I've begun looking acquiring a two-person tent for touring and am taking note of the pack size - the pack length in particular.
How important will this be for choosing a tent?
And which would be the better orientation to mount one on a pannier rack? Having it line up with the frame or rotated ninety degrees to stick out on the sides?
(It's my understanding that a backpacking tent will roll up into what is essentially a cylinder having length and diameter once packed.)
From what I've measured on one of my bikes, the handle bars are what stick out the furthest from side-to-side with a length of 16.5 inches. There are a few tents that do have a comparable pack length but not many.
Meanwhile, I'm finding nice deals for some used tents on Craig's List but am also finding that the pack length will typically be about 24 inches.
Should this be a deal-killer?