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Old 04-07-11, 11:05 AM   #1
darksiderising
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Tent, Leatherman, or Day-Pack and First-Aid?

I want to cash in my REI Rebate while the 20% off member deal is still in effect and I want to get something to use while camping with my girlfriend this spring/summer. We'll be doing mostly drive-in style camping in cool to hot, mostly-dry climates. I can afford to spend around $100.

Here are my ideas so far:

Tent: Right now we have a cheap-o Coleman tent that I scored out of a free pile on Craigslist. It definitely does the job but has a rainfly that would probably be insufficient in anything besides a heavy misting or sprinkle. The REI Camp Dome 2 seems like it could be a good option.

Multi-tool/knife: I've always wanted a Leatherman and it's just a matter of time before I get one. The New Wave looks like it has most tools I'd want/need.

Day-Pack and First-Aid kit: The last option I've come up with is getting a day-pack and first-aid kit, as we don't have either. The Flash 18 pack looks like something I could get a lot of use out of for day-trips and I like that it doubles as a stuff-sack. I'd also use it when I visit my folks or as a carry-on when I take a flight.

Thanks for voicing your opinion and helping us decide!
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Old 04-07-11, 11:07 AM   #2
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I'd go with the day pack.
You have a tent.
Knife? Dime a dozen for a cheapie.
Day pack would be nice for those trips when you and the lady want to go on a day hike and come back to the tent in the evening.
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Old 04-07-11, 11:08 AM   #3
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Well considering this is SIU here, I'd say the leatherman.
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Old 04-07-11, 11:23 AM   #4
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I bought my GF the Flash18 for Valentines Day (romantic I know, but she said she wanted one) and I'm amazed at how much you can fit in there. If you want one bag and aren't too worried about pockets you should be happy with it.

I don't have any experience with their tents, but have slept in enough leaky tents to appreciate staying dry inside when it's wet outside. Your Gf will really appreciate it if you 2 are in a dry tent when it's wet outside.
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Old 04-07-11, 11:24 AM   #5
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Well considering this is SIU here, I'd say the leatherman.
And we'd suggest the first aid kit to go with it.
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Old 04-07-11, 11:24 AM   #6
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Daypack and first aid kit would be my choice, as I have three tents and even more knives, including two gerber multi tools, as the wife and I carried them when we sailed and we often sailed on different boats.
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Old 04-07-11, 11:26 AM   #7
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Go for the tent, all it takes is for one rainy night in your free Coleman tent to make you a believer in a better tent. Think about a 3 person size tent and let the 20% bring the price down to what you can afford, the extra room is really worth the extra cost.
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Old 04-07-11, 11:28 AM   #8
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Thanks for the replies, so far. I also think that the day-pack or Tent are the most needed items at the moment. Siu, I know you love knives and I really, really want a good multi-tool, but I'm thinking it's more of a desire than a need for what we're doing. Maybe I can justify getting the tent AND day-pack. ARG!
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Old 04-07-11, 11:44 AM   #9
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And we'd suggest the first aid kit to go with it.
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Old 04-07-11, 12:02 PM   #10
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Old 04-07-11, 12:15 PM   #11
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I've had a Leatherman New Wave for probably 8 years. I'd go with that.

EDIT: After re-reading that, go with the day pack. You'll get more use out of it.
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Old 04-07-11, 01:24 PM   #12
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When I go camping I bring a 2 man that most people mistake as a 1 man, and I do put two people in it. On the other hand, a 3 man tent is the way to go if you're going car camping. If nothing else you can throw packs in the spot that would have been person #3. As for the Leatherman, I'm also in the "eventually" camp. For trips a cheap knife and pair of small pliers runs ~10 at the upper end, a bit more if you want a knife that doesn't suck. I think the day pack and first aid kit (always a good idea) are probably the best choice.
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Old 04-07-11, 05:25 PM   #13
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Old 04-07-11, 05:32 PM   #14
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A good day pack can make the difference between a nice hike and hours of pain and would probably get more use.
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Old 04-07-11, 06:09 PM   #15
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I'd go with the tent, as well. I have 3 tents.....one cheapo I got at Walmart, basically, the equivalent to a Coleman. It's nice enough and weathertight, but HEAVY at 14 pounds packed weight!

The other is a Wenzel Starlight Bivvy tent. It's a singlewall, supposedy 2 person tent (if they are both jockeys and horny), and lightweight (2 pounds), but probably only good for drizzle without a tarp fly. This takes away the ultralight quality.

The third is a Columbia Logan with full fly. 6.6 pounds packed weight, 2 person with double entrances, so me and the wife don't have to crawl over each other to get in or out of the tent at night.
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Old 04-07-11, 08:56 PM   #16
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I'm carrying my Leatherman Charge TTi right now. I vote leatherman.
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Old 04-07-11, 10:15 PM   #17
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Seeing as you are car camping I'd go for a three man tent, the extra room is welcomed in rainy weather.
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