User Review: The North Face VE 25
Design: 4 season free standing
Ease of Setup: Moderate but easier with practice. Can be done alone
Weight: 10 lbs
Price Paid: $400 somethin
This tent is like the shark, crocodile and turtle all rolled into one. So perfectly evolved the TNF has been making it for 20 years or something.
I've had this for 14 years so I can't remember how much I paid. Been there done that in this brick @#%! house. 60-80 mph winds, heavy snow loads, pouring rain followed by heavy snow. It handles it, quietly so you can sleep. You would never know the wind was doing that until you get out to clear snow!. A little on the heavy side but three days into a full on tentbound white out and you will appreciate the extra room, warmth, and the bomber security. Room for two nutballs and all their gear. Three's a squeeze with gear but it keeps it warmer. For long wait outs two is all I would want. Once had 6 folks in mine for an ad hoch poker tournament! House advantage didn't help. I lost.
I thought about getting something lighter. I have a Firstlight for ledges but after looking at all the other 4 seasons I keep coming back to the 25. The ones that were lighter were smaller and/or single walls and I could tell they won't stand up to the stomping that this tent laughs at. TNF service is unmatched, I needed new sponges that go on the side to keep the fly from flapping so I called TNF and they sent me new ones free. I mean free, didn't even hit me up for shipping!
After many years of service mine is getting tired. I just reproofed the fly with solarproof from nikwax, another awesome product, to buy me some time. No fear though, TNF will switch poles for free under warranty, a new fly is 100 bucks and a new body is 180. Can't go wrong with this one!
I know guys going on 15 or more years in these. You go up high on Everest, Denali, Rainier, White Mountains and you will see 25's. You can't beat that. Folks that complain about it haven't been there, don't understand what this tent is about and haven't taken advantage of TNF warranty on this bad boy. You have to know what its designed for and this is designed to keep you alive up high and come home with you for the next adventure.
This ones a no brainer.