View Full Version : need help finding a new tent

11-09-2012, 10:32
I recently took on my Eureka Spitfire 1 tent out in the rain, as I had never done so before, and became concerned. It didn't leak but did reveal my greatest fear. The vestibule is too small to hold my bag and boots without them getting wet and the inside of the tent is too small for me to bring them in and keep them dry. So it is back to tent hunting again. There are so many out there with so many features that I was wondering if you guys could help me out a bit. I am looking for either a verry roomy 1 person tent or a small 2 person tent that will be free standing and light weight (I'm not talking super light weight but something that isn't going to feel like a bag of bricks was attached to my bag would be nice haha). I want to be able to bring my gear into the tent with me to keep it dry.

Any and all suggestions welcome!

11-09-2012, 10:40
Do you have a budget in mind? Also, how tall are you?

11-09-2012, 10:56
I would like to stay somewhere areound 200-250 for the tent if possible (even that is streching it a bit) and I am only 5'6"...5'7' if i strap on hiking boots haha.

11-09-2012, 12:39
Any and all suggestions welcome!
Put your boots and gear in a plastic trashbag and keep using the Spitfire.

11-09-2012, 13:36
strange, i am 6'2" and 210 and all my gear fits inside my spitfire with me when i sleep and i never got wet inside on my thru with it. it stood up to the freezing temps, hail and 60 mph winds with rain. i find there is plenty of room for my gear inside with me and it vents great. i admit it is a shy on the heavy side but it performs so much better than some of the more expensive tents i own.

11-09-2012, 13:50
The Sierra Designs Light Year has a slightly larger vestibule than the Spitfire but the interior of the tent is slightly smaller. The MSR Hubba is roomier inside and has a larger vestibule but the cost will be higher. If you are looking for a two layer tent, you might want to look at the Sierra Designs Clip Flashlight. It is a smallish 2-P tent but incredibly strong and you would have LOTS of room using it solo.

11-09-2012, 15:12
The Spifire 1 was one of my earlier tents, still have it and still use it sometimes when solo. I know what you mean about storing your gear, I found it interesting that I could share the tent with a 108 lb doberman but could not seem to find space for my pack inside. Three options to offer:
1. As suggested before, put your pack in a plastic bag and store outside.
2. I managed to sleep with the dog but it was too tight, bought a Tarptent Double Rainbow, has plenty of space for us both plus gear with room left over...weight 40 oz.
3. The Tarptent Notch, my favorite tent, doesn't have much room inside but you can hang your pack on one of the hiking poles used to support the tent. The tent has two doors so you can hang the pack outside one door and swing it inside to get stuff in and out, works great for me since I always forget something after I've crashed for the night and need the pack...weight 26 oz.


11-09-2012, 15:19
Do you use a full-length pad? You might consider putting your pack under your feet with a 3/4 pad.

With the money you've already invested perhaps you could find a way to augment your approach to the Spitfire to make it work for you. Otherwise, my unscientific and very quick survey of ultralight tents at Campmore and REI don't show a lot of roomier options in your price category. FWIW, I have seen quite a few Big Agnes Fly Creek's on the trail. Roomier than the Spitfire but about $50 bucks outside your price range.

11-09-2012, 15:31
Since dogs and Spitfire 1 were mentioned, I'll add that my 55 pound mutt and I find it adequate. It helps that she settles down for the night where I put her. I basically just point at the spot and she settles in.

11-09-2012, 15:34
i admit it is a shy on the heavy side but it performs so much better than some of the more expensive tents i own.

I'll also add that some of the weight is in the really lousy stakes that come with it. I usually just carry 4 MSR needle stakes rather than the eight steel ones and it saves several ounces.

11-09-2012, 15:35
ive got the BA fly creek ul2, plenty of room or me and my gear, but it is not completely free standing, needs to be staked out to max out the room and stay dry. light though and easy setup.

11-09-2012, 17:00
Let me suggest the Tarptent Rainbow (http://tarptent.com/rainbow.html).
It's very roomy, so much so that you can sit up inside with your legs crossed. Plenty of room for boots and gear.
It's freestanding, using trekking poles, or just stake out the corners.
And of course it's light in weight and is in your budget, just barely.

Old Hiker
11-09-2012, 17:32

11-09-2012, 17:34
While the BA Flycreek and Hubba are out of your price range retail keep an eye out on eBay. I bought a Fly Creek 1 for $180 that look new and came with a footprint. I'm 5'9" and used a Fly Creek 1, slept with my pack and food inside. I did use a 3/4 pad (Neoair) and used my empty pack under my feet.

11-09-2012, 19:13
I use the MSR Carbon Reflex 1, simular to the Hubba, but different enough not to be free standing, and less weight. I find however that it really has all the advantages of a freestanding tent including the ability to move it set up to a different location, and can be made freestadning if you use your trekking poles. It has enought of a vestibule that I can store everything inside the tent and ability to sit up. Also it has the feel of a larger tent then it is which seems to help.

11-09-2012, 20:04
The flycreek ul1 I am selling weighs 30.2 ounces. What's nice about it is that it's freestanding making it very sturdy during storms. And then it only takes 2 stakes to pull out the foot end. I use 6 total.

11-09-2012, 22:20
Check out the Tarptent line. I have the Rainbow and it fits your requirements. I have over 1,000 miles on it in all sorts of conditions and it works great. Lots of room.

I recently bought the Tarptent Notch to save weight. It still has plenty of room for all of your gear.

11-10-2012, 10:55
Cover you pack with a plastic bag and hang it with bear bag, will keep the rodents from eating holes in it.
If its a UL pack, put it under your legs or sleeping pad and use for insulation, usually effective also at preserving it.

11-10-2012, 11:04
Cheapest solution would be to get a pack cover or contractor bag and leave it out in the rain. That's what I do with my pack. How about just getting a Spitfire 2?

11-10-2012, 11:14
Even if I had the room, I don't want my stinking pack or my muddy boots inside my tent. I hang my pack (with pack cover on it) from a broken branch on a near-by tree and if need be, cover my boots with my rain jacket. I guess I got into that habit when I used to use an extremly small, bivy like tent.

11-10-2012, 12:05
The Mormot EOS 1 Person is a great tent.