Friday, June 24, 2016

The Long Story

So yes, I bought a new ultralight tent!
So I needed a tent to sleep in nightly while volunteering for Project ReCycle during Ride The Rockies.  My full-time current job and REI's Spring Sale 20% coupon combined to make purchasing an ultralight tent possible.  So I bought an REI Quarter Dome 1.  Posted weight is 2 pounds and 2 ounces, but I will verify that with my scale and my choice of stakes and bags.  20% off is a $45 savings so the tent cost me around $185 plus tax, so it was competitively priced with other ultralight tents.
The tent does feel light and it fits in/on my Gossamer Gear Kumo backpack nicely.  I did buy the footprint and will try camping out without the tent portion, occasionally using only the footprint and rain fly like a tarp system in the Colorado mountains to save weight.  I know I need the tent body for keeping the bugs at bay and for my privacy during public camping with Ride The Rockies.
With only setting up the tent once indoors, I do like it.  The one person sizing and side-entry is generous with space, but I couldn't fully test the tent without staking it out, as it is not self-supporting.  I'm not crazy about using the tent poles because I was planning on getting double-use with my walking pole.  The tent pole design is cool though, offering a lot of interior space for little weight and they fit fine on the side of my Kumo.  I am packing the tent in its bag on this trip due to the light weight fabric, trying to keep it from being torn while in transit.  The included stakes are much heavier than mine, so I still need to add 2 of them to fully support the tent with the 6 lightweight stakes I have.  Maybe I will need to purchase some different stakes later.
I'll learn a lot more about this tent when camping out in it 6 nights in a row during Ride The Rockies and will write a full review upon my return.  I also hope to shoot a video of the tent setup one day during my down time.
For the record, I now have all the essential equipment I need to backpack in Colorado with the exception of:
1. A  bear-proof food container-required in National Parks.
2. Microspikes for my shoes for safety on icy trails.
I would like a better-designed stove, some newer clothing and lighter weight rain pants, but will carry and use what I already have until I can easily purchase them.

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