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Old 05-16-2020, 06:51 AM   #1
Viking
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Alps Mountaineering Tents Feedback

Good morning,

I have been looking for more of a 4 season tent for solo canoe trips later in the year. Purchased the Eureka Alpenlite. Set up in my living room as we speak. I take up a lot of space and this tent is a bit tight - I knew it was not a true 2 person, but that was ok. A little extra weight as well, but this is all canoe - no backpacking. Vestibules are a bit tight.

Then I saw the Alps Mountaineering Highland in a gear review where the testers gave it some very good marks - it won't compare to true 4 season tents - but they felt it worked well for many applications. Some nice features but a bit heavy. Other reviews were surprising in the positive way. So I bought that one too and now they are both set up in my living room.

The Alps tent was only $200. I thought it might be worth buying as a loaner, back-up, or just to keep the miles off my more expensive tents when conditions don't warrant the higher end. The model I purchased is the Highland, but info from any Alps model would be appreciated.

I searched the threads and there are some older references to the Alps, but was wondering if there was any more current intel on the Alps products.

Feedback on the Alpenlite is also welcome.

Please hurry - if I don't get these tents out of the living room pretty quick my wife is threatening to take them down for me - and she ROLLS tents.

Thank you.
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Old 05-16-2020, 07:18 AM   #2
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I don't own an ALPS tent but on TRAILSPACE Forum many of those tents have been reviewed with 4 or 5 stars by 'some' pretty experienced people...some think they're experienced, some are.
I do own an ALPS heavy winter sleeping bag, to heavy to backpack, and slept in it down to -25f multiple times and it was roomy and I was like toast, warm, dry toast.
If the comparable quality from bag to tent is there you'll get plenty of tent for $200.00 within your needs/wants.
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Old 05-16-2020, 10:09 AM   #3
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I'm not familiar with the Alps Highlands tent specifically, but my general experience with ALPS Mountaineering is that the brand tends to be a bit cheaper than many other brands- at the consequence of also being heavier than many other brands. Generally speaking, I would probably place them on par with (possibly even a bit lower than) Eureka in terms of overall quality. That's not to say that it's a bad brand necessarily (ALPS gear seems decently durable, at least), but I think if you were to outfit yourself entirely in ALPS Mountaineering gear, you'd probably question whether the savings in cost really justified the substantially added weight.

I also have to ask what makes you consider a 4-season tent, especially since it's for paddling trips- where you're not likely to encounter heavier snow loads. 4-season tents are often designed to be warmer, yes... but they are also designed to be stronger (to withstand heavy snow loads and high winds) and also to vent better (to cut down on condensation/moisture build up inside the tent). IMO, they can be overkill for anything less than true alpine, above-treeline mountaineering. I wouldn't fault anyone for carrying one in the Adirondacks during dead of winter regardless, but for shoulder season conditions (since paddling really only extends into the shoulder season at best), I would question whether it's really worth the purchase.

That being said, both of those tents look decent for the price. And for paddling trips without portages, weight is less of a concern. However, both tents come in at just shy of 8 pounds... which is pretty hefty for a tent that it sounds like will only see 3-season use. If I was looking for a tent to use on paddling trips with numerous and/or lengthy portages, however (or even to use on the occasional backpacking trip), I'd think twice about tent that weighed this much.
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Old 05-16-2020, 03:44 PM   #4
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I have the Extreme 3 that I got maybe four years ago. The quality is not bad but the weight is on the high side. Mine is over 8 lbs.

It does provide a lot of room and I like the position of the windows/screening. I bought it on a discount site (Cheaper Than Dirt?) at a really inexpensive price. I figured I would use it when I went with friends who aren't really backpackers and wouldn't want to hike in miles.

For me, the price/benefit was a no brainer and it does what it says it does. I did have it through a torrential downpour and it held up without a hitch.

https://www.alpsbrands.com/alpsmount...ents/extreme-3
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Old 05-16-2020, 06:32 PM   #5
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I got mine through steepandcheap at a good price. I serves its purpose, not bad for throwing in the canoe in areas where there are few large trees (Yukon). Otherwise I will be in my hammock.
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Old 05-18-2020, 06:46 AM   #6
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Thank you everyone, for your input.

DSettahr, you are correct - my current plans really don't warrant a 4 season tent. This is my feeble attempt to rationalize and justify more gear since I already have multiple 3 season tents. According to my wife anyway.

I took it out of the living room and set it up in the yard fully staked out and it seems pretty nice. It is a bit heavier as posters have noted, but the 2 doors and dual vestibules are very nice. Could lay in the bag and cook pretty easily.

While set up next to the Alpenlite I would say the poles and fabric on the Alps are of lessor weight and sturdiness, but not by much. The Alps is also brighter inside which I like.

A bit more room in the Alps - 2 will fit where in the Alpenlite for a guy my size I would have a tough time getting the Mrs. in there.

So I'm going to keep the Alps and add it to the closet - my wife loves the color of the Alps much more than the Alpenlite also, so I've got that going for me.

Thanks again!!
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Old 05-18-2020, 10:36 AM   #7
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Yeah, I hear you on the "always needing more gear" bit. I have 3 tents- a solo and 2 two-person tents. Plus an attachment for 2 of my tents, that greatly increases the size of the vestibule. Plus also 3 bug nets designed to be used with tarps- 2 solos and a two-man net. A backpacking hammock too. And 3 really nice ultralight tarps (including one with "doors" that hang down for added protection from the elements) and no shortage of hadware store traps.

Don't even get me started on sleeping bags, pads, backpacks, stoves...

The worst part is that I actually use all of it, for different trips depending on the conditions, who's joining me, our itinerary, etc. And, as you note, it's nice to have extra stuff to lend out to friends who are just getting started with backpacking, so it's easier for them to join you. So it's hard to justify trying to pare things down.
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Old 05-18-2020, 01:28 PM   #8
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Something just way too cool about outdoor gear. I play with the stuff for hours in my basement.

I spent time in the wholesale sporting goods arena for outdoor products. The trade shows were always on weekends, so as a perk the owners would let us trade our samples for other gear at the shows. Between that and the rep deals we had available - I bought so much at "salesman sample" prices of 15% - I really couldn't ever use the stuff before I die.

Biggest item I pursued were fishing rods - I now have 53 - but like you, multiples of everything else. I do use a great deal of my equipment but not all. In recent years I have been giving away some of my fishing poles when I hear about some youngsters getting into fishing.

Outside of that I will probably die with my 5 backpacking stoves.
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Old 05-20-2020, 03:58 PM   #9
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Eureka Alpenlite XT Shock cords.

Ok, I know nothing about 4 season tents but this is freaking me out.

I received the Eureka Alpenlite and set it up in my living room at first. The shock cord was very loose - almost as though it had been hyper-extended and stretched out. I assumed this was a defect and after setting it up liked what I saw. (There are about a million very positive reviews on this tent.)

I contacted Backcountry (who have been fantastic by the way) about the issue and they sent me another one pronto for comparison. Same deal. Looked online and could find only 1 comment about a different material being used for 4 season vs 3 season tents. A couple of posts about the shock cords missing a bit of "snap" but nothing more.


Is this a SOP for a 4 season tent? I was playing with it while it was about 70 degrees but this seems odd to me. Calling Johnson Outdoors resulted in a diabolical phone system where the mailboxes were full and I could not find a living human being.

It doesn't look difficult to replace the shockcord (MSR has a kit) but I don't feel I should be doing that on a brand new tent.

Any feedback is appreciated.

Thank you.
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Old 05-26-2020, 02:48 PM   #10
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In case anyone had an interest in the Eureka Alpenlite tent, the second Eureka Alpenlite arrived without any shock cord issues.

This is a bit heavy (Like the Alps) but it is pretty sturdy. There are many options for ventilation as well.

Not huge - I purchased it for solo use- and it looks like it will be perfeect for that.
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Old 05-27-2020, 08:39 AM   #11
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a) looks like you are set
b) as mentioned, can you really ever have to many tents?

My Eureka Mountainpass 3x is a bombproof 3 season that I use four seasons. Heavy, but plenty of room for a big guy like myself. I like the vestibules for 4 season since there is usually more gear. I did look long and hard at the Alpenlite as well, and Eureka 4 season dome.

Also - daughters wants a back yard campfire / camp out. Social distancing. Luckily I have enough tents to do one each!
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Last edited by tenderfoot; 05-27-2020 at 08:40 AM.. Reason: 5pelin'
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