if one can be so while on the ground.;)
Sorry it took so long to get back to you. The Catoma tents can be set up in 2-3 mins. I can set up the combat vehicle crew tent solo,(Got it in a previous life, that is prior to retirement.) solo, in about 5 mins. It's an external frame, that you snap the tent to, then cover with the rain fly.
I also have the stealth, which I can set up in about 1-2 mins. Very low profile and light weight to carry.
I've been in the combat crew vehicle tent in 45-60 mph winds in the high desert. As long as you run out the guy lines properly, it stays in place. So I would bet the smaller tents, with lower their profiles would be pretty secure in the wind also.
If you are looking to save a little money and still get some good gear. Try out these sites; [url]www.sierratradingpost.com[/url] & backcountry.com.
If you want a decent tent try Kelty Gunnison but if you don't mind throwing down $250 to $300 on a tent try the Big Agnes SL-2 Seedhouse.
Light weight Camp Gear
I do a lot of solo camping. I have an REI Polifil Mummy bag, a Sieria Design Sirius 2 (3 season 2 man tent) and a Hightech Cot found in the Aerostitch or Cabela's Catalog. The Cot is expensive but very light and comfortable & adjustable.:thumb