November 20, 2015 8:16 PM MST - Subscription purchasing, account maintenance, forum profile maintenance, new account registration, and forum posting have been disabled
as we prepare our databases for the final migration to our new server next week. Stay tuned here for more details.
Subscribe Contribute Advertise Facebook Twitter Instagram Forums Newsletter
Patrol Shelter vs. Hexamid Solo?
Display Avatars Sort By:
Brandt Zook
(BassDude) - F - M

Locale: Texas
Patrol Shelter vs. Hexamid Solo? on 09/23/2013 10:44:08 MDT Print View

Hello all,

I have a Hexamid solo (tarp only with beak, no net) which I do like. It is pretty easy to pitch, is very lightweight, and affords a good footprint. However, it seems a bit small for me when laying down/sleeping. I am 6' 2" or so and my feet come very close to touching the sides of the tarp, as does my head when laying down. What I'm worried about is wet and rainy conditions/me touching the tarp in my sleep and getting condensation on my bag.

Is the Patrol Shelter more roomy than the Hexamid? Would I have more room to stetch out and not touch the end of the tarp with my feet? Does the Patrol Shelter offer the same level of protection that the Hexamid can? Basically, how do these two shelters stack against each other? The Patrol Shelter would be cuben fiber.

Thanks for your input!

Edited by BassDude on 09/23/2013 10:44:45 MDT.

Steven McAllister
(brooklynkayak) - MLife

Locale: Atlantic North East
Patrol Shelter vs. Hexamid Solo? on 09/24/2013 12:24:36 MDT Print View

I haven't slept in a Hexamid, but felt the shape of the Patrol would work better for me. Having poles on each end makes the limited space feel roomier with more room around the face making me feel less cramped.

The Hexamid being a pyramid style shelter is going to be tighter near the face and feet, but provide better headroom in the center for sitting up.

I could have gone with either and been perfectly happy.
But, I have used similar shelters to the Hexamid in shape and found that I prefer the A-frame shape of the Patrol a little better.

Others will probably disagree.

Compare the dimensions and see what you think.

I am 5'11" and usually use a bug net of some kind, either a bug bivy or net inner. Not just for bug protection, but as a groundcloth, to reduce the wetness on my bag and reduction of convection heat loss on cold nights.

Andrew F
(andrew.f) - F

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: Patrol Shelter vs. Hexamid Solo? on 09/24/2013 12:35:08 MDT Print View

I have a Spinnshelter which I believe to be nearly identical dimensions to the MLD Patrol Shelter. At 5'10" I usually find myself with about six inches to the closed foot end and about a foot from the apex of the shelter / front pole. You won't have problems with touching the sides since the foot end is vertical. It does feel like a small shelter, though.

William Chilton
(WilliamC3) - MLife

Locale: Antakya
Re: Patrol Shelter vs. Hexamid Solo? on 09/24/2013 13:21:37 MDT Print View

Have you looked at the Hexamid Long? A lot more space than the Solo.

Steven McAllister
(brooklynkayak) - MLife

Locale: Atlantic North East
Patrol Shelter vs. Hexamid Solo? on 09/24/2013 13:34:55 MDT Print View

If you feel you want more room than a Patrol Shelter, especially at the ends, I'd consider the BearPaw Canopy 2. It is kind of a bigger version of the Patrol Shelter.
It can be ordered with the zip vestibule door similar to the Spinnshelter, Shangri-la, ... or with the non-zip beak like the Patrol.

He can make them out of the lighter or heavier versions of cuben.

Edited by brooklynkayak on 09/24/2013 13:47:10 MDT.

John Kays
(johnk) - M

Locale: SoCal
Tough Choice on 09/24/2013 13:36:01 MDT Print View


Edited by johnk on 09/24/2013 21:00:18 MDT.

BJ Clark
(bj.clark) - MLife

Locale: Colorado
Re: Patrol Shelter vs. Hexamid Solo? on 09/24/2013 13:43:43 MDT Print View

MLD can lengthen the patrol shelter as a customization. When I asked about it last January, Ron said an extra foot in cuben and 4 tie outs per side instead of three would at that time be $40.

jeffrey armbruster
(book) - M

Locale: Northern California
"Patrol Shelter vs. Hexamid Solo?" on 09/24/2013 14:02:29 MDT Print View

"My Solo has performed much better than I expected in strong wind." I hope this isn't a thread drift, but...I just came back from using my Hex solo with a beak in a very strong rain storm. We set up in a sheltered area and there was little wind, although it was extremely windy where we originally planned to camp, 500 feet higher by an exposed lake. Anyway, through my own fault, the tent's pitch was awful but it did keep me dry through a full night's heavy rain. But I was very concerned that high winds might have collapsed the tent--mostly because of the spectra (?) cord that came with the tent. Too late I noticed that this cord had frayed at the point where the beak's mitten hook attaches. A break on this one cord would have been a disaster: the whole tent would have collapsed.
So I'll replace this cord with stronger cord, and the other structural tie outs as well. But all of this struck home that this style tent's vulnerability is in how the failure of one key stake point spells big trouble in foul weather.
It may just be that I'm too...geometrically deficient for this style of tent. With a pole tent like the BA fly creek, etc. those of us who are technically challenged can still get a great pitch, even in stormy weather, because of the pole structure.

So this is a long way to ask about the reliability of spectra cord on this tent, and any other comments.

Billy Ray
(rosyfinch) - M

Locale: the mountains
Re: "Patrol Shelter vs. Hexamid Solo?" on 09/24/2013 14:56:30 MDT Print View

I had the Hexamid Solo out for first and only time last month. Had some high winds. Yes... that one tie out at the entry/beak is scary... though mine held in high winds it looked like it was going to come down at any moment so I just pulled the pole and let it down before it blew down. Wind was coming directly into the beak/entry. They say not to pitch the tent so that the wind is on that side, but unless the wind is blowing when you set it up there is no way to tell which way it will come from when above tree line in the mountains.

The cord on the beak side was not damaged in any way, but I replaced it with two of the thinker yellow cords sold by zPacks... figured I would use two tie-outs a bit apart for that side of the tent.

But other cords at other locations did abrade down to the white core... I don't use stakes as they are useless most of the time up high in granite country... I use rocks and the rocks can abrade that yellow cord so I went to thinker of the same. If those thicker are cut by the rocks then I will go to something less vulnerable to abrading.

I think you have to consider that when designing the Hexamid zPacks is promoting this as the lightest or one of the lightest tarps. In order to get the weight numbers down they use a pretty skimpy cord... which might be fine for in the trees and out of the wind, but I think it is compromising durability and maybe safety to be using that small of a cord in windy areas... just my opinion... not a lot of experience with this ultra light cord...

Bill D.

Jason Elsworth
(jephoto) - M

Locale: New Zealand
hexamid in the wind on 09/24/2013 22:44:47 MDT Print View

I have yet to have my hexamid out ina strong wind. However I was able to pitch it prety much down to the ground as an experiment. Still some gap at the beak and interior volume is reduced. I was also thinking if it would be possible to attach a guy line directly to the pole pass it through a small gap left at the top of the door. Obviously for emergencies only. Could also add s couple of extra lines to the peak in strong winds so not reliant on the single peg. Best bet is probably to find a sheltered pitch:)

Steven Davis

Locale: SF Bay Area
long on 09/25/2013 01:28:27 MDT Print View

just get the hexamid solo plus. joe designed that specifically for taller folks like you. i have the regular solo, but i'm only 5'8.

Jason Elsworth
(jephoto) - M

Locale: New Zealand
Patrol Shelter vs. Hexamid Solo? on 09/25/2013 02:37:35 MDT Print View

just get the hexamid solo plus

I think you mean the Hexamid long.

(Myrtille) - F

Locale: South of France
Re: hexamid pitched down to the ground on 09/25/2013 06:56:46 MDT Print View

Hi Jason
I am looking at the Hexamid Solo but I find it too high above the ground,
You said you pitched it down to the ground, what is the height inside then?
It is said that the lenght is about 54"?

Thank you for your answer