Anyone tried one?
New to the website and hoping to pick the brains of you more experienced folk.
Early next year I'm walking the Offa's Dyke Trail and so I'm looking for a cheap lightweight tent to take on the journey. I don't want to spend a fortune on a tent I might only use a dozen times or so, but then again I want it to be capable of doing its job. I know that in most cases you get what you pay for, but on more than one occasion expensive tents have had really bad reviews, and to be honest some tents seem overly expensive for what they are... or rather for what I will need it for.
Initially I'd looked at the lightweight Gelert Solo at 1.5kgs, and the fragile fibreglass poles aside I probably would have bought one (£19.99) if I'd not seen one erected and realised there was no space inside to get both myself and my backpack. So the Solo went out the window!
I decided that a lightweight two man tent would be the better option as the extra space inside would justify the extra weight to carry (within reason).
My thoughts have now turned to the Vango Banshee, as though 0.7kgs heavier than the Gelert Solo, there is plenty of space for one and a rucksack. Then I noticed a Robens Cloud 1 (1.9kgs) on Ebay (around £90ish new). Bids at £41 as I write, but on looking at the tent further, I again had the same problem as the Gelert - no real space inside for rucksack. There was also a one nan Mountainsmith on Ebay, again too small.
So back to the Banshee... that is until I saw the Lichfield in the Argos book. Now this tent looks to me like a copy of the Banshee, but according to the specs, although it's dimensions are an exact copy of the Banshee, its slightly lighter and made of ripstop (I don't think the Banshee is ripstop). The down side is that whereas the Banshee is retailing at around £62, this Lichfield tent is retailing at £99 from Argos!
I think this must be a new tent as I can't find a single mention of it anywhere, so I was just wondering if anyone here has seen the tent or had any experience of it? There is also another lightweight 2 man tent that has caught my attention called the Jura retailing at around £35, which seems to be very good value. This is a single loop (from back to front) design, weighing in at around 2.3 kgs.
I'm just trying to cover all the bases before I commit to making a purchase, but it does rather look like the Banshee is coming out on top at present.
Any comments much appreciated.
Hey tent peg,
Don't know this specific tent but used lichfields as a youngster.
A dozen trips is about your lot and pray for good weather !
There ok as a basic basic throw away job , I remember them ripping alot. But that was 10 years ago so they may have improved , but if there in Argos i would deffinately leave well alone.
We use Vango's now with Scouts and there holding up fine so far and they have been out on major camps and into the lakes in none to favourable weather and came back in one piece, so on experience of brands i'd go with the Vango.
Or may i suggest -
For that true 1 hit wonder , weighs alot more but what does one want for £30ish
or .... is a little lighter but still at £30ish
But if you want something halfway decent in the "cheap" range
Its got a higher mm hydro so should fair better in the downpours than the ones mentioned above not alot of moving room but it does have a vestibule for your pack.
If that rants on abit , sorry it is 1am
Thanks Jon, but, I daresay like your eyelids, all of those are just too heavy.
My initial instinct too would have been to steer clear of anything from Argos, but this Lichfield looks a few notches up from the ProAction tents they used to do, a look-a-like of the Vango Banshee but 300gm lighter, that's why I was curious. It's called the Lichfield Treklite 200.
The other tent I mentioned was the Highlander Jura. See:
Is there any particular reason why you'd go for the Vango you mention above, over the lighter (and cheaper) Banshee??
I know these tents won't be on par with the much reviewed high-end tents such as the Hillebergs and the like, but I won't be testing my tent to the extremes that some of you guys might well be. Weight along with enough room for my kit as well as myself are my priorities, though it would also be nice if it kept the rain out!
I guess it's because hardened and experienced walkers tend to steer clear of the low end stuff, but it seems that most of the expensive tents are well tested, evaluated and talked about, over and over. However, not much mention of some of the lower cost tents, that while they may not be suitable for extreme camping, may well be quite adequate for most uses... including mine!
Be interested to hear from anyone with experience of the above tents. Thanks.
The Banshee does looks very similar to the Argos tent. I'd also be a bit sceptical of the given weight of the Argos tent, although it might be made from lighter, higher quality materials. If there is a 300g difference in weight, that's considered quite a lot for backpacking. That 300g could allow you some luxuries for no extra effort or discomfort.
2kg seems to be the magic figure for solo tents. If the Argos tent does weigh 1.9kg and it ends up getting reduced, like the Pro Action tent, I can see people falling over themselves to buy one.
Yes, Steve, I agree with your comments.
To me £99 from Argos sounds expensive so I'd assume that the Lichfield Treklite 200 would be altogether in a different class to thier old ProAction cheap & cheerfuls. And, I know Lichfield have been making tents for some time.
As you can probably tell I'm quite taken by the Banshee, but I'd have to oder that and pay postage, whereas Argos is only 3 miles away from me. As far as I can tell the only difference is the materail used. The Lichfield states it uses ripstop material (which I thought might be useful) wheras the Banshee does not. I guess that might also be where the weight saving is. On the other hand, as you say, it might be that Argos have deceptively given the minimum weight - in which case I would expect it to weigh the same as the Banshee.
If the Lichfield was £20 cheaper I wouldn't hesitate to give it a go - just wish there was some review or evaluation of the product somewhere to enable me to make an informed decision.
Thanks for you input.
News just in: I can't believe this. No wonder that the Lichfield Treklite 200 appears identical to the Banshee. I've Just found out that Lichfield are owned by Vango - I never knew that! Lichfield are apparently Vango's budget line of tents!!! Why oh why then would they be selling a Lichfield at Argos that is actually more expensive than the supposedly non-budget Banshee equivalent?? Mind boggles.
That's settled it now. It's the Banshee for me!
Just thought it might be useful for someone like myself agonizing over which low/medium priced two man tent to go for, so here's my update.
After much research and consideration, I decided to commit to purchase a Coleman Avior X2, over the Vango Banshee, for my Offa's Dyke trip next year. At £69 from a local camping store I'm quite happy with the price, which compares nicely with the Banshee. My final decision was based primarily on two factors:
1. It is a flysheet first pitch. 2. It has two openinings and so can be accessed from the front or the side.
My reasoning with the two openings is that I can store my pack in the end and let myself in and out of the side. This way I won't have to clamber over my pack getting in and out. Obviously the fly first pitching has its advantages in poor weather, but also the specifications in general also seem very favourable.
Like the Banshee it's a two man tent that would be a squeeze for two large adults and packs, but provides ample space for one and a pack. Weighing in at 2.45kgs its a little heavier than the Banshee, but that was a compromise I was prepared to take. I'll be able to provide a full reveiw on the tent in spring next year if on one does so before then.
I used a Lichfield 2 man tent 40 years ago. I threw it out because the mould had got to it about 3 or 4 years ago. With a few repairs and occasional waterproofing it did my son proud, and me on occasions, for very many years and was a very good bit of kit for low level camping. I think Lichfield was a British company in those days, the tent bag had a label which said, "Made in England", not Britain mind you but England.
As for Argos being coterminous with tat, I have a ProAction (Argos own label) one man tent which is superb value for 20 squid and would have been for 3 times that. This is the famous Tiger Paw Mk1 and no, I'm not trying to spark a discussion on this tent, I'm just making a point
Edited because I'm wondering whether we're still in a time warp
interetsing, i bought the lichfield trklite 200 from argos at the weekend for the occasion overnight nap at 2000ft in the lake district. 1.9kg and 10cmx43cm pack size. I am replacing the metal pegs for alluminium to reduce the weight further and for better peg quality.
£99 and they chuck in a free Lichfield Saturn 100 0.99kg sleeping back (small when packed) and a free Lichfield Explorer 60+10 ruck sack.
I have just visited Outdoor World (great advice received by the way) and I think I have a bargain.
Although as the inner is meshed for ventilation I now know that it is a 2 season tent...which meets my needs.
In furtherance to Mike Costello's excellent find I thought I'd link to the tent in question. Seems a very good starting deal for those looking for a way into outdoorsyness at a good price.
Jon Lucas said,
"Hey tent peg,
A dozen trips is about your lot and pray for good weather !
There ok as a basic basic throw away job , I remember them ripping alot. But that was 10 years ago so they may have improved , but if there in Argos i would deffinately leave well alone."
Well, that's a pity, their was a time (see what I did there?) when Lichfield was definitely (see what I did they're too?) a reputable maker of robust and reliable tents.
I'm looking for a tent to use for motorcycle touring (so packed size is obviously important), I was looking at the lichfield and was wondering what you thought of it Mike?
It has already been said on here but the Lichfield is basically a rebranded Vango Banshee.
It looks a great tent but I was not keen on the inner pitch first, so I have just bought a Vango Spectre 200. This cost just under £65.00 delivered from Rydale Rambling. If I had acted sooner I could have got the same tent form Outdooraction for under £55.00, but they are now Just under £70.00 delivered there. With warmer weather approaching all tents are likely to rise in price.
I bought a two man tent because I intend taking my son with me on some trips, but I first started looking at the Gelert Solo. This was available (two weeks ago anyway) for £25.00 delivered. It is dual skin, single birth and weighs around 1.5 Kgs. I then started looking at superior poles, more space atc before settling on the Spectre.
It all depends on what you want, but that Banshee (Lichfield) is a very good looking tent. The Gelert Solo looks good too and I have read lots of good reviews about it.
I got the Lichfield Treklite 200 from Argos for £50.
It was on offer, I missed the offer by a couple of days,but as I was about to walk away,and after explaining that I had seen it on the website at the reduced price,the manageress(bless her) relented and let me have it for the offer price.
At 50 quid,it's a bargain.For 99....I wouldn't have gone for it.
I got it for the C2C next year,and have had it out fora couple of 2 day hikes,and it's perfectly fine.
Plenty of room for one and two weeks worth of kit...but don't get it if you need room for two.
The headroom is not great(and I'm not tall),and don't plan on cooking in or round it.There ain't no room for all that,and it's not flame retardant.
But you don't go to the Great Outdoors to be inside.It's a bedroom.It's all you need.
Hey Tent Peg,
I have a Coleman AviorX2 too. I have been well impressed with it once I threw the bag it comes in away and used a stuff sack to keep it all in to cut down size and weight.
It sure is a well made little tent and the side door is a bonus so you don't have to remove or climb over any gear stored in the 'foyer' as I call it.
Some backpacking purists might think the Avior a tad heavy, but I'm willing to put up with it for the additional space.
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