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#94987 - 04/23/08 10:39 AM Contrail in the Grand Canyon
300winmag Offline

Registered: 02/28/06
Posts: 1342
Loc: Nevada, USA
I just ffinished a 5 day backpack in the Grand Canyon and used my TT Contrail every night. The last night I was particularly happy to be inside when my buddy, sleeping beside me W/O a tent that night had little flying bugs crawling all over him.

Anyway, a few nights were very windy so I staked out the Contrail with the front guyline. Still, I feel the tent could use a triangular pullout on each of the two ridgeline seams about halfway up. I intend to make them from ripstop with a narrow nylon web loop at the tips to tie the Triptease guy line to.

I plan to use my same side stakes W/ a line coming from the original side wall bottom loops. i.e. two lines to the same side stake, one from the ridge tie-out and one from the original bottom loop.On a windy night the lessening of flapping walls (hopefully) and the peace of mind will be worth it.

I've e-mailed Henry Shires about this. Maybe he'll take a look at the idea,

Any comments from Tarptent owners?

"There are no comfortable backpacks. Some are just less uncomfortable than others."

#94988 - 04/23/08 11:07 AM Re: Contrail in the Grand Canyon [Re: 300winmag]
Trailrunner Offline

Registered: 01/05/02
Posts: 1835
Loc: Los Angeles
Just curious Eric, where did you camp? I just finished a 4 day trip where I camped at Hermit Creek, Monument Creek and Indian Gardens. At all 3 sites the ground was so incredibly hard that I had extreme difficulty driving stakes and I was carrying groundhogs. In fact, I ended up using large rocks instead of stakes to anchor my shelter. I think I could have used the Groundhogs but only by severely deforming them.

I had a brand new G.G."The One" shelter that I was dying to try out but when I saw a forecast that included high winds and no rain I opted for my bivy (Nemo)at the last moment.

I hope you enjoyed the desert spring bloom as much as I did!!!

Anyway, to answer your original question, I don't think any Tarptent can have too many guyout points. They're usually not needed but I'd be happy to pay the small weight penalty for a little more confidence in my shelter on blustery nights.

#94989 - 04/23/08 12:37 PM Re: Contrail in the Grand Canyon [Re: 300winmag]
Jimshaw Offline

Registered: 10/22/03
Posts: 3938
Loc: Bend, Oregon
Hi Dude
how was the trip? Stay warm?
Jim <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif" alt="" />
These are my own opinions based on wisdom earned through many wrong decisions. Your mileage may vary.

#94990 - 04/23/08 02:58 PM Re: Contrail in the Grand Canyon [Re: Trailrunner]
300winmag Offline

Registered: 02/28/06
Posts: 1342
Loc: Nevada, USA
Trailrunner & Jim,

Our trip was as follows:

April 15 > Drive to G.C. & camp overnight at a S. Rim campground.

16th >Park at Bright Angel Lodge & take shuttle bus to Kaibab trailhead. Backpack down Kaibab Trail to Phantom Ranch & camp there.

17th > Backpack 9 mi. to Clear Creek and camp. The desert flowers were incredibly beautiful and were everywhere. Rangers said this was the best year ever and the Clear Creek Trail had the best flowers. Trail is absolutely not maintained after the 2 mile point but still decent in most places.

18th Lay over a day at Clear Creek after being foiled trying to bushwhack (literally!) to the Clear Creek Falls - which, unusually, were running.

19th > Hike 9 mi. back to Phantom Ranch AND GET A MEAL AT THE CANTEEN! YEA!

20th > Backpack up, up to Indian Gardens & camp.

21st > Hike ever upward thru endless switchbacks past FOUR [email]d@mn[/email], dusty mule trains of jaded tourists to the rim and our cars at the Bright Angel Lodge parking lot. Muleskinners need to learn they don't own the trail. Reigning in as they sudenly round a bend to give hikers time to get out of the way would be nice. Also, mule trains not stopping to palaver while backpackers patiently stand by waiting for them to pass would also be greatly appreciated. Next time no more Mr. Nice Guy.

The trip was my 1st and now I "have" to do the North Rim trails. Being a transplanted Pennsylvanian sure is fun. Plus this was my "Medicare birthday trip". 65 on April 4th. Yeee HAW! (Over what hill? Funny, I never saw any hill.)


P.S. Jim, It got to 90 F on our return to Phantom Ranch but mostly we had some evening wind or just plain beautiful spring days.

Edited by 300winmag (04/23/08 03:00 PM)
"There are no comfortable backpacks. Some are just less uncomfortable than others."

#94991 - 04/23/08 03:56 PM Re: Contrail in the Grand Canyon [Re: 300winmag]
Trailrunner Offline

Registered: 01/05/02
Posts: 1835
Loc: Los Angeles

I missed you by 4 days at Indian Gardens. I hiked out the 16th, same day you went in.

Yes the mules are a PITA for hikers. Yes the wranglers do stop right in front of you when they know you're waiting for them. They (mules)literally stink and it's no fun to sidestep their excrement all over the trail. If I were king they would just go away since they benefit a relative few. But since the passenger fees are very high and they book up solid months in advance I'd say they're here to stay. I just hope the Park Service is reaping a fair percentage of the profits.

Now that I've had a taste of the less popular trails off the main corridor that's what I'll stick to next time. Much of the fun ended for me when I stepped off the West Tonto Trail and onto the Bright Angel. That's where the crowds and the mules began. Before that I hardly saw a soul and I sometimes felt I had the whole Canyon all to myself. That was an incredible experience.

And how about that (nearly) full moon? That was icing on the cake!!!!

#94992 - 04/24/08 07:56 AM Re: Contrail in the Grand Canyon [Re: 300winmag]
Keith Offline

Registered: 01/04/02
Posts: 1664
Loc: Michigan's Upper Peninsula
I had a Double Rainbow in GC in Jan. It was somewhat windy. (Stayed Brt Angel/Cottonwood/Brt Angel. )
The DR sheds the wind quite well. Not too difficult pounding in stakes in the campgrounds -- especially with the rocks edging the campsites as handy hammers.
Human Resources Memo: Floggings will continue until morale improves.

#94993 - 04/24/08 03:01 PM Re: Contrail in the Grand Canyon [Re: Keith]
Bert Offline

Registered: 10/03/04
Posts: 2
That's good to know. I am going on the JMT this Aug and own both the Contrail and Double Rainbow. Is the weight penalty worth it for wind protection and free stading?


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