UltraLight or "ultra light" tents

UltraLight class tent, where priority is given to maximum weight reduction.

While the norm is a 3.0 - 3.8 kg for normal double tourist tent, UltraLight its analog may weigh less than 2 kg. In the West, this last decade has been widely distributed. Increasing popularity they are gaining and in Russia. In the first place among the cyclists, backpackers and experienced hikers. Where it is assumed a collision with extreme weather conditions and, at the same time, the critical mobility, providing low weight and volume of the backpack.

Classic UltraLight tents

The classic design of the UltraLight tents are practically no different from the usual tourist. This double-layered with an internal, more rarely external, frame. The gain in weight is achieved due to the drastic relief of their main components:

  • First of all, to produce an awning and a bottom are applied high-tech thin fabric (usually with silicone impregnation).
  • The fabric of the inner tent is often replaced by a lightweight mosquito net .
  • Used delicate frames, often very intricate forms .
  • All auxiliary elements, such as zippers, guylines, pegs, maximum ease .

All this allows to reduce the weight of the final product in 1,5 – 2 times.

The following are two typical examples of classic UltraLight tents:

Vaude Hogan UL 2P MSR Huba Huba NX
The urgency – 2014
capacity 2 people 2 people
weight (min / max) 1,7 / 1,8 kg 1,6 / 1,7 kg
frame aluminum
Yunan 9.8 mm
DAC NFL the Featherlite 9mm
fabric awning 40D polyamide ripstop
bothside siliconized 3.000 mm
20D nylon ripstop
PU & silicone 1.200mm
fabric bottom 40D polyamid ripstop
laminated 10.000 mm
30D ripstop nylon
PU & DWR 3.000mm
number of entrances / lobbies 1 / 1 2 / 2
Packed 56 x 15 cm 46 x 15 cm

(Please note indicators of water resistance of both tents. The Vaude is 3000mm, 1200mm MSR. Despite the modesty of these figures, both do not leak in the rain and have earned an excellent reputation among tourists worldwide.)

In size, these tents are most often 1, 2 or 3 persons. Also, quite often the term local 1,5 – a kind of intermediate model that comfortably accommodates one person, but at the same time if necessary you can squeeze two people and a medium-sized physique.

For ultimate relief designs UltraLight tents, of course, but a small price to pay:

  • First of all, these tents were originally designed for relatively soft (flat, warm) environments. In spite of this, experienced travelers still sometimes used in severe climatic conditions. But you need to realize that gear is not used as intended and to evaluate the risk of possible consequences. For example, the use of such tents in the mountains, in case a storm can cause serious damage to the carcass and subsequent emergency spending the night without shelter . The possibility of using in cold weather as somewhat limited, because the mosquito mesh inner tent combined with highly raised above the ground by the edge of the awning leads to a good breathable tents.
  • Require more attentive and careful attitude. A tent is much easier to damage by its own negligence .
  • They are much more expensive than usual. This is due to the need for a more high-tech materials, which with such a small weight to ensure sufficient strength. In addition, the process of tailoring requires a very careful approach, since any inaccuracy immediately result in a strong weakening of the structure (actually marriage). So budget manufacturers rarely undertake the manufacture of such equipment.

Despite the fact that in comparison with traditional classic UltraLight often have slightly smaller internal dimensions (e.g., tapering or decreasing height in the toe area), they have a very high level of comfort. Other types of ultralight shelters is much more austere.

Other types of super light shelters

If necessary, abrogate the comfort can further reduce the weight of your backpack.

One option is the use of one-layer tent. Most often, this is the simplest gable house, made entirely of thin waterproof fabric. To facilitate it, usually not even supplied with the frame uprights. Instead, they use trekking poles or tent just behind the skate stretched between two trees . The full weight of this shelter with all the necessary pegs and braces usually varies in the range of 1.0– 1.2 kg. Capacity – one or two people (despite sex in a width of 120 cm, because of the large slope of the roof two people are placed with some discomfort). The main drawback, as with all single-layer construction, it is the condensation that inevitably forms on the inner walls of the tent in the rain, or as soon as the night temperature drops below 15 degrees. So the most appropriate use of these tents are short the outputs with one or two nights (weekend trips). For longer hikes have to face the fact that things quickly begin to mold and require regular dry.

Another type of ultralight shelters, this is a "Bivy" (Bivi). The name comes from English "Bivouac sack" – bivouac bag. Initially - the waterproof cover for a sleeping bag used by climbers at extreme nights under the open sky, in snow caves, etcD. At the moment the concept of a Bivy combines three similar types of shelters:

  1. Just a waterproof cover for a sleeping bag. Lightweight, weighing about 500 gr. Often from membrane fabrics like Gore-Tex®, e-Vent® andD.
  2. A similar case, but with one or two arcs in area of the head. This is somewhat more convenient in the rain: bit Bang on the face and not trying to get inside through a hole, in which you breathe. In addition, using mosquito nets to solve the problem with mosquitoes. Weight, typically, 0.7 to 1.0 kg.
  3. Recently Bivy often referred to as single double layer tent with small height. Their weight, in the region of 1.0 – 1.7 kg.

Thanks to its low weight and ability to be on any patch of land Bivy might be a good option for the lone traveller . But it must be remembered that about some comfort here speech does not go. In this shelter it will be impossible to sit in full growth, sometimes difficult to change or even just to sit inside in the rain .

Further weight loss leads to total failure from the tent itself. Legkondi often use just a small tent . When weight 600-700 gr. it allows a group of 2-3 people to sleep in case of rain. From the point of view of feelings, it's almost a night under the open sky. When you're not separated from nature, night rustles, mosquitoes, a light breeze and the first rays of the morning sun. But such is the lot of units.

In recent years, UltraLight rather actively began to appear in key domestic outdoor stores. Moreover, it can be things as from well-known foreign brands and some leading Russian manufacturers. Best of all, of course, the classic UltraLight tents, as things that are the most popular. But other types of shelters can sometimes also be found on the shelves.

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