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#167171 - 06/24/12 08:27 PM Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent
wandering_daisy Offline
member

Registered: 01/11/06
Posts: 2752
Loc: California
I am in the center of a dilema- mountaineering tent vs backpack tent. My current tent is the TarpTent Moment. It has condensation issues, but really works just fine for the Sierra. I am headed for a 37-day off-trail backpack in the Wind River Mtns. The last time I was in the Winds, I used the MSR MicroZoid and the Mountain Hardware Approach (a mountaineerint tent). After my epic last summer in the Tarptent Moment during a severe short-term storm (4 inches rain in 1 hour), I am not feeling very comfortable about the Moment in the Wind Rivers. I have a alpine bivy sack that I can add for backup, making my total shelter weight 3 lbs 8 oz. I am wondering if I cannot find a tent that would be less total weight and offer the same protection. Much of my camping will be above timberline, 11,000 foot range, with daily afternoon thunderstorms and REALLY HIGH WINDS. PS. The Moment is well used, zipper has had problems too. Oregon Mouse has offered many useful suggestions (I PM'd her because she KNOWS what the Wind Rivers are like!). Tent of choice = Heilleberg Anjan2, $570 - OUCH!!!. Wind, intense hail and rain are more of an issue than snow, so I am not talking exactly about a 4-season tent. I could also spend $240 and buy a bivy that is 7 oz lighter than what I have. Lots of $$ for a few oz. weight savings.

I am not convinced that UL gear is safe in mountaineering conditions. Convince me otherwise.

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#167172 - 06/24/12 08:49 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: wandering_daisy]
lori Offline
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Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Black Diamond comes to mind. Maybe the Hilight, Firstlight or Eldorado?

I was impressed with a friend's Skylight - it held up to torrential rains on the coast last year.
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#167175 - 06/24/12 09:28 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: wandering_daisy]
Jimshaw Offline
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Registered: 10/22/03
Posts: 3938
Loc: Bend, Oregon
WD
$240 to save 7 ounces is not too cost effective at over $500 per ounce to save weight - better to save weight in the new tent. I think you use the tarp because you like the space, so I'm not sure how you would feel about the solo - double tent thing as far as space. When I started carrying a $500 pack I decided to buy a big enough tent to keep my pack inside it with all of my gear.

I know its non-obtainium but my favorite UL tent for the last 20 years has been a SD Flash Magic - a single walled version of the flash-light that weighs 3 pounds 4 ounces with the stakes and everything. Its barely large enough to hold me and the pack but it works. (backpack tent)

I have an original Bibler Eldorado and I can attest to its ability to stand up to ANYTHING mother nature can throw at it. The roof vents are awesome but it weighs 4 pounds 5 ounces and I do not know what the available versions might weigh. I am taking it snow camping in the Three Sisters Tuesday night for an expected snow storm. (mountaineering tent)

I would feel better above tree line with the potential for strong winds and storm to be in a dome tent with three poles crossing over me. This is the most wind proof silent tent design. The Biblers with 2 crossed poles are lighter and ceertainly strong enough, but they do flap a bit in the wind if it comes from the wrong direction.

I'm not sure I would want a tent with any mesh in the body - thinking of the spindrift problem.

I saw a nice montebell solo tent on ebay - 2.5 pounds.
Jim smile
_________________________
These are my own opinions based on wisdom earned through many wrong decisions. Your mileage may vary.

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#167178 - 06/24/12 11:22 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: Jimshaw]
wandering_daisy Offline
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Registered: 01/11/06
Posts: 2752
Loc: California
Jim, I do not need lots of room. I did not go to the TarpTent for the room, rather for the 2-pound weight and the vestibule which provides wind protection when cooking. In fact the TarpTentMoment is really too big for me. What I did not expect was the excessive condensation which then "rains" inside as heavy winds and rain beat down. Fine when one can be sure of a nice sunny warm next morning; not so good when you awake to several more days of near freezing temps and winds. I do not think the TarpTentMoment will fall down or blow away in a wind, but living in it during a severe storm is disconcerning as I watch water accumulate on my down sleeping bag. It has one large pole and in a heavy side wind it does get distorted pretty signficantly. The headroom is nice to sit up in, but the profile is a bit too high for wind.

I hear a rumor that when Black Diamond bought out Bibler, they changed the material in the tents. Is that correct? Someone said the BD tents are not waterproof and are more appropriate for snow than heavy continous rain.

It does snow a bit, but the more serious concern is very intense lightning storms when within an hour you get nearly 6 inches of hail and then a few inches of rain, all the while the wind is blowing like crazy. I have previously used a North Face BullFrog - another bombproof but heavy tent. Tunnel, 2-3 hoop tents seem to do well.

We actually have a bomb-proof 4-season Mountain Hardware Spire, but at nearly 6 pounds, it is just too heavy for me alone. Fine if I have someone with me to share the weight. We also have a bomb-proof Marmot expedtion tent (7 pounds) and a Mountain Hardware Trango4 (huge and about 12 pounds). I am set for base camp at 14,000 feet as long as a helicopter takes me in! One reason I am so frustrated is that I have a closet FULL expensive high quality tents and none are what I really need. All these tents were purchased in our mountaineering days when we always went in larger groups.

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#167180 - 06/24/12 11:26 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: Jimshaw]
wandering_daisy Offline
member

Registered: 01/11/06
Posts: 2752
Loc: California
Oh, I have looked at the Montbell solo tents - they are the one length-wise pole variety that get flattened in wind. All the pole designs on the Big Agnes tents also collapse in high winds. The only two pole configurations that I like are the tunnel tent 2-hoops or the criss-cross variety (like the Black Diamond tents - and our MH Spire).

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#167210 - 06/25/12 12:58 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: lakhotason]
wandering_daisy Offline
member

Registered: 01/11/06
Posts: 2752
Loc: California
We mountaineering types LIKE high altitude routes. The entire PURPOSE of my trip is to stay high and run the Continental Divide. I have days that I am above timber the entire time. Sorry, I am not going to hunker down in the timber. In alpine terrain, as in lower terrain, there are microclimates that are more protected than other places, and obviously, you seek these for campsites.

There really are no hiding places from typical Rocky Mountain tunderstorms. During the "season" they roll in from one to three per day. Lightning also strikes in timber. No, you do not want to be up on a pass as a human lightning rod, but you can camp above timber without being a lightning rod. As for wind, it blows everywhere. Furthermore, due to the bark beetle infestation, a lot of timbered locations are actually less safe!

Wind is simply something you need to deal with, which includes having wind-worthy equipment. Whether you are heading up to climb a peak or just backpacking in "mountaineering conditions", you need "mountaineering" quality equipment. There is an overlap in backpack and mountaineering tents. It is in that overlap area that I am looking at tents. The trend in all shelters, including mountaineering tents, is to go lighter. In some cases lighter does not sacrafice strength, in many more cases it does. Tent failure in mild conditions is an inconvience; in mountaineering conditions it can be lethal. Since I am going solo, and in places where people are not going to just meander upon me if I get into trouble (typically I will not see anyone for 4-5 days), I am looking for a little more margin of safety.

Perhaps I should have posted in the mountaineering section of the forum.

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#167214 - 06/25/12 01:27 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: wandering_daisy]
Heather-ak Offline
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Registered: 07/11/10
Posts: 597
Loc: Fairbanks, AK
I think posting this here made sense. I'm watching with interest. Let us know what you decide?

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#167215 - 06/25/12 01:34 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: wandering_daisy]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada
Originally Posted By wandering_daisy
We mountaineering types LIKE high altitude routes. The entire PURPOSE of my trip is to stay high and run the Continental Divide. I have days that I am above timber the entire time. Sorry, I am not going to hunker down in the timber. In alpine terrain, as in lower terrain, there are microclimates that are more protected than other places, and obviously, you seek these for campsites.


Daisy, I faced the same dilemma as you up here. My tent of choice for what you describe is pretty simple, weighs just about 1 kilo, it's a Black Diamond one Shot:







Freestanding, good poles, takes a snow load and a wind beating when staked out fully.

Unfortunately - they are no longer made - they do make the firstlight, which is a small two man, but unfortunately weighs a full pound more than this one does. You may be
able to find one on Ebay - you'll note in the "for sale" section I am looking for anyone who has one (people who have decided it's too heavy for an ultralight tent, and don't do stuff all exposed may not want this tent)


I also have a skylight - for two person camping with the better half.

Black diamond seems to have a good balance between light and tough on their lighter models.

I also have a SMD lunar solo - great (and lighter) when I know I will have trees or something to cut the wind a bit. but If I know I'm gonna be doing stuff like what's in those pics, I take the black diamond. I'm amazed at how comfotable
I am in it on a half length prolite plus in raging rockies thunderstorm.

My plans this summer are for a GDT section hike from Jasper to the boundary of banff park through white goat, I'll be taking the black diamond for that - lots of up high exposed camping - followed by a limestone lakes trip, which even though up high will be a hammock trip (there's an epicly wonderful site) and then a trip up over glacier to a basin north of invermere - the Black Diamond will go on that too..

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#167217 - 06/25/12 01:43 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: phat]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada

Oh, and WRT the materiel - BD changed the original "ToddTex" of the full weight bibler tents.. The light ones I think are still the same or similar.

the light ones all advertise as "breathable" - it is still a single wall tent - I have found with the one shot it is pretty good. - better than pure silnylon for condensation - that doesn't mean it doesn't happen, but I have found it pretty good at that (very good in my books) when set up with the top vents under those "eaves" opened up a bit - and the eaves are such that they can generally be left open a bit unless you have a full on typhoon hitting the tent side on.

(the new firstlight has the same design as the oneshot - just bigger).


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#167218 - 06/25/12 01:47 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: phat]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada

I wish I knew someone at black diamond I could bribe, coerce, or threaten into making the one shot again wink

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#167219 - 06/25/12 01:52 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: phat]
phat Offline
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Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada

Aha.. having looked again - I have aftermarket carbon fibre poles for mine which brings the weight down by 150 grams.

The packed weight of my one shot is 1.28 KG with the real poles.

Packed weigh of a firstlight is supposed to be 1.42 KG with poles.

So you're not *too* far off with the firstlight - having said that you're not any lighter with that than with your bivy and moment. (other than your ability to laugh at a hailstorm in it).



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#167220 - 06/25/12 01:57 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: phat]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada

I've also spent many an exposed evening in a friend's tarptent SCARP 2 - it does qualify as something that will take a beating, although I feel better in the black diamond, that thing, staked down with the cross poles does take a beating from a severe thunderstorm and lots of rain very well. I wouldn't call it a "mountaineering tent" - but it is
head and shoulders in beefyness above the other regular tarptents.

the SCARP 1 might be a possibility - but it's 1.36 KG - not much less than the black diamond firstlight (and more than my oneshot)

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#167224 - 06/25/12 02:12 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: wandering_daisy]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
I think posting Here works - this is a good discussion illuminating where the line between backpacking and mountaineering should be drawn.
_________________________
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#167227 - 06/25/12 02:28 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: phat]
OregonMouse Offline
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6401
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
Lakatohason, there are many places in the Wind Rivers where you have to camp above timberline, unless you want to hike horrendous miles out of your way. That doesn't mean you camp on an exposed ridge, but even "down in the valley" is above timberline! Besides, a lot of the timber in the Winds is dead thanks to the bark beetle, so even below timberline, often the only safe place to camp is out in the open. I've also seen lightning strike--and explode--trees in the middle of a relatively level forest, so just getting below timberline is not necessarily safe! Also, W_D has more experience than very probably all of the rest of us put together because she worked as a NOLS instructor for many years.

For what it's worth, I've used silnylon tents--including your Lunar Solo, phat--in windy exposed locations with no difficulty. I would say gusts to at least 40 mph. I've also had dog and grandkids run full speed through the guylines with no ill effects (at least not to the tent!). It's amazingly strong fabric even though it doesn't look that way. One editor on BPL makes his own tunnel tents out of silnylon and has used them in Australia in up to 100 kph gales. I mentioned that in my PM to W_D. However, I know that W_D is uncomfortable with her Moment tent and with condensation. I personally wouldn't get a Moment (even if my dog Hysson and I would fit into one, which we wouldn't) because of the low ceiling over the head end, which I have found produces a lot more internal condensation. I wouldn't recommend that anyone go out with gear they're uncomfortable with! A good night's sleep is, IMHO, one of the most important things to consider. A backpacking trip is, after all, supposed to be a vacation, not an exercise in spending sleepless nights gritting one's teeth!

One thing that would help the wind-resistance of the Moment--and I know that a number of Moment users do this--is to add side guylines half-way up the pole. Of course that won't help the condensation issue! If you have to camp out in the open down in a valley, which you almost always do in the Winds, then condensation will definitely be an issue.



Edited by OregonMouse (06/25/12 02:30 PM)
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#167232 - 06/25/12 05:06 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: lakhotason]
wandering_daisy Offline
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Registered: 01/11/06
Posts: 2752
Loc: California
I would never stick my nose up at a cheap tent! My old 1-person tent was the 2#9oz MSR Microzoid that I bought on sale at Sport Challet for $140. Albeit not the most comfortable tent, it was bombproof, until it wore out. Not sure why, but the fly seemed suceptible to UV rays and when it started to leak, it was almost a universal seepage all over the fly. By the time it "died" zippers were broken, poles bent and fly leaked. It was discontinued because of its size - but that "flaw" was perfect for me - an adequate size for a small person. I got a lot of miles out of that $140 tent!

My ratty, low profile Microzoid:


I do use the guylines on the Tarptent Moment. I also back up the ends and side guylines by tying around HUGE rocks, in addition to the pegs. The Moment has been stable in winds, but the height and size puts up a large area for the wind to hit. There is a fair distance between the front and back tie-downs and the perpendicular middle hoop. When wet, sil-nylon stretches and high winds bow the sides inward - both creating "splash" and forcing the sides against my sleeping bag. I have not figured out how to tighten the tent without getting out in the rain. And in a wind storm with rain, you have to zip up the vestibule- which creates even more condensation. So it is not my fear of the Moment actually tearing apart or flying off into space -I just find that it performs poorly with respect to keeping stuff dry inside. Not soaking, but things get damp. And the minute it freezes, it is shades of Dr. Zhivago inside the old mansion full of hoarfrost! Then the wind blows again, and it snows inside. Actually if I were to put the Dr. Zhivago soundtrack on my I-pod shuffle. Needless to say I do not feel very confident when going through those conditions!

ALL tents have a failure point. You hear of mountaineering tents being shredded on Mt.Everest. But what tents are made of and the design of the tent DOES make a big differnce.

Phat - NOLS uses the Black Diamond MegaMids in the Wind Rivers for their 30-day courses. These are both weather-bombproof and "student-proof"- able to withstand all the abuse of novice backpackers.

Last time my husband I were there we used our 4-season Mountain Hardware Spire- advertised as a 5-pound tent but by the time you add all the pegs, line, etc it is closer to 6 pounds - shown below. We have never had any problems with this tent. It is just too heavy for me alone.





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#167234 - 06/25/12 06:02 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: phat]
Rick_D Offline
member

Registered: 01/06/02
Posts: 2802
Loc: NorCal
I considered the BD Epic fabric series as nice options for (more or less) self-standing, compact and light tents for alpine places where pitching space is tight. Unfortunately I've not read much complementary feedback about them since the switch from Epic to "NanoShield", which is reputed to both collect condensation and wet though in very heavy weather.

Having said all that, the I-Tent might be worth considering. Life above treeline suggests something compact, simple, wind-resistent and easy to pitch and the I-Tent has earned its reputation as all three. Probably better is the new ID MK2 Lite, which is eVent--the best WPB fabric at present. You'd need to figure out where to get one, as they can't ship to California.

While these tents are pretty costy, in crappy enough weather they "pay" for themselves on the spot.

[p.s. Has Apple sued BD yet for selling the "I Tent" or are they in the clear because it's an upper case "I"?]

Cheers,


Edited by Rick_D (06/26/12 12:37 AM)
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#167236 - 06/25/12 06:24 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: phat]
billstephenson Offline
Moderator

Registered: 02/07/07
Posts: 3890
Loc: Ozark Mountains in SW Missouri
I can't comment about mountaineering tents, but I do like your one Shot tent a lot.

A friend has a similar cross pole design 2-person tent and it's easy to set up, and works great as a free standing tent in on our rocky terrain here.

Looks like the vents in the side panels should work pretty good to help keep it dry inside.

The advantages of the ease of set-up with that design are pretty hard to resist and the size of that one looks about perfect for solo going. The new design has an option for a vestibule, but I don't think I'd want or need it for the way I backpack.

W_D, that trips sounds amazing... It's hard to even imagine taking off, solo, into the wilderness for that long. I have never been away from family and work for that long, and beside that, I wore myself out going to the garden and back this afternoon laugh
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#167244 - 06/25/12 10:21 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: wandering_daisy]
Jimshaw Offline
member

Registered: 10/22/03
Posts: 3938
Loc: Bend, Oregon
WD
the tent materials have changed a lot. The little BD tent phat is showing off is a take-off the Bibler Awahnee, a nice design with a big window. The Toddtex was amazing stuff, my Eldorado is made of it. If I were going on your trip I would definitely take the Toddtex Eldorado at 69 ounces. It represents a safe haven in extremes at altitude.

Oh yes I wanted to say that for such a long trip that high you will need to consider the cookability of any tent that you use since you will surely end up coooking in it. What kind of stove will you use?

Jim grin
_________________________
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#167246 - 06/25/12 11:43 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: OregonMouse]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada
Originally Posted By OregonMouse

For what it's worth, I've used silnylon tents--including your Lunar Solo, phat--in windy exposed locations with no difficulty. I would say gusts to at least 40 mph.


Oh, I've had that lunar solo out in winds more than 40 mph.. The night I set up here in whitegoat:



I had a newb in the lunar solo, and fading light, so I taught him how to set it up with a good pitch, the wind was *howling* and told him to get in his bag and warm up and wait for me (while I set up the BD). I lost it a couple times in the wind before getting poles in and staked down, as Simon described it - he was sitting in his tent hearing "fXXX.. fXXX.. fXXX. fXXX..." as I would run across the meadow chasing my tent half in the dark smile

I've definately had both of them out in adverse conditions, and believe me, I don't take an extra 550 grams of tent lightly - but I really do love that little BD's ability to shrug off the worst weather - heck the last trip I had it on I think I was carrying about a 10.5 pound base weight. So yeah, I coulda shaved a pound by carrying the smd. Meh - I slept very well in a thunderstorm wink

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#167260 - 06/26/12 11:20 AM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: phat]
wandering_daisy Offline
member

Registered: 01/11/06
Posts: 2752
Loc: California
Phat is absolutly correct about setting up. Even in a light wind the Tarptent Moment wants to "take flight like a kite" and setting up is a challenge for one person. It does however set up really tight, once up. Stretch in rain is a problem, but that simply is sil-nylon - not a flaw in the tent design.

Jim- the large wind protected vestibule of the Moment was one reason I choose this tent. I use a snow-peak stove but have a home-made wind screen that works very well. I really hate to eat inside a tent - I am such a sloppy eater- usually spill something so unless it is really bad weather, I just put on rain clothes and go outside and find a little wind sheltered spot to cook and eat. A potential "kitchen" is one of my main criteria for choosing a campsite! Ever since I have had a stove blow up on me, I am even more reluctant to cook inside the tent. In fact I have NEVER cooked inside a tent, just in the vestibule a few times. But Murphy's Law is typical - storms always occur just at dinnertime! I usually just change my idea of "dinner" - eat next days trailfood then cook previous night's dinner on the trail. It is not like it's constantly bad weather - typically mornings are crystal clear, clouds build up from noon - 2PM, then several short intense storms blow through until about 8PM, clouds clear, clear-cold nights.

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#167278 - 06/26/12 03:39 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: wandering_daisy]
OregonMouse Offline
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6401
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
I especially wouldn't want to cook or eat in my tent in grizzly bear country--and grizz have now been spotted all over the Winds, the latest confirmed report that I heard about being on the Middle Fork Popo Agie trail last June.

Edit, later: Just found this on another forum: WY Game & Fish confirms grizz all over Winds.

Dinner definitely becomes a "moveable feast" in the Rockies! I too have cooked and eaten scrunched under a krummholz "snowmat"!


Edited by OregonMouse (06/26/12 04:38 PM)
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#167292 - 06/26/12 06:41 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: OregonMouse]
wandering_daisy Offline
member

Registered: 01/11/06
Posts: 2752
Loc: California
Half my campsites are above timber between 10,500 - 11,000 feet where I doubt there would be bears. Most of the rest are at timberline around 10,000 feet. I use a bear cannister. I am trying to decide if I should bring bear spray - tending towards "no" right now. It is not like the place is crawling with bears. I will have to be more careful about eating and cooking well away from the tent.

Phat - do you carry bear spray?

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#167304 - 06/27/12 01:26 AM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: wandering_daisy]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada
Originally Posted By wandering_daisy
Half my campsites are above timber between 10,500 - 11,000 feet where I doubt there would be bears. Most of the rest are at timberline around 10,000 feet. I use a bear cannister. I am trying to decide if I should bring bear spray - tending towards "no" right now. It is not like the place is crawling with bears. I will have to be more careful about eating and cooking well away from the tent.

Phat - do you carry bear spray?


Yes absolutely - I'm used to, and have great admiration and respect for Mr Grizz. To not do so would be putting his life at risk if it went badly (statisticly, I stand a better than even chance of surviving a bad encounter. The bear *will not* - he will get shot after) and I like our bears. I think they're magnificent.

And in fact Daisy, I've encountered a lot of them at those kind of altitudes - it depends on the season and what they are after, and how territories are going, cubs, etc.

I have had more of my Sow and cub encounters in high passes, digging up stuff, food caches, marmots, pikas, etc. I've hear from a bear biologist friend that (unbelievably) there are some times of year they go high to eat *moth larvae* - I think a lot of the moms take baby up high to stay away from males in overlapping turf (who will kill cubs).

For reference, spot the Grizzlies in this photo



(there's a Mom and cub who were up in the pass when I came over and spooked them, they are two dots slightly away from the centre of the picture at about the 2 oclock position, they are heading for the trees in a direction of 2 oclock from the middle of the photo wink )

Your biggest issue with Mr Grizz will be that you're hiking solo, and you're probably used to being quiet. voices carry a long way so when with a partner and you're talking, you won't surprise them. when solo, I give a little "yip yip" every few hundred yards of travel if I'm making no other noise. (I think I did it out of habit when leading once on the eagle creek trail with people from here and everyone thought I was strange)

And no - I don't cook in my tent. I will boil water next to it in a pinch, but I won't cook in it, or eat in it - if I can get out of my tent to take a dump, I can get out of it to eat wink



Edited by phat (06/27/12 01:47 AM)
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#167359 - 06/27/12 10:15 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: wandering_daisy]
Rick_D Offline
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Registered: 01/06/02
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FWIW Backcountry Gear has the Ahwahnee and Eldorado on sale right now at a pretty decent discount. Still costy, but less painful than full retail. Either tent I'd trust in truly rotten alpine weather; I'd want the Ahwahnee when it's warm.

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#167367 - 06/28/12 12:33 AM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: phat]
phat Offline
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Loc: Alberta, Canada

And just an addon to that - I *never* see black bears up high - only grizzlies - so if you're considering where you do and don't find black bears in the sierras, don't make that correlation with grizzlies.

(of course, for all I know black bears might go up high here too if it wasn't for the grizzlies - they kill black bears as direct competition and the black bears avoid grizzlies)

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#167370 - 06/28/12 12:56 AM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: phat]
lori Offline
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Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Originally Posted By phat

And just an addon to that - I *never* see black bears up high - only grizzlies - so if you're considering where you do and don't find black bears in the sierras, don't make that correlation with grizzlies.



I've seen bear poop above treeline in the Sierra. They don't start talk about mandating bear cans above 10,000 feet in Sequoia NP for no reason.
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#167372 - 06/28/12 01:25 AM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: lori]
phat Offline
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Originally Posted By lori

I've seen bear poop above treeline in the Sierra. They don't start talk about mandating bear cans above 10,000 feet in Sequoia NP for no reason.


So perhaps I just don't see blackies up high here because it's Grizzly country wink
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#167373 - 06/28/12 01:34 AM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: phat]
lori Offline
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Registered: 01/22/08
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Originally Posted By phat
Originally Posted By lori

I've seen bear poop above treeline in the Sierra. They don't start talk about mandating bear cans above 10,000 feet in Sequoia NP for no reason.


So perhaps I just don't see blackies up high here because it's Grizzly country wink


I think the bears are following people up there!

It's nuts how I can go to Sespe and see a zillion bear tracks and scat, and no bears at all, and yet in the national parks, come tootling around a corner and nearly run into a bear that just stands there looking around, and casually steps off the trail. Habituated bears don't scare me because they are bears - they are nerve wracking because they are so blase about people, and you wonder when you are going to run into one of those bears that won't leave you alone. I love the parks, but I start to worry about 'what if I encounter one of those nuisance bears that are a fly's eyelash from being shot?'

A friend of mine saw Yosemite rangers kill a bear in Little Yosemite Valley once. It's a sobering thought, with all the zany behavior Yosemite bears exhibit - to what extremes does a bear have to go, relative to what happens 500+ times annually in Yosemite, to get the death sentence?
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#167383 - 06/28/12 06:14 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: phat]
wandering_daisy Offline
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Registered: 01/11/06
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Thanks for the informaton. I am used to talking to Sierra black bears. I wonder if grizzlies like to hear Dr. Suess?

The grizzlies have just started to move into the Wind Rivers and sightings have been in the 9000-ft range. I too have heard of the moth eating - it is a really big event in the Beartooth Mountains of southern Montana. I have run into enough black bear in the Sierra that I at least have some idea of their behavior. Do grizzlies have a "typical behavoir" or is their behavior regional? Thanks for the mother-cub warning for higher altitudes.

Do you carry the smaller bear spray can or the large one? I have a Counter-Assult 8 oz (2%) and a UDAP 6.3 oz (10%). The UDAP is actually in a larger cannister. Unfortunately both are past thier expiration dates (2008). I suppose I have to buy another - any suggestion of what is best?

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#167386 - 06/28/12 09:03 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: wandering_daisy]
phat Offline
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Registered: 06/24/07
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Loc: Alberta, Canada
Originally Posted By wandering_daisy

The grizzlies have just started to move into the Wind Rivers and sightings have been in the 9000-ft range. I too have heard of the moth eating - it is a really big event in the Beartooth Mountains of southern Montana. I have run into enough black bear in the Sierra that I at least have some idea of their behavior. Do grizzlies have a "typical behavoir" or is their behavior regional? Thanks for the mother-cub warning for higher altitudes.


I'm betting they have "habitat" behavoir - Grizzlies in the Rrockies behave differently than grizzlies on the BC coast - (who, like the Alaska bears have salmon runs to live off) some things won't change (like adult males killing cubs, moms trying to protect them, etc.)

I'm betting Grizz in the Winds would be a *lot* like the Grizz where I am.

While I'd be "concerned" about the mom and cub thing up high, the flip side is, I'd waaay rather encounter them in the alpine - they can see and hear you a long way off, and often, the reason they are up there is to *avoid* big things - I've never encountered them where they didn't just take off.

I have had big males where we've seen him walking down the trail at the end of the pass (toward us), made noise, made ourselves visible, and he looks at us.. and just keeps walking.... eventually we walk off the trail up the side of a hill a few hundred yards.. and he just keeps walking on down the trail past us.... "don't mess with me" sort of attitude.. we gave him the trail and all was well.

Quote:

Do you carry the smaller bear spray can or the large one? I have a Counter-Assult 8 oz (2%) and a UDAP 6.3 oz (10%). The UDAP is actually in a larger cannister. Unfortunately both are past thier expiration dates (2008). I suppose I have to buy another - any suggestion of what is best?


I carry this:

http://www.mec.ca/AST/ShopMEC/HikingCamping/HealthSafety/OutdoorSafety/PRD~5025-357/frontiersman-bear-spray-1-225g-cannister.jsp

A 225g canister My choices up here are basically 225 or 325 gram canisters (so 8 or 10 oz).

Honestly, I want enough that if I have to use it I can give a good constant hosing into eyes and mouth from under 10 feet. I don't want to go too small, because I want something with enough stuff to project even in wind.

I've been through 4 as they have expired. I have *never* had occasion to use it in many encounters.

That MEC page says it's 1% - it lies, I think it's 2%.

I don't think you can buy 10% in Canada that I have seen - unless you're the RCMP spraying G8 protesters or subduing polish immigrants armed with staplers...





Edited by phat (06/28/12 09:11 PM)
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#167387 - 06/28/12 09:15 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: wandering_daisy]
phat Offline
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Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada
Originally Posted By wandering_daisy
Thanks for the informaton. I am used to talking to Sierra black bears. I wonder if grizzlies like to hear Dr. Suess?


I talk to them here during an encounter. Haven't given them Dr. Suess - I tell every grizzly I meet the old joke about the bear and the rabbit on the latrine log with the bear asking the rabbit if stuff sticks to his fur.... seriously.. smile

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#167433 - 07/01/12 10:19 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: phat]
billstephenson Offline
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Registered: 02/07/07
Posts: 3890
Loc: Ozark Mountains in SW Missouri
Quote:
and he just keeps walking on down the trail past us


I've heard (read?), but never seen, there are bear trails out there that are thousands of years old, and in places there are big footprint depressions where they've stepped in the same spot when traveling on them over those years.

Ever seen anything like that?
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#167438 - 07/02/12 02:44 AM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: wandering_daisy]
OregonMouse Offline
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Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6401
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
Getting back to the original topic: the tent--another idea might be to modify the Moment: Tarptent Moment modifications by a UK hiker. According to him, there are already loops on each side of the pole to attach additional guylines. Definitely you should use these for windy conditions!


Edited by OregonMouse (07/02/12 02:47 AM)
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#167441 - 07/02/12 09:46 AM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: OregonMouse]
phat Offline
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Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada
perhaps - but looking at the "roof vent wouldn't stay open" that might help the condensation issues
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#167484 - 07/02/12 04:35 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: phat]
wandering_daisy Offline
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Registered: 01/11/06
Posts: 2752
Loc: California
I have already addressed both the roof vents (I made braces out of old stiff ensolite) and tie downs (I always use these). One thing going for me in the Wind Rivers, is the wind. I may not have as much condensation there since there are very few still nights. Right now I am taking a bivy as a back up and sleeping bag cover. I will not take the Tyvek footprint (saves 3 oz) if I take the bivy. I wish I had a lighter bivy but cannot justify buying one. The bivy plus Tarptent totals 3 lb 7 oz and I really am having trouble finding a tent rated for alpine conditions that weighs significantly less and of course, any new tent would cost significant $$$.

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#167486 - 07/02/12 05:03 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: wandering_daisy]
phat Offline
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Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada
Originally Posted By wandering_daisy
Right now I am taking a bivy as a back up and sleeping bag cover. I will not take the Tyvek footprint (saves 3 oz) if I take the bivy. I wish I had a lighter bivy but cannot justify buying one. The bivy plus Tarptent totals 3 lb 7 oz and I really am having trouble finding a tent rated for alpine conditions that weighs significantly less and of course, any new tent would cost significant $$$.


I have used my silponcho as a sleeping bag cover once - it does have buttons and ties down the side, and so can be made into a bivy of sorts - I'd not want to use it as my only shelter, but if it is only for a backup, and you are already going to carry a small silnylon tarp - my 5x8 silnylon tarps, or silponcho, weighs a lot less than a bivy (and can be used as a tarp too...) of course, it's also, well, not a bivy - would work good I think as a sleeping bag cover in a tent, would be very touch and go as a standalone bivy in foul weather.

Nevertheless, yeah, even my usual rig is not a lot lighter than what you are taking - and either very hard to obtain, expensive, or both. So I certainly wouldn't feel bad about taking that.

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#167631 - 07/04/12 10:32 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: phat]
sandia Offline
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Registered: 04/18/12
Posts: 68
A true "mountaineering tent" would be severe overkill for Wind Rivers in summer, & almost any backpacking tent would be fine, if potentially heavy.

At the very exposed Applebee Campground surrounded by glaciers in Bugaboos, a tent commonly seen is the BD Megamid, which as you know, is really more of a tarp.

Ray Jardine writes of his seasons as "wilderness instructor" in Colorado, camping extensively above tree line (in summer) with students using a large sheet of builders' plastic.

Am not suggesting this, but perhaps a tent intended for high altitudes in Alaska might not be what you need.



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#167766 - 07/10/12 05:56 PM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: phat]
finallyME Offline
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Registered: 09/24/07
Posts: 2710
Loc: Utah
WD, I don't know if you have seen this one yet. I haven't used it. Don't know how it will handle wind. Just something to think about.

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#167833 - 07/14/12 01:43 AM Re: Backpack Tent vs Mountaineering Tent [Re: wandering_daisy]
ohiohiker Offline
member

Registered: 07/20/07
Posts: 127
Loc: Ohio
I have a Moment, and I used it with a down bag last year as the outer bands of hurricane Irene hit us in the mountains of WV. We were in the forest and the leeward side of the mountain, so we didn't have severe wind. We did have torrential rain, and there was constant condensation in the tent which dripped and shook loose from the top of the tent. These conditions were somewhat anticipated, including the condensation showers. The DWR on my bag prevented the drops from penetrating into the down. I just shook it out in the morning, and it was fine.

There is a 3.8 oz liner available for the Moment which would mostly solve the condensation shower problem. I have it, but it wasn't worth the weight for me to bring it on this trip where temps never went below 50F.

There are a few small things on the Moment to tighten it down, like the strap/buckle to tension the fabric on the main pole. There is also the side lineloc at the ends which tensions the lower fly fabric. Tighten everything down right before getting into bed, as this will allow time for the silnylon to sag from moisture after being pitched dry. Also, use guylines and trekking poles on the mid-panel tieouts which are also used for the optional crossing pole.

If the tent is holding together in high wind, then it's fine. That's the most which could be expected from a non-mountaineering tent.

Having said all of this, I now have the 2012 BA Copper Spur UL1. grin It's the same weight as my seam sealed (and silicone-coated floor) Moment with liner. I've taken it only on one trip so far, but that was winter in 4 ft of snow and a snowstorm in the UP of Michigan near Lake Superior. There's less room, but I like the double wall. The higher solid inner walls reduce the drafty feeling of the Moment's ground-level ventilation. It could probably use a few added guylines itself for windy areas, but I like the integrated condensation prevention (double wall with mesh ceiling inner).

In the images below, I didn't have the guylines on the head end of the tent staked. This didn't seem to matter much, as the wind was from the foot (north) end, and coming in from a small lake. Once the snow accumulated on the fly enough to start sliding off, it startled me. In my mostly-asleep state, it sounded like alien lasers ripping apart the nylon. eek





Edited by ohiohiker (07/14/12 01:50 AM)

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