TREELINE OUTDOORS' ROOF-TOP TENT
WORDS AND PHOTOS BY BUDD STANLEY Testing the Treeline Outdoors Tamarack Rooftop Tent to the Extremes
If there is one thing you can say about Canada’s Arctic, it’s that it is a very unforgiving place that makes survival the primary concern of anyone who chooses to venture into this forbidding region. Nine months of winter per year and some of the world’s most extreme conditions demand that anyone travelling here had better be both educated and prepared for the worst Mother Nature can deliver.
During the planning phase of the Titan Arctic Challenge, this weighed heavily on our minds as we tried to wrap our heads around how to shelter ourselves from the elements. Others that had come before us made use of military style canvas ground tents. However, with the advent of the roof-top tent we could set up camp in a fraction of the time and provide better weather-proofing.
There is no shortage of great companies to choose from when purchasing a rooftop tent, however, we found that nearly all of them hale from much hotter climates than we planned to visit. That was until we came across Treeline Outdoors, an Alberta-based company that builds heavy duty roof-top tents specifically for Canadian environments. A quick chat on the phone convinced us that Treeline Outdoors were the answer to our shelter issue with their Tamarack two-man tent.
All of Treeline Outdoors' roof-top tents are built with 380g Poly/Cotton Rip-stop Canvas that provides maximum shelter from wind and rain, and aluminum tube frames. These Tamaracks feature a lightweight aluminum honeycomb base. Each are compatible with Goal Zero Solar products with D-rings for hanging lights inside, and easy mounting of solar panels and the associated charging station. Not so useful in the darkness of an Arctic winter, but these features will come in handy on summer expeditions given the amount of electronics we need to keep charged.
This new “Gen3” tent has been beefed up from previous generations. Aluminum tubing with 2mm wall thickness makes the tent both light weight and extra rugged. The frame poles are equipped with condensation sleeves, extra helpful in the Arctic to prevent icing. All the
tents come standard with three oversized awning windows that can be rolled up for unrestricted views, and we recommend the “Constellation” version that comes equipped with a window panel in the roof for star viewing from your sleeping bag.
The good folks over at Treeline Outdoors are proper outdoorsmen and women, and that shows with the attention to details they’ve put into these tents. Simple things like shoe/utility storage bags, an underside utility net for additional storage, heavy duty rubber latches for storing heavier gear like fishing rods or paddles, and a Diamond Ripstop rainfly, make the Tamarack a more versatile unit. Large hinges conveniently allow storage of bedding inside the tent while collapsed. The high density 2.5” foam mattress is built-in and waterproof. While firm, they provide an excellent sleeping surface, even in the freezing conditions we encountered.
Over the course of our two-week expedition the tents were subjected to
several hundred kilometres of rough roads per day and constant deployment in conditions as low as -38°C. The frames provided an extremely strong structure that held up against high winds and snowfall, while the materials conquered the extreme conditions remarkably well. Our only failure on the entire expedition was some cracking in the outer annex windows in the coldest temperatures (-38) and some bent tent pegs due to the ground being frozen rock hard.
Despite constant snowfall, high winds and frigidly low temperatures, the Treeline Outdoors Tamarack’s were an excellent life boat on the back of our Nissan Titan XD’s and provided comfortable shelter with the aid of suitable cold weather clothing and sleeping bags.
Part Number: NA Price: $3,161.00 www.treelineoutdoors.com
Rugged aluminum frames are strong and lightweight with condensation covers to keep the interior comfortable during cool nights.
Added shoe storage, hooks and mounts for camping and outdoors equipment up the versatility level.
Panoramic views with roll-up awnings give great visibility and cooling in warm conditions.
The Treeline Outdoors Tamarack’s were an excellent life boat in the frigid Arctic cold.
Every Treeline Outdoors tent comes solar-ready for charging systems like the Goal Zero.