This hybrid trekking pole tent is well suited to long-distance backpacking and thru-hiking, since it is roomy, packable and very light – just be aware that it can suffer from condensation more than most double-skinned designs.
- Generous interior length
- Stable, wind-shedding design
- Roomy porch areas and large entrances
- Lightweight and compact packed size
- Prone to condensation in cold, damp conditions
- Pegs/stakes not supplied
- Seams need to be sealed before use (or available as a cost option with a longer lead time)
Six Moon Designs Skyscape Trekker 1P: first impressions
With the smallest pack size of any one-person tent we’ve tested recently, and at well under 1kg, the Six Moon Designs Skyscape Trekker 1P is an impressively light and compact shelter, which seems ideally suited to multi-day backpacking and thru-hiking trips.
It’s a hybrid design based on a wedge-style, single-skin trekking pole tent (see also: types of tent) but incorporates a hanging mesh and fabric inner to give you some of the benefits of a conventional double-wall tent too (including a bug-proof inner with a sewn-in, bathtub-style groundsheet). The trekking poles fit inside the inner, although you can also pitch it using carbon fiber struts (sold separately). It is very easy to pitch, requiring just five pegs or stakes to create the basic structure.
When set up it is exceptionally roomy, with an integrated spreader bar that adds loads of headroom. This ensures that even the tallest backpackers will be able to sit upright, and length and width are both similarly generous (the tent measures over 8ft from end to end).
There are two doorways and vestibules on either side of the tent, which are a good size. This provides ample storage space and makes it easy to get in and out of the tent. The fact that the doors can be rolled back also gives you superb ventilation, not to mention panoramic views. All in all, this is a tent that offers fantastic liveability, even if spending multiple nights on the trail.
• RRP: $270 (US) / £285 (UK)
• Sleeps: 1
• Weight: 790g / 1lb 12oz
• Pack size: 38cm x 13cm / 15in x 5in
• Length: 305cm / 120in
• Compatibility: Three-season backpacking
Six Moon Designs Skyscape Trekker 1P: in the field
This is a neat-looking tent that proved to be refreshingly easy to set up in a range of different conditions and terrains. It pegs out quickly with minimal fuss and unlike some rival designs, it is easy to fit the trekking poles inside, giving you a nice taut shelter in minutes. The design itself is very stable and sheds wind well thanks to an aerodynamic, wedge-shaped profile, while the sil-poly fabric doesn’t sag.
Flysheet coverage is good at either end of the tent, though there are noticeable gaps elsewhere. This might be a drawback in terms of overall protection and coverage from weather, but on the plus side it does ensure improved airflow inside the tent. That’s just as well, since – like all single-skin designs – this tent can suffer from condensation, though it only seemed to affect one fabric panel overhead. And it is manageable, only really noticeable on the coldest, wettest nights. Provided your sleep system can cope with the odd drip or two, it’s likely to be a minor issue only, if at all.
One thing worth noting is that this tent is not supplied as standard with pegs or stakes, so you’ll need to invest in a decent set. For many ultralighters, this won’t be an issue, as it is common to swap out manufacturer-supplied stakes for lighter alternatives anyway. Just make sure you’ve added them to your kit before you head for the hills!
Similarly, be aware that – in common with many single-skin tents from the smaller manufacturers – this tent does not have sealed seams. You’ll need to do this yourself, using a product suitable for silicone-polyester fabrics. If the prospect of that is a concern, you can ask Six Moons to do this for you at their factory before dispatch, though this comes with an added cost and a longer lead time.
Single-skin trekking pole tents probably aren’t for everyone. If you’re a first-time camper, this might not be the best choice for you, unless you’re really looking to get into ultralight scene (see also: Ultralight camping: 12 ways to lighten your load). But for more experienced users who are familiar with these types of tent, we think Skyscape Trekker is one of the most practical and effective options on the market.
An outdoors writer and editor, Matt Jones has been testing kit in the field for nearly a decade. Having worked for both the Ramblers and the Scouts, he knows one or two things about walking and camping, and loves all things adventure, particularly long-distance backpacking, wild camping and climbing mountains – especially in Wales. He’s based in Snowdonia and last year thru-hiked the Cambrian Way, which runs for 298 miles from Cardiff to Conwy, with a total ascent of 73,700 feet – that’s nearly 2½ times the height of Everest. Follow Matt on Instagram and Twitter.
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