Originally Posted by HellsCanyonArmory
I am planning on picking one up next year to try out. Either that or the Megatarp from Kifaru...
The more I use trekking poles the more I won't hunt without them. They are a MUST for myself on the hike in or trek out or with heavy loads... take a bit to get used to but every person that tries them, ultimately uses them.
Yep, I think trekking poles are absolutely a must as well. I spent many years climbing and hunting dissing them in a way, but have come full circle, especially when it comes to packing 100+ lb. load x-country, and especially while doing so in steep downhill (or any downhill) situation. They can save you from a nasty fall and save your knees when going downhill if used properly. But, you have to know how to properly adjust the straps and properly use the straps to get the max out of them, although in more technical terrain going downhill I will often not use the straps at all so that can quickly jettison a pole if I feel like I might fall in such a way that the pole being attached to me could make things worse.
But, I don't like the idea of having a shelter that must be supported by trekking poles as I often do not pack my shelter with me and hunt a day or two from a basecamp and want my shelter to stay upright while I'm gone. At 2lbs. 3 oz., the TarpTent Rainbow is hard to beat in that regard as it is very roomy and has a ton of flexible pitching options. It can be made to be 'free standing' with the use of trekking poles and the trekking poles can be used in a different way to add support to the shelter if there was a big snowfall, for instance. The vestibule is particualrly flexible in it's various pitching options. The Stratospire has less floor room (unless 'expanded') and requires trekking pole use or another pole (add. 4 oz. for TarpTent's poles for this purpose to make it heavier than the Rainbow) to make it work and it weighs only 2 oz. less than the Rainbow, the Rainbow including it's pole in that weight, while being less expensive. So, you just have to pick and choose what's important to you and works for your style of hunting.
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