User Review: The North Face VE 25
Design: 4 season, Expedition, Geodesic dome
Sleeps: Designed for 3, 4 with summer gear OK, personal record 5 very close friends (top to tail)ecord
Ease of Setup: Takes practise - getting the poles onto the brass grommets difficult, and very difficult in high winds or with frozen or gloved hands
Weight: Very good for the size
Price Paid: If you need to ask, you can't afford it
Have bought two so far, just about to buy number three. On the plus side will stand up to a lot of abuse, however would suggest the optional footprint is essential to save the groundsheet.
Main design problems is on both tents, both front and rear zips have come off the end and been repaired free of charge by TNF on two occasions; finally we sewed in a stopper to stop this happening again. Tents do not arrive with the seams sealed, so a messy job before you use them for the first time. The final design fault is the difficulty of getting the ends of the poles into the brass grommets. We use it as an initiation ceremony to do it single handed, in the dark, in a high wind with frozen hands -- impossible.
My other critism is the flysheet only comes in brilliant yellow, great in the snow on the top of Everest, however difficult to hide in the green of an alpine national park. My one comment for the Europeans is this is a North American tent, designed for North American weather, in other words, snow. Wild Country/Terra Nova range has a very similar tent, with a green fly, designed for European weather, in other words, rain. If the majority of camping you do is in the wilds of Peak District, rather than the wilds of Alaska then go for the Wild Country version. Having said which, you can't go wrong with the VE25, right time, right place, they are lifesavers.