Friday, April 25, 2008

Four Season Tent Review

Some tents have pockets, some don't. For the life of me, I can't understand why on earth they wouldn't have pockets. I mean, where are you supposed to put all of the stuff you need to grab in the middle of the night when you only want to stick one arm out of your bag?

The North Face VE-35 is a perfect example of a tent with sparse pockets- comical in a way given that I now share a VE-35. Looking inside, it may appear as if a down bomb went off, but if in-fact you can look beyond that, you will notice two teeny and inconvenient pockets, way off at the top of the tent ceiling. So most of the things you want in arm's reach- aren't. Narrow in the center and given that Joe's a bit bigger than me and has more stuff, this means that we end up snuggling all night and he gets 2/3 of the tent anyway. VE-35? Booo!

At Base Camp, we all have Mountain Hardware Trango 3.1s. These, we have as singles to spread out in. They have oodles of pockets and these are located on walls, ceilings and entryways. You can put tons & tons of stuff literally everywhere. It would make the tent sharing experience much more tolerable for sure. Trango 3.1? Thumbs up.

The North Face VE-25 is a much more modern and expeditionary tent than the VE-35. Wider in the center, containing a much more solid vestibule than the VE-35, the VE-25 also has more floor space in the inside and actually has pockets that you can shove in Blistex, head lamps, pee bottles, you name it. All of these items being within immediate reach when it's all frosty inside the tent because you forgot to unzip an air vent and your breath now clings to the roof, conveniently snowing down onto you when you accidentally bump the tent side. And, the hot water bottle jammed down into the bottom of your bag has lost all of its heat- this tent is awesome! VE-25? Thumbs up.

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