The Extreme 2 is a two person, free standing, three pole dome tent designed for three season use. The poles are aluminum. There are dual doors, one for each occupant. The inner of the tent is composed of nylon and no-see-um mesh. The polyester rainfly covers almost all the tent, making this a double skinned tent. It contains a vent at each end as well as a small window. There are medium sized pockets on each side of the tent, across from the doors. I use them to hold my contact case, headlamp, and anything else I could need in the night or early morning.
Features# Year of Manufacture: 2005
# Made In: China
# All Actual Measurements within 1 centimeter of Manufacture Listed Measurements
# Base Size: 5'2" x 7'8" (1.57 m x 2.34 m)
# Center Height: 42" (107 cm)
# Vestibule Depth: 18" (46 cm)
# Tent Area (sq ft): 35 (3.25 sq m)
# Vestibule Area (sq ft): 18 (1.67 sq m)
# Tent & Fly Wt. (lb-oz): 5 - 12 (2.61 kg)
# Total Wt. (lb-oz): 6 - 8 (2.95 kg)
# Packed Size: 7" x 21" (17.8 cm x 53 cm)
# Listed Weight (lb-oz): 6-8 (2.95 kg)
# Measured weight (lb-oz): 6-2 (2.78 kg)
# Manufactures Seasons Ratings: 3
# Style: 3 pole dome
# Pitches: Inner first, then rainfly over top
# Sleeping capacity: 2
# Color: Blue
# Fly fabric: Polyester
# Floor fabric: Nylon with urethane coating
# Inner fabric: Nylon
# Factory seamed sealed: Yes
# Doors: Two, on each side of the tent.
# Gear loft: Yes, approximately 6 x 12" (15.3 x 30.5 cm)
# Storage pockets: Two, one next to each door. Approximately 6 x 8" (15.3 x 20.3 cm)
# Zips: Size #8 on doors and rainfly. Manufacturer not specified.
# Number of tent stakes: 12
# Vestibules: Two, one on each side of the tent.
The corners and seams have a high stitch count with heavy thread. The material is a ripstop nylon that is typical for this type of three season tent.
Set-Up The three aluminum poles snap together quickly because of the stretch shock cord inside. The center pole is pre-bent to accommodate the shape of the tent. By placing the poles in the correct ends and snapping about 20 plastic clips the shelter is ready for accommodation. I can easily set the tent up in 3-4 minutes by myself. The rain fly sets over the tent and is held down by 8 stakes around the perimeter. It connects to the inner by hook-and-loop strips near the top of the dome and four plastic clips around the perimeter. The inner must be pitched before the fly can be placed on top, and the fly cannot stand alone. The stakes are round aluminum 8 in (20.3 cm) shafts. I have not been overly impressed with them. They hold adequately in soft ground, but I have had them pull out in mud and sand.
Design ProblemsThis is the only area where I have several complaints about the Extreme. First, I should say that I think the inner tent body itself is well designed. Except for the angle of the walls (See Size) and maybe the zip in nylon panels, I would change very little. Most of my problems come from the rainfly. I believe that its design could be improved significantly. First, the vents on each end of the fly are usually unnecessary, because the fly sits three inches off the ground. There is plenty of air flow from that gap. The only time I have actually needed the vents was during a snowstorm that sealed off the bottom of the fly. A second issue with the fly is the size of the vestibules. I can hardly fit a backpack in the large part. It must lean against the tent, leaving little room for anything else. I would like to see the vestibule size increased significantly. Third, there are only two loops to guy line the fly out and they are in the wrong spots in my opinion. They are located at each end of the tent above the vents. I would like to see several more guy loops placed evenly around the fly. The two that are in place to do little to hold the fly out taunt. Finally, the zippers on the fly have an annoying problem of getting stuck in the flap that covers them. The last thing I want to do in the morning when I have to go to the bathroom is fight with a zipper to get the door open. With all of that being said, I have spent several nights in the rain, and the fly kept me dry each time.
SizeThe Extreme has adequate floor space for two people. I have spent numerous nights in the Extreme with another guy who is also 6 feet tall. (It was a sweet sausage fest high in the cascades!) We have never had trouble with the size. I like the floor design. The center pole pulls the middle of the tent wider then both ends. This leaves a small space on the side to store a water bottle or other small necessities. The roof of the tent is high enough that I can sit up in the middle without hitting my head. There is ample room to put a shirt on without disturbing my tent mate in the morning. I have noticed that the entire floor space of the tent is not used. The walls come off the floor at an angle that makes the last few inches of the perimeter useless. I would like to see the angle of the side walls steepened to prevent this.
OtherThe Extreme is very effective in shutting the weather out so you can get a good nights sleep. The three-pole cross-over design provides a sturdy foundation against the wind and the rainfly sheds whatever falls on it. The seams in the floor are factory sealed. After rainy nights, and the sun comes up, the tent is quick to dry. I have had the Extreme out in high winds and it does a great job. It help up like a champ and was not overly loud.
So far the Extreme has stood up to everything I have put it through. Several times I have brought it home covered in mud, but after a wash in the bathtub it is ready to go again. There are not any noticeable signs of wear. The tent body and fly each have several stains, but nothing that is a structural concern. I noticed the last time I set the tent up that the stitching on one of the nylon web clips looked like it was coming loose, but it has yet to tear or come out. The floor is in great shape
even from pitching it on rocky terrain in the cascades.
One thing that I especially like about this tent are the mesh panels on the top and sides. On clear nights they provide the best stargazing, and when the fly is on the tent still breathes well without forming condensation. As mentioned earlier, the vents in the fly are almost useless because of the gap between the fly and the ground. Plenty on air moves from along the edges. Even on the most humid night, I have not experienced any condensation. Having this much mesh and air flow can create problems on cold nights. I do not expect the Extreme to keep me warm. The temperature inside is the same at the temperature outside, but that is the trade off for exceptional ventilation.