A question from reader Caspar R:
I just bought your High Route Tent. Do you recommend using a footprint with it? If so, which one?
I generally do not recommend using a footprint with the Sierra Designs High Route Tent 1Fl. A custom-sized footprint for it is intentionally not available, and there are no plans to offer one.
The inner tent of the High Route features a waterproof floor made of medium-duty 30d nylon coated with silicone on one side and polyurethane (PU) on the other. It is rated to 3,000 mm hydrostatic head, which is nearly as waterproof as Cuben Fiber or premium sil/sil nylons used by cottage manufacturers like MLD. It should withstand extensive use before its loss of waterproofness becomes noticeable or problematic.
If you manage to wear out the floor, you have two options. (1) You can send it back to Sierra Designs for repair or replacement. (2) Or, you can supplement its waterproofness with an ultralight groundsheet made of mylar or polycryo (i.e. window shrink wrap).
When using the High Route Tent without its inner — which is my go-to configuration in Colorado for nearly the entire year — I carry a mylar blanket to protect my gear from groundwater, keep my gear out of the dirt, and help prevent air pad punctures. This summer I’ve been using the post-race blanket that was distributed to runners at the Boston Marathon in April. Mylar blankets are not created equal. If you go this route, purchase a blanket that is marketed as being more durable (e.g. thicker, double-sided) than a standard blanket, which will tear easily.
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