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Application: REI Half Dome 2 tent - Bob Dorenfeld

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  • geartest7000
    Hi Kurt, Please accept my application to test the REI Half Dome 2 Tent.  I have read and understand the BackpackGearTest Bylaws v0609, including Chapter 5. I
    Message 1 of 1 , Jul 18, 2013
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      Hi Kurt,

      Please accept my application to test the REI Half Dome 2 Tent.  I have read and understand the BackpackGearTest Bylaws v0609, including Chapter 5. I agree to comply with all requirements. My signed tester agreement is on file.  

      Tester Bio:
      Name:  Bob Dorenfeld
      Age: 55
      Gender: Male
      Height: 5' 6" (1.7 Meters)
      Weight: 142 Pounds (64 Kilograms)
      Email address: geartest(at)sageandspruce(at)net
      City, State, Country: Salida, Colorado, U.S.
      Date: July 18, 2013

      Backpacking Background (general): 
      I'm an active hiker, snowshoer, skier (Nordic & alpine), backpacker. I live at 7000 ft (2134 m) in the Southern Colorado Rockies where I hike between 7000 ft (2134 m) and 14000 ft (4200 m). I'll do from 4 to 12 miles (6 to 20 km) in a day, ranging as much as 5000 ft (1500 m) of elevation change. I carry up to 20 lb (9 kg) on day hikes, about 45 lb (20 kg) on backpacks. Overnights are usually from one to three nights. Often I hike off-trail on challenging talus, snowfields, or willow brakes, with occasional bouldering.

      Backpacking Agenda & Field Testing applicable to this test:
      I intend to test this REI tent under both summer and fall weather conditions in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado and also some in the Colorado Plateau high desert Four Corners region. Some of the wilderness areas I frequent are La Garita, South San Juan, Powderhorn; other areas and trails to be determined. My backpack trips usually incorporate daily hikes of 5-8 miles between campsites, although that can vary depending on trail conditions and last-minute itinerary changes. Since this tent weighs a bit more than my current tent, I want to test whether the features of the new HalfDome 2 justify its extra weight. In addition to backpacking I would like to use the tent on a couple of car-camping trips to test its comfortableness without weight or packed-size restrictions. I expect to experience a range of temperatures (across trips) from the 20s F (<0 C) at night to the 80s F (>26 C) during the day. My camping itinerary will take me from moderate to high altitudes, 8000 - 11,500 ft (2400 - 3500 m) in the mountains, and from 3000 - 6000 (900 - 1800 m) in the high deserts of the Four Corners region of the U.S.

      I want to test how the tent holds warmth at night, and whether it can stay reasonably cool during the day. The tent will be pitched in both shade and sun to test for comfort. While I can't predict high winds, I will attempt to see how well the Half Dome 2 does in breezy conditions if possible, including during setup and while standing (with gear inside, and empty). If possible I will also pitch the tent while raining to test how it sets up in wet conditions. I may also be able to see how the HalfDome 2 performs in winter conditions (low temperatures, snow) if weather permits during the testing period.

      Most of my trips will be 3-4 days long (2-3 nights), although some trips will be a couple of days longer. Trail campsite conditions will vary from virgin meadow and forest ground (smooth or lumpy) to established trail-side camp spots, plus the occasional campground.

      As part of the test I will monitor how well the HalfDome 2 unpacks for setup, but more importantly how easy (or not) it is to fold and roll back up into its carry bag. Do the poles snap together and apart easily? Do they fit into the tent grommets well, and do the tent hooks easily fasten onto the poles? Is minimal effort needed to attach the rainfly? Do the zippers slide easily, especially with one hand? How does the packed tent fit into my backpack?

      Using the tent with a hiking partner will be part of my test for a tent of this size, to see whether two people can comfortably use the doors and negotiate the interior, and store at least some of our gear inside. I'm also looking forward to having my medium-sized dog as a tent companion, both with and without my human partner. Even without another person, I will see how my gear fits inside a tent of this size instead of using the outside area under the rainfly.

      I've had an REI QuarterDome tent for the past eight years and I have found it to be a mostly well-designed and useful tent for its class (including some modifications I made to make it easier to use once set up). It'll be interesting to see what improvements and differences I find in the new HalfDome 2.


      Previously Written Reports:
      None at this time.

      Owner Reviews (Completed):
      REI PINNACLE 35 TECHNICAL DAY PACK (April 15, 2013)
      The Lighter Company SOLO CANDLE LIGHTER (May 30, 2013)
      Both completed reviews can be found at: http://www.backpackgeartest.org/tester_reviews/geartest7000

      Owner Reviews (In progress):
      LATITUDE 40 Trail Map Series

      Completed Tests:
      None at this time.

      Currently Testing Other Items:
      None at this time.

      Currently Serving as Monitor For:
      None at this time.


      Thank you for your consideration,
      Bob Dorenfeld
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