User Review: Stephenson's Warmlite 3R (and 2R)
Design: 4 season
Ease of Setup: very easy, even in high winds
Weight: 3 pounds
Price Paid: $525
I have owned a 3R for more than 20 years and finally replaced it with a 2R. Both tents have the side windows and use them often in the summer. I used the 3R for more climbing and backpacking trips then I can recall and never had a problem with it. It stood up to winds on winter climbs of MT. Hood that exceeded 50mph. When others where out trying to secure their flapping tents we were snug inside the Warmlite with almost no movement of the walls.
It is important to try to line the tent up to the wind direction rather then across the wind if you expect storm conditions. It has always been a quiet and secure shelter. We have slept four and all our climbing gear with plenty of space. Yes, it could have some condensation is the right conditions but no more then the many other tents I used in the mountains.
I have had the 2R for two years and love it. It is smaller and lighter then the 3R which is great as I now use it as a solo/2 person shelter for backpacking and cross country ski trips. It weighs as little or less than most bivy set-ups and actually has a floor, footprint and side windows.
I looked at everything else available before making this purchase and found that most of those so called ultra-light tents came with no floor or poles (use your trekking poles is what they suggested). None of them would stand up to a summer storm very well and certainly not be considered for snow use. I have had no problems putting the poles in place and have never broken or even dented a pole.
Though it looks flimsy compared to other tents it is quite rugged. It sleeps very warm and packs into a small sack. I make a footprint out of the lightest painters plastic I can find and repalce it when it gets too many holes. I tape it to the tent peg pull outs so it stays in place and is easy to replace whe needed.
You do have to seam seal it and this took about an hour and a half. It is a good way to learn how to set the tent up the first time and I added some of the sealant, in strips, to the floor to reduce the slickness. If you don't do this your bag will move in the direction the tent is tilted as you sleep.
Overall I have never had a better tent for all purposes then the Warmlite. I will be using it for a kayak trip later this summer.