I'm interested in buying a Clip Flashlight for a hike from Key West to Canada. Would you recommend this tent?
It would be two people in it. Also what is the diff. between the 98 and 99 model?
Would you recommend another tent over this one? Thanks for you help!
Finally an answer to your question. Sierra Design has made a few changes to
some of their tents for '99, but the Clip Flashlight CD remains unchanged.
In the ultralight tent review I did last summer, I recommended the
Flashlight as the best of the review.
You can also look at the Quest Seescape, North Face Vapor,
Walrus Arch Rival, and Kelty Windfoil Ultralight.
There are a couple of things I didn't like about the Flashlight tent (see
the article), but overall it is a good solid lighweight two person tent.
The principle disadvantage was the rainfly's design which allows water to
drip onto the mesh doorway, and potentially into the tent itself, when you
zip open the vestibule door. If water drips onto you clothing or sleeping
bag that's a distinct bummer. With care you can usualy avoid the drips, but
I felt that the design was a poor one. Sierra Designs countered by stating
that they intentionally designed the doorway that way for wind dispersion.
The sloping long rainfly splits the wind around the tent body when set up
with the vestibule facing into the wind.
The tent's pluses were lightweight, good peak height (headroom), adequate
vestibule space, ventilation thru side mesh panels, easy setup, and
roominess for two. For your trip length, the lightweight would be a strong
advantage. I'd advise against any tent over 4 lbs--no sense carrying the
extra weight when good lighter weight alternatives are available.
Bottom line: I'd recommend the Flashlight CD for your trip. In my opinion
its the best all-around ultralight three-season two-person tent, especially
when weight is a (the?) primary concern.