Walrus Micro Swift
Design: 3 Season
Ease of Setup: Reasonable
Weight: +/- 3 lbs.
Price Paid: $120
I just purchased one prior to a Thanksgiving trip into Linville Gorge (NC). Actually bought for a Chilean friend who works for me and was going on the trip. He didn't make it, so I decided to try it out.
First of all I'm 6 foot and about 200 lbs. It is small and virtually impossible to gracefully crawl into. Our trip was snow the first day, overcast the second, and sleet and freezing rain the third. The worst complaint I have is condensation. The inner roof material stayed wet and therefore my bag got wet (not enough to be a bother, but annoying). I've used a cheap Cabella's North Star solo tent, poorly made, but better in rain and condensation issues.
I think if they could make the tent with another inch even in width and height they would have a better product. I'm going to work on the condensation issue, maybe by working on improving the air flow under the fly. Vestibule, forget it (it's more of a "space" between the inner and outer doors). The door is very awkward to operate unless you have long arms and wiggle around alot.
Getting into this baby in a driving rain would be impossible without getting completely soaked, but in the one rainy night I spent in it no leaks, just condensation.
Almost something good, with a couple of design changes they might have something here. But if you're short and skinny should work okay.
Design: a little more than a bivy sack
Ease of Setup: Really EASY!
Weight: 2.85 lbs.
Price Paid: $120
I like lightweight *everything*. I especially hate 9-10 pounds of tent on my back, when the same space can be used for beer. I've gone tentless on 90% of my hikes, (gimme a tarp and my Therma-Rest, and I'm good for the night in my 800-down Marmot Pinnacle). But last year, some expected rain in the area led me to buy this tent.
Set-up is a breeze...I'm a big guy, and it's a little tight in there, but let me tell you....when the expected rain arrived on schedule, this little gem was as water-tight as a frog's a$$!! The design of the fly "door" is a bit convoluted....I'm glad I had it all buttoned-up by the time the typhoon hit.
I like it--I'll probably use it more than any other shelter I own. Beats the hell out of my old tarp! Oh, I would recommend the footprint. I'm not sure how waterproof this tent would be from "the ground up" without it--the footprint probably saved me some "bailing time"!
Design: three season non-free standing
Ease of Setup: Pretty easy set up takes about 3-4 minutes to set up properly
Weight: around 3 lb.
Price Paid: $130 at REI
This tent is for people who don't like bivy sacks, but don't need a lot of room to move around in. It's small, compact, a great three- to four-season tent (depending on where you go camping). It weighs almost nothing and sets up fairly quickly. If you are doing a long summer trip or a short weekend trip this is a great tent to have. Takes up no room in your pack. Unfortunately there's no room in your tent for your pack. The vestibule is just big enough for your boots and maybe a few small items. I highly recommend this tent to all serious hikers/campers.
Design: 3 season bivy/tent
Ease of Setup: Set up is not difficult
Weight: 3 pounds 8 ounces or so
Price Paid: $119
Don't buy this tent without first trying to get into the tent with the fly door in place. The fly door has a peculiar design with two zippers on left/right sides of a rectangle. It's very difficult to get into the tent then close the fly door. The Walrus assembly/setup instructions do not mention the fly door! I found myself inside the tent, elbows outside in the dirt, trying to manipulate velcro tabs and zippers. This is not something you want to do in the rain, which is precisely when you need the fly door.
Where to Buy
The Walrus Micro Swift is not available from the stores we monitor.
You may be able to find it new or used at one of these sites:
Or you may want to check for a dealer list or direct sales on the Walrus website.
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