Tent Options for OLT

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Tent Options for OLT

Postby Joel1982 » Fri 07 Apr, 2017 1:21 pm

I've been on a search for the right tent to do the OLT with for the past 3 or 4 months. Unfortunately, there being so much information out there, I have yet to narrow down to a few tents before I then again search for a good deal on one of those tents.

My specs I'm looking for:
- less than $300
- plan on doing the track in Feb/Mar next year
- I may be going solo so I'll be the only one sleeping in the tent, so a one or two person tent is what size I'm looking for
- I already have all of my other heavier gear (sleeping bag, backpack, sleeping mat, etc) and I'm getting pretty high up on weight (looking like 15kg so far w/o tent) so a lightweight tent would be great (less than 2 kg)

What have you used on the OLT? Can you suggest something I can keep my eye out for?

Here's some of my front runners:
- Black Wolf Isopod (heavy)
- MSR Elixir or Hubba (expensive)
- Vango Banshee (not sure if warm enough)

Cheers
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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby Strider » Fri 07 Apr, 2017 4:24 pm

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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby Joel1982 » Sat 08 Apr, 2017 3:54 pm

Yes, saw that one earlier but wasn't sure if it would cope with the lower temps there.
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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby Hermione » Sat 08 Apr, 2017 6:30 pm

What exactly do you mean by not warm enough? Your tent is supposed to keep the weather out, are you worried it will be too draughty or something? I haven't owned one of these tents but they have a good reputation. Also while you can have bad weather including snow at any time of year on the OLT we aren't talking the Himalayas here, provided you're not planning to pitch it in a ridiculously exposed location I think a lighter tent is the best option. It also depends what you're comfortable with some people appreciate the security of a more solidly built tent, others opt for a lighter pack it's alway a compromise. If you didn't want to buy a tent you could consider hiring one. Anyway you've got plenty of time to get sorted so just enjoy the planning phase of your walk.
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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby Strider » Sat 08 Apr, 2017 7:55 pm

Hermione is onto it. A sleeping bag is for keeping you warm. A tent keeps the rain off.

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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby Joel1982 » Sun 09 Apr, 2017 8:24 am

Makes sense. I'm not exactly experienced at this, so that's why I'm asking the questions.

But what does everyone else use?
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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby bumpingbill » Sun 09 Apr, 2017 9:31 am

I have a TarpTent, which I love.

My favourite is the Moment (https://www.tarptent.com/momentdw.html). I have an earlier model.

It's light, very quick to put up and keeps the rain off.

It's not 4 season, so I wouldn't take with the aim of using in snow.
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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby lseries92 » Sun 09 Apr, 2017 10:24 am

I walked the OLT in the second week of March this year. I used a MSR Hubba NX and my two friends shared my Nemo Galaxi 2P (a 2.5kg tent they split up between their two packs). Neither are four season tents (they have mesh inners) but this was not a concern for us. Even if the weather got really, really nasty, you always have the options of the huts. Even if the sleeping areas are full, there is normally a patch of floor in the common area that you could use in a pinch. We have never camped in really, really bad weather so this was our plan :-)

The Hubba NX is a small tent but it was fine - most of my non-sleeping related gear has to go outside in the small vestibule (on the OLT I just stored my pack up at the hut each night). I am 5' 10" and I personally thought that if I was too much taller, its length may become an issue (one morning I found the end of my quilt was wet from pushing against the end of the tent onto the fly). My friends were also fine in the Galaxi and enjoyed the door each side and the big vestibules (they left all their gear at camp except for food - the possums at Windermere were huge and had no fear!).

I am pretty sure I saw a Black Wolf Mantis 1 or 2 man tent being used by someone on the OLT - there are new UL versions that are around your price range now. As well, someone elsewhere posted about the Naturehike series of tents which are knock-offs of MSR, Big Agnes and other UL designs from China and are very affordable although still may be an unknown quantity. They have a one man version that looks a bit like an Hubba on eBay although it remains to be seen how much time was spent on making it look like a premium tent and how much time they spent on really important things like durability. As you have some time this is something you may be able to monitor as other people report how they go.

Of course, if this is the only time you may use a really small and light tent for hiking, hiring one may be the cheapest option of all.

Finally, you mostly pitch tents on platforms on the OLT. While having a free standing tent makes it easier to do, don't let this stop you from buying a non free standing tent. I took someones suggestions of taking small cup hooks which I could screw into the boards at the right spot. This made tent set up was a snap (especially for someone that never pitched on platforms before) although you may need to take a few longer guy lines as well.
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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby Strider » Sun 09 Apr, 2017 11:26 am

There is also a Terra Nova for sale on Gear Freak. Different modelImage

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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby Strider » Sun 09 Apr, 2017 3:42 pm

Another option ...Image

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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby Hermione » Mon 10 Apr, 2017 7:07 pm

Hi Joel1982,
Meant to say in my last post don't get too caught up in all the minute details (unless you're that way inclined) if you get a tent from a reasonable manufacturer that's in you're price range you should be fine for the OLT. If you haven't done heaps of overnight walking you'll likely change your mind about what suits you anyway and end up with a few tents.
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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby hoog » Mon 10 Apr, 2017 11:38 pm

bumpingbill wrote:Finally, you mostly pitch tents on platforms on the OLT. While having a free standing tent makes it easier to do, don't let this stop you from buying a non free standing tent. I took someones suggestions of taking small cup hooks which I could screw into the boards at the right spot. This made tent set up was a snap (especially for someone that never pitched on platforms before) although you may need to take a few longer guy lines as well.

Is it possible to post a picture of said 'cup hooks'? I have noticed reference to the utility of these hooks in other posts also, but I can't quite picture what they might look like. We are heading off in a week or so and I am in full-panic-pack-mode - this is our first multi-day hike, so I have become a little manic in the planning. :?
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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby Lophophaps » Tue 11 Apr, 2017 6:37 am

Hoog, welcome to the form. The cup hooks aremost probably the sort that you buy from the hardware store. Another option is to take longer guy ropes and fix to all anchor points. While a bit stretchy and not very strong, I use venetian blind cord, raided from hard rubbish collections. Cord is a lot faster to set up than cup hooks, albeit not quite in the best place at times. Have the sliders or adjustment on the top, or know how to do a truckies' hitch, with a slip knot to undo it.

If you post a list of you geat and itinerary we can comment.

On the OLT it gets easier about 15 kilometres after Echo Point, or if taking the boat, it's easier after the bridge before Narcissus Hut.
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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby lseries92 » Tue 11 Apr, 2017 6:56 am

I took some 50mm ones like below as I already had some in my tool box that I had bought for something else (mine happened to be PVC coated too - not sure if that made them easier to handle but I doubt it is necessary).

https://www.bunnings.com.au/tic-50mm-zi ... k_p3930167

Others have said that smaller ones (30mm?) were what they used - I found that if you did not chose a spot where the wood was already split, you would create a split in the wood with the 50mm ones so I ended up screwing them into positions where small splits already existed. A smaller hook may not do that (as much) ...

Good luck!
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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby lseries92 » Tue 11 Apr, 2017 9:22 am

Actually I am not sure of the size of the cup hooks I took - I just run across a unopened packet of 25mm cup hooks and they look to be a similar size to what I took ...
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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby Joel1982 » Tue 11 Apr, 2017 11:44 am

Thanks for all the tips everyone.

Glad I do have the time to sit and wait for the right deal to hit me. I have been worried about how much of an impact the right or wrong tent will have on me enjoying the hike, but it sounds like I may have been overrating that. Going to just be making sure it is light and waterproof. I'd like to complete the track without resorting to huts, except for food security, so it would take a lot for me to swallow my pride and go into one for the night. Does that make me some kinda of snobby-hiking-purist? Ha! Jokes, of course :)

I have read the cuphook comments on another post and they are on my packing list. How thick are the boards on the platforms?

I've looked into the cheaper Naturehike tents, as well as all the other Naturehike gear on aliexpress. While I have no concerns about whether I'll get the item I purchase or it is as described, I'll wait and see how others go with them re:durability.

Whatever tent I go with I'll be doing more multi-day hiking with it, likely alpine too such as the NZ Great Walks on the south island. Will consider bringing a groundsheet on the OLT just to avoid putting any holes in the tent bottom. Has anyone ever had a splinter get through their tent?

Just joined the gear freak FB page.
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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby Strider » Tue 11 Apr, 2017 12:13 pm

I have a Naturehike tent and wouldn't have an issue taking it on the OLT provided a reasonable weather forecast. I did have an issue with the wrong product delivered from Aliexpress though, and ended up selling that and ordering the correct one from Ebay.

Platform board are approx 40mm thick.
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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby gayet » Tue 11 Apr, 2017 12:37 pm

RE: Cup Hooks

Use the gaps between the boards rather than screwing directly into the boards. This causes far less damage. Of course, the gap may be too wide for this to work so then, as Iseries92 noted, use an existing crack or split. Screw them in and screw them out, don't just pull them out. Move your tent around slightly to make use of existing gaps/cracks as well, rather than just creating new damage.

I use 19mm and perhaps 25mm. These worked well on the platforms at Wild Dog in WoJ.
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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby Jayps68 » Tue 11 Apr, 2017 12:44 pm

I used a Vango Spectre 200. Did the job perfectly. 2 skin, tub floor, good venting... We had a decent few dasy/nights of rain, and one night of light snow. As Hermione said, the tent is to keep the weather out. Your sleeping system, whatever that may be, is for keeping you warm.
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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby entreat » Sun 23 Apr, 2017 6:28 pm

I walked in mid-January and took a Black Wolf Mantis 2 UL. To be honest we only used it once because we found the huts comfortable, and happened to walk with a swell bunch of people also staying in the huts. The Mantis was simple to set up (only two poles) and very comfortable. There's no way two people could hide two packs in the tent or vestibule (we put ours in the hut). But that's a small inconvenience.

I'd feel pretty happy buying a second Mantis for hikes with our kids because of their simplicity, reasonable price, and light weight.

I'm not an experienced hiker, so I don't have a large experience base. I'm just happy with the tent Ant it looks like we have similar requirements for tents.
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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby Joel1982 » Mon 01 May, 2017 1:29 pm

Update...
Went with a second hand vango helium 200, the older version with one door. $180 delivered so no big risk if I don't like it. Lots of time to resell and try something else, too.
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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby dunamis » Tue 02 May, 2017 9:22 pm

If using second hand I recommend pitching it and either turning a sprinkler on or pitch just prior to forecast rain and check to see if the fly wets out or if the tub leaks. Tent DWR only lasts so long before UV and abrasion/rain strips it off. I use a Eureka Moonshadow Duo and my last trip had some ingress possibly contributed to by the pressure between the hard platform and sleeping pad. It rained for 3 nights and got damp inside so I'm going to reseal.
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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby Joel1982 » Wed 03 May, 2017 3:07 am

Thanks. Any recommendations for a resealer?
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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby dunamis » Wed 03 May, 2017 12:11 pm

It depends on the fabric. If it's a polyurethane coated Nylon or Polyester then you can get a PU brush on product. If it's a Silnylon then you can presumably get a brush on silicone based product. I'm going to coat my tub with a DIY slurry of 100% silicone and turps and will probably get a spray DWR for the fly


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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby threshold » Tue 16 May, 2017 8:40 pm

Would a SMD lunar solo be ok for the OLT? Been watching some videos on it and I am getting itchy feet. Wondering If I need something freestanding for the 'tent pad's'

Thanks in advance.
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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby Strider » Tue 16 May, 2017 9:22 pm

threshold wrote:Would a SMD lunar solo be ok for the OLT? Been watching some videos on it and I am getting itchy feet. Wondering If I need something freestanding for the 'tent pad's'

Thanks in advance.

Freestanding is helpful though not essential, but from memory the LS is single skin?

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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby threshold » Tue 16 May, 2017 9:39 pm

Yeah mate single skin, I would guess I would want to do this in Tassie's 'summer'. It also Is set up with a single pole.
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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby Nuts » Wed 17 May, 2017 4:05 pm

We have one of them, great little tent. It won't get used a lot, the need for some experience in using a single skin tent can be an added chore.
May be a bit hard to get set up, perhaps a bit breezy on the platforms, there will likely be some splash back under the 'eves' (if using the platforms). If you know these things your tent will be fine. Ours went on a trip and hasn't been used since, i'll probably sell it on (but not the purpose of posting). The feather weight will definitely be appreciated :)
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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby Nuts » Wed 17 May, 2017 4:27 pm

If you haven't bought, and considering going that light, iv'e been looking at this design lately: http://www.kuiu.com/hunting-tents/ultra ... 12003.html
(the design, for a DIY project). There are others in a similar vein, Big Sky make something similar, iv'e seen one on aliexpress (but would baulk there) For single skin I expect it will be a little more storm-worthy (than the SMD) for use elsewhere (anywhere here off the OLT, exposed to the weather and with lack of options), will need a big step up in use-skill.

PS. You'll definitely need Cup Hooks for the tent platforms with these shelters or some other way to fix the corners close in.
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Re: Tent Options for OLT

Postby threshold » Sat 20 May, 2017 10:26 pm

Nuts wrote:
PS. You'll definitely need Cup Hooks .


What are the cup hooks? Do you have a link or a pic?

I already have my SMD lunar solo, added work chores?? Do you mean because it I have to carry a towel for condensation?
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