The North Face VE-25 Silicone
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The North Face VE-25 Silicone has been around for ever. This latest version sports the same geodesic structure and generous living area. The shape of the floor space provides maximum use of space enabling comfortable stoage for 2-3 people with A LOT of kit. The design will stand up to extremely strong winds from all directions. This is the tent every serious mountaineer lusts after...
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The North Face VE-25 Silicone Reviews
Reviewed by Rob (Kilmaurs) on 2005-12-22:
General comments: I have a VE-25 from 1992 and extremely happy with it. I've used it canoeing in Iceland and trekking in the artic circle - it has never let me down. While all my friends have replaced their tents multiple times, my VE25 only has a few traces of wear and tear. Even the original zips still work! The disadvantages of this tent are the weight (although I believe the newer versions are much lighter) and the non-existent ventilation system. Also, for me, the rear porch was a waste of space/weight as the front porch is sufficicent to store a large amount of gear. The tent is huge - it comfortably takes 2 or 3 people plus loads of gear. In fact, mine has slept 4 people (+ gear) on many occassions.Comment on this review...
Reviewed by David White (London) on 2005-12-22:
General comments: I lived in this tent for 8 weeks last summer in Colorado during a mountaineering holiday in the Rocky Mountain national park. The weather ranged from extremely sunny (110?F) to fairly cold (3?F) with a few thunderstorms thrown in for good measure. Also impressive was the wind stability especially at higher altitude. The VE 25 coped well with everything and was a very comfortable home for the two months. After some practicing, you can pitch the tent quickly (even on your own). This winter I finally used it in the snow (although not much) and it performed well again. Even for an expedition tent, it's expensive but if you're going to get enough use out of it, it's money well spent.Comment on this review...
Reviewed by Roger (Fife) on 2005-12-22:
General comments: I've owned two North Face VE25 tents and I can confirm the roof ventilators work substantially better on the later models. Furthermore, the new material is also a big improvement. I used this tent most recently on a Mont Blanc trip. Due to the weather we had to spend a lot of time in the tent and did all of our cooking inside. The living space is generous and the weight is more than fair for such a sturdy tent. For longer routes where the weather is certain to include storms and snow, the VE25 can be depended upon. The structure deals incredibly well with wind - we had it exposed to 100 km/h winds at altitude without any problems. Our front porch did spring a tiny leak but it was easily sealed (the weak point was the seal at the fasteners used to roll up the entrance). I would not consider using another tent for serious expeditions.Comment on this review...
Reviewed by Sam Walker (Leeds or Birmingham) on 2005-12-28:
General comments: Only used this tent once in a very wet campsite in Langdale in the lake District and although it certainly is a very very strong tent, we hadgale-force winds that weekend and it stood upto it no problems at all.
It's very very large for a tent too, the front porch is hugh and the space at the back is more than enough for putting rucksacks in. I slept with 2 other men in it and we were more than comfortable sleepign together in it with all our kit too.
I liked some of the little details, real attention detail was shown on this tent, like glow in the dark zip-pulls, very useful at 2am! Also the strange wire things on the poles seemed to work well too, kept the flysheet off the inner in all conditions and so the inner remained dry
Only slight complaints were that this tent pitches inner first,I don't think this is ideal for a UK tent and ereceting in the rain was no fun at all, the inner seemed to let water in like a seive but this probably isn't such an issue on expeditions.
Overall a good tent, slightly heavy and the pack size wasnt as small as a backpacking tent, but I doubt i wuold want to take them on any expedtions! Bui nothing to worry about. Ok to split between 3 men and reasonably easy to errect, but not exactly as speedy as my hoganComment on this review...
Pros: Glow in dark zip pulls!
Vestibute ends are hugh, enough to have one for gear and have one for cooking, so could be useful for long expeditions
Once up, seemed to withstand high winds and rain well
More than enough space for 3 men and kit
Cons: Errects inner first
Slightly heavy and bulky, but nothing major.
Reviewed by Gary Duckworth (Herefordshire) on 2007-05-18:
General comments: Purchased this tent from new after using one on Snowden three years ago in horrendous conditions. It was a force 8 outside, sleet mixed with snow and generally not the nicest place on Erath at the time. Putting it up was probably the most difficult part (one person lying inside the canopy to hold it down) whilst the rest of us struggled against the elements to put it up. Once up and inside, the tent was unbelievable and vowed to buy one when I could.
On opening the bag you immediately are reminded of a superior quality tent. I have heard a lot of negative things said about North Face in the past especially regarding price but unfortunately, especially these days, you get what you pay for.
The flysheet is made of polyester which has great advantages over nylon, mainly being that is doesn’t sag when wet. Poles are aluminium, which are more than adequate for high altitude events (just llok at photos around base camp of Everest for the shear numbers of these tents). As per earlier, the longest/hardest thing when setting up is attaching the Velcro wraps to the tent poles. Everything else just falls into place. We suggest a couple of practise sessions each person so that when in a live environment it will be a breeze.
Inside, the tent offers plenty of room for two adult personages plus loads of extra space for gear. Head room is great and the groundsheet is extremely strong (but recommend a foot-print for those possible sharp encounters. Most people use this as a base camp type tent due to its slightly greater weight than most – I use it wherever I go – its simply one of the best, if not the best, tent that money can buy. You will not be disappointed.
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Cons: possibly weight and cost.....but its not been an issue for me
Reviewed by Grey Arete (Somewhere) on 2009-03-07:
General comments: Best tent ever made. Withstands everything thrown at it and shared between two is backpackable.Comment on this review...
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