View Full Version : My new tent!

01-09-2003, 11:50
I just ordered my new tent the other day!

Dancing Light Gear "Ultralight Arapaho Solo".

I'm having them customize the front "bathtub" height up to 5" for added protection. It also has the optional velcro closed mesh doors, and it's being seam-sealed by them. Color option I chose was "Purple Haze" lol. I was going to make my own, but decided to puchase a custom built tent instead. Probably be cheaper in the long-run anyways.

I also ordered nine 6 3/8" long Titanium V-stakes from Snow Peak (4.5oz total, 9x0.5oz).

Entire shelter should weigh in at about 2 pounds!

Now I have to wait and wait and wait for it. 3-5weeks (ack!).
Next on my list is building a down quilt (bloody fingers here I come)!

01-09-2003, 14:21
The Snow Peak titanium stakes do tend to bend, especially if the force used pounding them into the ground is not directly in line with the angle of the stake. Hope that made sense- geometry isn't my strong point.

01-09-2003, 15:46
Thats definetly good to know!

02-06-2003, 15:18
Well I've tried my new tent last weekend, and it works great! It's hard to imagine how I use to use a two-wall tent, and at twice the weight! Never again. Tent, 4'x8' Tyvek groundcloth, 9 stakes, and stuffsack comes in at 2lb 5oz. Perhaps I will someday gravitate towards using a tarp with attatchable bug netting (or something along those lines). For now I still want/need a tent, and this one works great!

02-06-2003, 18:08
Hey... Tent sounds great... any pictures of the custom tent?


Hammock Hanger
02-06-2003, 18:36
The day I stuffed my goose down quilt there were feathers everywhere!!! My husband says we will be vacuuming up a year. HH

02-07-2003, 13:19
Hampster - I am considering ordering a tent from Dancing Light Gear also. I am trying to decide either the tacoma solo, or arapaho solo like you have. A question I have about the arapaho solo is its performance in the wind. I have heard complaints about the 2-4-2 in the wind and it seems that the arapaho has a similar silhouette. The tacoma is much lower in the back. Like you though I would prefer to have the extra room of the arapaho over the tacoma for the extra few ounces. Have you used yours in the wind yet?

I like the options you ordered, the 5" high bathtub heigth in the front and the mesh velcro closers. How much additional did they charge for those two options? Thanks for any additional information you can give me concerning the arapaho.


02-07-2003, 14:10

Take a look at the review of the Tacoma tarp that I posted in the gear reviews section. The tent version includes a floor and some other options. So, my review won't help terribly much, but it might make for a little more information. I've had it out several times, but not in what I would consider adverse conditions. When I get back from the summer, I'll have a better idea of durability and weather performance. Dimensions on the tent should be about the same as the tarp. I would definitely get pull out loops on the sides if you are over 6'.

02-07-2003, 14:11
I was also nervous about the tent during wind storms, and asked Carol Wellman (one of DLG owners) about it's performance. She said they never had one go down in the wind, and not to worry about it in the least. After pitching it, I felt relieved about it's abilities. I use 8 stakes and then 1 for the storm door. It's very taught, and pretty much bulletproof. So much that...

Even though this is suppose to be a 3-Season tent, I used it last weekend in the snow. There was a good breeze going, and I had no problems. With the front storm door up, and the rear vent open, I could also feel a nice breeze going through (albeit a bit cold, it was 18*F where I was). During the night I put the storm door down, and kept only the vent open (which is fairly large by the way), and woke up with no condensation to shake out (or scrape out rather). I would certainly recommend you to use a tyvek ground cloth though. Although the 1.1oz Sil-Nylon is "RipStop", I don't think it would perform well on anything but the softest of grasses and snow. I think it would abrade after a few weeks of constant use on beaten down campsites.

Go with the Arapaho over the Tacoma Solo. The Tacoma has no vent, an awkward floor, and next to nothing head room to sit up. Not to mention reduced width. My tent with the custom 5" bathtubbing, velcro mesh door closures, seam-sealing, a Tyvek groundcloth, and shipping came to $325 even. This also includes a sil-nylon stuffsack, and all the instructions etc. I'd like to mention the stuffsack is not seamsealed (odd?), and that with a couple nylon straps you could probably compact the stuffsack to almost half its size, roughly to the size of a 32oz Nalgene bottle. You also need tent stakes. I went with the 6 3/8" Snow Peak Titanium "V" type stakes (1/2oz each). Oh and trim the Tyvek they send you to the outline of the tent base. It's a little too long.

Hope that helped. Until I become grizzly adams and share my night with nocturnal duff-bugs (ie. adopting a tarp shelter), I'll have to live with a 2lb 5oz shelter.

02-07-2003, 16:28
Hampster - I really appreciate all of the information you posted. I probably will go with the arapaho. I use 6" simmons titanium stakes. That would save me a couple of ounces over the stakes you use. I'm now using a Sierra Designs Ultra Light Year with the above stakes and it weighes just under 3 pounds. Switching to the arapaho would save me about 3/4 pound and give me more room too. A good combination, but rather expensive for the gains. I really hadn't thought of needing the tyvek, but I'm sure you are right about the floor not standing up to abrashion with continual usage. Again, thanks for your help.