Specs

Total Weight 1940 g
Tent footprint 4.1 m²
Inner tent footprint 2.4 m²

Reviews

Made with typical German quality, a sturdy two-person…

Rating: rated 4.5 of 5 stars
Source: bought it used
Price Paid: £150

Summary

Made with typical German quality, a sturdy two-person tent with reasonable space for living in comfort. Stood up to poor weather and great for the British climate as it pitches flysheet first.

Pros

  • Easy to erect
  • Sturdy
  • Use of space
  • Weight
  • Small footprint
  • Free standing

Cons

  • Font entrance may not suit everyone due to restricted view
  • Pegs are a bit short
  • No through ventilation
  • Porch size
  • Company's environmental credentials

The Vaude Taurus II UL is great for two people and luxurious for one. It is smaller and lighter than the Marmot Limelight I have used for several years. Though I loved that tent, it was getting too heavy and bulky for my creaking back.

We chose the Vaude Taurus because one person does not need to climb over the other to get out of the porch. Also, it has a small footprint—ideal for the tiny spots we find when wild camping. Finally, unlike the Hogan UL, it pitches flysheet first which is great for the inclement British weather you always get when you decide to camp. Also, I like the fact it is free standing as many of my favourite trails have very poor soil and a tunnel tent is virtually useless. 

The Vaude Taurus UL that I have is green, which I like because it blends in well with its surroundings (useful for stealth camping in wild country). It has a very small footprint which makes it a very attractive choice for routes where level ground is scarce. I found this easier to pitch than the Hogan UL and soon had the tent pitched. The shape of the pegs means they are really strong and do not bend so easily as other pegs I have used, but I found them to be a little too short for the wet soil we pitched the tent on.

The flysheet has ladder lock peg points which allows the height to be adjusted for airflow or to protect against sideways rain (We get a lot of that here.) Whilst the front entrance solved the problem of clambering over each other to get out. It does restrict the view. This is not a tent for lounging and admiring the view in.

Only having a single entrance does mean there is an issue with the through flow of air. It is possible to have the porch entrance wide open, but this lets more cold air in. Do it all the way up and the tent is guaranteed to have accumulated moisture on the inside of the fly sheet by the morning. This adds a couple of hundred grams or so to the packed weight until a time can be found to dry it out (I spread it out on a morning tea break if the sun is out.)

Finally, the porch is small and is only really any good for stowing boots and essentials. All our gear is placed in dry-bags and stored next to the tent or under a rock. The porch door can be opened on opposite sides which is useful for swings in wind direction. 

Inside, there is plenty of headroom at the head end and I am just about able to sit up, but it is less spacious towards the foot end. That said, the short integral poles do ensure a little more space for the foot-box of a larger sleeping bag without coming into contact with the fly and allowing moisture in (however these integral poles do make it more difficult to pack away and stuff in a rucksack). This saves weight and bulk, but it does mean the tent does not feel as spacious. Tasks like changing etc were best done consecutively rather than simultaneously. That said, the sacrifice was worth it for the savings in weight and bulk.

The door is two skinned with a handy mosquito net door for increased ventilation and protection from those troublesome wee beasties. There are a couple of storage pockets and some loops for attaching some line from which to hang things.

The tent is very secure when done up and it withstood a battering from a typical late evening storm on one trip. There are plenty of guy lines, though I wish I had added an extra one to the porch where the central pole terminates.  

Overall, this was a good replacement for our Marmot Limelight. Though condensation is an issue, being able to get out without clambering over each other is useful as is the reduced weight and bulk, though I do miss being able to lounge with a view.

Experience

Used for short trips to UK mountains wild camping in winter and spring conditions (no snow).

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