Wednesday, May 19, 2010

My Review of REI Hoodoo 3 Tent - '09 Special Buy

Originally submitted at REI

The Hoodoo 3 is a full-featured, lightweight tent that optimizes convenience for 3 persons with ample headroom, 2 doors and generous storage.

Versatile Big Tent

By Haris from Chicago, IL on 5/19/2010


4out of 5

Gift: No

Pros: Fly Works Well, Easy To Set Up, Windproof, Waterproof, Comfortable

Best Uses: Backyard, Beach, Car Camping

Describe Yourself: Avid Adventurer

What Is Your Gear Style: Minimalist

I've owned this tent for two seasons. We bought it as a replacement for Alps Mountaineering Orion 3 tent because it shaves off over 4lbs of weight from that, otherwise excellent, tent. An additional benefit is much easier set up. Not having to thread the poles through holes in the fly helps a lot. HooDoo set up is somewhat different from the other tents I used and requires some learning which may intimidate some of the less technically inclined. Once you understand how things go together (and they are color coded) it's quick and painless.

The poles don't fit together very well one folded. There are a couple small sections with breaks on each side I have to guess and try which side to open every time I fold them. Somewhat annoying. I guess I could just mark the right ones once and for all but that would be work :)

Love the horizontal walls--makes the interior feel so much bigger!

HooDoo 3 is a bit smaller than the Orion 3 and has just enough room for 3 20"-wide sleeping pads. With three people, there's very little room left for gear. I miss the overhead mesh storage compartment of Orion 3 but HooDoo has smallish pockets in each corner of the tent.

Vestibules were larger than other tents when I compared them on-line; however, my Orion 3 has substantially more vestibule space.

We used this tent as a shelter on the beach and during our son's outdoor swim meets--set up the ground cloth with the rain fly without the tent. Works very well and is easy to set up.

Although it could be used as such, I would not classify this as a backpacking tent. There are many of the same size that are much lighter but, of course, they normally cost more. I've used this tent for car and kayak camping with great success.


Monday, May 3, 2010

Into the new decade

Last weekend I gathered a bunch of friends from various walks of my life to inaugurate the fifth decade for me.

Before the party I was really eager to show of the standing waves on the mighty DuPage river. It rained the night before so, with the vast basin on this river, I was hopeful. The gauge was not showing much rise. And there wasn't much to show for the rain, as it turned out...

On the positive end, when the water is not high enough to generate the waves, a kayak in capable hands can make it up the stream throught he drop/constriction. And we had six capable hands...

Thanks to Eimly and Pierre for helping me smoothly transition into the new decade. I hope that it will be full of paddling.

Paddle on and paddle hard!