I truly appreciate the input and it looks like I came to the right place for advice.
So last night back at the homestead on Blue Grouse Mnt., it poured down buckets of rain all night long. Towards dawn the skies cleared, and the wind began to howl!
I found myself wondering how well a Rainshadow 2 would have worked under these conditions?
I have zero experience with Silnylon. I have read about the “light mist” that can press through in heavy rain, and that certainly does concern me, but the consensus here is that such material and such a shelter is fine in a heavy rain?
I am also a little apprehensive about the condensation issue. My wife and I have had considerable condensation in a Sierra Designs Clip Flashlight, and that is a traditional two–layer tent!
When I started my quest for a suitable shelter for our future thu-hike ( and of course other general use as well ) I looked to ordinary double wall nylon tents first, with a goal of finding a shelter offering the comfort and if possible the ease of use of a heavy old-school tent at a reduced weight.
Perhaps I should explain the baseline my wife and I use to compare tents -
Our traditional tent has been the Eureka Timberline 2. It’s a great tent, roomy at 38 sq, ft., and very easy to set up, can withstand almost any storm, and they are cheap to boot!
I used one steadily for 17 years, wore it out and got another!
In about two decades of steady use I have yet to have any condensation inside one. We’ve used ‘em all over Washington, Idaho, parts of Canada and I even lugged one on a cycle tour of Iceland.
This tent has plenty of room for my wife to climb inside and set up our bed, change out of wet clothes and relax while I break out our stove and cook a hot meal in the doorway. The door has a generous overhang, which makes cooking there easy and safe.
‘Eh, we always keep all our gear – and food – inside the tent with us. I hate soggy packs in the morning, and any bear that wants my food is going to have to deal with me first!
But the dang Timberlines are heavy. So much so, that at age 50, I no longer want to carry one of ‘em!
So anyway, my first attempt at lightening my load was a Sierra Designs Clip Flashlight. Complete with a ground cloth mine weighs in at 4 pounds.
“Not bad!” I thought. I got it because at a listed 32 sq. ft., it is “bigger” than many other “two person” tents on the market, and the design has been around quite some time so I figured it must be a great tent, right?
Well, on our first five night backpacking trip with it we discovered otherwise. We had surprising amounts of condensation, and it is just to cramped for two people in foul weather.
One evening I had to cook our dinner outside in the rain, then retreat to the tent where we had to lay on our stomachs to eat.
It simply isn’t big enough, and in particular lack headroom anywhere but at the door.
- This is a concern I have with the two person version of the Rainshadow ( the Squall 2? ) – I reckon two folks can crawl in and lay down, but that’s about it?
So anyway, I am considering ripping off the silly “vestibule” off the Flashlight and sewing on a proper awning as Ray Jardine describes in his book Trail Life.
That will help, but I feel we just need a tent with proper headroom and maybe an bit more elbow room?
So I gave up on the so called “ Two man” tents and started looking at three man tents like the MSR Carbon Reflex 3 and the Big Agnes Copper Spur and similar tents.
Great shelters no doubt, ( expensive...) but they are all generally pretty close to five pounds ( especially with a ground cloth ).
I reckon I could live with that and had just about talked myself into one, but heck, that isn’t all that much lighter than the timberline!
Then I stumbled upon the Rainshadow 2.
Now I’ve been reading here at backpacking light about other shelters, and I’m totally mixed up, to much information!
Eh, I suppose I should have called this thread “suitable shelter for two?” or something similar, because there does seem to be allot to choose from.
So it’s going to take me a while to sort through everything and come to any conclusions.
I do very much wish to keep my base load as close to ten pounds as possible for this thru-hike.
Say, anyone know anything about the Six Moon Lunar Duo, and how that might compare to the Rainshadow?
Cuben material was mentioned – What similar designs in that material are available?