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  1. #1
    Registered User colorado_rob's Avatar
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    Default Our shiny new Big Agnes Copper Spur 2...

    Just wanted to post a huge thumbs-up for what I think is my favorite all-time 2-person tent, and I've owned a bunch of tents in 45 years of backpacking. It's early because we've only used it two nights and in dry (but windy!) conditions, but on a comfort-to-weight basis, this tent is fantastic.

    Measured at 2 pounds, 13.0 ounces, this tent is not "ultralight" by any means. I own and use a zpacks hexamid solo+, weighing in at 16.0 ounces total, when hiking solo and in gentle climates. But with my wife, we've been using my older BA fly Creek 2, and while this is a fantastic traditional (double wall, free standing) solo tent, it is cramped for two. So, given our fly creek is many years old with 100+ nights on it, we decided to go ahead and try the BA copper spur.

    The copper spur 2 is not really much larger in terms of floor space than the fly creek 2, but the walls are essentially vertical making more volume, and with two entrances and two decent sized vestibules, it affords a whole lot more comfort for two than the fly creek, at only a few additional ounces.

    Definitely recommended; I know, darn expensive (but we get a pro-deal with BA...), but worth a look for those wanting pretty darn light tent for two, but in a traditional double-wall tent. We plan on using this next spring on my wife's AT section (GA->Harpers) for when I'm with her (and she will use my zpacks when I'm not).

    Pic from this last few days' outing:
    Attached Images Attached Images

  2. #2
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    Amazing scenery!!! What tent?. Can't wait to get to Co!!!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  3. #3
    Registered User BlueFeather's Avatar
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    WOW! Gorgeous picture. You answered a lot of my questions about comparing the Copperspur vs the Fly Creek. I'm planning to thru hike next year (hubby will be with me part time) and right now I'm debating between these two tents. The Copperspur seems much more comfortable, especially for 2 people, but the weight reduction of the Fly Creek is tempting.

  4. #4
    Registered User colorado_rob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlueFeather View Post
    WOW! Gorgeous picture. You answered a lot of my questions about comparing the Copperspur vs the Fly Creek. I'm planning to thru hike next year (hubby will be with me part time) and right now I'm debating between these two tents. The Copperspur seems much more comfortable, especially for 2 people, but the weight reduction of the Fly Creek is tempting.
    Solo, I'd definitely go Fly Creek for the 14 ounces of savings, and just suck it up a bit for the nights when your hubby is with you. Why not buy one at an REI (a fly creek), try it a couple nights together to make sure the fly creek is not too heinous for two of you, then make the call. My wife and I have been using a fly creek together for years, it does work. We just are at a point where we want a bit more space, plus our fly creek is getting a bit worn out, so we kinda needed a new tent.

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    "Measured at 2 pounds, 13.0 ounces, this tent is not "ultralight" by any means."

    Seriously? Under 1.5lbs per person is pretty darn light if you ask me. And Big Agnes does classify it as an ultralight trail tent. I saw one on the AT this morning pitched right next to a Fly Creek...the owner of each were hanging out together in the Copper Spur as it had considerably more headroom.

    We owned a Fly Creek UL2 for a few days, and promptly sold it due to being quite disappointed with it. If the Copper Spur indeed offers so much additional comfort, for such a tiny amount of additional weight, it's hardly worth worrying less than a half pound increase per person.

  6. #6
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    We have a CS UL1 UL3 & UL4 in the stable for various sized group trips. I have always been a big BA fan, use their inflatable pads too!

    There's an existing thread on Hillberg tents leaking like a sieve just in a rain storm. Our Ul3 was in 3" of standing water for hours, we had to pitch @ existing RMNP site, and didn't leak a drop.

    BA builds some bullet proof stuff at a pretty good value.

  7. #7
    Registered User colorado_rob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Casey & Gina View Post
    "Measured at 2 pounds, 13.0 ounces, this tent is not "ultralight" by any means."

    Seriously? Under 1.5lbs per person is pretty darn light if you ask me. And Big Agnes does classify it as an ultralight trail tent..
    Semantics, I suppose. Considering our other choice of a zpacks hexamid twin at 20 ounces, call it 10 ounces each, that's what I (and many others) call true "ultralight". But we're happy with our heavier choice.

    Solo, like my last 5 days out in the Colorado high country, I still carry my 16.0 ounce hexamid solo+ tent, a true ultralight tent.

  8. #8
    Registered User Venchka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hosh View Post
    We have a CS UL1 UL3 & UL4 in the stable for various sized group trips. I have always been a big BA fan, use their inflatable pads too!

    There's an existing thread on Hillberg tents leaking like a sieve just in a rain storm. Our Ul3 was in 3" of standing water for hours, we had to pitch @ existing RMNP site, and didn't leak a drop.

    BA builds some bullet proof stuff at a pretty good value.
    That would be one Hilleberg tent in one thread that seems to have a problem. The manufacturer has yet be contacted about the problem.
    Hardly indicative of an epidemic of leaking floors.
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    I guess that's ok if don't own it?

    Epidemic anyone, please

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hosh View Post
    I guess that's ok if don't own it?

    Epidemic anyone, please
    Like Colorado Rob I've been thru a bunch of tents and have to say of them all Hilleberg has the best most waterproof floors on the market. At least in my experience. The mentioned failure in another thread isn't something I have experience with. No failed floors with me. Just like a couple years ago a guy wrote a bad review of his Hilleberg zippers always breaking and something I've never experienced.

    Question to Rob---does your new tent stink? It's a peeve of mine, that new tent stank. All my Mt Hardwear and MSR tents had that bad chemical smell, probably flame retardant in the fabric. Just wondering if the Big Agnes tents also have a smell.

  11. #11
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    Look, you love your equipment, you love your process and you are a successful backpacker, congrats.

    When I see your picture with your pack, I have to smile about many, many, many days (weeks, months, years) gone bye.

    Hilleberg makes great, great tents, expensive, heavy and over kill for most situations, but heck people buy'em, love'm and advocate them.

    They are not the only answer and certainly not an UL solution. Many of use like to cook in cast iron, but don't want to carry it on our back.

    That's why there are other manufacturers, for us less enlightened folks.

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hosh View Post

    When I see your picture with your pack, I have to smile about many, many, many days (weeks, months, years) gone bye.

    They are not the only answer and certainly not an UL solution. Many of use like to cook in cast iron, but don't want to carry it on our back.

    That's why there are other manufacturers, for us less enlightened folks.
    Not sure what you mean in the highlighted sentence. Can't make any sense of it.

    No one really mentioned "UL solutions" on this general tent thread so I guess that gives us permission to talk about heavy 4 season tents, or any tents we want. And no one called Colorado Rob less enlightened for using a Big Agnes. I'm glad he found something he likes. And I hope he's able to use it and enjoy it.

  13. #13
    Registered User colorado_rob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tipi Walter View Post
    Like Colorado Rob I've been thru a bunch of tents and have to say of them all Hilleberg has the best most waterproof floors on the market. At least in my experience. The mentioned failure in another thread isn't something I have experience with. No failed floors with me. Just like a couple years ago a guy wrote a bad review of his Hilleberg zippers always breaking and something I've never experienced.

    Question to Rob---does your new tent stink? It's a peeve of mine, that new tent stank. All my Mt Hardwear and MSR tents had that bad chemical smell, probably flame retardant in the fabric. Just wondering if the Big Agnes tents also have a smell.
    I just did a sniff-test of the new copper spur in its stuff sack, and yeah, there is a bit of a stink, nothing major though, and I didn't notice it when I set it up the first time and used it.

    But my mountain hardwear mountaineering tents (trangos 2, 3 and 4) did have a much more noticeable stink when I got them, I clearly remember that, and even about 10+ years old have a bit of a smell.

    I borrowed a Hilleberg tent, a Nallo-3 IIRC, for a multi-night winter trip one time, loved the tent and have heard nothing but great things about them. I was completely surprised by the other thread about some sort of leakage problem. Hillebergs have an outstanding reputation, but even the best can sometimes have some sort of manufacturing flaw, either that or simply "user error" in this case.

    Anyway, we sure love our copper spur for a true 2-man super-light option on long hikes. Significantly more comfortable and useable than the Fly Creek, though my fly creek 2, used solo, sure served me well on about half of my AT hike, before I finally sprung for that sa-weet, true UL zpacks cuben tent.

    Full disclosure: we do get a pro-deal on Big Agnes products (40% off), which increases their appeal somewhat, plus, of course, the BA company is based in our home state of Colorado (I realize the tents are probably made overseas).

  14. #14
    Registered User colorado_rob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tipi Walter View Post
    Not sure what you mean in the highlighted sentence. Can't make any sense of it.

    No one really mentioned "UL solutions" on this general tent thread so I guess that gives us permission to talk about heavy 4 season tents, or any tents we want. And no one called Colorado Rob less enlightened for using a Big Agnes. I'm glad he found something he likes. And I hope he's able to use it and enjoy it.
    Yeah, this post was not made on the UL forum, just passing on first hand experience with a particularly nice piece of gear.

  15. #15

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    Hey Rob, it just dawned on me that my backpacking buddy Bryan DeLay who I just saw on my last trip was carrying and using a Copper Spur UL 3. Small world.





    And maybe you can clue me in but I have another buddy named Will Skelton who carries a Copper Spur??? Smaller of course. Is this a Spur??


  16. #16

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    I don't recall my tent stinking, but my air mattress sure had that new beach ball smell.

  17. #17
    Registered User colorado_rob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tipi Walter View Post


    And maybe you can clue me in but I have another buddy named Will Skelton who carries a Copper Spur??? Smaller of course. Is this a Spur??

    Nope, a CS has 2 side-entries, that sure looks like a Fly Creek, though not quite. I wonder if it's a knock off by another brand... probably just a newer version of the FC, mine is 4 years old.

  18. #18

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    He told me it's a beefier Fly Creek . . . new model something or other. Who can keep up with all the names and new stuff?

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hosh View Post
    We have a CS UL1 UL3 & UL4 in the stable for various sized group trips. I have always been a big BA fan, use their inflatable pads too!

    There's an existing thread on Hillberg tents leaking like a sieve just in a rain storm. Our Ul3 was in 3" of standing water for hours, we had to pitch @ existing RMNP site, and didn't leak a drop.

    BA builds some bullet proof stuff at a pretty good value.
    Silly to use this thread as an opportunity to bash Hilleberg... Conparing them to Big Agnes UL tents is like comparing a Mercedes to a Corvette. Both may be "good" but are tailored to radically different ideals. One may be faster and lighter but that doesn't make it the best choice for most people. Big Agnes also makes lots of heavier tents, since these fit different needs more adequately. There's really no value in putting down another brand, one which I imagine you have no actual experience with. Just creates arguments.

    I own both brands of tents, and appreciate both for what they are. In my experience Hilleberg floors don't leak but they don't come seam sealed, leaving this to the consumer to do if they choose. Seam sealer is generally is a more durable solution than seam tape anyways. We've got many dozens of nights out in my Hillebergs, and I never have any inclination to doubt the floor integrity. However, the extremely thin floor on the Big Agnes UL ended up with small holes with far less use, and always paired with their (equally thin) footprint. That doesn't make them bad - the holes are easily patched and this is a tradeoff for lighter weight. But I can tell you without even trying which one I'd trust more not to flood night after night, and it isn't the Big Agnes, nor is the BA anywhere near what I would call "bulletproof". After extensive experience with both, I am usually happy to carry the heavier weight of the Hilleberg - there are many reasons for this, ultimately agreeing with Tipi's thoughts about being comfortable camping wherever, whatever the conditions may be. However, if I want to go as light as possible, that's when I find the Big Agnes UL to be a great choice. All UL gear has tradeoffs such as needing to be treated a lot more carefully. If your trip allows you to baby your gear and/or stop and replace/repair it more often, then why not save the weight? But that doesn't make it universally better. I use plenty of UL gear, but generally prefer a tent to be more durable and comfortable. Ideal site selection is frankly not always possible, and in real storm conditions you don't want a tent to fail. In high humidity, I'm not a fan of condensation raining down on me when the wind or rain picks up, whether in a single wall or an all-mesh inner tent that it comes right through.

    I am glad to read the review of the Copper Spur, and how it relates to the Fly Creek, since for a UL choice it sounds a lot "better" than the Fly Creek, to me, for my preferences (an entirely personal opinion). The weight still seems pretty UL to me, and the tent does still have the same UL materials and tradeoffs, but as one who found the Fly Creek entirely unsuitable as a 2-person tent, the Copper Spur sounds like it has more promise. Enough to replace my lighter-than-either Scout UL2? Maybe not, but for a roomy freestanding option or if one finds value in a mesh inner wall, this is a pretty light option.

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    Question to Rob---does your new tent stink? It's a peeve of mine, that new tent stank. All my Mt Hardwear and MSR tents had that bad chemical smell, probably flame retardant in the fabric. Just wondering if the Big Agnes tents also have a smell.
    Yeah, they have some odor when new, but it dissipates pretty quickly. It's not nearly as bad as a Big Agnes sleeping bag we got. Maybe because a bag is literally in your face all night. It has DWR fabric and DWR-treated down, so I imagine that's why. It was pretty awful the first few nights but seems to be well-aired now as I don't notice it anymore. I'd personally prefer an untreated down bag, but it was a great deal at the time.

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