New tent bargain
I have been considering a new tent for solo backpacking trips with a lightweight theme. My current tent the NF Tadpole 23 is a great tent but it weights 2.2kg so is a little heavy on the lightweight front.
So after careful consideration and months of checking the internet for bargains I have decided to buy a North Face Mountain Marathon tent. Yes shock horror I have overlooked the all conquering Atko and Laser Comp. My reasons are simple, I don’t want to be a sheep, every Tom, Dick and Harry has these iconic tents and quite frankly they are way overpriced especially the Atko. Far enough the Atko is a better tent, and the laser comp is lighter but frankly I don’t give a rats arse for the sake of amazing construction or an amount of weight that I have shit bigger than
I have bagged a quality tent for £70, don’t be fooled by all the hype surrounding other tents, they are all the same when you look at the components and for some reason lightweight means more expensive……go figure.
Anyway I cant think of a valid argument why I should have spent £225 on a lasercomp or £320+ on the Atko. It’s funny isnt isn’t, recently I have seen walking poles for over £100, an inflatable lilo for over £110 and coats for over £300 and yet I have managed to buy a new tent for £70 delivered to my door. My crusade to stick two fingers up at outdoor pricing goes on……………….dont be a mug !!!
Update April 2010
I used the tent on its first National Trail – Wolds Way. 4 nights varied conditions. The tent itself is low to the ground so wind is never going to be a problem but changing clothes inside the tent is a struggle for the larger man. I found the tent really easy to erect once I got the hang of it, the shape of the tent is confusing at first. Leave the inner attached to the outer and you have no worries about getting the inside wet when its raining. One of the main plus points is the ability to unpeg the inner and create more space inside, I found this extremely useful for cooking. The weight saving on my NF tadpole was noticable and I have plenty of extra room inside my pack. Inside there is bags of floor space. All in all, very pleased so far the real test awaits in May and 200+ miles across Scotland.
Update June 2010
Well the tent survived the TGO challenge. The tent did not fail me, although I think I may have taken the title for the smallest tent on the challenge. Pitching has now become a doddle, you can actually pitch the tent extremely quickly with just 2 pegs, get inside and out the rain, then finish your pitch once its eased off. For the price I paid I am extremely happy with its performance. It does has its downsides though, mainly the height of the tent, its so close to the floor you can’t sit up. I didn’t find it a problem but I was jealous of the height of some of the other tents on the challenge. Great tent at this price, but there are far better tents out there, trying to find one at this price will be the real challenge !!