Six Moon Designs Lunar Duo Arrives…

 

My new Six Moon Designs Lunar Duo tent showed up on my doorstep today! I bought this to replace my heavier and smaller Kelty Grand Mesa 2 tent for when my wife or my son goes out with me.  I will save approximately 30 oz but my interior space is much more usable/livable. It may not sound like much but going from 29 ft2 (which was limited all around the perimeter due to a sloped wall and shorter dimensions) to a 34 ft2 floor has a huge advantage.

In the Kelty tent my sleeping bag would always rub the foot-end of the tent and the hood would even touch the door on the front. This was due to the sloped walls at the head and foot. I didn’t like my bags touching the walls which is why I wanted such a large floor space for two. However, I also wanted something that was as vertical as I could get it. This is the cool thing about the Lunar Duo, all around its perimeter the walls are indeed vertical. Of course there is some compromise here though. At the head and foot the bathtub floor is sewn to a fine no-see-um mesh which goes straight up about a foot or so where it meets the walls going up. (The picture below shows this.) Due to such a long floor length and this vertical area, there is so much room my sleeping bag on top of a NeoAir or a taller Exped air pad will not even come close to hitting the tent walls!

Here is a picture with only my full length (20″ x 72″) sleeping pads inside the Lunar Duo:

And here is a picture with our sleeping bags on the pads:

And here is a picture of me laying inside my sleeping bag inside the tent:

As you can see, there is indeed plenty of room.

I opted for the UL floor since I plan on using a ground sheet under the tent. I thought about using a polycro ground sheet but I figured that the silnylon by itself is slick enough, so I ordered a large Tyvek ground sheet from Six Moon Designs with the tent. The Tyvek sheet is listed at 48″ x 84″ which is just a little smaller than the tent’s floor but that will be ok.

As far as the inside of the tent floor, well it is silnylon so as anyone that has had a silnylon floor knows, it is a little slippery. I was pleased to find that my NeoAir did a pretty good job at not slipping around so much, at least on level ground. However, I plan to use some of my SilNet and making dots inside on the floor once I get a nice sunny and dry day. I do feel like things will feel like they are moving around on the floor a little when actually it is the floor that is moving. This is because the floor is not staked down, but rather stretched using some elastic cord at each of the four corners. (This is the same idea I had for a DIY bathtub floor not to long ago…)

As well, I opted to have the tent factory seam sealed. I was a little hesitant since I have the SilNet already, but figured I would be happier to let some one else do it. Now that it is here I have found some spots that will need to be touched up, but that shouldn’t be a problem. That said, if I were to do it again, I would have saved the $30 and did it myself. (Seems like I have heard that before…)

The tent came in a green stuff sack made of the same silnylon as the body of the tent with a cord lock to cinch the top closed. Of course the tent also came with the two ceiling poles. As far as the tent, there are a few loose threads that I will cut away that are mainly found where the no-see-um mesh is sewn, however, they do not give me any reason to worry. Although, there is a seam on the top of the vents that is directly over the tip of the trekking pole (can be seen in very first picture). I figure that this (tent) is a well thought out design, but I will keep an eye on this seam since a large amount of pressure will be put on these two spots, which hold the tent up. If this seam were to split the trekking pole could possibly go through the tent, which would make it hard to keep the tent erect.

Other than this, this tent is a very nice tent. Very roomy for a 2 person tent, and at a lesser weight than my Kelty. One thing I was a little concerned about is the size of the footprint, and finding a large enough spot. Granted it may be hard to do so in some areas, I don’t believe that it will be as difficult as I feared. Other than this, I am very excited about my new tent! I can’t wait to take it out for a few nights. I am sure it will be set up in my yard though real soon for the night…Oh yeah, I forgot weights…  🙂  (Not really, just saving it for last…)

Six Moon Designs classifies this tent as an Ultralight tent, and in my opinion, for all that it is, it most certainly is Ultralight. However, in the light of Ultralight backpacking as a whole, maybe not…Another thing to think about is pack size. At 15″ x 7.5″ this tent does not pack down the smallest, but then again, there are certainly bigger. Again here, in my opinion, I am fine with this, but I do have to think about how I will carry this in my pack. I am afraid that it will be too big to pack in my front pocket of my new ULA Circuit but that is something I will have to figure out…

So, here are the weights I got on my scale:

  • Tent Body & Stuff Sack: 34.4 oz
  • 2 Arched Ceiling Poles: 2.6 oz
  • 48″ x 84″ Tyvek Ground Sheet: 5.1 oz
  • Stakes: Depends on what I take.
  • Total: 42.1 oz (2 lbs 10.1 oz)

Lastly, this tent does require the use of trekking poles to pitch, but for those that do not use trekking poles, Six Moon Designs does sell an optional Carbon Fiber pole to use instead. For me, I like to carry trekking poles when I hike so I will be using these. At the moment I carry 2 Outdoor Product flick lock poles I got at Wal-Mart a little over a year ago. These poles have been great, but they are due a replacement. To replace them I will be going with the regular Gossamer Gear LT4 adjustable poles, just as soon as Gossamer Gear has them available again (which should be in the next couple of weeks).

EDIT: Due to my impatience I went ahead and got a pair of Leki CorkLite Aergon SpeedLock Trekking Poles. I still plan on getting the Gossamer Gear LT4 poles, but now I must wait a little longer… However, these poles will work great with my new Lunar Duo!

About Stick

My blog is essentially a record of my hiking career. Through it, I, and others, can see how I have evolved from a heavy weight backpacker, to a smarter, more efficient, lightweight backpacker. Through the use of video, still photos, and of course writing, one can see my progression, as well as check out some of the places I hike, and not to mention some cool, lightweight gear options. For me, my blog is a journal, but for others, I hope that it is an interactive learning tool to aid them in their own progression towards lightweight backpacking.
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13 Responses to Six Moon Designs Lunar Duo Arrives…

  1. Pingback: Ultralite Luna Cargo Bag

  2. Chris Emmerson says:

    Greetings from England. I reckon you’ll be more than happy with the Lunar Duo. I’m a big fan of Ron’s gear and have been using the LD on a number of trips with my wife. For two people it is really spacious so that, even if you do get minimal condensation (which is inevitable in our climate) you can easily avoid any contact with the walls. Great design and easy to pitch (not as perfect as your pics though) and light enough for one person to carry (me). Will look forward to hearing how you like it. Have fun.

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    • Stick says:

      Chris,

      Hey! Thanks for checking out my blog. And I completely agree with you about the Lunar Duo. It is great as far as I can tell. The one thing I will need to do though is to fine tune how I will handle the floor moving around so much. As far as the pitch, I give that credit to Ron and the design. I have set it up twice, and both times it has been super simple.

      Thanks,
      Chad

      Like

  3. John Roan says:

    Stick,

    I have an old SMD Refuge-X, the cuben version of the now discontinued Refuge tent, which is similar you your new tent. Mine is quite spacious, but not as large as your Lunar Duo. I hope you like it!

    John

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    • Stick says:

      John, thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment. I do like the LD so far. It is replacing my smaller and heavier 2P tent. I feel like I may could fit my wife and son in here with me if I needed to. (They are both small people.) I want to get me a solo shelter next, and the cuben is awful nice… Chad

      Like

  4. Alan says:

    Looking good.

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  5. That might just be the best pitch of a Lunar Duo I’ve ever seen. I can’t say mine ever looked so stately.

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    • Stick says:

      Thanks Green Giant. That was my first pitch ever with the tent, and only minutes after I put my hands on it. However, the trekking pole on the back (the side opposite the side with the “Six Moon Designs” logo on the vent) was actually a little lower than the front side. This was due to the fact that the trekking pole was slipping. It will not hold up under the pressure needed to hold the tent up at the 45″ mark. Therefore I am getting new trekking poles. I will say that in my post I indicated that I was getting the GG LT4 poles, but due to my impatience I went ahead and picked up a pair of Leki’s. I will still get the GG poles, it just may be a little while longer now.

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  6. Jason says:

    Man, please tell me you have some hooks or something on that porch space for some hammocks!

    Oh yeah, nice info on the tent.

    Jason

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    • Stick says:

      Haha…Thanks Jason! I need hooks and a hammock…Actually I have a DIY hammock, but I never got around to getting any rope that would hold me up…

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  7. FamilyGuy says:

    Thanks for posting these pictures as it accurately and clearly shows the enormous size of the interior. Although the canopy slopes at each end, there appears to be a lot of room for side sleepers without touching the canopy with a shoulder.

    Look forward to hearing about the field test.

    Like

    • Stick says:

      FG,
      I know I didn’t post pics of my laying inside the bags but I will. For now though I will tell you it is fine, for me. I am 5’10” and I experienced no problems when laying inside. I was also happy to find that the pads are not squished together in the middle. Here again, I will post more pics.
      I did not mention though that the bathtub floor really varies. It is actually a very shallow bathtub floor, but that kind of depends on what is on the floor. All of the edges can easily be squished down flat if something is laid at the edge or near it. I will have to keep this in mind during a rain storm…
      Thanks for checking out the post.
      Chad

      Like

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