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Whip

First time bike tenter review.

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Whip

Let me start out by saying I haven't camped since Carter was pres.

 

I always thought sleeping in a tent was some kind of cost saving life choice where you give up all form of comfort and rest for a few dollars a night, but the idea/feeling of freedom that sleeping in an environment you bring with you intrigued me. I have been exploring the idea of camping (in my own mind) for some time but never had the right time or event to try it...until this years Un Rally in Lake George. For nearly a year I had been planning this cross continent adventure with ***Chris***/Blaschke. 

 

My first problem was the gear. I had no idea what I needed or what was functional. I started reading everything I could find on the subject. It seemed like reading hikers reviews of products was a good place to start because they obviously had limited capacity like I would on a bike. I chose a simple two man easy to assemble tent, a light weight sleeping bag and an air mattress. I decided against any cooking junk because I planned on eating out and didn't want to deal with it.

 

I put the tent up in my living room without any issues and put the air mattress in it and the sleeping bag on top....what could go wrong?

 

 

 

...next up my over night test at 11,000 feet in the Rockies. 

 

 

 

 

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elkroeger

"What could go wrong?" he says....   HA!

 

I used to teach at a mountaineering course.  We used to tell the students "don't just sit on the couch and learn your knots with the book open.  When you can tie these knots in a cold dark shower, naked, sitting on a block of ice, with mittens on, THEN you are ready."

 

So how much sleep did you get?

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hopz

I did some bike camping, and posted to this site... wonder why my post and photos do not appear? 

 

Whip?

Edd?

 

What's going on?

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Whip

No idea.

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Whip

Try it again Bob

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Whip

I did a test camping not far from my house  up 225 past Fooses Lake toward the Continental Divide. I was the only one up there so I had my choice of camp sites. 

I chose the one with two entrances making it easy to get in and out.

 

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Whip

I was a bit apprehensive and even had second thoughts about the whole idea while I was packing up for my first night outside since the Carter Administration. 

 

I really thought the first time a twig snapped I would pee on myself inside the tent. To my surprise or lack of thought the sound of the river twenty feet away was so loud the water rushing over the rocks was all I could hear. 

 

It got got down to about 40 that night and I was a bit chilly.  My air mattress on top of a yoga mat sucked. I needed something else. My tent went up fast and packed small. My packing job on the bike was not seriously tested but seemed okay.

 

The answer to my sleeping pad was solved on a day trip to Telluride. I came across a hiking/sporting goods store and went inside. I talk over my sleeping pad issues with a very helpful sales person who suggested a Thermarest “self inflating” memory foam mattress. It was the answer though I am not too sure about the self inflating part.

 

 

 

 

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dirtrider
10 minutes ago, Whip said:

I did a test camping not far from my house  up 225 past Fooses Lake toward the Continental Divide. I was the only one up there so I had my choice of camp sites. 

I chose the one with two entrances making it easy to get in and out.

 

 

 

 

Morning Whip

 

I see that you have a folding chair with arm rests. Those are comfortable but take up a lot of room on the  bike.  If you don't need the arm rests  then try to find a camp chair without arm rests (difficult to find anymore but garage sales usually yield some older ones). Not a big deal but can save some room for other camping gear  on the bike.

 

I see in one of your above pictures that your tent ground cloth sticks out from under the tent quite a ways.  Not a big deal in dry country but in heavy rains the water will run down the sides of the tent & get between the ground cloth & the tent floor. Once it gets in there it can find small inclusion in the tent floor & get inside the tent. I usually fold the ground cloth UNDER (not over) to be at or just slightly smaller than the tent floor size.

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dirtrider
40 minutes ago, Whip said:

I was a bit apprehensive and even had second thoughts about the whole idea while I was packing up for my first night outside since the Carter Administration. 

 

I really thought the first time a twig snapped I would pee on myself inside the tent. To my great pleasure the sound of the river twenty feet away was so loud that the water rushing over the rocks was all I could hear. 

 

It got got down to about 40 that night and I was a bit chilly.  My air mattress on top of a yoga mat sucked. I needed something else. My tent went up fast and packed small. My packing job on the bike was not seriously tested but seemed okay.

 

The answer to my sleeping pad was solved on a day trip to Telluride. I came across a hiking/sporting goods store and went inside. I talk over my sleeping pad issues with a very helpful sales person who suggested a Thermarest “self inflating” memory foam mattress. It was the answer though I am not too sure about the self inflating part.

 

 

 

 

 

Morning Whip

 

The Thermarest is sort of self inflating as it will inflate to about 1/2 full. You can easily finish with your mouth (do this before you drink 1/2 bottle of Scotch though)  or use your electric tire air pump.

 

To get the air back out when you break camp-- open the valve, then start rolling the Thermarest from the non-valve end, as you roll it tight kneel on the rolled up part to squeeze the air out, when you get to the end close the valve again so it doesn't start to re-inflate.  

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chrisolson
1 hour ago, hopz said:

I did some bike camping, and posted to this site... wonder why my post and photos do not appear? 

 

Whip?

Edd?

 

What's going on?

All posts should have migrated from the old site.  If you remember a key word or two from the post you should be able to find it with the search function.  If not, then its a mystery, :(

 

 

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hopz

Thanks Chris... but... I posted the item a few minutes after Whip put this post.... not at some previous time. Not that it matters but I would have been the first respondent.

 

This is the second time in a few weeks that a post of mine has not appeared... I am I being black-listed? If so why ?... what is going on?

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hopz

This is the hopz campsite...

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chrisolson
37 minutes ago, hopz said:

Thanks Chris... but... I posted the item a few minutes after Whip put this post.... not at some previous time. Not that it matters but I would have been the first respondent.

 

This is the second time in a few weeks that a post of mine has not appeared... I am I being black-listed? If so why ?... what is going on?

 

Sorry, no idea of what the problem is / was .... but apparently perseverance on your part got it done . :grin:

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LittleBriar

I found I kept rolling off the air mattress so I got a backpacking style cot. I went with the Thermo-a-Rest one and am quite happy with it. Packs small and light and gets my body off the ground. Can be tricky to assemble the first couple times but fine now.

Here's a review of several brands.

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hopz

Whip- a hint from an experienced camper... when it gets cold see if you can find on of those smallish animals that are mostly black but have white stripes... 

 

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Bud

I'm old and like comfort. Have a 10 X 10 tent that I can stand up in.

 

So I have a Helinox Cot 1, really comfey air mattress, and a down quilt style bag. I hate being cold.

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Whip

After the purchase of the Therm-a-Rest.....I was ready for whatever.

 

I thought.....

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powwow

Whip, I know you already purchased the Therm-a-rest, but....  I do a lot of ski mountaineering in the winter and have found far and away the best solution are the air pads from Exped.  They come with a bag that is used for inflation, but more importantly, they are down filled and actually have some R value.  I've camped in some VERY cold temps and stayed very comfortable with my Exped.  Bonus...they pack down to the size of a Nalgene bottle.

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TEWKS

I'm evolving, I fall into the second from the left camp. :grin:

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                                       ^     Tent ---- Teardrop ---- Pop-Up ----  Camp-trailer ---- Class A RV  ^

 

image.jpeg

 

 

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elkroeger

I've had several thermarests over the years.  They're about as good as it gets, but there are a number of similar items out there these days.  The self inflating feature is perhaps a little overstated advertising hype.  As stated earlier, it will mostly inflate, and then you can top it up to your needs with your breath.  It will inflate a little better with more time though.  Open up the air valve, and let it sit for a 1/2 hour or more.  You may find that you don't need to blow it up any further.  I don't think I'd try using a pump though.

 

Also during storage at home, open up the valve, lay it flat under your bed.  And your sleeping bag - lay that flat under your bed, so it's not compressed all the time.  Actually, that goes for the rest of your camping gear too - remove all that stuff from the tight stuff sacks, let it dry / air out for a couple days, and then store it loosely in boxes or those big rubbermaid type tubs.

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Whip

So I am ready.

 

Tent

Thermarest

Light weight sleeping bag

Flashlight for inside the tent

No plans for camp cooking or even coffee.

 

...and all my normal tools and traveling stuff.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Whip

We got rain tested the first night but after that we had nearly perfect temps for riding and camping.

 

Saved maybe $1000 in travel costs.

 

We did some 600 mile days without a problem. 

 

We used a phone APP to find campsites with showers. 

 

We had campfires fires almost every night.

 

We managed to eat out every night except one where we bought bread and sandwich stuff.

 

I enjoyed building my living quarters every night.

 

In the morning tearing it down and drying it all out while showering seemed to work okay, but was not as much fun as setting up.

 

Packing it all on the bike was easy.

 

Keeping our phones charged on the bikes was important.

 

Keeping the mosquitoes out of the tent was a fun game, but doable.

 

i am thinking of doing a camping only event in the Rockies?

 

Who’s in?

 

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LBump

Depending on schedule... 

Interested. :thumbsup:

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TEWKS

I'm pretty sure I couldn't make the "Colorado Camping Extravaganza" :grin: but with the power of the Internet & this new site, a camp out around the USA could be a fun event. Five or ten different locations around the US with pictures and possibly video would be pretty cool. :cool:

 

Date dependent but I'm game! :clap:

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roadscholar

Here's my tent, fairly minimalist but only packs down to 7x10. And in case someone wants to cool off, stay dry, make some coffee, heat up the vittles or keep their beer cold, we got ya covered : )

 

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**   Chris   **

Depending on timing, I am in. 

 

I still need to replace my tent.  It is great when it's dry, but it leaks.

I like the fact that it has lots of mesh panels.  I also like that you it has fabric panels that you can zip up to close the mesh.

One night we were camping next to some people and I did not have my rain fly on the tent.  I looked out of the mesh and saw my neighbor looking at me through the mesh.

I decided to cover that panel for some privacy before getting undressed.

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**   Chris   **

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