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Hyperlite Mountain Gear UltaMid 2 Shelter Review
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(jpovs) - F

Locale: Arrowhead
Re: Comparison with the Locus Khufu and use of DPTE on 02/13/2014 10:27:16 MST Print View


Edited by jpovs on 06/15/2014 14:01:39 MDT.

Andy Jarman

Locale: Edge of the World
HMG Ulta Mid Vs Bear Paw Pyra 2? on 02/13/2014 17:47:06 MST Print View

Having complained about no mossie net (my post above) I took a look at the Bear Paw Pyra 2. Lo ! it can be fitted with an internal mossie net/bug bivy, hurrah.

Now, what I'd really like to know is why would I look at an HMG Ulta Mid when the Bear Paw Pyra 2 is nearly half the price, lighter, the same size AND I can add a bug bivy during mossie season? Can anyone shed light on any pros and cons between these two shelters?

Edited by AndyJarman on 02/13/2014 18:09:10 MST.

Franco Darioli
(Franco) - M

Locale: @Tarptent
Hyperlite Mountain Gear UltaMid 2 Shelter Review on 02/14/2014 16:27:49 MST Print View

From Kevin :
"aggressive caternary cut in the corner "
If you still have the shelter try this :
When you stake down the corners don't pull the fabric taut but leave some slack.
(the more tension you have on the 4 sides before putting the pole in , the greater the catenary curve will be)
Once you place the pole in and it is up then pull the corners taut if they need to be.
May not work for you but try it.

Tom Clark
(TomClark) - MLife

Locale: East Coast
Sloped door on 02/15/2014 06:18:29 MST Print View

Could those people that have used shelters of this type comment on how the sloped entrance works on a rainy night? It does seem like LOTS of water could come in during avery short time if you have to get out during storm. I ask this because I often camp with my kids, and there is little hope of controlling when they decide to go.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Sloped door on 02/15/2014 08:15:17 MST Print View

Don't put anything below the door. Consider that spot an entrance area. Close door, shake off rain jacket and put aside. Move to the other area that's dry.

With one person, I open the door on one side and leave the other side closed, where my sleeping bag is, dry.

With two people, I stake the middle of both panels, so the wet area is in the center, and the foot of both sleeping bags points point to the corners on both sides.

Kids are maybe a little less under control - harder to constrain water to just that one spot.

Edward Jursek

Locale: Pacific Northwest
UltraMid Review on 02/15/2014 19:59:27 MST Print View

After posting complaints over editorial drift into areas like pack rafting and heavy backpacks, it is nice to see a review of a newish UL product. I have always enjoyed Will's reviews.

Greg Mihalik
(greg23) - M

Locale: Colorado
Re: Sloped door on 02/15/2014 20:31:49 MST Print View

---- drifting ----

Tom -
"Could those people that have used shelters of this type comment on how the sloped entrance works on a rainy night? It does seem like LOTS of water could come in during avery short time if you have to get out during storm. I ask this because I often camp with my kids, and there is little hope of controlling when they decide to go."

Have you considered a Mountain Laurel Designs' TrailStar?

It's got a very functional all-weather entry...

...or a SuperMid

SuperMid "half-door" mode?

----- end drift

Edited by greg23 on 02/15/2014 20:46:35 MST.

Daryl and Daryl
(lyrad1) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest, USA, Earth
Re: Hyperlite Mountain Gear UltaMid 2 Shelter Review on 02/16/2014 10:06:15 MST Print View

"Taking into account that a center pole is required for these shelters (unless you suspend it from a tree branch), the narrower Mids (60 and 64 in/152 to 163 cm wide) seem inadequate for two sleepers; the wider widths would be preferred, especially if you use it for winter camping."

At another site one reviewer of a center pole tent liked the center pole as a nice divider between users. My wife and I are usually debating which of us is over the center line. Center pole might be good for us?

Is the center pole really a problem for two sleeping people? Neither of them should be taking up the center spot anyway.

Edited by lyrad1 on 02/16/2014 10:52:31 MST.

Will Rietveld
(WilliWabbit) - MLife

Locale: Southwest Colorado
Re: Hyperlite Mountain Gear UltaMid 2 Shelter Review on 02/17/2014 12:00:28 MST Print View

Sorry for the delay in responding to your questions.

CORNER CATENARY CURVES: The corners do have a catenary curve, and yes that does reduce interior headroom. Raising the shelter up a bit helps a lot to increase sidewall headroom. It snowed on the shelter only one time when I was testing it. It was about 1" of wet snow that stuck to the tent; it really flattend the lower sides of the shelter and did not readily come off. It was not very inhabitable under those conditions. I did not use the shelter for camping in dryer snow.

CUBEN FIBER WEIGHTS: I incorrectly stated that HMG uses a heavier weight of Cuben Fiber. Upon further research I find there is some variation in the stated weight from .74 to .78 g/sm, but in fact they are all exactly the same thing. Only ZPacks uses a lighter weight. CT2E.08, about 26g/sqm, .75oz sq.yd, break strength 105 lb/in is the Cuben Fiber used by most manufacturers; CT1E.08, about 18g/sqm, .53oz sq.yd, break strength 68 lb/in is the one used by ZPacks.

SEAM CONSTRUCTION: The four corner seams have two lines of stitching and are taped on both sides with 1.25" wide Cuben tape. See photo below.

HMG UltaMid Seam

r m
(rm) - M
So about that snow loading... on 02/05/2015 00:26:54 MST Print View

I'm almost ready to buy an ultramid, (I really like HMG's customer service and so far trust their products).

But, hearing that one inch of snow kills its liveability is a bit concerning.

I was thinking of a 4 person for myself and gf for year long use as a lightweight shelter. One thing I'm unsure about is what happens when you get say half a foot or more of wet snow while you're gone, or asleep. That's a lot of mass if the sides aren't steep enough to shed it, and is hate to return to camp to find the tieouts have blown or the pole snapped and poked a hole through a wall.

Demanding circumstances for a mid, but that's precisely what I'm interested in - how much I can get away with before I reach the bringing my 3kg winter tent stage.

So...How have people gone with ultramids in windy/snowy/harsh alpine environments?

Dan Durston
(dandydan) - F

Mids in Winter on 02/06/2015 11:18:48 MST Print View

My experience with mids in the winter is limited, but the general wisdom is that silnylon sheds snow quite a bit more readily than cuben. At moderate angles snow may slide off silnylon but not cuben. It'll still collect around the edges and reduce space a bit, but a generously sized silnylon mid should fair well in moderate snowfalls. In heavy snowfalls it's time to get out and shovel.

With that said, cuben doesn't stretch very much, so I've found that I don't lose that much space inside under light snow falls (1-2") but that's with other cuben shelters (HMG Echo, MLD DuoMid), not the UltaMid. There may be something specific to the UltaMid design that is causing this (i.e. guyline stretch). Silnylon will sag quite a bit more for the same snowload. Cuben is probably better for light snows, while silnylon is probably better for heavy snows because it's shedding ability and dynamic stretch.

The weight savings of cuben are nice, but I've recently switched over to silnylon for my mid (MLD cuben DuoMid to Locus Gear Khufu) because I feel more comfortable using silnylon in really cold conditions with potentially a lot of snowfall.

Locus Gear makes a number of really nice mids (Khufu, Menkaura, Khafra) that they'll make in either cuben or silnylon (not all options are listed, so ask). MLD makes great mids in both fabrics too.

Edited by dandydan on 02/06/2015 11:19:27 MST.

Paul McLaughlin
(paul) - MLife
Re: So about that snow loading... on 02/07/2015 14:53:10 MST Print View

My experience with a mid on the snow is with an old Chouinard megamid, but this applies pretty generally: IF you get serious overnight snowfall, like 6-12", then you're up during the night digging out. Even if the snow slides off nicely, it has nowhere to go at the bottom, so it piles up on the bottom edge, and all that weight pushes the bottom edge down, reducing your interior space. The only way that you can sometimes get around this is to build a little snow wall and set your mid up on top of the wall, so that when snow slides down the side it can slide off the top of the wall and build up outside the wall. But it's hard to get the bottom well anchored on top of the wall - the best I've done is to use guylines on the bottom stake points and put the stakes out past the wall, so that bottom edge is on top of the wall but the stakes are out past the wall at the end of the guylines. Trouble with that is in the wind it tends to flap, so it's only really good in a heavy snow with not much wind (like if you're camped in thick trees). And even then at soem point the snow starts to build up at the bottom edge of the fabric - it just takes longer than if the mid is staked down without the wall.
My own attitude on mids for the snow is they are great for the spring, but not so much in mid-winter when you get the big snowfalls.

Steve Staloff
snow walls on 02/08/2015 01:54:08 MST Print View

If you cut blocks for a high snow wall and add a skirt to the pyramid, wind isn't much of a problem, snow buildup is less of a problem, and the room inside is huge because the loss of length to the blocks is offset by the height at the edges. Adding a akirt to a mid seems to have a wonderful payoff, but I haven't used my modified mid in extended periods of high winds that might eat at the snow walls.

Edited by twilight on 02/08/2015 01:59:23 MST.

r m
(rm) - M
Re: Re: So about that snow loading... on 02/09/2015 04:14:11 MST Print View

Thanks for the insights.

I've gone with a MLD Supermid in sil-nylon. It sounds like I'll survive just fine in a mid - and if not at least I'll have first hand experience in the matter.

At one quarter the weight of my winter tent, I'm excited :)

Chad Lorenz
(ChadL) - MLife

Locale: Teton Valley, Wydaho
pyramid in snow on 02/10/2015 08:42:15 MST Print View

Pyramid w/walls

This shelter setup (not finished, front wall near door not dug out yet) shows how I built up internal walls that help shed heavy snow. The snow along the outside wall also gets dug out a bit to allow for snow accumulation. Digging down into the snow also allows for a lot more room ("bell out" the interior and we got 4 people in a megalight). A pillar has been left to help support the pole (stuff sack filled with snow serves as a float for the pole end) is awkward, but the alternative, throwing a rope over a branch would be even more problematic as the tree branches gather and release their snow loads during the night. Other alternatives exist, but this works for me!

Bob Moulder
(bobmny10562) - M

Locale: Westchester County, NY
Re: pyramid in snow on 02/10/2015 08:56:10 MST Print View

We were out night before last and got some freezing rain that created an ice glaze approximately 1/16" thick on my Duomid.

It sagged a bit but there was still plenty of room inside for me, although with 2 people inside there would have been some brushing of the walls. However, the 2-pole inverted V set-up is really good for this situation because the poles hold the walls out.

In the morning, the ice sloughed off the silnylon very easily.

duomid ice

ice sheets

Edited by bobmny10562 on 02/10/2015 09:19:47 MST.

David Olsen
( - M

Locale: Channeled Scablands
Re: Re: So about that snow loading... on 02/10/2015 09:51:27 MST Print View

Taller is better for snow loading. Digging down prior to set up can give one a circus tent feel with the extra room.

Here is a friends mid. This one is 6 ft tall and 10x10' bottom dimension. Sleep and cook.mid in snow 4mid in snow 3

Edited by on 02/10/2015 09:56:32 MST.

David Olsen
( - M

Locale: Channeled Scablands
Inside and out on 02/10/2015 09:58:45 MST Print View

mid in snow 1mid in snow 2