Backpacker - - Camping -


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

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