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Owner Review of Eureka Gossamer solo tent

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  • Sandra Greive
    Hi, This is my second owner review and I ve chosen to review my trusty Eureka Gossamer backpaking tent. Owner Review: Eureka Gossamer Solo Tent. Personal
    Message 1 of 3 , Jul 12, 2005
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      This is my second owner review and I've chosen to
      review my trusty Eureka Gossamer backpaking tent.

      Owner Review: Eureka Gossamer Solo Tent.

      Personal biographical information

      Name: Sandra Greive
      Age: 33
      Gender: Female
      Height: 160 cm (5 feet 3
      Weight : 66 kg (145 lb)
      Email address: srna89@...
      City: Eugene, Oregon, USA.
      Date: 7 July, 2005

      Backpacking background:
      I discovered backpacking (around Sydney and Newcastle,
      Australia) when I was 14 and went regularly until I
      was 21 when I developed arthritis. Since arriving in
      Oregon 4 years ago, I have started backpacking again
      with my usual trip length being 2-4 days (8-16 km or
      5-10 miles /day), once or twice a month between May
      and October (late spring-early fall here in the US).
      To reduce the stress on my creaky joints, I am trying
      to find a balance between carrying lightweight gear
      while maintaining comfort. I am in the process of
      replacing my heavy or old gear with lighter equipment,
      where possible, given my requirement that comfort be
      maintained. So far my pack weight is down to ~9 kg (20
      lb) or so, including water.

      Product Information

      Manufacturer: Eureka
      Year of manufacture: 2003
      URL: http://www.eurekacamping.com/
      Listed weight: 2 lb 14 oz
      Weight as delivered: Unknown
      Weight as used: 2 lb 2 oz
      Dimensions: 2 ft 8 in wide, 8 ft long, 2
      ft 5 in
      MSRP: unknown
      Cost: $89.95 USD

      Modifications: sealed the seam over the main pole and
      zipper in the fly.
      replaced the steel stakes with
      aluminum ones
      replaced guy lines with Kelty Triptease cord.

      Product Description

      This is a two-hoop (aluminum), non-free standing bivy
      tent, with the main pole at the entrance or head end
      of the tent and smaller pole over the foot. The tent
      body is no-see-um mesh while the fly and floor of the
      tent are constructed of coated nylon. The fly can be
      arranged in a number of configurations: staked out at
      both ends with the door open or closed; or rolled back
      and secured to the main pole from each end of the

      Field Information

      This tent can be a little fiddly to pitch, but goes up
      easily with practice. The body sometimes sags and it
      is difficult to get the mesh to stay taut, as it
      stretches during the time it is pitched. I overcame
      this problem by guying out the main pole from the
      webbing loop provided by the manufacturer, and the
      foot pole by running some Kelty Triptease cord from
      the webbing loop at the foot end of the fly out to a
      stake, back up underneath the fly around the highest
      point of the foot pole and then back out to the stake.
      This seemed to keep the whole tent and fly, taut and
      stable, even in high wind. The tent is quite small,
      as I am short and can barely sit up (hunched over) in
      it. When I lie down in my bag, there is only a little
      room to move between the walls of the tent. I don’t
      use the entire length of the tent, and can store my
      pack and some gear at the bottom if I need to.

      I used this tent during the spring and summer of 2004
      and 2005 on numerous trips along alpine (Timberline
      trail, Mt Hood; Three Sisters wilderness) and river
      trails (Rogue River and Bull of the Woods wilderness).
      The weather was generally mild during the day, but was
      sometimes very cold and windy at night. I’m not sure
      what the temperature was, but one night all the snow
      banks and little creeks froze and a heavy frost was
      evident the next morning. On one occasion it was not
      only very cold and windy, but rained heavily and
      consistently during the night. The other trips were
      not nearly so cold and some nights were quite warm as
      my -10°C (14 °F) sleeping bag made me too hot. I have
      pitched this tent on a variety of ground conditions,
      such as rocky river banks, sandy soil, wet heavy soil,
      and hard-packed dirt.

      This tent is a great little tent for my purposes, it
      is light, I have ample room to sleep in and store most
      of my gear, and it didn’t leak at all when it rained
      really hard one night, even though it was very windy.
      The integrated fly is a really useful design feature
      when pitching the tent in the rain. I always extend
      the fly out over the tent when I pack it away and when
      pitching it in the rain, the fly covers the tent at
      all times. On warm nights, I was able to sleep with
      the top part of the fly folded back, and even on
      cooler nights I slept with the door open. The mesh
      walls of the tent make it a cold tent to sleep in when
      it is cold and windy, even with the sides staked close
      to the tent and the ground. However, a good warm
      sleeping bag (I have a –10°C or 14°F down bag) and
      clothing (I use thermals and an insulated vest on cold
      nights) can compensate for this. On the night where
      everything froze, I was aware that it was cold, but
      didn’t feel cold and slept pretty well most of the

      One disadvantage with this tent is condensation
      accumulation on the inside of the fly on still and
      humid nights where it is too cool or rainy to have the
      door open. This hasn’t been a problem for me as my
      sleeping bag was never wet as a result, and the
      condensation can be shaken off really easily in the
      morning. So far there is no damage or failure in
      either seams or fabric on the tent, although I do use
      a REI roadster footprint to protect the floor. The
      disadvantage of a non-free standing tent is that when
      camping in places where stakes are difficult to use
      (e.g a rocky beach) the tent is hard to pitch. I
      overcame this problem by placing a big rock in each
      corner of the tent body and tying the guy lines to
      large rocks to make the tent relatively stable.

      Value for money
      Rainproof if the main pole seam is sealed

      Small (this is not a problem for me, but probably
      would be for taller or larger people)
      Difficult to get a taut pitch
      Cold when it is windy

      This tent works well for me at the moment. It was
      excellent value, is light, rainproof and I have
      figured out how to use it well. At some point in the
      future, I would like to replace it with a lightweight
      freestanding tent, but since these are relatively
      expensive, that will have to wait until the Gossamer
      wears out.

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    • Brian
      Nice to see a couple of OR s on this cool little tent. Brian
      Message 2 of 3 , Jul 12, 2005
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        Nice to see a couple of OR's on this cool little tent.


        On 7/12/05, Sandra Greive <srna89@...> wrote:
        > Hi,
        > This is my second owner review and I've chosen to
        > review my trusty Eureka Gossamer backpaking tent.
      • chcoa
        PLEASE READ THIS EMAIL IN FULL. IT IS MOST IMPORTANT! Thanks for your Owner s Review. It has been added to the Owner Review Queue and will be picked up by an
        Message 3 of 3 , Jul 12, 2005
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          Thanks for your Owner's Review. It has been added to the Owner
          Review Queue and will be picked up by an Edit Moderator soon. Do not
          worry if nothing happens with it for several days. All our Editors
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          Edit Administration Officer
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