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Thoughts on pop up tents?


I think that pop up tents are next to useless, they see the wind and then collapse into a heap, scared.

Tarps and bothy bags are a better solution. I’ve used my bothy bag lots over the years, I have a 2 person bag. In use, I sit at one end and use my rucksack to fill out the other end, you can eliminate a lot of the flapping that way.

There’s quite a lot of info on tarps on this reflector and elsewhere, noted users include G4ISJ and wG0AT. I’ve also been known to use a tarp on occasions.

When it comes to a longer stay on a summit, a small trekking tent with alloy poles <3kg can be quite useful. My Vango Banshee is very stable.



Ha,ha, I own the sewing machine in our house!!:grinning: Matthew!!


I’m starting to think something like this might make more sense.

Our winters, especially Scotland can be quite fierce, cold, windy and snowy too!


I, like Andy, do not see the point in activating if the WX is rubbish! The hills will be there for another day!

However, in my bag I always carry this

I peg one corner down first, then get a walking pole and prop up the opposite end, then simply peg the perpendicular corners down

John MW0XOT gave me the idea

73 all

Matt G8XYJ


I guess I was thinking about operating in these sort of conditions - Scottish winter mountains on my annual northern climbing/walking/skiing (now sota) expedition to the far north.


I guess I may be just too hopeful about much of a shelter other than making something out of snow blocks like on the link http://reflector.sota.org.uk/t/g-tw-003-activation-14mhz-cw-on-skis/17062http://reflector.sota.org.uk/t/g-tw-003-activation-14mhz-cw-on-skis/17062!


This would mean I could avoid having to do this:-

Which was my last winter activation:-


Exactly what I had in mind: cheap and versatile.

Sorry, didn’t mean it to sound quite so patronising, but it’s a fact that I asked my mum how to bring the thread up when I first got mine.


Matt Your reply wasn’t at all patronising - the fact that I own the sewing machine in our house is a bit of a family joke - although in fairness my wife does probably use it more than me now.
However you may have given me an idea of making something small, simply and robust enough to sit in.


During my SOTA trip to FL/VO, I used a cheap Decathlon popup shelter several times:

Link to the popup shelter:


Frank PC7C and me used several times on wet days this one:

Simple, light weight and cheap (we are Dutch) :grinning:


Thank you gentlemen for your thoughts. I’ll let you know but a couple of interesting options. Especially surprised about the durability of tarps as summit shelters but they look rather interesting as origami tents. I’ll have to play with mine on the lawn !!


Has anyone ordered from summitgear (a/k/a JDS Components) recently?

I placed an order online last week but have received no acknowledgement of my order or shipping info. I emailed the company via its Contact web page but have received no reply. I called today and heard a very generic sounding recorded message for voice mail. The charge against my credit card went through, but nothing more - seems odd.

73 Paula k9ir


I’ve been hunting round recently trying to find an inner tent for my pyramid shelter. It seems there are a lot of cheap options popping up on AliExpress:


The Trailstar here is a copy of the Trailstar from Mountain Laurel Designs:

What with intellectual property theft becoming more of an issue, I don’t really want to recommend buying the copy, but the design itself is very strong and a good choice for UK conditions. There are, however, plenty of original designs on offer (or so old that no one can lay claim to them), that also have good reviews:


Whilst construction quality overall seems OK (there are a few rough edges), some of the tie outs may benefit from modification. Just one bar tack is not really sufficient for UK 3 season use. If you own a sewing machine and the XYL is happy for you to use it, then replacing some of the tie out points is relatively simple. The advice here is of course ‘buyer beware’! But I ordered an inner tent for my Locus Gear Khufu shelter, as inner tents are not so critical as flysheets.

If you don’t want to risk AliExpress, there is always backpacking light in the UK which has a good range of well constructed tarps and shelters:


A bit more expensive, but reviews seem to be good in general, so there is peace of mind at least. The specs for the waterproof materials on AliExpress are complete BS, but it is a fact that quite a low hydrostatic head is often sufficient for camping. When it comes to hydrostatic head, it is often a case of ‘what the customer doesn’t know won’t hurt them’.

          73 de OE6FEG / M0FEU