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New Big Sky Soul - double wall freestanding tent...18 ounces
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Sam Farrington
(scfhome) - M

Locale: Chocorua NH, USA
BS Soul on 03/04/2013 22:10:57 MST Print View

You've made your buy, now you have to lie in it, hah, hah.
Like any fin-shaped tent, FS or not, above timberline, in the wind, you will need four side-guys, two in front and two in back from the guy loops, one of which is clearly shown in your photo. If the stakes for the guys are well secured, you should be fine.
One possible niggle is a direct connection of the side-guys not just to the fly, but also to the poles underneath it. Some of the wedge domes don't have this, and that could be a problem. Velcro loops around the poles could be a fix, but don't know if I'd want to trust a little Velcro loop in a gale.
Can't tell from your photos how much rain cover you have over the door. One poster alluded to that issue, as Roger Caffin often does. Not being able to set up the tent in a downpour without getting the bathtub floor wet can be an arguable trade-off; but not having a dry entry and exit in a downpour can be a deal breaker.
Love the light emerald color on the fly. If only BSI sold its fabrics to MYOGers.
After you've used it in foul weather, you might have some good insights about this design to possibly share with us.

Dylan Fish

Locale: Moon
coolio. on 03/05/2013 03:38:55 MST Print View

That looks sweet! I love free standing tents. Though its a shame there is no room for your pack :/

Josh Thomas
(JtPeso) - M

Locale: Louisville, Ky
Re: Big Sky on 03/05/2013 06:39:21 MST Print View

Can't speak for that particular tent, but just wanted to speak to a recent interaction with Bob at BSI. I'm well aware of the past problems with fulfillment, but – and I can only speak from personal experience – he was quick to communicate and fulfillment was spot-on. I'd ordered a Revolution 1P, and had my tent within 4 days. Great tent, taboot! I'm with Ben, in that I don't mind a little weight penalty for ease at the end of a long, difficult day.

Nathan Watts
(7sport) - MLife
Re: BS Soul on 03/05/2013 06:58:32 MST Print View

There are 4 guy lines that you mention for staking in the wind (fly, inner, and ground sheet if used) as well as 2 more guy lines attached to the sides of the fly (can't see from picture). There are also several more attachment points around the fly for attaching additional guy lines if that became necessary. The tent comes with instructions for staking down in the wind and priority of which stakes to use in which order. Tent is designed to face foot-first into the wind (don't we all wish wind was that consistent in direction above treeline!).

There are attachment points to the inner tent, though they might be difficult to use with the fly on. I don't think that is what you were referring to anyway.

I couldn't see any direct attachment points for guy lines to the poles themselves. The fly has velcro straps to secure to the poles and there is a buckled closure around the poles where they cross. The inner hangs from the poles.

If using the ground sheet and/or a cross-cord (which I ordered) the inner can be installed after the outer. Or the outer can be used by itself with no inner. So you can protect the inner during setup if you desire. To be honest though, the tent is so fast to set up (inner first as that's the easiest) the inner isn't exposed for all that long. The most time consuming step for me was the 20 or so seconds to attach the pole sections together inside the house. I'm sure it took me less than 2 minutes to set up and perhaps even less than one - and that's for a tent I'd never handled before.

As for rain entering through the doorway, that's a legit concern. From directly overhead you should be fairly well protected and if there is wind and you have the tent properly oriented (toe in) to the wind that should help matters. But if there's a head wind, you'll get some rain in through the doorway. The vestibule area will get rained on, so probably best to pull any dry things into the tent before opening up the door. I'll have to give it a closer inspection tonight to see if the doorway overhangs the inner at all and by how much.

My pack fits in the vestibule. Or under my legs if using my short Neo-Air. But I've become so spoiled by the full length pad lately.

Edited by 7sport on 03/05/2013 07:03:03 MST.

Sam Farrington
(scfhome) - M

Locale: Chocorua NH, USA
BS Soul on 03/05/2013 19:34:05 MST Print View

Thanks for all the details.
Agree that if the pitch is fast, DWR on the inner will keep water off the floor.
Snow Peak has a similar tent sold only in Japan that allows the floor to zip back away from the area exposed when the door is opened. Have no idea if it works.
Yours sounds like a pretty secure tent that will pitch fly first. Think I'll go check the BSI site. Thanks again.

Robert Guild
Re: New Big Sky Soul - double wall freestanding tent... 795 grams on 03/16/2013 17:55:34 MDT Print View

Does anyone know the packed size of this tent? I explore high desert terrains where I have to pack extra water so, while light weight is important, getting everything, including bag, tent, extra water, and food, in the pack is a huge issue for me. The length of folded poles can mean the difference between getting them in your pack or having to tie them to the outside.

Daryl and Daryl
(lyrad1) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest, USA, Earth
Re: coolio. on 03/16/2013 18:06:38 MDT Print View

"there is no room for your pack"

I solved this problem by sleeping on my pack. Is that possible with your pack?

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: New Big Sky Soul - double wall freestanding tent... 795 grams on 03/16/2013 18:14:06 MDT Print View

My own BS Mirage 2P packs down really small -- prolly just 1/3 of the size of my old BA Seedhouse 2 SL. Indeed, if I recall correctly, my Mirage 2P's tent sack is actually a respositioned HS Rainbow tarptent sack! NO direct experience with the BS Soul, but considering it's just 40% the weight of my Mirage 2P -- it likely boasts a significantly slimmer tent sack as well.

Separately, depending on your pack design -- have you considered attaching your tent to the outside of your pack? To me, that's where tents properly belong. It's the first thing you reach for to set up camp -- so being on the outside is nice. And when it's raining while you strike camp, you can first pack up and close up your backpack completely -- then put on your rain jacket, take down your tent and pack it to the outside of your pack. No more worries about opening a pack to expose it to the rain -- while jamming a wet, muddy tent in.

Nathan Watts
(7sport) - MLife
Re: Re: New Big Sky Soul - double wall freestanding tent... 795 grams on 03/24/2013 12:07:42 MDT Print View

"Does anyone know the packed size of this tent?"

Here are some pictures to help you understand the size. Shown are the poles, fly, and inner rolled up and loosely compressed in a compression sack. I pack stakes separately. Normally I will add a ground sheet to the roll, but I didn't in this picture. The last pic shows a size comparison to an HMG Echo 1 shelter that I'll be selling to make way for the BS Soul. The tarp shelter includes the inner, tarp, and beak rolled and inserted into the HMG stuff sack. No poles inside the HMG sack as they are a bit too long.

with nalgene

with echo

with tape measure

John McAlpine
(HairlessApe) - M

Locale: PNW
Looking for Input on Big Sky Soul 1P on 12/06/2014 19:49:54 MST Print View

I'm reactivating this subject. I'd like to hear if others have more info on this tent.

Nathan?'s the tent been?

Eric Blumensaadt
(Danepacker) - MLife

Locale: Mojave Desert
Non- sheltered Entrance on 12/07/2014 14:40:11 MST Print View

Dale Stuart is EXACTLY correct. This style of entrance lets in rain and snow as soon as it is opened.

I say this from owning an early 1980s Jansport "wedge" tent with the same type of opening. Yeeeeccchh!

BTW, Several times here on BPL I have railed against this entrance design as a "failed design" and even been taken to task for posting my own experience and opinion on design, I stand by my statement, The FACTS show it as a failed design. Period.

Edited by Danepacker on 12/07/2014 14:41:30 MST.

Sam Farrington
(scfhome) - M

Locale: Chocorua NH, USA
New Big Sky Soul - double wall freestanding tent... 795 grams on 12/11/2014 19:36:06 MST Print View

There you go again Eric!
My modded One Planet Goondie, while not made for a gale force pitch, does not let vertical rain in when the door is almost completely open due to the cross support strut at top. And the solid inner version can be pitched without letting in water, as the DWR will resist rain for the very brief time it takes to pitch. The top net window vents on the inner are vertical, so do not allow much rain in during the pitch.

The real problem is that most of the mass market domes, cross pole or hubbed, or even tunnels for that matter, do not hang the inner so that it goes up with the outer when pitching. Since they all have that problem, I don't know why you just pick on the cross-pole domes.
Please be more indiscriminate. As Arlo Guthrie said, in America they don't discriminate, they'll get anybody.