REVISED OR- BIG SKY INTERNATIONAL EVOLUTION 1P 1D rev. G SHELTER- RALPH DITTON
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Here is a revised effort for your consideration so kindly disregard my
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BIG SKY INTERNATIONAL EVOLUTION 1P 1D rev.G SHELTER
OWNER REVIEW BY RALPH DITTON
DATE: 27th February, 2009
Summit Evolution 1P 1D 1V Shelter
Big Sky Evolution 1P 1D Shelter
Name: Ralph Ditton
Height: 1. 76 m (5 ft 9 in)
Weight: 71 kg (156.5 lb)
Email: rdassetts at optusnet dot com dot au
City: Perth. Western Australia. Australia
My playgrounds are the Bibbulmun Track and the Coastal Plain Trail. I
aim to become a sectional end-to-end walker of the Bibbulmun Track. I am
nearly there as it is 964 km (603 mi) long. My pack weight including
food and water tends to hover around 18 kg (40 lb) but I am trying to
get lighter. My trips range from overnighters to five days duration.
Manufacturer: Big Sky International - Jackson, Wyoming - USA
Manufacturers website: http://www.bigskyinternational.com/
Year of Manufacture: 2007
Made in: Product of USA sewn in China.
Model: Evolution 1P 1D rev. G Shelter
Colour: Granite Grey
Sleeping capacity: 1
Number of poles: 2
Pole choice: Aluminium or Carbon
Aluminium poles: 7075 - T9 Easton main tube 8.74 mm (0.344 in)
7075 - T9 Easton insert tube 7.07 mm
Tensile strength of aluminium pole: 67 Kg/mm² (96,000 PSI)
Rainfly fabric: 30 D Silnylon
Inner fabric: No-see-um mesh
Floor fabric: 30 D Silnylon
ShelterSavers ground sheet with webbing tie straps
Factory seamed sealed: yes
Zips: 2 YKK on the inner and 1 YKK on the fly.
MSRP: Shelter with aluminium poles only: US$249.95
Shelter with a set of carbon and aluminium poles: US$349.95
Carbon Poles only: US$100
ShelterSavers ground sheet without grommets: US$14.95
Shelter without accessories + carbon poles : 916 g (2 lb 0.3 oz)
Shelter without accessories + aluminium poles : 1. 05 kg (2 lb 4.9 oz)
Pole diameter: Aluminium 8.74 mm (0.344 in)
Carbon 7.42 mm (0.292 in)
Floor length and tapered width dimensions: 213 cm x 91 cm x 61 cm (84 in
x 36 in x 24 in)
ShelterSaver length and tapered width dimensions: 200 cm x 79 cm x 53
cm (79 in x 31 in x 21 in)
Peak height: 99 cm (39 in)
Floor area: 1.62 sq m (17.5 sq ft)
Vestibule area: 0.84 sq m (9 sq ft)
Packed size: 13 cm x 48 cm (5 in x 19 in)
Accessories: 2 Easton aluminium stakes and 6 Ti Stakes kit: 77g (2.7 oz)
4 reflective spectra guy lines with 4 Easton
aluminium stakes kit: 61 g (2.1 oz)
Weight of Rainfly: 342 g (12.06 oz)
Weight of Inner: 376 g (13.26 oz)
Weight of Aluminium poles: 338 g (11.92 oz)
Weight of Carbon poles: 216 g (7.61 oz)
Weight of repair sleeve: 8 g (0.28 oz)
Weight of stuff sack: 35 g (1.23 oz)
Weight of ShelterSaver ground sheet with webbing tie straps: 74 g (2.6 oz)
Weight of shelter without accessories + aluminium poles:1 kg 56 g (2.33 lb)
Weight of shelter without accessories + carbon poles : 934 g (2.05 lb)
Weight of shelter in my backpack with aluminium poles and the two above
stake and guy line kits: 1 kg 198 g (2.64 lb)
Length of tent poles fully extended: Aluminium 3m 615 mm (11 ft 10½ in)
Carbon 3m 630mm (11 ft 11 in)
Length of each pole section: Aluminium 445 mm (1 ft 5½ in)
Carbon 457 mm (1 ft 6 in)
Repair sleeve : 126 mm (5 in) long
Floor area inside inner: 213 cm (long) x 91 cm (head end) x 61 cm (foot
end) (84 in x 36 in x 24 in)
Inner door: 109 cm long x 80 cm high (43 in x 31.5 in)
Peak height inside inner: 1 m (39 in)
Pocket in inner at the head end: 55 cm long (base) x 19.5 cm high x 38.5
cm opening x 21 cm (21.6 in x 7.6 in x 15 in x 8.3 in)
Pocket in inner at foot end: 51 cm long (base) x 27 cm high x 35.5 cm
opening x 32 cm (20 in x 10.6 in x 14 in x 12.5 in)
Diameter of repair sleeve: 9 mm (3/8 in) inside
11 mm (7/16 in) outside
Diameter of tent poles: Aluminium 8 mm (6/16 in)
Carbon 7 mm (5/16 in)
Roughly measured for each vestibule area: 0.79 sq m (8½ sq ft)
Number of pole sections per tent pole: 9
Internal loops in Inner: 7
The Big Sky Evolution 1P 1D rev. G shelter is a one person,
free-standing, one door, one vestibule shelter with an inner and a
rainfly. In fact, there is a de facto vestibule also on the non-door side.
Due to the cut of the rainfly (hereinafter known as "fly") there is an
excess of material that requires the fly to be stretched out and pegged.
This created the de facto vestibule which is the same in area as the
legitimate vestibule on the door side.
To gain access and put items in there, I have to lift the stake loop
over the tent peg and lift the fly up. When finished, I just slip the
stake loop back over the tent peg. There is no zippered access to it.
(Note. Big Sky does offer a 2 Door version with door and vestibule
zippers on both sides. The 2 Door version has two vents and four
pockets. The 2 Door version is US$15 more and adds 104 g (3.6 oz) to the
weight. The manufacturer advised me that the reason for the design
decision is that in most cases those purchasing the 1 Door version want
light weight so it has fewer features that add weight, for example: it
has two pockets, while those purchasing the 2 Door version want more
features, so it has 4 pockets.)
A) The fly.
The colour of the fly is Granite Grey and the material is silnylon, but
to me it looks like a very light olive green and I find that it is a
very pleasing colour.
There are four plastic/nylon type material dog clips that clip onto the
respective loops on the inner. There is one on each corner. Two at one
end of the fly are attached to red strips of material that are sewn to
the edge of the fly. The other two clips at the other end are attached
to black strips. This is the colour coding to match the fly to the inner
as there are red and black strips on the corners there also.
There are four cord tie down points around the perimeter of the fly.
They are all halfway on each side.
The door entry runs vertically from the base to the vent at the top.
Underneath the flap covering the zipper there are two small patches of
hook and loop, one at the bottom and the other about halfway. So when I
go to open the fly I have to break apart these two patches so that the
fly can be opened for me to get in and out of. The zipper pulls are
yellow cord with a reflective strip woven into them. There is one for
the outside and one for the inside of the tent.
At the top of the fly there is a vent that can be propped open by a
little rod covered in silnylon that has a foot of loop that marries up
with a patch of hook on the other edge of the vent. The vent can only be
opened so far because there is a strip of black ribbon that is attached
to both sides of the vent.
Along the four outside edges where the poles go behind, there are
reflective guy line loop about halfway along. On the door side
immediately above these reflective guy line loops there is a toggle
which marries up with a loop on the underside to keep the door open when
The fly is further secured to the poles by way of a wrap around hook and
loop system. They are around halfway along the stand up sewn seams.
The final piece de resistance is the "Egyptian Eye" window sewn and seam
sealed into the fly. It is 24 cm long and at the highest point 10 cm
(9.5 in x 4 in). At certain spots along the seam I can see where the
seam sealing brushwork was a bit dodgy as it has intruded onto the
window from between a half and full brush width of 8 mm (0.3 in). The
bottom edge is the one mostly affected.
B) The inner.
The tub floor is made out of silnylon and is navy blue in colour. The
height of three of the sides are 17 cm (6.7 in) and the head end is 24
cm (9.4 in).
From the four corners of the tub floor are two strips of material that
are joined to a piece of webbing that has a grommet and elastic loop.
The grommet hole is for the end of the tent pole to hook into and the
webbing is an anchor point for a tent peg. When stretched out fully the
straps form a triangle with the side of the tub floor forming the
vertical base. At the foot end, two of the straps are red for the colour
coding match up with the fly.
Stitched to the tub is a canopy made of no-see-um mesh. Attached to the
outside of the canopy along the seams that run diagonally from corner to
corner are the pole clips that hook onto the tent poles. There are
fourteen of them. At the very apex, instead of a pole clip there is a
loop and buckle. This is where the poles cross over. Just like on the
fly and in the same position, there are four reflector guy line loops
that serve a purpose when the inner is being used only.
The door is quite generous in size. It is 80 cm (31.5 in) high and 109
cm (43 in) long at the deepest part.
The end that opens is gently curved. The two door zippers have two
reflective zipper pull loops attached to them. One for the inside and
the other for the outside operations.
Inside the tent there are two pockets whose dimensions are mentioned
above under "Lengths". They are both on the door side of the canopy.
There are seven accessory hanging loops along the seams. Four of them
are clustered in such a way that they are anchor points for a gear loft.
There is one loop that is at the very apex of the canopy and the other
two are located 40 cm (15.7 in) above the tub line at the head end for
hanging a light or attaching a clothes line.
To hold the rolled open door together, there is a toggle and loop
arrangement to facilitate this.
I contacted the manufacturer to find out the denier of the silnylon, the
weight of the fabric per square metre and tear strength. I was advised
that the nylon is 30 denier with silicone coating on both sides. The
manufacturer does not give out the exact weight of the fabric per square
metre expressed as g/m² (grams per square metre) nor tear strength.
However, the manufacturer advises that the material is light weight and
strong or stronger than similar fabric used in other shelters on the
In addition I asked if the floor has a very high puncture and abrasion
resistance. The response was that they use the strongest nylon yarn in
their fabric for strength and abrasion resistance.
I have an earlier rev. B version of this tent and there are a number of
alterations and new features in the "Improved" rev. G version.
The differences are set out below:
Weight 392 g (13¾ oz)
342 g (12¼ oz)
Vent No strap across the base.
Strap across the base.
Window Larger. 26.5 cm x 12 cm (10.4 in
x 4.7 in) Smaller 24 cm x 10 cm (9.5 in x 4 in)
Weather flap over Opens to the left.
Opens to the right.
Stake out points No loops at halfway point at base
on Loops at halfway point at base on all four sides.
front and rear.
Tent pole set up Grommets at each corner for the
Clips at each corner that clip onto the inner.
pole tips to lock into.
Weight 464 g (1 lb 3/8 oz)
376 g (13¼ oz)
Tent pole set up Two pole sleeves.
Fourteen pole clips.
Pockets Two. One the same size as in the
Two. One the same as in the old version. The other pocket
new version. The other
is a very large is very much smaller. Both on the same side.
triangular pocket. On
Total weight fly and inner 856 g (1 lb 14.2 oz)
718 g (1 lb 9.3 oz)
Note: rev G is
138 g (4.9 oz) less weight than rev. B
My first trip with this tent was for two days and one night and took
place on the Bibbulmun Track around the Murray River campsite.
Temperatures during the hike ranged from 28 C to 33 C (82 F to 91 F).
Humidity I estimated was around 70% judging by the amount sweat on my
clothes. Elevations ranged from 143 m to 280 m (467 ft to 919 ft). The
Ultra Violet Index peaked at 9 which is very high.
During the evening when I went to bed around 8.30 pm I estimated the
temperature to be about 18 C (64 F). I had the tent door on the fly
zippered closed and the vent open. I did not leave the tent during the
night, but when I got up at 6 am I noticed that there was a light mist
I checked under the fly and sure enough, there was a very thin film of
condensation that left a track in it when I drew my finger through it.
When I was packing up the tent I gave the fly a good few flicks but did
not notice any moisture flying away from the fabric.
I was impressed with the two vestibules. I utilized both of them and the
lifting up of the tent peg loop over the tent peg to gain access to the
gear did not irritate my emotional well being. I had to go back and
forth getting stuff as the afternoon progressed. Yes, I could have left
the vestibule collapsed until I went to bed, but I liked the look of it
fully pegged out.
There were a lot of flies and very small biting insects but they did not
gain access to the interior of the inner canopy although they buzzed and
crawled around on the outside of the no-see-um mesh. I had a very sound
My next trip was over the Easter break at Greens Island in the south
west of Western Australia.
This was a four day, three night camp out. I found a nice spot to pitch
the tent just under a low hanging pine tree branch.
For the first two nights it rained but not heavily. Just a steady patter
on the tent fabric which was very soothing to listen to.
Temperatures overnight averaged around 10 - 12 C (50 - 54 F). I had the
vent open on all nights and no rain entered through it. Due to the high
humidity and relatively still nights I was very surprised to find that
there was no condensation inside on the fly, nor did the no-see-um mesh
The window was not much help as it was fogged over from the rain. On the
morning when it did not rain overnight the window looked opaque and I
couldn't see too much through it.
During the day little ants tried to get inside the tent. All that they
succeeded in doing was to craw all over the fly. I sprayed the fly
fabric with my personal insect repellent which has the active ingredient
of picaridin. It is tropical strength at 14.25%. I sprayed the tent on
all three days. No damage was suffered by the fabric.
When I got home, I washed the fly in warm water only to clean off the
spray and dirt that had adhered to it after being wet. The rain beaded
well on the fabric.
The next trip was to the Granite Monolith area south of Perth. This was
an overnighter. The overnight temperature from 7 pm to 6 pm when it was
dark ranged from a high of 18 C (64 F) to a low of 12 C (53 F). Relative
Humidity was stuck around 88% and it was very still with a clear sky.
What this meant was that there was condensation on the tent even before
I went to bed. Everyone's tent was wet before they got into theirs as we
all commented about it.
Needless to say, condensation also formed on the inside and where the
inner touched against the fly it got wet. Some moisture did fall onto my
sleeping bag but did not affect the down due to the waterproofing
material of the sleeping bag.
I did not have the choice of a large area to pitch the tent as the
ground was sloping and had a lot of spiky short bushes. When I put my
hand down on the ground it got pricked by very tiny little spikes like
the very fine hairs from a blister bush. I swept the ground as best as I
I did not carry a ground sheet so the floor of the tent went directly
onto the ground. My sleeping bag and mat fitted very well inside the
tent without either end touching the ends. This prevented the inner
being pushed up against the fly and getting wet there. I placed my
backpack in the de facto vestibule and the pack touched against the fly
and it got wet where it touched. Moisture did not penetrate inside the
pack. In the morning when I was packing up I noticed that a little bush
had managed to puncture the floor, leaving a tiny pinprick of a hole. As
the fly was very wet I flicked as much water off it as I could when
packing up. In the process I got a good drenching also.
Summit Evolution 1P 1D 1V Shelter
Big Sky Evolution 1P shelter
Upon returning home I washed the tent in plain luke warm water to clean
it up as dirt had stuck to the floor.
After this trip I purchased the new ground sheet designed for this model
tent. It is called "ShelterSavers ground sheet" The model that I
purchased does not have any grommets to hook onto the pole tips. Mine
has coloured tapes which indicate which end they tie to. They match up
with the colour coding straps on the inner. The ground sheet is tapered
to match the base of the tent; wide at the head and narrow at the foot end.
ShelterSaver ground sheet
ShelterSaver ground sheet
The photo below shows the tie for the ground sheet. The red tie matches
the red strap so I have the ground sheet at the right end.
ties on ground sheet
ties on ground sheet
On my next outing to the Coastal Plain where elevations range from 20 m
to 80 m (65 ft to 197 ft) and the soil is very sandy. The trip lasted
three nights and it rained on the last night whilst I was inside the
tent. Overnight temperatures over the three nights ranged from a low of
0.3 C to a high of 10.8 C (32.5 F to 51.5 F). (Source. Bureau of
When I erected the tent, I noticed that the window had a patchy milky
look. I tried rubbing it with a cloth and tissues, all to no avail. It
would appear that the plastic of the window has been "bruised" in places
thereby causing the milky appearance. I have notified the manufacturer.
The polyurethane material (PU) is very soft and pliable in my fingers,
whereas on the old version the polyvinylchloride (PVC) material is
stiffer and is still very clear.
window with milky look
window with milky look
The orange colour seen through the window is my sleeping bag.
I heard back from the manufacturer very quickly who asked that I send
the fly back to them so that they could examine the window and replace
it with a clear window.
After a few weeks the fly was returned with a new window. There is no
cloudiness at all in the new window. I was extremely pleased with the
turn around time and quick response to my problem. The only expense that
I suffered was the postage cost to America which came in around AU$10.
As this tent is a single person tent, there is not a lot of room left
inside after putting my sleeping mat and sleeping bag inside. I always
place a relatively full clothing stuff sack behind my pillow so that it
fills the gap between the end of my mat and the wall of the tent so that
the pillow does not end up on the floor of the tent during the night.
looking inside the tent
looking inside the tent
During the course over the three nights I only experienced a very thin
film of condensation on the underside of the fly for two of those
nights. The first night and the last night. The Dew Point got close to
the temperature on a few occasions. The first night the Dew Point was
0.2 C (32 F) and the temperature was 1.5 C (35 F) at 1 am. The closest
the Dew Point got on the second night was 2.7 C (37 F) when the
temperature was 5.1 C (41 F) at 10 pm. The final night was when it
rained. The Dew Point was 9 C (48 F) and the temperature was 10.7 C (51
F) at 6 am whilst the humidity was 94%.
The fly was very wet on the outside surface so I had to flick off as
much water as I could before packing the tent away. I packed the inner
away separately as I did not want to get it wet also.
rain on fly
rain on fly
Subsequent outings have been to my favourite retreat at Prickly Bark on
the Coastal Plain Trail where I love to go and chill out. There is a
three sided shelter at the campsite but I prefer the tent as it offers
protection from the flies, wasp and ticks that inhabit the area.
Yes, I have had condensation issues on cool, dew laden still nights, but
I have experienced this problem with other tents also, so it is not a
fault of the tent. This comes with camping in a tent because hot air
from a person's breath and body heat from the head and face will react
with the cool air inside a tent and start to warm up the interior
causing the condensation.
I have had this tent for over a year now and have used it extensively
during the year at various locations in Western Australia.
The performance has been excellent and I love the size of the vestibule
space on the door side and the de facto vestibule on the other side
which is created when the fly is pegged out. It is a good place to store
my backpack and boots so that they are out of the way as I don't use
them whilst in camp. I always have camp boots/shoes for around camp and
they live in the vestibule on the door side together with my cooking
gear, stove, fuel, pot and eating utensils.
I alternate between the carbon and aluminium poles just to give them
both equal usage.
Recently, I used the older rev. B version to see if I missed it and yes
I did as I love them both. What I would love to see is the larger pocket
on the older version incorporated in the newer version. I doubt that
there would be any weight gain. The larger pocket is great for placing a
damp shirt in the pocket to assist with drying during the night.
What type of pole assembly do I prefer? Pole sleeves or clips? On
balance, probably the clips. It is definitely much easier to erect and
pull down using the clips. With the pole sleeve, the pole tip is
scraping along the top of the pole sleeve when it reaches the top of the
tent and then starts to bend over to go down the other side. I have to
be careful that I do not punch or wear a hole through the sleeve and I
have to assist it in the latter stages of feeding it through the sleeve
as it can bunch up.
The follow up service by the manufacturer was excellent and this speaks
volumes about them caring for their product.
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