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  1. #16
    Seattle-area Rounder OfficerImpersonator's Avatar
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    I love it - we'll spend $25k for a motorcycle, but we're too cheap to pay over $200 for a decent tent! Too funny.

    What do backpackers look for in a tent? Low weight? Strength and protection in adverse conditions? Flexibility for pitching the tent in less than ideal locations?

    Seems these are the same qualities you'd want in a motorcycle tent...

    So definitely check out the offerings from the various manufacturers of backpacking tents. The best brands are MSR, Mountain Hardware, The North Face, Black Diamond, and Sierra Designs. REI's house branded stuff is also well designed and constructed.

    But if you can buy it at Wal-Mart, forget it. It will be too heavy, poorly constructed, and poorly designed. It won't come with sealed seams, a bathtub floor, or durable zippers and seams. Poles will likely be fiberglass instead of aluminum. It will likely die after one season of use. You want a tent you can abuse a bit - pitch it in dirt, let the wind try and knock it down, stuff it into a dusty sack and toss it in a side case. Spill coffee and bacon grease on it. It's your home away from home, so make sure it's dependable, useful and light.

    Finally always set up your new tent for the first time in your back yard or in your living room. Never try to figure out how to set up your new tent at the end of a long day, in the rain, in the dark. Learn how to set up your tent in ideal conditions so you'll be ready to set it up in less-than-ideal conditions later.

    I always set up my tent in the living room or back yard after a trip, so I can shake out all the dirt and dust, hose it off if need be, and pack it away in as large of a stuff sack as I can find so the material doesn't stay compressed when stored. You should also do this with your sleeping bag, down coat, etc. You can buy specialized storage sacks for tents and sleeping bags, or you can use large pillow cases. Whatever you use, make sure the fabric can breathe and isn't crumpled and smashed together when the tent/sleeping bag/jacket is stored.
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  2. #17
    Rather B Riding SCBMWRIDERDEB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dvandkq View Post
    I love it - we'll spend $25k for a motorcycle, but we're too cheap to pay over $200 for a decent tent! Too funny.

    What do backpackers look for in a tent? Low weight? Strength and protection in adverse conditions? Flexibility for pitching the tent in less than ideal locations?

    Seems these are the same qualities you'd want in a motorcycle tent...
    That's why I recomended the Mountain Hardwear earlier. When it came time to replace our old North Face Big Frog (about 13 yrs old) I looked and looked. We are usually 2 up on the bike, backpacking or canoe camping and I have been spoiled by having a bombproof tent.



    It's a couple years old now and has been through some very heavy weather. Never had a drop of water inside or and problem with high winds etc. Yes it is on the heavy side at around 9 pounds but the floor is 7'7" X 7'5" with a over 4' hight there is lots of room for both of us and our gear. Room is good while waiting out bad weather. Plus Campmor has them on sale for $269
    Greg Hunt scBMWrider@gmail.com
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  3. #18
    Seattle-area Rounder OfficerImpersonator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by scbmwrider View Post
    That's why I recomended the Mountain Hardwear earlier. When it came time to replace our old North Face Big Frog (about 13 yrs old) I looked and looked. We are usually 2 up on the bike, backpacking or canoe camping and I have been spoiled by having a bombproof tent.

    It's a couple years old now and has been through some very heavy weather. Never had a drop of water inside or and problem with high winds etc. Yes it is on the heavy side at around 9 pounds but the floor is 7'7" X 7'5" with a over 4' hight there is lots of room for both of us and our gear. Room is good while waiting out bad weather. Plus Campmor has them on sale for $269
    My first backpacking tent (which I still use for solo trips) is an old The North Face. The equivalent today is their Tadpole model, which goes for around $230. It weighs a whopping five pounds. Super light, super durable, excellent ventilation and lots of room to stretch out and keep gear out of sight and out of the weather for one person. It's pretty tight for two people and all their gear.

    For two people, or for the wife and I plus the 2 year old, I use a Mountain Hardware Trango 3.1. Yes, it's a $600+ tent. But - it's the same tent you'll see used at 26,000' at Camp IV on Mt. Everest. It's not just wind and storm-proof - it's jet-stream-high-altitude-blizzard-proof. Packed up, it's the size of a sleeping bag and weighs 10 pounds, but three people can comfortably hang out for extended times of bad weather with all their gear. The thing has doors at both ends and massive vestibules to keep your gear out of the rain and out of sight. It's tall enough inside that I can "stand up" on my knees, which makes getting dressed/undressed so much easier.

    We also have an old REI 4 person dome dent that we use when we're camping in places where we don't want to use a fancy mountaineering tent - like camping at the Gorge Amphitheater in Eastern Washington. When the drunks start lighting off fireworks and stumbling around after a concert, you don't want burning embers or the intoxicated reveler landing on your fancy-pants tent!
    Seattle, WA
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  4. #19
    Mudbug
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    I have never camped out before. I've lived out in the open without the benefits of a tent many years ago in the Army. This year I decided to try camping. With my wife's help, I chose a REI Quarter Dome. I did not want to spend too much money in case this would be a one time attempt. I chose a decent pad for my sleeping bag. But I bought a cheap sleeping bag for warmer weather. I'm not too keen on cold weather and I do not plan on camping in it.

    During the process of choosing a tent I learned that a 2 person tent isn't. Neither is a three person tent, if you expect to put your gear in it. Also there are some incidentals to get, if you do not have, such as a light, not a flashlight, extra pegs and maybe a mallet, and a tarp for under the tent.

    I decided on a tent that had two poles of equal length. Being new, I did not want to remember what went where in the dark after a long day or travel. Also, I chose a tent that attached to the poles with clips. I figured it was easier to set up.
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  5. #20
    Ahead of my time bigdelta's Avatar
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    Didn't you have a bivouac during Basic Training?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mudbug View Post
    I have never camped out before. I've lived out in the open without the benefits of a tent many years ago in the Army. This year I decided to try camping. With my wife's help, I chose a REI Quarter Dome. I did not want to spend too much money in case this would be a one time attempt. I chose a decent pad for my sleeping bag. But I bought a cheap sleeping bag for warmer weather. I'm not too keen on cold weather and I do not plan on camping in it.

    During the process of choosing a tent I learned that a 2 person tent isn't. Neither is a three person tent, if you expect to put your gear in it. Also there are some incidentals to get, if you do not have, such as a light, not a flashlight, extra pegs and maybe a mallet, and a tarp for under the tent.

    I decided on a tent that had two poles of equal length. Being new, I did not want to remember what went where in the dark after a long day or travel. Also, I chose a tent that attached to the poles with clips. I figured it was easier to set up.
    Remember carrying that shelter-half and pitching it along w/another soldier's half?
    And digging a trench around it after it was assembled to keep the running water OUT of it?Ah,Jan '71,just like yesterday.
    I will do my 1st "camping" since the Army also when I get settled in Baja soon.
    John
    ATGATT
    "It is better to have seen a place once... than to have heard of it a thousand times"

  6. #21
    Stuff2c
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    Thumbs down Bibler

    I used to think my Bibler was the best tent out there until...I just got a quote of $500 to replace the floor

    Bibler has NO in house service, they referred me to Rainy Pass for the repair.

    I have had my tent for more than 10 years...but the tent is still in GREAT shape other than the floor is wearing thin and is no longer water tight. If it was out of warranty and a year old the cost would be the same. OUCH! when you spend that kind of $$ on a tent.

    I'm now looking to a different mfg for my next tent.

    Just a heads up for those interested in a Bibler/Black Diamond tent.

  7. #22
    Rather B Riding SCBMWRIDERDEB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stuff2C View Post
    I used to think my Bibler was the best tent out there until...I just got a quote of $500 to replace the floor

    That's a drag. My Northface Bigfrog had a pole break after 10+ years of service which tore the fly. I sent it back to them, they sent me a post card with a charge for the fly repair. I think that it was less than $50. I made a quick call to them letting them know that the fly tore when the pole broke. They said to ignore the bill sorry.
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  8. #23
    Stuff2c
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    Quote Originally Posted by scbmwrider View Post
    That's a drag. My Northface Bigfrog had a pole break after 10+ years of service which tore the fly. I sent it back to them, they sent me a post card with a charge for the fly repair. I think that it was less than $50. I made a quick call to them letting them know that the fly tore when the pole broke. They said to ignore the bill sorry.

    Believe me I wasn't looking for a freebie. But $500 was a SHOCK!!! I guess when BlackDiamond bought the company they went offshore with the mfg of the Bibler brand tent.

    I'm now lookiing @ a mountain hardwear tent. I called them and they have a full in house repair facility and quoted me $80 +- depending on the tent to replace the floor. And nice folks to boot!

    If you are looking at a tent make the call and find out about the repair facility. It could save you some $$$ later if you need them.

  9. #24
    Rather B Riding SCBMWRIDERDEB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stuff2C View Post
    I'm now lookiing @ a mountain hardwear tent. I called them and they have a full in house repair facility and quoted me $80 +- depending on the tent to replace the floor. And nice folks to boot!

    Mt Hardwear good if you don't do anything before the RA you can check out out HammerHead 3
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  10. #25
    Roadster Rider sjbmw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by proctor View Post
    can anyone suggest a good two man tent, that is compact to carry and easy to put up.

    Remember, a 2 "man" tent is really for one person, with gear. If you are doing 2 Up traveling, get a 3 person tent.

    I got a Eureka Pinnacle Pass 3XTA, packs small (under 7" by 21", compared to 6" x18" for the 2XTA), spacious, and 2 people with gear fit pretty good. Also stayed dry through 24 hours of relentless Ernesto rain at the Finger Lakes rally last year.

    http://www.eurekatent.com/pinnaclepass3xta.asp


    Excellent $150 tent.

  11. #26
    Stuff2c
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    Quote Originally Posted by scbmwrider View Post
    Mt Hardwear good if you don't do anything before the RA you can check out out HammerHead 3

    I was looking at the MH Trango 3.1

    http://www.mountainhardwear.com/Prod...&viewAll=False

    If my tent leaks, I'm like a spoiled child, I pack my stuff and head for the house or hotel...wet camping SUCKS.

    I am gooing to miss the easy setup of a single wall tent. Unfortunately Bibler is now out of the running for my replacement. If I can keep water from under it the "toddtex" is still doing a great job.

    I figured I'd try to find a seemstress that may be able/willing to put a new floor in it for me.

  12. #27
    Das Cooool ITSBOB's Avatar
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    http://www.dickssportinggoods.com/sm...i-2212134.html

    I found this one at Dick's Sporting Goods.. 2 person tent, but packs up small enough to fit easily into a sidecase.
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  13. #28
    Rather B Riding SCBMWRIDERDEB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stuff2C View Post
    I was looking at the MH Trango 3.1

    http://www.mountainhardwear.com/Prod...&viewAll=False

    If my tent leaks, I'm like a spoiled child, I pack my stuff and head for the house or hotel...wet camping SUCKS.
    I agree that water inside your tent sucks. We have been VERY happy with thew Hammerhead 3, room to put a Queen size air matress and our gear. Good venting, a pluss in the SE, and DRY inside. We often use a "space blanket" under the tent to protect the floor.
    Greg Hunt scBMWrider@gmail.com
    Klassic K Kampout VI July 12-14, 2013

    Klassic K kampout 2013 Brick Battalion Home

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