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Looking to advice about Bike Touring Tents

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Looking to advice about Bike Touring Tents

Old 12-04-16, 08:56 PM
  #1  
mymorningjacket
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Looking to advice about Bike Touring Tents

I'm planning a 3-4 month bike tour across Canada next summer, and I'm looking for a tent.
My budget for a tent is about $200 dollars max.
Now I'm more frugal than lavish, so I know for this budget I can get a solid tent for my liking. I've been looking on amazon for one and there are plenty of good deals. Couple Chinese knock off brand, but I found a Alps tent I'm interested in.
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...=ATVPDKIKX0DER
Something I'm wondering about this tent is that, is it too heavy? 6 pounds may seem like not very much, but I know every pound counts.
Anyways, tell me what you think of this one and leave me some recommendations.
Thanks in advance!!
Happy riding!
Cole
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Old 12-04-16, 10:29 PM
  #2  
Erick L
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Is that $200 CAD or USD? Tax included?

6 pounds is heavy for one person. Alright for two on a budget but not great.

For good, cheap, and decent weight for one person, look at Eureka Spitfire 1 & 2 or Sierra Design Lightyear & Clip Flashlight. The latter has just been reintroduced so it's hard to find. They're all excellent tents. Chances are they will outlast many 500$ tents.
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Old 12-04-16, 10:58 PM
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Alps lynx info and thoughts...
The tent and fly is 5lb4oz combined. The total weight i 6lb5oz.
It has aluminum poles which is nice.
Its a 2person, not 1(was called a 1 in another post).
6lb5oz isnt light for 2 person.
No idea if its quality or not. I have multiple alps products and like em all, for what thats worth.
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Old 12-04-16, 11:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Erick L View Post
For good, cheap, and decent weight for one person, look at Eureka Spitfire 1 & 2
+1 - I own both the 1 (also called the Spitfire Solo on some websites) & 2. Both are less than $200 USD and the 1 can be found for less than $100 USD when it's on sale. The 1 is considerably lighter and packs smaller than the 2. I haven't used the 2 yet but the 1 has been great while on tour and on backpacking trips.

Spitfire 1


Spitfire 2
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Old 12-05-16, 12:29 AM
  #5  
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With enough money you can get a 2 lb tent. $350 or less a 3 lb tent. 6lb + is certainly a heavy tent. Ty seems happy with his decision. There's a lot of tents out there.
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Old 12-05-16, 09:50 AM
  #6  
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I used a 7 pound tent on trips where I expected inclement weather, the tent was large enough for me and my gear and I had enough room to pack all my gear inside the tent while it was raining outside too. That way I could take my tent down and pack the last pannier that the tent went in, thus only one pannier had wet stuff in it.

But I also have toured with a 3 pound tent that I could not pack my gear in if it was raining.

I am in USA, thus have never seen a MEC. But it is my understanding that it is a great place to shop and may have sales. Can you have time to watch their sales or do you need to finish shopping quickly, such as before christmas?

I bought a new tent last week to replace my 7 pound tent, but since I have not camped in it yet, I am not making any recommendation, plus it was above your budget.
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Old 12-05-16, 09:56 AM
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most brands go to China to take advantage of their low costs, then ship them to the company warehouses .

lots are around Seattle, which has a Port , Tacoma, nearby.. REI HQ & premier store is there ..

[ REI has 2 WI stores near Milwaukee & Madison... ]

MEC is like REI, a consumer Co Op, but in Canada.. (where OP is)






...

Last edited by fietsbob; 12-05-16 at 10:01 AM.
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Old 12-05-16, 10:36 AM
  #8  
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MSN -- I can pack the same way in my Copper Spur 2, 3 lb. The Zpack duplex is about the same size under 2 lbs. but real expensive.
For under $200 a nice 2 man does get harder to find. You pay for what you don't get, extra wt.
Good luck with your new tent. let us know.
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Old 12-05-16, 11:06 AM
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REI.com's Garage Sale section has a bunch of high-quality tents on sale. In addition, you can get an extra 25% off orders today. When I was researching a tent for bike touring, Big Agnes seemed to be lightest high quality tents for reasonable price. However, I ended up buying an REI Quarter Dome 1 because it was so inexpensive and still reasonably light (altho heavier than Big Agnes models). The Quarter Dome is $229 full retail, and REI often puts them on sale.

https://www.rei.com/rei-garage/c/ten...ts&outlet=true

https://www.rei.com/c/backpacking-te...g-tents&page=1
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Old 12-05-16, 11:07 AM
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Well, I'm using an UL sub-2 pounder that's on holiday sale for $230 at the moment. Although it's considered solo, I find it both roomier and drier than any of my past traditional 2 person UL tents (BA FlyCreek UL2 most recently) due to its completely independent internal tent. I can unpack, pack, cook, leave shoes on, store [folding]bike inside, and even take a cathole dump (umm.. last step before taking down and moving, not established campsites, of course ) under cover from the rain. Doubles as rain gear too, provided you slow down. Gatewood cape, Serenity NetTent, pole, and Tyvek footprint.
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Old 12-05-16, 11:08 AM
  #11  
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6 lbs. is quite heavy if you're only using the tent for yourself. I have both a 3 lb. Eureka Spitfire-1 and an older 4 lb. SD Clip Flashlight-2 that I've used for bike camping. Although the Spitfire is smaller inside, I prefer to take it in order to save the extra pound. It still has enough room for me to bring my panniers inside at night and also have enough room to sit up and get dressed comfortably - or to sit inside reading if the weather is bad. I wouldn't consider using a 6 lb. tent - lots of other items I'd rather use for those additional pounds.
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Old 12-05-16, 12:46 PM
  #12  
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Originally Posted by tarwheel View Post
REI.com's Garage Sale section has a bunch of high-quality tents on sale. In addition, you can get an extra 25% off orders today. When I was researching a tent for bike touring, Big Agnes seemed to be lightest high quality tents for reasonable price. However, I ended up buying an REI Quarter Dome 1 because it was so inexpensive and still reasonably light (altho heavier than Big Agnes models). The Quarter Dome is $229 full retail, and REI often puts them on sale.

https://www.rei.com/rei-garage/c/ten...ts&outlet=true

https://www.rei.com/c/backpacking-te...g-tents&page=1
I suggested MEC because the original question was from Canada.

Both the 3 and 7 pound tents I mentioned that I have used were from REI scratch and dent sales, the 3 pound tent was about $20 about 5 years ago and the 7 pound one was bought so long ago that I have no clue what I paid.

The new tent that I mentioned but have not camped in yet was a Big Agnes Scout Plus. I received it this past Friday. Takes two trekking poles to set up, but I have an old 70s vintage A frame tent that has not been used since the 80s, I plan to cut the poles from that tent to work on the Big Agnes since trekking poles are inconvenient to carry on a bike. But since I have not actually camped in the Big Agnes, I am withholding recommendations. I did get the extra 25 percent off, plus I get the extra 5 percent back for using an REI credit card. The new Big Agnes with the poles that I am going to use will be under 3 pounds and has plenty of room. So, I think I have it figured out for the next trip. Some internet reviews mention condensation problems, it is a single wall tent, but I think if I am careful with my setup I can keep that under control.
https://www.rei.com/rei-garage/produ...plus-ul-2-tent
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Old 12-05-16, 01:48 PM
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I just ordered a Gelert Track Tent because they've been selling for crazy cheap. $50CAD shipped to Halifax.

Am I going to take this tent across the country? Nah. But I am going to do a lot of overnight/weekend bike trips with it. The reviews of Gelert Track tents seem to be pretty good, and at the price (for a 5lb tent) it's not bad.

If I was going cross-country, though, I'd probably shell for the Eureka tent. And if that one fails ya, maybe I'll lend you my Gelert when you get here!
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Old 12-05-16, 02:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Scottybigs View Post
I just ordered a Gelert Track Tent because they've been selling for crazy cheap. $50CAD shipped to Halifax.
....
Outwardly, it kind of looks like a Hilleberg Akto - but with several differences. Cheaper materials and no inner mesh. Two "poles". Unsure of how many guys the Gelert has. The Akto when set up with all guys was stormproof for me. Bathtub type floor was a nice extra touch

I paid extra for the Akto footprint and it was worth it - cleaner equipment in the "porch/veranda" and better protection for the tent floor..

Wonder what the ventilation is like on the Gelert? Oh, the Akto was a LOT more expensive that the Gelert, but it has really stood up with absolutely no issues - storm/wind wise etc. I am 6'5" and I sleep well in it.
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Old 12-05-16, 02:46 PM
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I use a BA cooper spur UL2. It's alright, easy to setup and enough room in the vestibule or inside the tents for my bags. I've stayed dry in the rain, it relatively light and work fine. They are a bit expensive but have had great luck for many nights.

I'm sure there are some others that are solid, I've only had a handful of tents. I refuse to do any single man tents or bivvy sacks, not comfortable and being able to sit-up is key to being comfortable.

I had one memorable night, dumping rain, Oregon coast....sat in my Bivvy trying to read for 3 hours before falling asleep, never again.
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Old 12-05-16, 10:26 PM
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I have an REI Half Dome 2 that I'm very happy with. It's a bit heavy at just under 5 lbs. but it seems much sturdier than other lightweight tents I looked at. The denier of the fabrics used is twice as thick as many tents and it's very well constructed. I can open and close the four fly vents without leaving the tent so changing weather isn't a problem. Since it's a two man tent, I have room for everything but my bike in inclement weather. It retails for only $199 US and might even be on sale right now. (Check the REI website.) I know that every pound counts, but a pound or so extra, is worth the piece of mind for a very sturdy durable tent, AS I LOOK AT IT.
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Old 12-05-16, 10:58 PM
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Originally Posted by MAK View Post
I have an REI Half Dome 2 that I'm very happy with. It's a bit heavy at just under 5 lbs. but it seems much sturdier than other lightweight tents I looked at. The denier of the fabrics used is twice as thick as many tents and it's very well constructed. I can open and close the four fly vents without leaving the tent so changing weather isn't a problem. Since it's a two man tent, I have room for everything but my bike in inclement weather. It retails for only $199 US and might even be on sale right now. (Check the REI website.) I know that every pound counts, but a pound or so extra, is worth the piece of mind for a very sturdy durable tent, AS I LOOK AT IT.
It's on sale for $134.99 right now.

The Half Dome 2 has a history of tent pole failure though so I wouldn't recommend it to anyone personally.
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Old 12-05-16, 11:06 PM
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What's the difference between a 1/4 dome and a 1/2 dome?
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Old 12-06-16, 02:36 AM
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Originally Posted by Ty0604 View Post
It's on sale for $134.99 right now.

The Half Dome 2 has a history of tent pole failure though so I wouldn't recommend it to anyone personally.
You are right. I heard the same thing but I believe that the pole failures were problems related to the previous model. About two years ago they went from three separate pieces to a single integrated hub. The problem was with the brow piece. Some people had problems but most did not. I haven't had any problems with the new model; but then again I try to be careful.
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Old 12-06-16, 02:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Squeezebox View Post
What's the difference between a 1/4 dome and a 1/2 dome?
The Quarter Dome is lighter than the Half Dome by about a little more than a pound, but has much thinner materials to attain the weight reduction. The Quarter Dome is tapered while the Half Dome is rectangular and has more square footage. The Half Dome has four vents and the Quarter Dome has one. Also, because of the pole configuration, it appears that getting the fly on the Quarter Dome would be more difficult in the wind than the Half Dome.

Weight and material wise it appears that the Quarter Dome is designed to compete with Big Agnes light weight tents. The extra weight and more durable materials of the Half Dome make it a more robust tent IMO.
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Old 12-06-16, 08:25 AM
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I’ve had a Sierra Designs Clip Flashlight for decades, and am very satisfied with it. It goes up quickly, packs small, and is big enough to accommodate two humans and a Labrador if need be. It has kept me snug and dry through several torrential downpours, too. (I did learn on one occasion that’s it’s best to put the rainfly on even if the night is clear at bedtime, though.)
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Old 12-06-16, 08:32 AM
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Originally Posted by Squeezebox View Post
What's the difference between a 1/4 dome and a 1/2 dome?
A quarter dome.
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Old 12-06-16, 10:00 AM
  #23  
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Regarding the tent poles, I have two REI tents and haven't experienced any problems. However, even if I did have a problem, REI has a great reputation for exchanging/refunding/replacing problems. I have no doubt whatsoever that REI would make good if any problems occurred.
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Old 12-06-16, 10:35 AM
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I've been touring with a Kelty Salida 2 Tent and am very happy with it, you can pick one up for 130.00 bucks or so if you shop around online. weighs less than 5 pounds and is very well constructed.
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Old 12-06-16, 05:41 PM
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I love my Montbell Crescent 1 as a minimalist solo tent. The vestibule is not big enough to store your gear which is fine by me since my panniers are waterproof (Carradice). $200 and less than 2 pounds packed.

Mont Bell Crescent 1 Shelter - 1 Person, 3 Season - Backpacking Tents - Tents & Shelters - Camp & Hike :: CampSaver.com
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