Tag Archives: Tread Lite Gear

Tread Lite Gear tent can

We all need a bit of cheering up! I was browsing through the Tread Lite Gear website, as you do, and I spotted this beauty. Organising storage in a tent can be a bit of a challenge. This attaches to a trekking pole or tent pole to provide some convenient storage, keeping stuff off the ground. It can also double as a stuff sack, although it’s not watertight. In the picture, it has a full length Thermarest X-Lite inside. It’s simple to attach to a pole with hooks and silicone bands. It weighs 27g. As with all Paul’s stuff, it’s top quality. Well worth a look.

https://www.treadlitegear.co.uk/dcf-cuben-fiber-pole-mounted-tent-cans-366-p.asp

Disclaimer: I have no relationship with Tread Lite Gear and paid for this product with my own money.

Tread Lite Gear Cuben Roll Top Dry Bag Camera Strap Pocket

I twisted Paul’s arm to make me a shoulder strap roll top camera pocket in cuben fibre hybrid fabric. I’ve been using a bulky Berghaus camera pocket on my Lightwave Ultrahike for a while (the Lightwave won’t accept hip belt pockets). It worked ok but was a bit awkward. This is much more slimline and elegant.

My Sony RX100 fits perfectly into it. It is secured by two elastic straps and a slik clip. I’ve had to sew a grosgrain loop onto the Lightwave shoulder strap as there’s no daisy chain. I’m really pleased with it. It doesn’t swing around like the old Berghaus one and access is easier as it has no padding and liner. It is fully taped so should be pretty waterproof although not immersion proof.

Paul has made eight for sale on his eBay shop. They are a bit fiddly to make, so they are unlikely to be a regular item. If you’re looking for a rucksack strap camera bag, it’s well worth considering.

Disclaimer: I have no financial relationship with TLG and bought this item with my own money.

Tread Lite Gear Packing Cell

I’ve just got back from a short trip to Dartmoor (there’s a bit of a story to tell there) and one of the new bits of gear was a Tread Lite Gear Packing Cell. Mine was one of a limited batch in cuben but Paul is now making them available in silnylon. The silnylon ones are actually slightly lighter 26g vs 30g, but the same size 32x16x16cm.

I fitted three days of food into it easily. I reckon I could get five days worth, maybe at a pinch six. It’s a great way of organising you food. Previously I had been using a couple of stuffsacks.

It fits nicely into my Lightwave Ultrahike and I’m sure it would fit into my other packs. I think it’s a neat idea. If you’d like to see more, pop over to Paul’s eBay store.

Disclaimer: this product was purchased with my own money and I have no financial relationship with Tread Lite Gear.

Tread Lite Gear: sad news

Sad news from Paul at Tread Lite Gear: he’s having to wind down his business and find another job. Making a living out of a niche lightweight backpacking business is a tough ask. Hats off to Paul for trying. If you want any of his products, you’d best hop over to his eBay shop and get them before they disappear. I’ve ordered some more bits and pieces. Best of luck to Paul in finding a new job!

Deepdale and back: gear chat

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I guess the item that most of you will want to know about is the Tramplite shelter. As I mentioned before, I had some of the worst weather I’ve camped in. The Tramplite performed superbly. It was very solid with no leaks. Cuben is a bit noisier than silnylon, but it doesn’t stretch so the pitch stayed taut throughout the ten hours of rain and wind I endured on Saturday morning.

I think the MYOG A frame is excellent. It makes the Tramplite really solid and access is so much easier than a central pole. The valances were also good. The wind was swirling and the valances prevented the rain from driving under the beak. I’m sure it would have been ok without them, but they were definitely useful.

In terms of pitching, it’s possibly the easiest shelter I’ve had. Peg the rear corners, insert the pole then pull out the front guy. Peg the front corners then the rear. Tighten the front and back, then the corners and the fly is done. It’s really easy to get a nice taut pitch. The inner is simple to attach and easy to get reasonably taut.

It takes a little bit of time to get used to the more restricted headroom compared with the Scarp or Duomid, but it’s not cramped. Lying down, there’s enough length not to have the material in your face and a decent amount of room for gear. The rear storage space was useful for my rucksack and other bits and pieces. This meant I didn’t put as much in the front porch as I might with other shelters.

The workmanship is first class. There are no wrinkles. It’s better than the cuben Duomid. There’s obviously been a lot of thought gone into the design as well. Considering it cost the same as a Hillberg Enan, I think it’s a bit of a bargain.

My rucksack was the Lightwave Ultrahike. This was the first time in three years that I’ve not used my GG Mariposa. Arguably, it was overkill for a two-day trip. However, it reminded me of what a great pack it is. The hip belt makes it incredibly comfortable to carry. It’s a great pack for higher volume and heavier loads.

I’ve bought a number of bit and pieces from Paul at Tread Lite Gear recently. The cuben LED camping lantern was brilliant for providing some light in the evening. The first aid kit pouch forced me to downsize my first aid kit and was just the right size. I also used the polypaq 45L rucksack liner. It didn’t get tested by rain, but is a great alternative to a cuben or silnylon rucksack liner. It’s much cheaper and very light. It’s quite tough as well. In future I think I’ll use these instead of an Exped liner.

In terms of clothing, I took my Arcteryx Squamish windproof and Arcteryx Delta zip fleece. The Squamish is my favourite windproof. It’s very comfortable with good breathability, yet windproof and decently shower resistant. The Delta fleece has a grid pattern, which I think works better than flat fleeces. It’s a nice fit and just the right thickness.

I also used a Berghaus VapourLight zip T base layer. I’m really impressed with its wicking and smell resistance. Of my synthetic base layers, I think the VapourLight ones are the best.

Lastly, I must mention the As Tucas Sestrals insulated trousers. These are so good to put on at the end of the day. Nice and warm when you’re lying around in camp but not too hot. They also give some flexibility for your sleep system if it gets cold. I didn’t need them inside my sleeping bag (my modded Rab Neutrino SL 200 ) as it was quite mild, but great insurance in case it’s cold.

Nothing failed, although my Salomon X Ultra Mids are going to be relegated to dog walking boots as they are getting quite battered and the foam under the forefoot is loosing its resilience. I bought another pair in a sale recently to replace them. They’re great boots.

Tread Lite Gear cuben camping lantern

IMG_1635(2)I bought this recently and thought it might interest others. I’ve had a variety of small camping lanterns over the years, but this has to be the lightest at 7g (advertised at 8g). It throws out a surprising amount of light and the batteries are replaceable. If you want a bit of ambient light in your shelter at next to no weight penalty, it’s hard to beat. Link: Tread Lite cuben camping lantern.

IMG_1636Diclosure: this lantern was purchased with my own money.

Tread Lite Gear Cuben Tent Pockets now available

IMG_1244It’s nice to see one of my ideas make it into production. Paul has made some more cuben tent pockets and they are now available on his Tread Lite Gear eBay site. They fit both the Laser Comp and the Scarp well.

If you want some, you might want to get them now as I don’t know whether they will be a permanent part of his catalogue.

Disclaimer: I have no formal or financial relationship with Tread Lite Gear.

Tread Lite cuben tent pockets mk2

After a bit of a conflab with Paul, he sent me a mark 2 version of the cuben tent pockets.

 

These are 13cm deep (20 cm wide) compared with 10cm for the originals and designed with the Scarp in mind. At the same time, I bought a First Aid Kit pouch from Paul, which is rather nice.

 

Here’s the revised tent pocket in the Scarp. It is now the same height as the groundsheet bathtub wall. The pocket weighs 2g. With the safety pins, it weighs 3g. While it would be very easy to sew it, using safety pins means the pocket can be moved around. As it’s secured on the seam of the bathtub, it shouldn’t cause any undue stress to the fabric.

 

I also checked it would fit the Laser Competition. Attached to the seam of the mesh vent, the bottom of the pocket just touches the floor, do it works well. Another small design tweak is that the outer lip is slightly lower than the back of the pocket, making access to the contents easier. A nice little design touch, typical of the care that Paul takes over his products.

If your tent hasn’t got pockets and you’d like to have some, this seems like an ideal solution. I believe Paul is going to make a few to test the market. If there is demand he might make them part of his catalogue. Tread Lite Gear Ebay shop

Tread Lite Gear cuben tent pockets part 2

After feedback on these pockets, expressing concern about pinning the pocket to the tent fabric, I re-positioned it so it’s pinned on the lower seam of the mesh panel at the end of the Laser Competition. This is obviously a better and more secure solution. Although I’ve never had a problem pinning a pocket direct to the tent fabric, it makes sense to use a seam where possible. The pocket now stands slightly above the tent floor, but that shouldn’t be an issue. If Paul goes into production on these, he will make them 13cm deep not 10cm, so they should fit both the Scarp and Laser Comp.

Tread Lite Gear cuben tent pockets

I find it a major frustration that some tents don’t have pockets. Fragile items like sunglasses are vulnerable to being accidentally sat on. The best way is to keep them off the tent floor in a pocket. Hitherto I’ve improvised with a silnylon stuff sack that I halved and pinned to the inner tent wall.

I asked Paul at Tread Lite Gear to make a pair of bespoke cuben ones. The result is in the top photo. They weigh 2g each (ex safety pins). The grosgrain is to give the pocket some structure and allow me to use safety pins to secure it to the tent. I like using safety pins rather than sewing them on as I can move the pocket around.

The next picture shows one of the pockets in my Laser Comp. Perfect.

The next is in my Scarp. The pocket is 20cm x 10cm. For the Scarp I probably should have specified a slightly deeper pocket (13cm?) but it still works for light items.

I’m very pleased with them. As with other items I’ve ordered from a Tread Lite, the workmanship is first class. I will be ordering some other bits and pieces soon. It’s great to see a small UK lightweight gear business developing. I’ve not given a price. I think Paul’s intention is to list them on his eBay site soon.

Disclaimer: I have no business or formal relationship with Tread Lite Gear, but I have been discussing product designs with Paul.