Where am I?:^mistymornings-->Cycletouring-->Equipment.-->Tents.-->Eureka Moonshadow Duo

The Eureka Moonshadow Duo

Eureka Moonshadow Duo on a sunny morning.

Eureka Moonshadow Duo on a sunny morning.

Characteristics:

2 pole tunnel tent, not freestanding. Poles of unequal length. One entrance. Polyester outer tent, inner tent mostly mesh. Weight approx 2.7kg. Pitch system, outer tent first or inner tent first. Inner tent can be used without the flysheet.

Why did we choose this tent?

This was the tent that Stan wanted to buy for the 2005 trip and use it together with a small wing. The reasoning was that when the weather was fine you just put up the tent and when it was bad or to provide shade in fine weather you put up the wing as well. The Moonshadow Duo also had a smaller pack volume than the Citadel which was important when we went camping with our Bromptons. The extra size and weight of the Citadel made if very difficult to be able to take all the other gear we needed. The weight is kept down by using an inner tent which is mostly mesh. Despite this the tent seems to stay quite warm even in cold weather. Perhaps because the internal volume is relatively small.

We've used it a few times when touring with the Bromptons as, at the time, it was the tent with the smallest pack volume that we had. The poles just fit across a Brompton Touring bag although it is a tight fit and given that we take fewer bags on our Bromptons the Moonshadow Duo offers just enough storage space. However now we use the Helsport Fjellheimen Camp 3 as it is not much heavier and has a much smaller pack volume. In terms of price the Moonshadow Duo is far and away the cheapest tent we have bought together. The build quality seems good although the groundsheet is a bit thin. We had a replacement inner tent as the first groundsheet ended up being peppered with tiny holes (well two as the first replacement turned out to be for a Moonshadow Solo doh!). Since then and also with our other tents we use a second groundsheet (builders tarp in most cases).

There are a number of advantages:

  • It light without the use of exotic materials.
  • We think it offers good value for money and seems well made.
  • A reasonable amount of space for two people. Good for taller people as the inner tent is very long.
  • The tent ventilates very well and we rarely find condensation on the inside of the outer tent.
  • Quick to put up and can stand up happily with just 4 pegs.
  • Although designed to be an inner tent first pitch it is easy to pitch the outer tent first which we like.
  • You can also pitch the inner tent on its own in hot dry weather or you can pitch the inner first and then add the outer.
  • Large entrance for the size of tent. The flap can be zipped down from the top further improving ventilation.
  • Handy pockets around your head,
  • It will stand up to fierce winds and gales when all pegs and guy ropes are attached.
  • An eyebrow above the entrance ensures that you don't get water dribbling down your neck when getting in or out of the tent.
  • There are a few disadvantages;

  • It is just a bit small for a longer tour if the weather is not so nice.
  • The groundsheet is not as strong as it could be. We always use a separate groundsheet.
  • With a small wing it is heavier than the Helsport Fjellheimen Camp 3 without the small pack volume and it doesn't offer as much space/convenience in bad weather.
  • Only one person can sit upright in the tent at a time.
  • The location of the single exit, and the low headroom means that we don't think it is safe to cook inside the tent. Thus in bad weather either use the tarp or put the cooker outside in the rain.
  • You can only just get eight panniers and bar bags in the tent and then only when most of them are empty.
  • Conclusion:

    This is a good value for money tent relatively light and robust (apart from the inner tent groundsheet). For taller people this tent is good given the length of the inner tent. Ventilation is good in wet conditions even without zipping the entrance down from the top. It works well with a small wing (the Bever 150 for example) and is can be pitched in several different ways. Stan likes this tent but if you have the money there are many more expensive tents that offer much better accomodation without being much heavier. If money is the limiting factor then this tent is worth a look. However besides the price difference the Moonshadow Duo offers too few practical advantages over the Fjellheimen Camp 3.

    Side view of the Eureka Moonshadow Duo

    Side view of the Eureka Moonshadow Duo showing the large difference in height as a result of the large difference in pole lengths. The point at the end (left hand side) of the outer tent is is mirrored in the inner tent. However if you leave the point of the inner tent loose it is possible to push a few bags in from the outside. If the entrance was zipped on both sides you could use it as a canopy to provide more rain cover.