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FR - Big Sky International Summit Convertible 2P - Bob Sanders

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  • Bob Sanders
    Field Report Big Sky International Summit Convertible 2P Tester: Bob Sanders Up loaded to test folder: http://tinyurl.com/3zwtjt Ready for editing... Thanks,
    Message 1 of 2 , Jul 1, 2008
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      Field Report

      Big Sky International Summit Convertible 2P

      Tester: Bob Sanders

      Up loaded to test folder: http://tinyurl.com/3zwtjt

      Ready for editing...

      Thanks,
      Bob


      FIELD REPORT
      July 1, 2008

      The weather has most certainly warmed up. So my desire to do more cold
      weather backpacking has been dashed. I have managed to sneak out for a
      quick overnighter in May and a two day trip in June.

      Overnighter: On May 17, 2008 the weather was pretty typical for a
      Colorado spring day. The daytime high was 73° F (23° C) and the
      evening low was 42° F (6° C). I packed everything up Saturday morning
      and was on the trail by noon after a short drive. I picked a new trail
      to try in the Cache la Poudre area and hiked along the Little South
      Fork of the Cache la Poudre River. Elevations were between 6200 and
      7500 ft (1890 to 2286 m) Very pleasant trip. The tent didn't receive
      much of a workout but at least I did.

      After an 8 mi (14 km) hike I camped for the night and hiked out the
      next morning. The weather forecast was for a 30% chance of rain that
      never occurred. Though I did experience winds of 25 mph (40 km). The
      humidity was pretty low at about 20% so condensation was kept at bay.
      Since the weather was so mild I packed the winter shell and the summer
      interior. There were some spotty areas of snow but I found a dry spot
      to set up camp. During the evening I slept with all the vents open and
      both vestibule doors open. In the morning there was no condensation
      inside or on the exterior of the tent.

      Since on this trip I was going solo I had the tent all to myself. This
      meant I had to carry everything but the accomodations were luxurious.
      By the time I set up camp, explored the surrounding area a bit and
      decided to cook dinner the bugs were beginning to swarm a bit.
      Probably because I was close to the river. So I decided to see if I
      could cook dinner and eventually breakfast while remaining (most of
      the time) inside the tent protecting me from the bugs. First let me
      explain that I was not cooking inside the tent (never recommended).
      Nor was I even cooking inside the vestibule. The doors of the tent
      open quite widely and can be secured with little elastic loops and
      small plastic rods. I placed my alcohol stove at least 2 ft (0.7 m)
      away from any part of the tent. It was actually resting outside of
      where the exterior door would be if it were closed (but it was secured
      open). I sat in the vestibule area and lit the stove and got
      everything ready. I always have my water bottle ready in case anything
      needs to be doused. I then slipped back inside the tent and closed the
      screen door. I relaxed inside until the water boiled. All I had to do
      was unzip the door, lean out far enough to reach the pot, take it off
      the stove and pour the water over my dehydrated food concoction. My
      main purpose for trying this was to see if it were possible during
      rainy, drizzly weather or even in light snow. It obviously wouldn't
      work in a down pour, with the door completely open, but in a light
      rain or drizzle it would be quite doable.

      Two day trip: On June 6th the weather was even warmer. The daytime
      high was 80° F (27° C) and the evenings low was 48° F (9° C). And once
      again there was a small chance of rain that never materialized. So
      basically it was hot and dry. It was my sons birthday so the two of us
      split the weight of the tent. I carried the fly and the stakes and he
      carried the summer interior and the poles. It is not quite half but
      hey, he is younger and in better shape than me. We decided to leave
      the vestibule pole at home because the weather was so mild and the
      extra support of the third pole was unnecessary. Most of my trips are
      solo so it was a nice change of pace to have someone sharing some of
      the weight. Plus I wanted to see how roomy the tent really is with 2
      people. We are both 6 ft 1 in (1.85 m) and the tent is long enough to
      accommodate both of our long bags. I am a bit of a sprawler when I
      sleep so I choose a summer weight down quilt. My son was using a down
      sleeping bag and tended to stay on his side of the tent. Because of my
      sprawling, elbow room was at a premium. Thank goodness we know and
      like each other. I didn't brush up against the ends but I did brush up
      against the mesh sides on numerous occasions. Not a problem because
      this is a double walled tent. Even if there was condesation (and there
      wasn't any) I would not have come in contact with the exterior wall.
      Both of us could sit up inside, and we played some cards for about an
      hour while the bugs were out starting at around dusk. Although, if I
      had to spend many hours or days inside of the tent because of bad
      weather I would begin to feel a bit claustrophobic. The real saving
      grace are the two doors. There was no climbing over each other at
      night to answer the call of nature and the two vestibules really
      helped with the storage and organization of gear. There is plenty of
      room for our gear and a pair of shoes in each vestibule.

      Summary: This test got started a little late in the year. So with that
      said I have not being able to test this tent under snowy winter
      conditions, which it was designed for. To be honest, I haven't even
      exerienced any rain. So there are some testing criteria that so far
      are missing. Short of testing the tent out in the back yard with the
      sprinkler on full blast (which I might do) I have no way of knowing
      how waterproof it is. Now that the weather is hot, being able to swap
      out the full fabric winter interior for the all mesh summer interior
      has been a blessing. It saves weight and the ventilation is greatly
      enhanced. So far everything works as expected. All the zippers are
      smooth but the vestibule zippers are just a little tight at the top of
      the door. Set up has gotten so much easier after setting the tent up
      for the first time. New instructions for set up were sent to us by the
      owner Bob Molen. The instructions are now clearer but if he would add
      some pictures that would really help.

      Things I Like: The pitch is pretty taunt so there is no annoying
      flapping of the tent walls while you sleep. The mesh pockets are good
      sized and can hold a lot of gear. Enough room for 2 tall adults. Extra
      room is always appreciated but would also add to the weight, which we
      don't want. The marigold color of the shell adds a nice warm glow to
      the interiorwhich makes for a pleasent morning when the sun comes up.

      Things I don't like: Nothing so far. Except for the fact that I need
      to carry a winter shell and heavy duty poles during the summer.

      Quandary: At first I was pretty intrigued with the idea of a
      convertible tent. Having the ability to swap out components to suit
      the weather. Well for me, right now the jury is still out. For the
      Summit 2P, the manufacturer offers a winter set up (winter shell with
      snow flaps, full fabric winter interior and a 3 piece heavy duty
      aluminum pole set to handle potential snow loads) and a summer set up
      (summer shell, mesh summer interior and a 2 piece light weight
      aluminum pole set. They even offer carbon fiber poles to lighten the
      set up further. All of the components are interchangeable with the
      exception of the 3rd vestibule pole which only works with the winter
      shell (again for extra support). Here is my quandary, if it was cold
      and I was expecting snow I would choose the winter set up and carry
      the extra weight. If it was warmer and I wasn't expecting snow I would
      carry the summer set up which is lighter. So for me this is 2 tents.
      The convertible set up is just not a benefit to me.

      Check back in 2 months for further testing.....

      _______________________________________________________________

      I would like to thank Big Sky International and BackpackGearTest.org
      for the opportunity to test this item.




      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Thomas Vickers
      These are Thomas Vickers official monitor edits of Bob Sanders Big Sky International Summit Convertibel 2P Field Report EDIT = must do Edit = think about it,
      Message 2 of 2 , Jul 5, 2008
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        These are Thomas Vickers official monitor edits of Bob Sanders Big Sky
        International Summit Convertibel 2P Field Report


        EDIT = must do
        Edit = think about it, but do something
        Comment = think about


        The weather forecast was for a 30% chance of rain that never occurred.
        Though I did experience winds of 25 mph (40 km).

        Comment: My grammar checker says the second sentence is a fragment. Not a
        big deal, but it might read smoother as "that never occurred, but I did
        experience."

        **************************

        Since on this trip I was going solo I had the tent all to myself. This meant
        I had to carry everything but the accomodations were luxurious.

        EDIT: accomodations = accommodations
        ******************************

        It was my sons birthday so the two of us split the weight of the tent.

        EDIT: sons = son's

        ****************************

        Not a problem because this is a double walled tent. Even if there was
        condesation (and there wasn't any) I would not have come in contact with the
        exterior wall.

        EDIT: condesation = condensation
        ********************************
        The real saving grace are the two doors.

        Edit: this could probably be "saving grace is" or "saving graces are"

        ************************

        To be honest, I haven't even exerienced any rain.

        EDIT: exerciended = experienced

        *******************

        The marigold color of the shell adds a nice warm glow to the interiorwhich
        makes for a pleasent morning when the sun comes up.

        EDIT: space needed between interior and which
        EDIT: pleasent = pleasant

        **********************************

        Having the ability to swap out components to suit the weather.

        Edit: This sentence just seems out of place. Is there a way to rewrite it or
        combine it with the sentence before?

        ***********************************


        Update and upload

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