Tuesday 23 February 2010

MLD DuoMid - awesome gear! To be or not to be?

Oh, how have I been tempted!

That MLD DuoMid looks so good, and, even worse, has had excellent reviews.

So, to convince myself that I could do without it, I went back to my tarp set up. The question in my mind was: could I have the head end pitched down to the ground and still have enough room?

The answer is yes. And with the Micro tarp as a vestibule (as termed on the AGG website) I really do have superb weather protection. I've even got the gap at the top of the pole, where the two tarps overlap down to nothing.

I was put off the DuoMid in one respect - the lack of cover for cooking once the doors are rolled up. With the Micro tarp there are many ways this can be rigged to ensure protection from the elements while cooking - especially if I use my Bushbuddy.

In good weather the Micro tarp can be taken down completely. And, there are no zips to stick or bust. Pub proof!

My only other issue, that I had to work on was using shorter guylines, or, doing away with them.

I've shortened the guys on the front of the Solo tarp, as well as those on the Micro tarp. I've kept the guys on the Solo lifter points long. I didn't use them in the above photos, but, lifters are essential in strong winds.

Then I took it down and then put it up again - in a few minutes.

And, the weight comparison? With guylines and pegs, I guess the Duomid would weigh in at around 350 grms. The tarps weigh in at around 600 grms - complete. What's 250 grms? Or, 150 grms when compared with the silnylon version?

I use a TiGoat Ptamigan bivvy bag with built in headnet for midge/bug protection. I would still use this in a Duomid.

OK - I've convinced myself. MLD DuoMid? - Not to be!  But, I'll still keep an eye on Ron's excellent MLD website: he's for ever developing awesome gear!


  1. I like that pitch. I have often thought about carrying my mini tarp (MLD Monk) with the bigger 8'X10' tarp (ID Siltarp 2) for two people. I had just never figured out exactly what my favorite pitch would be.
    That seems to be better than anything I had thought of.
    I was originally going to pitch the 8X10 as an A-frame and pitch the mini on the windward side as a vestibule.

    I had also lusted over a Duo or Supermid and I'm thinking your setup better as it is more flexible. Being able to cook under the vestibule in pouring rain is definitely a plus. Can't do that with a Nid.

  2. Typo, I meant "Can't do that with a Mid."

  3. It was the MLD Monk tarp and the Shangri La 3 that gave me the idea of the two tarps setup. AGG also suggest a similar pitch with their tarp.

    I've used the 2T setup now in some rough weather and they have stood up well. Not for mountain top storms, but then what tent/tarp setup is?