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View Full Version : Cold Weather and The Tipi



Ken
01-24-2003, 06:01 PM
I light of all the cold weather we've had here in Upstate NY, I'd like to hear from all the tipi owners about their coldest stay in the Tipi. How cold have you camped in the Tipi, what size tipi/stove were you in, what bag/sleeping gear did you use and how did you fare? It was -20F hear this morning and I couldn't help but wonder how it would have been in a Tipi last night.

Dave R.
01-24-2003, 07:14 PM
Hi Ken...I live in PA....it has been around 5 degrees here at night. I have a 4 man TIPI, but I've never used it below 2O degrees F(above zero.) I've been wanting to pitch my TIPI in the back yard this week to give it a whirl at zero, but I have not had the time. If the cold holds out till Sunday or Monday, I may get a chance to try it out.

I believe that you would be able to say fairly warm at 20 below...I say this because I can get my stove to burn so hot that I can't stand it at outdoor temp of + 20. I'd sure like to know for sure what it would be like at 20 below too. Let me know what you find out. Do you have a TIPI ??

Dave

Dean
01-24-2003, 07:19 PM
Ken , I have been in my tipi at 0 degrees and as long as you keep stoking the fire in the stove there is no problem you can make it quite hot in there, so hot that you have to vent it a little. One thing you should know about these stoves is that they are not all night stoves about an hour is max out of my small one. On cold nights I wear a wool watch cap and a light layer. I had a cheap zero degree bag this year and was fine. However I am upgrading my bag next year to probably a western Mounianeering bag good from between 0 and -20, not because I was cold just because I want a better quality bag.

Ken
01-24-2003, 07:36 PM
Dave- No unfortunately I don't have one yet. I think I'm leaning towards the 8-man with a large stove and all of the fixins...I'd like the 4-man because of the weight savings but my size requirements are putting me into 8-man territory. I assume you are running a med. stove in your 4 man?
Dean- Sounds like I'll have to wait 'till next winter to find out if I can make the -20 mark. I really wish I had the tipi before this week, conditions were perfect for the test, cold and sometimes windy. I've been pretty happy with my North Face bag so far but there are some here who would rather have the Wiggys for durability or the Western Mountaineering for sleeping comfort and packability. I was in their site the other day, their weights are impressive. I'll be curious to hear your report.

MikeM
01-24-2003, 08:43 PM
Ken & Dave -
For what it's worth, I had mine down to minus 25, although it was almost minus 15 inside in the morning. They do cool off fast and the snow floor doesn't melt. With the large stove going at a conservative rate, meaning flames weren't shooting out the top it was comfortable sitting around in long johns within range of the stove. If you stood up it was hot. I did pack a small saw for that outing and used it to burn bigger wood.

Dave R.
01-24-2003, 08:54 PM
Hi Ken....i have a 4 man standard TIPI...I bought it before the ultralights were available. For 9 ounces more, I could have the 8 man in ultra light. That's the way I would go now if given the choice. I'd like to have an 8 man because my family would have a better time with the extra room. the 4 man is nice though...lots of room for 2 to 3 guys. I've had 4 in it too. Only 13 lbs with the stove....divided between 2 or 3 guys its very easy to carry. By the way...my stove is the old model, I think it was called the 'small stove.' Patrick mentioned that i could retrofit the new lighter stove pipes to my older stove and save some wieght....i may just do that.

I must say you that if you decide to buy a TIPI, you will be very glad, I love mine!

Dave

Ken
01-25-2003, 08:25 AM
MikeM- I can't see using mine much below that. -15 sound pretty chilly to be crawling out of a bag to start the fire! I can't wait to try!

Dave- were things pretty cramped with 4 people in your tent?

Dave R.
01-25-2003, 01:10 PM
Ken...

Yes it was tight with 4 guys but doable. We left some gear out of the tipi. with 2 or 3 guys there' enough room to bring all of your gear inside, including backpacks. Also....you don't need to get out of your sleeping bag to start a fire....you can just stick one arm out of the bag and light it while you stay warm.....the trick is to have all the tinder and fire starter ready to roll be for you go to sleep.

Its supoosed to drop below zero here on monday...I'll put up my TIPI and see how it feels with the stove. I'll let you know ken...

Dave

Dean
01-26-2003, 11:44 AM
Ken.. can you tell me what type of camping you usually do and how many people usually go with you . I ask only because in most cases you should be fine here in NY with any of the tipi's as far as cold is concerned , this year is probably one of the coldest in a while. I would tend to think that a 0 to - 20 bag would get you by here for almost all winter camping . If it gets colder just add a light sleeping layer and a wool watchcap. for 2 people the 4 man with a small stove would be quite roomy but if you plan on going with 3-4 people on a regular basis than the 8 man would be my choice if you are not the minimalist type and enjoy some elbow room rather than close quarters . I do a lot of solo stuff and own a paratipi with small stove and it is a condo for just me , but I am planning a do it yourself moose hunt in AK and would like to have an 8 man ultralight for that. Others have also stated here another good idea for parties of 2 that like to go light and that is get the para tipi and tarp use the tarp for your storage area for just 11 oz and the tipi for sleeping and cooking in this instance you get a lot of room for less weight than a 4 man.

Ken
01-26-2003, 12:55 PM
Dave- Sounds like an 8-man will be the ticket for me. The majority of my use will be with 3-4 people. I'll have to suck it up and carry the extra weight of the 8 when I go alone untill I can pick up a Para-Tipi. Have fun Monday night!

Dean- most of the time I camp in the springtime fishing the backcountry for brookies. I've got a -40f rated Northface bag. I should be good to go in the Tipi with that bag. I am starting to tent hunt and can see this becomeing more of a habit with a tipi. The para-tarp is in the works for my daytrips...too many Tipi choices and not enough $$$$...

MikeM
01-26-2003, 01:51 PM
Ken, sounds like you made up your mind on an 8 man. Good choice with 3 to 4 people. I took my out this weekend to get away from it all. Back packed a couple of miles to a lake in a non motorized area to enjoy some peace and quiet. Brought a thermometer along so I'll share the info.

By the time I had camp all set up and the wood gather it was totally dark, wind 20 - 25 mph, temperture 0. When I started the fire I quickly got tired of burning squall wood, and broke out the saw for bigger stuff. The large stove has a big appetite and you're chained to the stove with that small stuff. All I could find was poor grade aspen and small pine branches.

By 9 the temperture was -15 with a nasty wind. Three feet from the stove and one foot up the temperture was 52, 2 feet up it was 65. Five feet away and one foot up the tem was 30. At ground level the temp was 15. Clothes line hight the temp was 75 - 80. Like I said I was burning poor wood and never got the stove to turn mostly red hot. By morning, inside temp was -12. Outside was -20+, (I was in my long johns and didn't hang around to long). I've gotten the tent a little warmer but never had to worry about too much heat when the temp is in the teens or lower. Maybe the 4 man and smaller are easier to heat?

Not a motel room but comfortable. By the way I used a -5 bag to see what it could do. At midnight I had to add a fleece jacket, otherwise I was fine, but somewhat cool.

Dean
01-26-2003, 05:37 PM
thanks Mike

Ken
01-27-2003, 07:09 AM
MikeM- Sounds good. With a little quality wood and my current bag I should have no problems. I would have to guess the 4-man would be a little warmer also. We haven't had these temps in a few years so the majority of the time my use will be above zero. Thanks for the update!

Dave R.
01-27-2003, 11:57 AM
Hi Ken, Mike and Dean too...

My Son(4 1/2 years old) and I pitched our TIPI in the back yard a few minutes ago. Its a bright clear day at 15 degrees. Its amazing how warm it gets just sitting in the sun without the stove on.

It's going to go to down zero tonight...We are going to go out before bedtime and cook some hot coco...I'll let you know how comfortable it is..

Dave

Dean
01-27-2003, 01:35 PM
Hey Dave or Ken are you going to Harrisburg? I will be there the first weekend. Ken if you want I will bring my Tipi then.

Dave R.
01-27-2003, 04:33 PM
Hi Guys...I am hoping to go to the Harrisburg show. Kind'a wishing it was this week because I'm going there this tuesday for music related business. Never been to the expo, and I have it marked on my schedule....all depending on healthy kids, and last minute work. Maybe see you there?

By the way ....do you guys know that a Cabela's is opening up here in September, in Hamburg PA...about 20 minutes from my house, about an hour east of Harrisburg/??

dave

Dean
01-27-2003, 06:45 PM
No I did not but thanks for the tip...keep us all posted . I have always wanted to make it out to one of there other stores but never did.

Nevada Dan
01-27-2003, 11:19 PM
Dave, When you get back from the Harrisburg show, would you mind posting a small (quick) report? I'm curious about its size, etc. I've been told its a big show.

Thanks, Dan

Ken
01-28-2003, 06:53 AM
Dean, I wasn't planning on going but I'll see if I can't get a few other poeple interested, what are the dates?

Dave- How was the Tipi last night?

Dave R.
01-28-2003, 01:43 PM
Hi Guys,

Nevada Dan, I'll be more than happy to post info on the Show in Harrisburg if I make it. I drove by there today, started getting excited about going to the Show.

Ken....the TIPI was GREAT last night. We went out and started the fire at 1O degrees outside. It got really warm very fast, in fact I was burning the stove so hot that we had to open the door for a while. There is no doubt in my mind that minus 20 would be a piece of cake for this stove. Lots and lots of heat to spare. The Hot Coco was great too. I didn't spend the night in the TIPI, but we got a good test of how well it works in cold temps.

Dave

Ken
01-28-2003, 01:48 PM
Dave- That is a pretty serious setup when you have to open the door at 10 deg! What were you stoking it with?

Dean
01-28-2003, 06:10 PM
Ken ....2-8-03 to 2-16-03 at the farm show complex in Harrisburg .Go to http://www.easternsportshow.com to see the gig.

Ken
01-28-2003, 06:51 PM
Thanks Dean, I was in there earlier this afternoon looking around. I'll keep looking for somebody to split the ride with. It has to be close to 5 hours from my place.

MikeM
01-29-2003, 05:11 PM
Dean -
I'm looking for more information on the paratipi and was wondering if you could help. Want something lighter for solo outings, but I'm having a hard time picturing the inside of this unit. How do you sleep and arrange your gear including fire wood? How much room is there between the two poles or I guess between the stove and rear pole? What about head room? As you can see any info would be appreciated. MikeM

Dave R.
01-29-2003, 07:34 PM
Hi Ken....I was burning wood scraps from my house in the stove...so the results may be a little slower with wood that's a little more moist....but i bet there would be no problem at all. I've had some nice hot fires with both eastern hard wood and western pine and spruce gathered from the forest. i've just never been out in a real bone chilling cold...so the test!

Dave

Ken
01-30-2003, 08:00 PM
Dave- There is no shortage of hardwood blowdowns for firewood around here! I would think that bringing the fire inside would cut down on the amount of wood needed...and I have yet to burn myself out of it!

Dan D
02-01-2003, 05:01 PM
Mike,
I don't have a stove for my paratipi, so I don't know how much room it takes up. There is more than enough room in there for 1 person, if you are looking for a solo rig. I can kneel in the front by the pole and not touch my head. The tipi slopes to the back so height decreases. Plenty of room in the back for gear (long hunter). There is enough space between the poles for a person. With the stove in there you would probably want to be more to the front and sides. I am looking to upgrade to a 4 man as most of my hunting is with a partner. If you are interested in a paratipi email me at dandunc@hotmail.com
Dan

MikeM
02-01-2003, 06:06 PM
Dan -
Thanks Dan for the info and the offer. Don't know if I'm ready to make the leap just yet. Still doing the research and the trips planned this year will be with a buddy, so the need isn't immediate.

Dean
02-02-2003, 09:43 AM
MikeM .. I am 5'10 and have no problem in the tipi with the stove in it . There is a lot of room for 1 guy in there and all his gear and then some . You could fit 2 peopls in there with gear and wood however it would be a little cozy if you know what I mean. For solo hunting though this can not be beat in my opinion. There is enough room to sleep behind the stove with out feeling cramped . I sleep in the middle of the tipi and can not touch the bottom of the tipi on either side. The stove will heat the inside in no time I have found the last and final stoke for the night will last about an hour. You will need to have a good supply of wood for cooking and heating if you want real t-shirs weather in side or want to cook in a hurry you have to burn the stove red hot.This is what I take on all my solo hunts however for hunts where I am going in by plane or truck I would like to get an 8 man ultra.

MikeM
02-02-2003, 02:12 PM
Dean
Thanks for posting. I'm trying to picture it - so you're sleeping in the middle, quessing your feet are going on one side of the foot pole and the top of your bag is still far enough away from the stove to prevent melting, yet allow you to feed it in the morning - is that about right? Or do you face the stove the differently? How much room is there when you climb into the tent past a hot stove or wet tent sides? Again thanks for the help.

Dean
02-02-2003, 05:22 PM
MikeM ....entering the Tipi I only open one door because that is all the room I personally need to get in and out which give about a12 of the entire front of the tipi , if I opened both doors there would be about a 5 foot opening to go in and out of . This thing is 12 ft long and 7 ft wide so for one guy there is a ton of room . I set up the entire thing stove and all in about 10 minutes. Inside the tipi from the front of the door to the front pole is about 3 ft of room and the tallest part of the tipi about 4 and a 1/2 ft ,directly behind the pole I set up the stove facing the rear and cantered slightly to the right so that stove sits off to the right of the tipi if you were looking out of it.My wood is piled along the right side of my tipi wall which makes it easier for me to stoke it ( I am right handed). Behind the wood pile is my longhunter top facing forward to make getting at things simpler . My sleeping pad and bag are on the left of center of the tipi. When cooking and eating I usually sit in the cargo chair in the forward section in front of the pole , I don't crawl into my bag until its time to sleep I feel I stay warmer at night that way. Even with 2 people in the tipi . We simply put both packs in the extreme rear of the tipi both of us sleep between the poles stove door facing the rear . As far as condensation goes we have never really had a problem you just have to venilate properly and whatever little does come about the stove quickly remedies. I have not had the drips that others have spoke of . If you are really worried about having enough room get the 4 man granted it is 2 lbs more weight but it is a big tipi very big for 2 people in my mind. I guess it all depends on how much weight you are willing to carry and how much room you really have to have . I prefer to go light within reason some guys REALLY go light thats not what I'm about and the para tipi and small stove suit me fine.

Ed C
02-03-2003, 07:33 PM
Dan

How much are tou asking for your para tipi? $$$?

Thanks

Ed C

Ken
02-03-2003, 09:27 PM
Dean- If you ever need to come try the Para-tipi up in my neck of the woods and need a partner let me know...I know of a few good spots...

Dean
02-04-2003, 03:17 PM
Ken.. Sounds like a plan maybe this spring . I am booked every weekend from now till april , and then am off to Mexico to go fishing for a week but yes I will keep it in mind .

Dave
02-04-2003, 09:22 PM
Lets see here, the coldest night I ever spent in a tipi was about 3 weeks ago in the northern Colorado Mtns. This was my first experience and the first one that I know of with two large stoves in a 12-man tipi. The tempature dropped to about 5-10 below freezing and the winds were at least 70-80 mph. We were camped out on about 4 feet of good packed snow. I know at one point we had the clothes line (approximately 8 feet off the floor up to about 140 degrees and didn't have any trouble staying warm all night. The only regret was that I didn't have a liner. I used a 0 deg moonstone down bag with a liner and an inflatatable air matress. The wonderful thing about camping with pulk sleds is that after you tow in all of your firewood, you can pitch the tent and then drag the sled in through one of the doors, so that you have your stash of firewood right next to your bed. It takes a little bit of practice to pitch these tents on snow (and probably a lot less alchohol) but we managed pretty well. I hope to do more than a few more winter trips this year and am dying to try out the "Xtra-Large" stove and if I can spontanious combust in a 12-man /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/smile.gif

MikeM
02-06-2003, 05:54 PM
Dean -
Thanks for taking the time to paint a picture of what it's like in a para tipi. Sounds real comfortable and practical.