Further to my post the other week on winter gear, I decided after much thinking time to go for the Hilleberg Soulo tent.
Attributes for selection of Hilleberg Soulo tent
Bomb-proof – I don’t need to concern myself where I pitch or what the weather throws at the tent.
Stable dome design – should get a good night’s sleep – very important
Excellent reviews from fellow outdoor bloggers and experts for example Chris Townsend’s review in TGO
High build quality
“Lightweight” in comparison to other 4-5 season tents
Very simple and quick to pitch – important in late autumn/winter
Excellent snow handling abilities, should this be required.
Opening up the stuff sack
The first thing I noticed (which is obvious) is the weight and the pack size compared to my Vaude Power Lizard UL tent. The weight is around an extra 1100g and the pack size is quite a lot bigger. The 3 poles have a very robust feeling, and looking at the tent generally, it is a very high standard of workmanship, with heavy-duty fixings, clips and zips. The 12 V pegs use DAC alloy and have a short piece of cord to help pull the peg out. The 3 crossing poles are 9mm DAC Featherlite NSL alloy with two sections on each pole pre – bent.
The outer tent fabric is made from Kerlon 1200( 30 dernier ripstop nylon) with a minimum tear strength of 12kg, coated both sides with a total of 3 layers of 100% silicone and a hydrostatic head of 3000mm.
The inner fabric is 30 denier ripstop nylon with a Durable Water Repellent (DWR) treatment.
The floor fabric is 70 denier nylon triple coated with polyurethane and a hydrostatic head of 5000mm.
First time pitching the tent
I had a quick go at putting the tent up indoors, as it freestanding it is easy to do so. This is a ridiculously simple tent to put up.
1. Spread the tent out, make the poles up.
2. Place the ends of two long poles in the poles sleeves. These go along the length of the tent. Place the ends of the shorter pole across the width of the tent,
3. Clip the hooks to the poles
4. Attach the vent cover by attaching the hooks to the matching rings. Then tighten the webbing straps, to make the vent cover taut.
5. Peg out the double guy lines (my wife wouldn’t let me do that indoors it would have ruin the carpet !!)
After work and before it was dark, I put the tent up in our field.
Here are some photos and commentary
First time erecting this tent, took around 10 minutes, including pegging out the double guy lines using the DAC alloy V pegs.
This photo shows the double guying system
The tent has an adjustable roof vent, accessible from inside the tent. A separate vent cover protects the open vent from rain and snow. The vent is tightened by a buckle system. The next two photos show this.
The inner is sufficient for one and has a high bathtub floor to keep out ground water. There is a triangle area which give some additional area for storage. There are two storage pockets side by side.
You can achieve more vestibule space, For example when cooking, by disconnecting the inner, by un- clipping the toggle which connects the inner tent to the outer.
The inner doors can be rolled back, with one half covered with no-see-um mesh. This in turn is covered with an equal sized zipper adjustable fabric panel.
The outer door zip has a heavy duty flap protecting zippers from rain.
From an initial look, this tent looks very well made and I sure it is going to be stable. It has a lot of well thought out features such as the venting system and the ability to increase the vestibule area. I am sure that at 2.1 kg in weight, people may say that they would not carry that weight and it is over specified . My believe is that the extra weight will be justified by ensuring a comfortable night’s sleep in any weather and easy cooking in bad weather. Time will tell.
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