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Buying a Tarptent... need trekking poles
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Sean Passanisi
(passanis) - MLife
Buying a Tarptent... need trekking poles on 02/24/2013 23:22:46 MST Print View

Hi. I plan on purchasing a tarptent soon but have never used trekking poles and need to buy some for support. Seems like the Gossamer ones are popular around here. Any other suggestions? Does one typically use the poles on trails with greater incline/declines?

Thank you.

Travis Leanna
(T.L.) - MLife

Locale: Wisconsin
Re: Buying a Tarptent... need trekking poles on 02/24/2013 23:52:15 MST Print View

Hi Sean. Henry's shelters are fantastic. But I would suggest not buying trekking poles simply to hold up the shelter.

Personally, I say buy a dedicated set of tent poles that fit the shelter, and experiment with trekking poles to see if they are something you actually like using.

If you find you truly enjoy using trekking poles, then you can certainly use them for a shelter.

But seriously consider holding off on trekking poles if your main reason for getting them is to support a tarptent.

Good luck!

Herbert Sitz

Locale: Pacific NW
Rainbow and Moment on 02/25/2013 00:18:10 MST Print View

In addition to what Travis said, some of the Tarptent designs don't require trekking poles at all, e.g., the Rainbow and the Moment. The Contrail uses a single trekking pole.

Matthew Hoskin

Locale: Kanangra-Boyd NP
Tarptent and trekking poles on 02/25/2013 01:17:10 MST Print View

I have a SS2 and a Contrail - both which use trekking poles.
I personally have found using carbon Fibre Trekking poles are excellent to take weight off my knees and give support on uneaven ground. I used to shun them but the minimal weight is now totally justified.
For me, having poles and also using them for tent poles is just plain great. Why carry extra weight when you don't need to?
Of course you can buy CF poles, or alternatively, cut down some tree branch to suffice.
I use a brand here in Australia fairydown/macpac - got them on special for $80AU. I have also use the BD Ultradistance poles for both tents. I find 135cm is what I use for height but can go even higher for more headroom.
Yeah, you can just get the CF poles - but consequently cannot use them for anything bar tent poles. Atleast with trekking poles you can multi use them

(JRinGeorgia) - F
try 'em to see if you like 'me on 02/25/2013 06:22:32 MST Print View

I agree you shouldn't carry trekking poles you don't know if you will like/use just to hold up your shelter. My suggestion is to try trekking poles first -- I also used to be skeptical but once I tried poles I won't go back. They help on inclines and declines as well as on level terrain, they take weight off your legs and help steady your balance or recover from the inevitable trips and slip.

You can get a cheapie pair at Walmart for under $20. Heavy, but will give you an idea if you like trekkers. If you like poles you can use the cheapies or upgrade as you wish, but if you don't like them then many makers of shelters that use poles for support can also provide a lighter pole designed just for supporting the shelter.

Nick Larsen
(stingray4540) - F

Locale: South Bay
Re: try 'em to see if you like 'me on 02/25/2013 06:39:17 MST Print View

I'll second, the walmart suggestion. Cheap way to find out if you like them.

Personally I didn't use them until I blew my knee out on a trail. Fashioned a pole from a sapling, and was surprised at how much pressure was taken off my knee. Made it possible to finish the trip, even if I was in pain. Otherwise I may have had to crawl to the nearest TH.

Since then, I picked up a pair at Walmart, and love them! I also noticed they help me hike faster once I get into a rhythm. I'd like to pick up a pair of CF ones, but at the moment, I haven't felt the weight of the ones I have, particularly burden me.

Link .
(annapurna) - MLife
Re: Buying a Tarptent... need trekking poles on 02/25/2013 08:31:51 MST Print View

Sean,From your other post I see you plan on doing international travel.You might like this thread by Christine(German Tourist),she travels all over the world and tells what works and doesn't work for her and why.She also has a very good

Herbert Sitz

Locale: Pacific NW
$27 Costco carbon fiber poles on 02/25/2013 09:35:49 MST Print View

Here's recommendation of some $27 poles at Costco by Andrew Skurka:

They're not too heavy and from sound of it they're probably preferable to cheap ones Walmart.

Dave -
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Up there
Re: Buying a Tarptent... need trekking poles on 02/25/2013 09:38:53 MST Print View

If you have never used trekking poles, I would suggest buying (or renting from REI) a pair and try them out first. If you are not keen on using them, then buying a tarptent that requires trekking poles seems a bit backward. In this situation, I would simply buy a tent with a dedicated pole structure - lots of light ones available. Or... a tarptent that does not require trekking poles (i.e. Moment, Scarp, Rainbow, etc).

Ross Bleakney
(rossbleakney) - MLife

Locale: Cascades
Re: Re: Buying a Tarptent... need trekking poles on 02/25/2013 11:22:03 MST Print View

Even if you own trekking poles, you may still want to use lightweight poles to hold up your tent. My wife and I own a TarpTent Squall 2 and decided to buy a couple poles from TarpTent. They weigh about 2 ounces a piece, so the weight penalty isn't too big. If we base camp, it is easier to just set up the tent with the pole, rather than switch back and forth during the day. You can also use sticks (if push comes to shove). But that is a hassle as well. Carrying a pole is also useful if you are worried about breaking a trekking pole. You could carry a spare trekking pole, but that would be a lot heavier.

If you do decide to buy trekking poles, I would recommend Gossamer Gear or Black Diamond poles. Gossamer Gear poles are really light. Black Diamond poles have the best locking system.

Sean Passanisi
(passanis) - MLife
Thank you on 02/25/2013 12:53:20 MST Print View

Hello everyone. Thanks for all of your insights and advice. I will hold off on purchasing trekking poles since I have no experience using them. But it does sound like the type of thing that I will try.

I'm leaning towards the SST over the DoubleRainbow based on my research on BPL. If I go that route, I will purchase the poles from Tarptent and then replace in the future if needed.

Thank you Anna for the additional note.

Dave -
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Up there
Re: Thank you on 02/25/2013 13:04:07 MST Print View

Sean, if you use the SS2 with the carbon poles it will not be as stable as the Double Rainbow. If you are concerned with condensation, just use the Rainbow liner.