Trying Out The Southern Cross 2

The weather forecasts have been rather windy of late, and even though last night’s was not in the same category as Storm Doris, it seemed prudent to keep right off the tops. I settled for half way up Kinder instead.

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I was expecting to be putting the tent up in windy, heavy rain, but then taking it down the next morning in windy dry. And this is, in fact, exactly what happened.

As I journeyed upwards, Kinder Downfall could clearly be seen blowing upwards in all its magnificent glory.

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Pebbles was left at home for a change. She’s not totally recuperated from her spaying operation about ten days ago, but is nevertheless well on the way. Maybe next trip.

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The spot I was aiming for was not too far away. I’d not been there before, but Geoff had spent a night there with Islay, last year. I’ve been trying to Google some information about it, but haven’t come up with much. There’s obviously a ruined farmhouse, with the obligatory small group of sheltering trees around it, and its own, personal stream complete with mini waterfall, for water. The only bit of social history I have discovered, is that the farmhouse was definitely in existence and lived in, in the 1200s.

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Very pleasant, it offered a reasonable amount of shelter from the worst of the gusts and rain overnight, although did have a somewhat spooky air in the fog when venturing outside in the dark, for toileting purposes.

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Considering that this was the first time I’d erected the tent on my own, and despite the rain and wind, it was pretty quick and easy. I’d split it to make it easier to pack, so the outer went up first, keeping the inner nice and dry.

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It’s specced for two, so there’s oodles of space inside, plus two large porches. One either side. I only used the one though, most of my gear going straight into the inner. It also has a really nifty way of clipping open the outer door, to the external poles.

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What impressed me even more about this system, is that this clipping and unclipping can be done really easily without exiting the tent. Perfect for inclement weather.

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The headroom is absolutely brilliant and the only thing I regretted, was not taking my Thermarest Chair Kit with me. There’d be ample space for using that inside and thereby watching I-Player in total decadence.

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The wind and rain continued for most of the night, in the form of heavy showers and the occasional mad gust slamming into the side of the tent. It felt very stable. I slept pretty well, finally waking properly around 7am.

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It was fresh and breezy, but no longer raining. Lovely and bracing really. I thoroughly enjoyed my walk back home, taking a different and longer route to the one I’d walked in on. Looking back at the Downfall occasionally, it was still spectacularly blowing upwards.

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Logic suggests that I might well eventually find something I don’t like so much about the tent, but nothing obvious came to mind last night.

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In fact, I’m rather wishing I had the money to buy the one person version, as well!

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About chrissiedixie

Love being out on the moors and mountains, backpacking, dogs, travelling generally. Favourite place in the world - Yosemite National Park. Retired teacher and ex Mountain Rescue Deputy Team Leader. Married to Geoff, who puts up with all sorts.
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30 Responses to Trying Out The Southern Cross 2

  1. Fellbound says:

    Glad the tent is working out. Always a worry whether an expensive purchase will do the job as desired.

  2. Definitely try a Southern Cross 1 before you buy, or failing that a Laser/Zephyros 1. The lack of headroom and only one porch/door might swing it.

  3. andysmgray says:

    The tent looks well roomy. Seems it coped well with the wind and rain. I’m sure you and Geoff will put it through it’s paces. Looks like you enjoyed a wee bit of “Just Me” time Chrissie. Pebbles might have something to say about that though…..😊 Excellent read and pictures.

  4. Nice looking tent, like the way the door clips. Something that annoys me is a flappy door when you want it to stay open.

  5. Nice looking shelter. I’m sure I’ve said that before so it must be true! Good choice in the Indian Stew too πŸ˜€ Good little trip report, Chrissie. I really should bring my own blog up to date.

  6. Did Kinder Scout last year for the first time – really liked it!

  7. Brenda-Dawn Linney says:

    Lovely write up Chrissie, like the tent, it looks like you are on to a winner there. Excellent photos too.

  8. surfnslide says:

    Wet but good to get out. I really need to make more effort to do some overnights. Interesting to read the tent review as I’m toying with buying a new tent. I have a big 3 person Lightwave tent and a Voyager (and a small 1 person Macpac). I need a bigger 2 person tent, easy on the weight but with decent headroom and 2 porches able to stand up to a Scottish battering. This one looks pretty close to what I need. Time to look down the back of the sofa for some loose change….

    • I reckon this would stand up to a Scottish battering pretty well! I’ve been busy looking for loose change to buy the 1 person one too, for when I’m on the TGOC this year and no dog with me…..
      Incidentally, Geoff’s just gone out with it tonight and is trying it with his dog. Can’t see any reason why it won’t be excellent for 1 person plus a dog. Having the two porches, it would probably be pretty good on space for two people, to be honest.

      • surfnslide says:

        I’m a fan of geodesic tents (I cried a tear when my 25 year old Quasar died last year) especially if they can pitch fly first. Also looking at an MSR, Nigor and Big Agnes flavours

  9. awomanafoot says:

    What a great looking tent! I like 2 person tents for just me, b/c I want all my gear inside, with no worry about anything getting wet (if there is serious pouring rain and muddy ground). I also like my comforts inside and ease in changing or such. I’m using Vango blade now and it’s fine for my budget now, but it does have its down sides (in addition to 2kg of weight). How much does this one weigh?

    • I’m used to the space in a 2 person tent. Love getting everything inside. Plus, I’ve often got my dog with me, and we can both then fit in easily – with all our gear too!
      It’s a bit heavier than the last tent I had, but I specifically wanted an ‘outer pitch first’, 4 season tent. There are lighter ones out there, but they tend to be 3 season. I’ve changed all the pegs to MSR Groundhogs – because it came with naff pegs like they usually do – and the whole thing packed up, now weighs 2.3kg. (I’ve put 2 spare pegs in as well.)

      • awomanafoot says:

        The outer-first pitching is definitely a big plus! I have my inner attached to the outer, so at least I dont’ have to do the inner first in rain, but it’s not perfect. I also changed to MSR pegs, I’m not sure if I have the same that you have – but I found them painful to put in the ground! But sturdier and stronger than the regular ones.

        • If there’s any damp on the outer when I pack up, I always split the tent and pack separately. That way, the inner stays dry. for the next night.
          If your pegs are red, they might well be either the Groundhogs or the mini Groundhogs. Have to admit I push them in with my boots….. πŸ˜€

          • awomanafoot says:

            Yep, I have the red mini groundhogs. I used one to push another (so they don’t make a hole in my hand) or a stone. I am always scared of using my boots, got too many of pegs crooked that way πŸ˜‰
            I can’t split mine, so I either wait for the sun to dry it, or say f-it and pack it. The good thing with a bigger tent (as opposed to the tiny one-person), that I can sleep in the middle and not touch the wet sides if I had to pack it completely wet.

  10. McFadzean says:

    Enjoyed that. Some nice open spaces. And I love to camp next to a ruined building because you just know a wealth of human activity and drama has occurred there over the centuries.
    Alen

    • Thanks Alen. Exactly how I feel too!
      Although I couldn’t find out much about the farmhouse, I did find out that back in the 1200s etc, all these slopes of Kinder were wooded, and had various smelting works and charcoal producing works. This iron industry, was the main reason all the trees went in fact. Apparently, many of the remains from the industry disappeared under Kinder Reservoir when that was completed, in 1911. Love this sort of information! What I find particularly fascinating though, is the fact that all of this area is now considered to be uninhabited and – while not ‘wilderness’ – wild, and out in the sticks, and yet was thriving and populated hundreds of years ago!

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