Expedition Tents

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Which tent to choose for expeditions?

When planning an expedition to the Himalayas or other high-altitude regions (or cold, windy environments such as Greenland, Antarctica, etc.), the choice of tent is a crucial and often underestimated issue.

There are three crucial and essential, if not vital, elements when contemplating a high-altitude summit: shoes , comforter and tent.
There's no point in having a good comforter if your tent tears in the middle of the night...

There are hundreds of tents that "do the job" in the Alps or on a summer vacation in the mountains. But preparing an expedition and
arriving on site with a reliable, robust product is another story. You'll need to choose a tent that can withstand heavy snowfalls, strong winds, rockfalls (and keep your fingers crossed that few tents can!) and avalanches.

What are the requirements for a quality expedition tent?

Sturdiness: Although not visible to the naked eye, the tent fabric must be designed to withstand extremely high winds. It's the quality of the fabric that makes the difference between a mediocre-quality tent and an excellent one, which explains the significant price differences. The materials used, especially the poles, must be both strong and light.

Weight : the higher the altitude, the lighter the tent needs to be, which often means compromising on the strength of the materials used, especially the poles. A tent designed for fast ascents or to be used at the highest camp should be as light as possible, even if it is slightly less solid than a tent designed for a camp at a lower altitude or for a more classic ascent.

Simplicity: A tent should be quick and easy to set up, especially in windy conditions. That's why you can opt for freestanding tents, which don't require stakes to stand upright.

Mistakes not to make

Ensuring proper anchoring: It's essential to secure your tent using ice pins or by placing all the bags inside before unfolding it. This secures the tent and prevents it from being blown away by wind or weather. I myself had the experience of losing a tent at Manaslu Camp 2 when setting it up in bad weather.

Protection from the elements: At high altitude, it's crucial to be safe from snowflows and rockfalls, even those that seem unlikely. It's important to choose a sturdy tent that offers maximum protection against these hazards.

Creating a platform: It is often necessary to dig a platform to lower the tent to the ground and reduce its exposure to high winds. This minimizes the effects of the wind and ensures a safer installation.

So which tents should you choose?

At AlpinStore we offer you the best brands of expedition tents, such as Samaya. A young, innovative French brand offering an ideal choice of ultra-sturdy, light and resistant tents, they can be adapted to all types of outings, whether it's a simple mountain bivouac or an ascent in extreme Himalayan conditions.

We're back to the basics, with MSR, the American brand that guarantees a wide, reliable choice that can be taken anywhere. Or Ferrino, a dynamic brand with in-depth experience and durable design.
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