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Archive | Sierra Designs

To use the High Route as a 2-person shelter, leave the inner tent at home. Instead, use a bivy sack (as Amanda has), a ground sheet, and/or headnet.

Two snug: Can the High Route Tent 1FL be used as a 2-person shelter?

For a one-person backpacking shelter, the Sierra Designs High Route Tent 1FL is palatial. Its footprint is 36 square feet and its minimum peak height is 48 inches. In comparison, the two-person Big Agnes Copper Spur 2UL has a 38-square-foot footprint, with a maximum interior height of 42 inches. And the two-person MSR Carbon Reflex […]

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Final side pocket. Clean and functional, but less durable than pack fabric, and no lock-out.

Room for improvement: Self-critique of the Flex Capacitor 40-60 Pack

Recently I highlighted seven standout specs and features of the Sierra Designs Flex Capacitor 40-60 Pack. Today, I’ll do nearly the opposite: identify its imperfections. Since I co-developed the Flex Capacitor with Sierra Designs, naturally I want to see strong sales of it. But I also want prospective buyers to understand its optimal applications and […]

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The easy-gliding #10 zipper offers annoyance-free access to the pack's main compartment.

Sales Pitch: Seven reasons the Flex Capacitor 40-60 Pack stands out

Earlier today I filmed the product video for the new Sierra Designs Flex Capacitor 40-60 Pack, which with the High Route Tent 1FL currently constitutes SD’s “Skurka Series.” To develop my script, I had to prioritize and succinctly describe the pack’s must-mention specs and features. Later I’ll write a self-critique, as I did for the High Route, but for […]

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Tighten the webbing grommet to its max. To remove leftover slack from the door panel, extend the trekking pole.

Wind advisory: Tips for using the High Route Tent in high winds

How can you maximize the performance of your Sierra Designs High Route Tent 1FL in high winds? 1. Find a good campsite. I will intentionally select an unprotected campsite in only a few situations. If: The conditions are warm and calm; A breeze will keep grounded a hungry hatch of bugs; and/or, I’m willing to compromise sleep quality for campsite aesthetics. Otherwise, whenever […]

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Tie-off to a horn-like growth on a cottonwood tree

How-to video || My guyline system for tents, tarps, and hammocks

The guyline and tensioning systems normally found on backpacking shelters (including tents, tarps, and hammocks) share two flaws: Insufficient cordage is provided. This limits stake-out locations, which is especially problematic in rocky or hard-packed ground. Natural anchors like trees, downed logs, exposed roots, and large rocks cannot be used, nor can deadman anchors in the winter. These anchors […]

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For extra wind-resistance, use the tie-out above each side door. Add reinforcement by tensioning it off a stick or ski.

Performance assessment: High Route Tent 1FL meets Glacier National Park

Last month Dave Chenault and I used the Sierra Designs High Route Tent 1FL* while attempting the Glacier Divide Route, a rugged 125-mile traverse of Glacier National Park that is largely off-trail and above treeline. We experienced some of the exact conditions for which the HR1 was designed: on the first night we had marble-sized […]

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