I spent 3 weeks on the ground...
Posted by: johnysmoke on Feb-13-13 12:07 AM (EST)
Due to a brand new Big Agnes sleeping pad. It failed on day 4 of a 26 day trip, delaminated and couldn't be field repaired. I wouldn't buy anything Big Agnes ever again, but that's just me. It was also the third pad I had from them that failed, I should have learned the first time, but they were so compact and comfortable for the time. I've since switched over to a exped.
I spent three months in a MSR Hubba Hubba tent in Chile, and it performed perfectly despite not being the best tent for the wet\windy conditions down there. If camping on a sandy beach, I'd wake up to a tent that was more sandbox with all the sand blowing through. It did blow flat during a few gusty nights, but always sprang back up.
For nasty weather nothing beats a full on 4 season tent, no breeze cranking through the tent all night, no endless flapping all night. I've spent a lot of time in the MH Trango tents, pretty awesome. As are the Hillbergs, but so expensive. I cheaped out and found a Marmot Widi 2 that seems pretty good, kind of a tube tent 4 season tent, but can open up a big side panel to get lots of ventilation and access for nicer weather.
NEMO designs out of NH seems to making some pretty burly little tents that would stand up to a bit of weather, and have more panels in addition to the mesh that's typical of other manufacturers.
For kayak camping I usually add 3 or 4 feet of p-cord to tie down points to stack rocks, and lots of p-cord on the guy out points to tie to either a rock pile or whatever anchor is available. A well set up tent doesn't make as much noise or flap around in the wind all night. I carry extra cord to make sure I get a good set up. I've seen people who carry small eye-screws with them to tie into logs or wood platforms to get a good anchor point.
For hiking I'm looking into a UL tarp setup, and a lot of manufacturers are making mesh inserts for the more popular tarps to keep the creepy crawlies out. I'm thinking if I can find something that will handle a bit of wind, I'll use this as my nice season kayak and hiking setup, and keep the four season tent for the kayak trips to places with a little more weather.