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Which Tarp tent for the Canadian Rockies?
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David Rohof
(djrohof) - F

Locale: Canada
Which Tarp tent for the Canadian Rockies? on 04/27/2011 10:27:45 MDT Print View

I have been looking at tarp tents for some time and feel the time is right for me to get one. I am having a tough time choosing which is the most appropriate one for the area I am in and was hoping you guys might be able to give me your two cents. Criteria for the tent;

- must be less then 2.2 pounds.
- Able to withstand a small amount of snow (~4inch) as it can snow year round
- Remain stable with high winds
- Be able to accommodate myself (5'6" and 160 pounds) and two medium sized dogs.
- I am thinking something with an attached floor and bug netting for the dogs can not escape in the night.

Right now I am leaning towards the Tarptent Moment but am a little skeptical with the side opening and feel I might bet wet each time I open the side door. Because of the temperature condensation is a constant problem here. The second one I am looking at is the Contrail.

I am more then happy to look at other manufactures or tarp tents if anyone has information to provide. I look forwards to hearing what you guys have to say. Thanks and take care.

Dave -
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Up there
Which Tarp tent for the Canadian Rockies? on 04/27/2011 10:59:47 MDT Print View

I am in your neck of the woods. The Contrail would not be an ideal source because of the lack of snow load ability with wet snow. The Rainbow would be a better choice, although the Moment should handle some snow just fine. The Scarp would be a better choice for snow.

But the kicker is your mention of two dogs. Will they sleep in the vestibule? If so, none of the shelters mentioned will have enough room. Inside? No - unless they are really small critters.

My recommendation would be to look at the Mountain Laurel Designs SpeedMid (or DuoMid depending on the size of the dogs). You could add a Solo Inner net for you and then have plenty of space for gear and dogs in the 'vestibule.' All for under 2lbs.

Edit: I re-read your post and see that you want the dogs in the tent with you. MLD offers the Duo Innernet which will have a ton of space for this purpose. Right at about 2lbs.

Edited by FamilyGuy on 04/27/2011 11:02:40 MDT.

Mary D
(hikinggranny) - MLife
Which Tarp tent for the Canadian Rockies? on 04/27/2011 11:25:59 MDT Print View

When the Moment first came out, I did a mockup (with string and masking tape), using the specs on the Tarptent website, and it definitely isn't big enough for me (5'3") plus my 80-lb. mostly Lab. I definitely wouldn't recommend it for two dogs, unless you plan to sleep outside! The Contrail is bigger than the Moment, but I wouldn't recommend that for two dogs plus a human, either. The single Rainbow (a 1.5 person tent) might work, depending on how much room your dogs take up when they sleep.

Consider that trying to put yourself plus two dogs in a solo tent will not only overwhelm the space designed for one but can also overwhelm the tent's ventilation system, also designed for one. I had this problem trying to squeeze my dog and me into a SMD Lunar Solo a few years ago. Space was OK if we were just in there to sleep, but pretty cramped when it rained the whole evening from 5-6 pm on! Condensation was also a really big issue.

I think you and your dogs will be far more comfortable in a 2-person tent. Tarptent's Squall 2 fits your weight criterion at 34 ounces and should have plenty of room. If you take care to put the back end facing the wind, use two front poles and add side guylines, it holds up to a lot of wind.

The previous poster's idea of a MLD DuoMid is good, too.

Edited by hikinggranny on 04/27/2011 11:29:58 MDT.

Chris Gray
(ChrisFol) - F

Locale: Denver, Coloado
RE: Which Tarp tent for the Canadian Rockies? on 04/27/2011 12:22:43 MDT Print View


I was also in the market for a lightweight shelter that could fit myself and my dog and withstand a few inches of snow and winds in the Colorado Rockies. Most of these shelters I crossed off my list very quickly.

I honestly do not believe that any of these solo shelters will work for you and your two medium sized dogs.

The Moment is going to be far too small and the tiny side entrance is going to be a pain in the rear to get everybody in and out each night. I own a SMD Lunar Solo and like Mary I also have a lab and I can attest to it not being very much fun confined to such a small space with just one dog-- I can imagine it being quite unbearable with two furry creatures!

As David Ure mentioned, the Contrail also won't work because it can't handle snow very well and you will spend the entire night knocking it off from the inside; again not much fun when sleep is important for an alpine start the next day.

I think you guys would be much happier in a two person shelter and if *I* had to make the same decision again, I would opt to carry a little more weight for the additional space and go with something like the Double Rainbow or Cloudburst II.


I just took a look at David Ure's MLD Duo+Duo Inner suggestion and just by looking at the pictures on MLD's website; even this option looks cramped to me:

I guess it is all down to what you can and are willing "put up with.

Edited by ChrisFol on 04/27/2011 14:57:28 MDT.

Mark Ries
(mtmnmark) - M

Locale: IOWAHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!
Whats medium? on 04/27/2011 14:07:41 MDT Print View

It would depend on whats medium I had three medium sized dogs (just lost one down to two now) 30lbs and well behaved and could have gotten them into my lightheart solo (no awning) Im 5'10" 230lbs I also would be willing to sleep the right partner in this tent with no dogs and the right pad setup. It is very roomy I think this tent would work in lighter snows as the two poles give it good structure and has plenty of guy outs. It should do well in winds also. Like the moment as long as the end stakes stay in the ground it should stay standing, the rest of the stakes are only needed to keep the fly tight. I like it but a friend just ordered the new six moons and at its price I cant wait to see it It looks similar but a bit smaller

Charles Henry

Locale: Arizona and British Columbia
1 on 04/27/2011 14:43:11 MDT Print View

A double rainbow, and your dogs can carry some of your gear?

David Rohof
(djrohof) - F

Locale: Canada
Thanks on 04/28/2011 10:08:37 MDT Print View

Thanks for all the great replies. I think you guys might be right that the solo tarp tents might be a little tight. I have never used a shelter similar to the MLD Duomid but just curious on what peoples thoughts are on these. Saw the one below on the used gear swap and thought it might be worth a try.

To answer some of the questions from the posts above my dogs are 50 pounds and 70 pounds. They both sleep pretty small.I am currently using the north face tadpole 23 ( and we have slept the three of us and my wife. Very tight, but manageable.

Keep the great input coming guys. And thanks to everyone who replied.