All photo's are Copyright of Scott Swalling or the tagged Photographer. (Background photo Scott Swalling Photography).

About Me:

24Hr MTBike racer and general bike rider, climber and mountaineer. Good coffee drinker and cake eater (any cake, seriously, don't leave your cake laying around). Also, I like to try new things that challenge me.

Monday, 13 February 2012

Frozen Brecons and gear test

I nice evening to be in the mountains.

Alex K (Denali Team) and I headed to the Brecons for a walk and a high camp to test some of our gear or at least carry similar gear around the hills for a while.  We arrived as most were heading off the hill tot their cozy pubs and B & B's, we headed up and got some quizzical looks.  We found a suprising amount of snow and ice, but being prepared, we cramponed up and kept moving.

Anyway after reaching the top of Pen-y-Fan, lingered at the summit cairn for a little, then drop off the shoulder toward Cribyn a little way, dug in a bit and set up camp in the Mountain Hardwar EV Direct 2 (EV2), the tent that will be heading with us to Denali and possibly up onto the Cassin.

The tent was up in a few minutes, even with a little first time faffing.  Being single skin it is quick to set-up and super light, I didn't notice it on my pack.  In fact throwing my pack on, I thought it was going feel heavy due to the tent, but the pack was comfortable light.  So far the EV2 is light and easy to set up.

Spacious, erm, no. Enough room for two and gear, yes. There is no vestibule, but as it is designed for moving light and fast, that is expected as a weight saver.  The door could be pin up with a walking/ski pole and provide some cooking protection at the front of the tent, due to the cut.

Inside the tent

There is quite a bit on ventilation in the tent, sensible sized and placed gear pockets and the loops on the zips are all a good size and easy to managed with gloves on.

After dinner I would get to test the sleeping mat combination of Thermarest Z-lite and Lite 3, as we wiggled into our sleeping bags and the wind began to pick up.
I can safely say that the mat combination worked very well and I was comfy and warm all night, both mats are very light and the Z-lite folding rather than rolling up was much easier to handle.

As the wind battered then EV2 all night, I actually watched and took note from my warm bed.  The EV2 just quivered in the winds, that hurled spin drift at it for most of the night and it was a little fortress against the elements, cover in ice on two sides in the morning proved that the little tent had been battered all night.  It seemed the weather was wort than it appeared from inside, a good sign for what is install for it and us.

In the morning we broke camp and headed for Cribyn, but altered out descent due to some dodgy looking snow, but where soon back at the car and happy with the 18hrs we had spent on the hill and very happy with the way the tent had performed and how light our packs were even though we had everything we needed.  Not a bad show really and always great to be in the mountains, with good company.

The EV Direct 2 in the morning.

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