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Sleeping without a tent?

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Offline Sanjuro82

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Sleeping without a tent?
« on: December 07, 2007, 05:23:34 PM »
In the past my brother and I have always used a lightweight 2 person tent on our multi day trips.  But this year we are thinking about saving the weight and ditching the tent on our trip to the Mesa de Anguila.  My main concern would be the creepy crawlies.  I'd really prefer to to not be sharing my sleeping bag with any scorpions or spiders.

The cold and wind isn't really a factor with us.

Thoughts?  Comments?  Suggestions?

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Offline presidio

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Re: Sleeping without a tent?
« Reply #1 on: December 07, 2007, 05:40:56 PM »
I'd really prefer to to not be sharing my sleeping bag with any scorpions or spiders.
Thoughts?  Comments?  Suggestions?

I have spent many a night camped without a tent and never, ever had an occurrence of finding something in my bag either before I got in (just don't put it out before use or shake it out if you do....like checking your boots in the morning) or upon waking.

I'm sure it must occasionally happen, but the concern seems to be overblown and misplaced, perhaps approaching 'rural legend' status.

Now, just to creep everyone out, if you ever take a battery-powered UV lamp into the desert and shine it around, you will be TRULY ASTOUNDED at how many scorpions are out hunting. There ain't just a couple. When you consider this and then the fact that these kinds of critters are rarely to never found in in-use bags, that says to me that the bugs have better things to do than drag you away in the middle of the night. However, all bets are off if the ants from Them! show up.
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Offline sleepy

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Re: Sleeping without a tent?
« Reply #2 on: December 07, 2007, 06:09:01 PM »
i've done both.  i do both.  i like both.  for me, there is something about the security of a tent that makes me sleep deeply.  it's probably more a false sense, but it's there.  however, there is nothing like being "in it" by sleeping out under the stars.  it makes me feel a bit more vulnerable; but, that's the point.  what are those sounds i hear in the bush that i don't hear in the tent?  no mesh in between me and Orion.  you think that's small, but it can be big.  the one last barrier, physical and mental, between me and the environment that is gone.  when your eyes open, there are no poles, no fabric, no net, only sky, air and dirt.  still, always have a plan for rain.
It's never too late to be what you might have been-Geroge Elliot

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Offline okiehiker

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Re: Sleeping without a tent?
« Reply #3 on: December 07, 2007, 06:19:25 PM »
90 percent of my bibe nights have been tentless and i have never had any problem.  Go for it!
Funny... I have a story about that...

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Offline Burn Ban

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Re: Sleeping without a tent?
« Reply #4 on: December 07, 2007, 07:29:27 PM »
i am definitely a no-tent kind of guy.  never had anything happen that i didn't like.

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Offline astrofizz

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Re: Sleeping without a tent?
« Reply #5 on: December 07, 2007, 08:01:20 PM »
There are few things I enjoy more than simply opening my eyes during a dark or Moonlit night in the Big Bend to savor a star-filled desert sky. This is most easily done without a tent.  No tents!  :-)

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Offline randell

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Re: Sleeping without a tent?
« Reply #6 on: December 07, 2007, 10:13:17 PM »
I camped with my kids a few months ago in a teepee.  There was a two inch gap between the ground and the bottom of the teepee and an opening (doorway) with no flap or anything.  It also had the skylight thing going on.  Nothing happened to us.  This wasn't in Big Bend, it was in the Big Thicket of East Texas where I believe there are more creepy crawlies than you could ever dream of seeing at Big Bend.

However, during the night I woke up and looked out the door and saw some coyotes or wild dogs roaming on the edge of camp.  It was a little concerned so I got out of my sleeping bag and marked my territory on a few nearby trees and went back to sleep. 

There's nothing like a good quest to get you intimate with a place. - Tom Clynes

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Offline STARLITDARKNESS3

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Re: Sleeping without a tent?
« Reply #7 on: December 07, 2007, 10:30:07 PM »
It was a little concerned so I got out of my sleeping bag and marked my territory on a few nearby trees and went back to sleep. 




 :rolling: :rolling: :rolling: :kaos-cactus06:
"Are we there yet?"  ... by my Kids

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Offline Hoodoo

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Re: Sleeping without a tent?
« Reply #8 on: December 07, 2007, 11:20:40 PM »
I really enjoy falling asleep on the river bank, just above a small rapid to serenade me into slumber. All the while gazing up in awe at the stars above. Words just can't describe it.

If the weather is questionable and/or a base camp is used, I set up a tent.
Don
Fort Worth

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Offline mule ears

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Re: Sleeping without a tent?
« Reply #9 on: December 08, 2007, 06:54:47 AM »
Other than one trip in the Grand Canyon in the 70's, I haven't carried or used a tent in the desert for over 30 years.  Even here on the East coast I haven't carried a tent for over 6 years.  Just like to save the weight and love to sleep under the stars.  I have never had anyone visit me during the night (in the desert), as least that I was aware of.  A good tarp and in the wet climes a good bivy sack is all I need, even with a down bag.
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Offline Mark D

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Re: Sleeping without a tent?
« Reply #10 on: December 08, 2007, 01:34:57 PM »
I spent a lot of money a couple years ago on an MSR Hubba solo tent which weighs only 3#12oz all tricked out with fly, poles, stuff sack, stakes and ground cloth.
But I just bought a 5'x8' sil-nylon tarp from Campmor ($55). Along with 8 MSR aluminum needle stakes ($13), guylines and a 2 mil plastic ground cloth. Altogether it weighs about 15oz. and takes up almost no space in the pack. I intend to go tentless on my next trip, and take this tarp along just in case it's cloudy or I need a wind break. Of course you need trekking poles to hold it up.
After all, it is the desert and it probably won't rain and if it's windy you can snuggle up behind a bush or your backpack. Maybe you don't even need a tarp.
Like a previous writer, I also think the snake-in-the-sleeping-bag is something invented in Hollywood.

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Offline TheWildWestGuy

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Re: Sleeping without a tent?
« Reply #11 on: December 08, 2007, 10:33:04 PM »
Bring a Tent!   You can thank me after your trip.  Maybe the threat from creepy-crawly's is overblown but your goal is to sleep well not prove how fearless you are.  It will also be a good bit warmer and offer some wind/sun/rain protection.   The Mesa Anguila is pretty exposed and isolated, your not going to find some tree or bush to snuggle up under and I would take it along as "safety gear" if nothing else.
Look Mom 500 Posts... TWWG

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Offline badknees

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Re: Sleeping without a tent?
« Reply #12 on: December 09, 2007, 12:21:17 AM »
Bring a Tent!   You can thank me after your trip.  Maybe the threat from creepy-crawly's is overblown but your goal is to sleep well not prove how fearless you are.  It will also be a good bit warmer and offer some wind/sun/rain protection.   The Mesa Anguila is pretty exposed and isolated, your not going to find some tree or bush to snuggle up under and I would take it along as "safety gear" if nothing else.
Look Mom 500 Posts... TWWG

I totally agree. One good, misty cold front with 25 mph wind out of the North at 30 F.....Get the picture? Brrrrr. :eusa_pray:
Not all those who wander are lost.
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Offline Al

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Re: Sleeping without a tent?
« Reply #13 on: December 09, 2007, 12:36:50 AM »
Know the weather forecast and plan according.  If a cold front is coming through, a tent is a good thing to have.  A tarp is much more flexible and less constraining but does not substitute for a good tent if there is heavy weather unless your camp is sheltered from the wind.

Al

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Offline Boojum1

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Re: Sleeping without a tent?
« Reply #14 on: December 09, 2007, 12:54:42 AM »
Never a tent in BiBe, but never winter either.  I got caught in an 18 degree night in GMNP and was quite happy to have my tent available.  Pack it just in case.  You don't have to take it if the forecast is decent.
Pithy quote free for years

 


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