OUR TAKE In 2012, we lauded the original Katabatic for its immense strength and spacious interior, and this redesign doubles down on both. The fly’s guyout points have been beefed up to handle the nastiest weather out there: “We saw 70-mph gusts with blowing snow and still felt totally secure,” said one tester after a ski mountaineering adventure in Alaska’s Western Chugach Mountains. The walls are steeper, to max out livable space without increasing footprint size (the shelter is 48 square feet). “We easily fit three sleepers inside with some gear; we could even cram in a fourth person in a pinch,” our tester says. Tradeoff: weight.
THE DETAILS The Katabatic’s rear vestibule has also been redesigned as side-entry with a curved zipper on the fly, which offers easier access in high wind than a vertical zipper. A 40-denier ripstop nylon fly and 70-denier nylon taffeta floor add all-mountain durability. Extra-wide (46-inch) double doors boost livability, and eight pockets line the walls for maximum organization. Two zippered roof vents prevented major condensation, although we noticed slight moisture buildup with a full crew inside during a 15°F evening on Alaska’s Eklutna Lake.
TRAIL CRED “Color-coded poles helped me pitch this in near-whiteout conditions,” said one tester after a night in the Whistler backcountry. $799; 10 lbs. 3 oz.; eddiebauer.com