View Full Version : golite
anyone have any experience with the golite lair or cave? i am thinking of buying one or the other. i noticed that on ray jardines site that you can buy the materials and make your own cave and customize it. anyone done that? also any alternatives that are very similar to these designs? thanks for your time...
I have the 2 person Golite Cave; used it last year during a five day 42 mile Scout trip in the Blue Ridge Mountains. It worked great! The only day I had a potential problem was aduring a three hour series of thunderstorms. I did not bring the sides down close enough to the ground. But my backpack was in the middle wrapped my poly groundcloth so nothing got wet.
On a seperate weekend hiking trip, I woke up at the Loft Mountain campground (Shenadoah Natl Park) to intense fog and there was a large amount of condensation on the inside of the tarp; but that was to be expected.
Before spending the money on purchasing or making the tarp... go out and camp with just a cheap tarp or poly. Try it a few times; that will tell you if you like the concept of being open to the air.
The only other point that irritates me (as I get older! ::grin::) is bending down, scrambling through the end to get in. I guess I am just to used to bigger doors! I use my hiking sticks on either end.
I am actualling considering transitioning to the Hennessy Hammock... but thats for a different thread.
I have made a tarp and a net-tent by way of the Ray Jardine kits. I have thus far been totally impressed. The instructions (found in the tarp book) are very clear and the kit's are a great value.
I am quite pleased with how both projects turned out. Mind you, I have extremely limited sewing experience ... one pillow, four or 5 stuff sacks, and a window seat cover ... that was it prior to attempting this project. It was not difficult!
I've found the tarp to be very reliable, sets up well and protects you in a variety of conditions. I have made no modifications to the tarp and don't really see a need for any at this point.
The net tent project I did modify slightly. I didn't like the entrance "flap" idea so I installed a zipper instead. It adds a little wieght but seemed worth it. For the flap to work it has to be sewn up the sides, leaving only a "slit" along the bottom, of which there is simply extra material to fold into the tent. I didn't like crawling through the slit ... nor did I like that this invariable lifted the corners so you'd have to constantly re-spread the floor. My next modification will be to put a simple loop to each corner of the net so that I can use a stick/stake to keep the corners in place. If I were to completely remake it I would probably also add about a foot to the width for the 2 person ... I find it cozy for myself and my 9 year old, wouldn't want to sleep with another adult in there. Otherwise, the net-tent is pretty good.
I'll be hiking next week with a friend who has purchased the Cave so it will be a good opportunity for me to compare the Cave against my I put together.
I have a Lair 2 and it's great. In fact I just finished a 10 day trip in the Superstitions using it, and tomorrow will be starting a trip in the Mazatzal Mountains. It weighs 15.9 oz in the stuff sack w/ 7 ti stakes and a guyline at the front and rear. Excellent storm protection except for no door, I usually tie off to a tree in front and that helps alot. It also requires a short stick or tie out at the rear. Never been a problem. I like it better than a reg tarp. I've seen them go for $65 on ebay.
I used the GoLite Cave for about a month on my thru-hike last year. Worked like a champ. I bought the OR Bug Bivy to use under the Cave. They made a great combination. Only thing about the Cave is that you need trees around in order to tie out all the lines. Otherwise it's great.