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The 'Perfect' Winter Hot Tent Set-Up
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Author:  Mike McIntosh [ January 31st, 2011, 12:52 pm ]
Post subject:  The 'Perfect' Winter Hot Tent Set-Up

Well, I think I've finally found it: the 'Perfect' Winter Hot Tent set-up.
The following pictures were taken this past weekend in Algonquin PP.

I've tried just about every style of winter camping over the years:
Cold camping in bivy sacs, quinzee camping, lean-to, tarp rigs, 4 season tents...
Hot tenting in Kifaru tents, Snowtrekker tents, big heavy prospector's tents, and now this:

I think I've found a set-up that takes all the qualities I'm looking for and combines them into 1 lightweight unit:
Here it is:
It's an 8x10 wall tent made by a Canadian company - Capital Canvas. This is their "blended" model: it's part canvas for breathability, and part nylon to keep it lightweight and compact.

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Interior view, with my clothesline modifications around the wood stove for drying mitts, hats, socks, after a day hauling sled.
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Also, the stove I use is made by Kifaru - it's a collapsible model that packs down to the size of a laptop computer.
It is quite simply, the most ingenious piece of winter equipment I have ever field tested.
I've read some reports that suggest that collapsible stoves are too 'fiddly' and parts will get lost in the snow, etc... etc...
I suspect those that mke these claims have never actually tried one of these. They are simple to assemble, lightweight and compact.

Image

An action shot, of the Kifaru stove doing what it does best:

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Even the stove pipe is an ingenious piece of engineering: It is made of a thin sheet of stainless steel, and rolls up into a 1" x 12" roll for easy transport.

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All rolled up:

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Everything packs into it's own carrying case:

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Can't get much easier than that...

My entire outfit, including tent, stove, pots, pans, sleeping bag, thermarest, clothes, spare mukluks, and all my food supplies can be transported in one small sleigh.

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Then the tent goes on top, tarp lashed over to keep the snow off, and I'm on my way.

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It's just that easy.

I've spent years perfecting my winter camping outfit, and I think I've finally found a set-up that meets my need.

Can't say enough good things about this new tent manufacturer: lighter than a snowtrekker, breathes better than a nylon tent like my Kifaru, tons of interior space (I need headroom in a hot tent) and less than half the price of a snowtrekker.

I would highly recommend this tent option to winter hot-tenters.

Author:  SWIFT [ January 31st, 2011, 3:05 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: The 'Perfect' Winter Hot Tent Set-Up

I am very interested in your set up, do tell more. How much did you pay for the tent? Was it custom made? And if so, how long did it take to get it made?

And the stove? It breaks down completely? What's the weight? And how much? Or did you make it yourself.

Like I said on your Facebook, I am envious, at first of the trip, now of your gear lol!

Author:  Mike McIntosh [ January 31st, 2011, 3:43 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: The 'Perfect' Winter Hot Tent Set-Up

The tent was a bit of a gamble, as I had never actually seen one or read any real reviews of one, but being the gambling man that I am...

http://www.capitalcanvas.ca/

They are located in BC, and were very nice to deal with.
I paid $568 including taxes and shipping - that's about 1/2 the price of a comparable Snowtrekker tent (which I was also considering)
These guys make their tents in canvas, nylon, or in my case, a blended canvas/nylon tent.
It's roof is mostly canvas to help with moisture/breathability issues, and the walls are mostly nylon to save weight and bulk.
They did some customization on my tent (free of charge) by moving the stove jack to the roof as opposed to the sidewall where it would normally be located.
I wanted the stove jack in the roof to accommodate my stove.


The stove is made by Kifaru, and as I mentioned above, I have yet to find a better tent stove. It is listed on their website for $333 +taxes and shipping (and brokerage fees because it's from the U.S.)

https://kifaru.net/stoves2009.html

I have their 'medium' size, which I think may be a little undersized for an 8x10 wall tent, so I'm considering upgrading to a larger model...

Author:  jbishop2112 [ January 31st, 2011, 4:27 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: The 'Perfect' Winter Hot Tent Set-Up

Looks great! Would you mind sharing the approximate packed volume of the tent and its weight? I will be shooting for something very similar in a 8x10 tent project which I have on paper right now.

Author:  jimdiane [ January 31st, 2011, 6:57 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: The 'Perfect' Winter Hot Tent Set-Up

Mike,I think you should maybe play a little hookie from school and come up to Deepfreeze this year. :wink:
jim

Author:  Mike McIntosh [ January 31st, 2011, 9:06 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: The 'Perfect' Winter Hot Tent Set-Up

jimdiane wrote:
Mike,I think you should maybe play a little hookie from school and come up to Deepfreeze this year. :wink:
jim


I'd be lying if I said it hadn't crossed my mind... :wink:

Author:  Mike McIntosh [ February 1st, 2011, 7:50 am ]
Post subject:  Re: The 'Perfect' Winter Hot Tent Set-Up

jbishop2112 wrote:
Looks great! Would you mind sharing the approximate packed volume of the tent and its weight? I will be shooting for something very similar in a 8x10 tent project which I have on paper right now.


The weight is about 15lbs.
Packed volume?
I can get it into a roll about 6"x30" give or take...

For comparison's sake, I guide for a company that uses Eureka Timberline 4 man tents, and I'd estimate my wall tent is about the same packed size, just slightly heavier.

Author:  jimdiane [ February 1st, 2011, 8:43 am ]
Post subject:  Re: The 'Perfect' Winter Hot Tent Set-Up

Mike, do you mind telling us where in Algonquin you go, or is it a secret :wink:
jim

Author:  Barbara [ February 1st, 2011, 8:55 am ]
Post subject:  Re: The 'Perfect' Winter Hot Tent Set-Up

I was wondering if Mike was the other snowshoe tripper that is mentioned in this trip log from this past weekend:
http://www.network54.com/Forum/352882/t ... Canoe+Lake

Author:  SWIFT [ February 1st, 2011, 9:35 am ]
Post subject:  Re: The 'Perfect' Winter Hot Tent Set-Up

Well I just emailed them as to the availability of this tent, hopefully I can get one in time for Deep Freeze.

Thanks for linking me up to them. I have been looking for an upgrade to my currently well used Military Bell Tent, but haven't been able to justify or afford the price of a tent with the likes of the Snowtrekker. I think this is a good option.

If there is anything else you can say about this tent, even trivial stuff, I'd love to hear it.

Thanks again, Andrew

Author:  Mike McIntosh [ February 1st, 2011, 11:22 am ]
Post subject:  Re: The 'Perfect' Winter Hot Tent Set-Up

Barbara wrote:
I was wondering if Mike was the other snowshoe tripper that is mentioned in this trip log from this past weekend:
http://www.network54.com/Forum/352882/t ... Canoe+Lake


Nope... wasn't me.
I was in the Sunday Lake area.
Slush is a major problem on the lakes in Algonquin right now - lots of snow on the ice, creating major slush pockets, so I opted to stick to the dogsled trails and avoid the lakes.

SWIFT wrote:

If there is anything else you can say about this tent, even trivial stuff, I'd love to hear it.



The only other thing I can think of is stove jack placement:
I specifically requested to have my chimney exit through the roof, because of the stove I use: the Kifaru one-piece stove pipes can't use an elbow.
Depending on the stove you use, you may prefer to have the chimney exit the side.

In either case, they seem to be very accomodating, and will set it up however you want.
Excellent customer service.

Mike

Author:  Debbie [ February 4th, 2011, 7:37 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: The 'Perfect' Winter Hot Tent Set-Up

Mike u must come to DF !!! want to see all of ur great gear in person !!!

Impressive...
Debbie

Author:  QED [ February 6th, 2011, 7:46 am ]
Post subject:  Re: The 'Perfect' Winter Hot Tent Set-Up

Love your setup Mike. Thinking seriously about ordering that tent and stove now. Thanks for posting those photos and description.
-Martin

Author:  SWIFT [ February 6th, 2011, 8:49 am ]
Post subject:  Re: The 'Perfect' Winter Hot Tent Set-Up

Well I recommend you try calling them. Since my post here earlier I am still waiting for them to return my email as I was seriously considering making an order myself. But since I am most motivated to have it for this years DF, there's no way I could get it in time.

I will probably still get it, but it'll be less impulsive and I might wait until next year, as there are plenty of other things I really should redirect my money on. :cry:

Author:  Mike McIntosh [ February 6th, 2011, 12:51 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: The 'Perfect' Winter Hot Tent Set-Up

SWIFT wrote:
Well I recommend you try calling them. Since my post here earlier I am still waiting for them to return my email as I was seriously considering making an order myself. But since I am most motivated to have it for this years DF, there's no way I could get it in time.


That is odd...
My emails were returned the next day.
Maybe Mark is out winter camping... :wink:

Shipping did take longer than expected for me, but that was before Christmas, so I blamed it on the holiday rush.
In any case, I don't think there's much chance you'd receive your new tent before Deep Freeze... that's cutting it a little close.

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