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New to backpacking starting my gear hunt


Cattasraafe

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Cattasraafe

Whats up everyone.

I am finally giving in to my urge to sleep outdoors, and I'm starting my hunt for gear to do so. Starting off with looking for the right tent. My budget is kind of tight and I know when tent shopping cheap and effective normally are not used in the same sentence so I'll try to avoid that. During my searching I did come across this tent http://www.wayfair.com/Hooligan-2-Tent-2000001978-CLM1210.html. Some of the reviews for it have been decent save for the weak support poles which many recommend replacing. I have been looking at this tent and the 3 person variant. I am just hoping to get some feed back from people that have a bit of experience in this field. Also I saw a video where a guy that got the 3 or 4 person variant of the tent had "waterproofed it" I was wondering what products may be good for that, or if there were any green products I can imagine that waterproofing agents are some sort of nasty chemical blend.

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PaulMags

I wrote this little article that may be of use:

http://www.pmags.com/300-gear-challenge

The tent you listed is almost 20 lbs (8.9 kg) ! Even if that is a typo and pound were meant, still far too heavy for backpacking vs car camping.

Mentioned in my article, but the Eureka Solitaire is a decent budget tent for one person. LEss than 3 lbs and less than $100 online. Unless you have a compelling need for a 3 person tent, a two person tent is great for one and serviceable for two.

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kwhowell

I agree with Mr. Mags.

Another suggestion would be to keep an eye on steepandcheap.com . They have a lot of bargain deals on there. Of course their product selection is hit or miss, so this is only ideal if you aren't in a big hurry. Right now they have a Alps Mountaineering Zephyr 2 Tent going for a hair over $100 and it is a sub five pound tent. http://www.steepandcheap.com/gear-cache/spring-camping-essentials/ALM000D-COP .

Also, keep an eye on ebay. When I started backpacking I pretty much bought all my major items at bottom dollar prices off of ebay, including a Kelty Teton 2 for $110.

Welcome to a whole new world!

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Cattasraafe

So after not being convinced that the tent I linked was actually 20lbs or 8.9kg I looked a bit deeper. Turns out that site must be off its rocker because a few other listings of the Coleman Hooligan 3 person tent showing the 3 person tent at 10 pounds. So I really doubt the 2 person tent variant is actually going be 20lbs. I understand 10lbs is still kind of heavy, but I don't think I will be hiking the AT or PCT anytime soon lol so I may be ok with that. I can even go lighter still with the 2 person tent. I think will be getting this tent to try it out and a lot of reviews say the poles need to be replaced so I need to look into that, and before I take it out I'll be testing it out in the yard with a garden hose or something to try and find where it may or may not leak.

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Shaun Squid

Honestly, I would highly recommend not buying the 10lb tent. I get that it is a steal, but you will realize all too quickly that it just insanely heavy. I am not a hardcore ultralighter, but there is a lot to be said about enjoying the experience more if your pack is reasonable. I have carried 50+ lbs packs and not only does it make the experience miserable, it really limits how far you can go.

If you are okay with buying from walmart, a quick search finds similarly priced tents at half the weight. I would bet the price of one that you will replace it within a year, but it will get the job done. Otherwise, you could just get a tarp, some paracord, and some mosquito netting to tide you over until you can drop $100 for a decent tent that will last.

http://www.walmart.com/browse/tents-accessories/tents/4125_546956_4128_887708/?_refineresult=true&facet=tent_type%3ABackpacking+Tents&mmodule=1&_mm=&_mm=&_mm=

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Hi! As "newish: to backpacking I understand and I appreciate your enthusiasm. I can also promise you 10 pounds is 5 pounds too heavy for a tent. Teton Sports had a very nice 2 - person tent w/footprint which can be found very reasonably. Otherwise as someone else suggested find something inexpensive at Walmart and see if you like all that comes with backpacking. More than anything have gun!

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AdventureMyk

I'll double the recommendation for the Eureka Solitaire. Mine's held up fine for a few years and is able to be found anywhere from $60-70 new at your local sporting goods store. No need to even get that one online. The weight isn't as big a deal IF you have the right pack designed to carry it. That kind of pack is typically going to retail for a good bit more than the tents you are talking about.

There is another nice cheap option: Craigslist. Look at what's for sale, google up the reviews, then google up local shopping to make sure it's a decent deal. (Amazingly enough some people want 150% of new retail for a 3 year old used tent with missing poles because when it was new it might have cost that much).

Good luck on the hunt!

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Staredge

Do you have an outfitter nearby where you can rent the big stuff? Gives you a chance to get started, and a little longer to save up or find a good deal on good equipment.

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tmountainnut

So after not being convinced that the tent I linked was actually 20lbs or 8.9kg I looked a bit deeper. Turns out that site must be off its rocker because a few other listings of the Coleman Hooligan 3 person tent showing the 3 person tent at 10 pounds. So I really doubt the 2 person tent variant is actually going be 20lbs. I understand 10lbs is still kind of heavy, but I don't think I will be hiking the AT or PCT anytime soon lol so I may be ok with that. I can even go lighter still with the 2 person tent. I think will be getting this tent to try it out and a lot of reviews say the poles need to be replaced so I need to look into that, and before I take it out I'll be testing it out in the yard with a garden hose or something to try and find where it may or may not leak.

Why even go with 10 lb tent?

If you look around for a good used 2 person tent, you'll probably find something very good at a good price. I absolutely love my BD firstlight tent, and its only 3lbs, and i found a older yellow version for ~$130 used. There are many used options, and most higher end brands have a good aftermarket, so if you decide you don't like it, you can re-sell it for about how much you bought it for.

Alternatively, if you do a little research on SACalerts.com, you can use it to track stuff on "steep and cheap". If you can be patient, sometimes you can get some REALLY good deals on really good stuff.

There are PLENTY of sub-5 lb tents that will last you a very long time that cycle through the REI outlet site, like this one - http://www.rei.com/product/880300/easton-mountain-products-slickrock-2p-tent-2014-closeout#tab-specs

In short, treat the tent like its an investment. Instead of buying a cheap tent now, and then having to replace it in a year or two with another one, look for some deals and get a nicer one thats discounted that will last you many years to come. My favorite tent is an older north face canyonlands tent. I bought it over 10 years ago, and it is still my go to tent for very rainy weather, and still works perfectly. I don't carry it on backpacking trips very often anymore though, but thats because i've gotten a much lighter and flexible single person setup (Six Moons designs Gatewood cape + Mountain Laural Designs ultralight bivy sack).

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Shaun Squid

Hi! As "newish: to backpacking I understand and I appreciate your enthusiasm. I can also promise you 10 pounds is 5 pounds too heavy for a tent. Teton Sports had a very nice 2 - person tent w/footprint which can be found very reasonably. Otherwise as someone else suggested find something inexpensive at Walmart and see if you like all that comes with backpacking. More than anything have gun!

I think we will have to agree to disagree on the need for a gun, Karen. :D

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