Tunnel tent reviews

16 messages
19/02/2005 at 09:53
I'm looking to get a tunnel tent for general and wild use. I think TGO did a comparison last year sometime.
Can anyone tell me which issue this was in and if it's still available.
Or let me know what the opinions were on the Force10 Serac and Vango Spirit tents. They both seem to look quite similar and good but I can't find any reviews on the Serac or much on the Spirit.
19/02/2005 at 14:29
Hi Stuart,
The review was in the June 2004 issue. I reviewed the Force Ten Serac 1:2 and the Vango Spirit 200 and recommended the latter. I think the Spirit is the better of the two tents - it weighs and costs less, has tension bands for stability and the inner is 10cm wider. To get the complete review email the TGO office and see if they've got any back copies. John Manning should know - john.manning@tgomagazine.co.uk
20/02/2005 at 21:38

Have you looked at the Macpac Olympus or Minaret(smaller version of the Olympus)?
Major advantages are:
1.You can put it up all at once in seconds (well about 1-2 mins). Perfect in foul weather.
2.The inner can be detached from the outer and pulled back so as to make a massive cooking area in the porch.
3.Massive storage pockets inside.
4. I've had my Olympus for 9 years and all the bits and pieces are still like new ie. velcro, bungies etc.
5. Groundsheet is neoprene coated and again mine is still in excellent condition.
6. Macpac gear is very well made with excellent materials.
21/02/2005 at 12:27
Back issues queries can be addressed to the delightful Carrie on 0141 302 7744, or go the tgo subs pages via our own website at www.tgomagazine.co.uk.

22/02/2005 at 14:31
macpac olympus; get one!! awesome tent nothing i think can come close, for all the same reasons as paul says, THE DADDY OF TENTS
24/02/2005 at 00:32

Although I would never swap my Macpac tent for any other (I can compair a few as my friends have Saunders, Terra Nova, Sierra Design, Karrimor and others), there are a few drawbacks with tunnel tents.

The main one is that they never quite pitch as rigid/taught as goedistic tents so you get some flapping noise on a windy night. Also, because the Macpac Olympus tent is pitched altogether you can't really split the load up (one person has to carry the whole tent).

Saying that, if the weather is going to be rough, we always choose my tent over anyone elses because everyone accepts that my Macpac tent is best in foul conditions, if only because you can get it pitched quickly and guarantee that the inner will still be dry. It will also take an absolute hammering and stay up.

They're expensive but money well spent!.
15/01/2009 at 09:36

The Macpac tunnel tents can be split and carried separately. It is possible to pitch them taut if you are very careful to stake out the pole sleeve sections of the tents with symmetric tension.

The Minaret handles strong winds better than the Olympus because it is a lower profile. One person needs to be short though as it has a short and a long side. 

As these tents are well-engineered, they are heavier than some models. The floor doesn't let water seep through. I often just take the fly and poles as these models are multi-pitch.

15/01/2009 at 09:39

Last time I used a Minaret, I got slabs of rock and placed them strategically against panels with copious amounts of dead tussock as padding to eliminate flapping. You will need the padding to protect the tent fabric from abrasion.

Edited: 15/01/2009 at 09:43
15/01/2009 at 09:41
Hi there Honora. The thread is 5 years old.

15/01/2009 at 09:43
Hi   for some reviews,  Google macpac olympus,   its the the second entry down the list
15/01/2009 at 09:44
Well, it's still relevant for anyone looking for advice on tunnel tents!
15/01/2009 at 09:47
No problem Honora! I just though that you were maybe replying to the original post. Welcome to the forum.

15/01/2009 at 09:58
cheers, I'll register tomorrow. I added my review as well. I must admit I try to persuade people not to take these tents on trips as they're usually too heavy for the conditions (below the treeline). However if we're going above the trees in winds, then they are the best.
15/01/2009 at 10:41

A Kaitum 2 weighs about the same and gives you full length throughout the inner and a full porch and entrance and vent at each end, so I'd sooner have one of those.  Having said that, the Kaitum is considerably more expensive so you damn well should get something more!


15/01/2009 at 13:25

Aaah Pete you got at least 2 things more than you thought

1. The name Hilleberg

2. the looks of neighbouring hikers "he actually bought a Hilleberg"

Kind regards


Owns one Hilleberg (Niak) and two other brands tents of which only one just nears the quality of the Hilleberg (it's a Wechsel).

04/12/2009 at 23:35
macpac olympus! i bought one about a year ago and took it up new zealands highest mountain, mt cook. it was amazing, gale force winds, and heavy snow it didnt even budge this is a seriously good tent and although it is expensive you will need another one!
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