View Full Version : Non-freestanding tents

10-14-2012, 19:05
Hi everyone,

I'm trying to decide between a number of lightweight single person tents. I've got it narrowed down to a few styles, both free standing and non-freestanding.

What is your opinion or experience with non-freestanding tents? Specifically single walled tents that use trekking poles in lieu of tent poles. I can't help but wonder about stability in the poor weather that seems to be abundant on the trail. However, the weight savings are hard to beat and there are some pretty impressive models currently on the market.

Any assistance would be appreciated!

10-14-2012, 19:14
There is no need for a free standing tent. Single wall tents do fine as long as they are set up correctly.

10-14-2012, 19:59
Yep, bring enough stakes to guy things out solidly and you'll be fine. also many tents have a preferred direction they want to be aimed in the wind, so if you have a choice then have it pointed in that direction.

10-14-2012, 20:07
Some of the tents that use trekking poles work fine. All of the single wall tents have condensation problems. Considering that a double wall tent like the Fly Creek UL1 weighs less than two pounds, I don't understand why folks want to sacrifice so much for so little.

10-14-2012, 20:33
Can find double wall hybrids that are nearly as light and much bigger space too.. fly creek looks tiny. Lightheart Solo costs less and has a lot more room 30oz. Duomid +inner net.. 29oz more room too. carrying poles you only use for your shelter and space loss are sacrifices too

10-14-2012, 20:34
I agree about single wall.. you can find nearly as light with double wall or hybrid

10-14-2012, 20:36
There's always the in between... I have a TarpTent Rainbow (LOVE IT btw). This has one pole that goes the length of the tent and uses 5 stakes (one on each corner plus the back)... OR you can use your trekking poles to make it freestanding.


turtle fast
10-14-2012, 20:44
I saw very few places on the AT where a non freestanding tent would not work well. I would equate it to those who hammock hang as there are just a few places where its not really conducive for them as well (like a bald). On the plus side a freestanding tent many times you do not need to even stake it in and emptying out the debris from the inside is as simple as lifting it up and shaking the stuff out the door.

10-15-2012, 11:34
There is no need for a free standing tent. Single wall tents do fine as long as they are set up correctly.

Location, location, location. If you don't have the skills, or don't want to learn them, a single wall probably isn't a good choice.