Up till now we have been using a Bardani Marinello tent for our holidays and we did so quite satisfactory.

Advantages of this dome tent are its size (enough room for 2 persons and their equipment), a large vestibule with two doors and aluminum tent poles. It also has a modest packing size and acceptable weight.

The tent has been used for a quite some years now and it starting to show signs of wear. So it is time for a good replacement. Unfortunately this model isn’t produced anymore. Besides we got more demanding. So the search for a good alternative has started.

The tent we now have in our mind is the MSR Holler. The inner tent of this geodesic tent is even bigger than the Bardani (10cm in both ways). The maximum height however is a little bit lower but due to its special shape it offers more space than the Bardani. Also the weight is less, its 2 kilo lighter and the packing size is also smaller. Furthermore, the tent is free standing, which is an advantage on hard surfaces.

The only disadvantage is that the entrance is less accessible compared to the Bardani and the MSR Mutha Hubba HP. But compared to the Bardani the last one is 10cm shorter in both ways. We think, this is too small for us, taking into account the kind of trip we would like to make with it.

Right now we have bought this tent as you can read in this post.

We have been using the MSR Holler for a couple of times now. And it really is a nice tent. Easy to pitch by one person and offers a lot of sleeping space for two persons. However it also has a couple of drawbacks. The fly of the entrances is sloping too much, which makes it hard to fully close the zippers without touching the fly. And the vestibules are too small to be of any value. They don't offer any protection during bad weather and such. So that's why we decided to buy a Lowland Dome tarp, to increase our living area. During our holiday in Romania this tarp has proven to be invaluable. It can be pitched very quickly to offer protection from the rain. We even used it wrapped around our heads, to keep us dry. But of course it also offers sun protection when needed.

Last weekend we bumped into the Vaude Monolith Ultralight, which got us reconsidering the MSR Holler. For a lightweight tent the vestibule area is enormous. Which really is something we are lacking at the moment. The sleeping bay isn't that big, but if you only use it for sleeping it probably is ok. Though, we'll have to figure out if our Exped matresses fit. The major drawback is that it isn't a free standing tent. So it's NOT usable on hard surfaces or as a mosquito net. However during rain, it allowes to pack everything underneath the fly, without getting wet. Which in fact is an advantage. We'll just have to reconsider the pros and cons of both tents.

You will all already know that we went on our trip with our Vaude Monolith tent, a nice tent but the disadvantages are still that it is not free standing, it cannot really handle wind and that Marianne has to climb over Sander to leave the tent. Also setting up the tent, after 9 months Africa it took still 20 minutes. We could continue with this tent but then we saw this one:

The Vaude Mark XT. It is a hugh tent, free standing, easy to set-up (also alone) and hugh! So we bought it and it will hopefully be our tent for the rest of our trip.

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