Shelter Backpacks Sleeping Bags Accessories Materials FAQs Payments About/Photos
September 2014 - Welcome to ZPacks!

Autumn is here! Take advantage of our short lead times. Accessory items including rain gear are currently shipping in under a week. Larger items like backpacks, shelters and sleeping bags are made to order and are shipping in just 1-2 weeks! If you need your order to arrive right away or by a certain date please feel free to ask and we will schedule accordingly. All ZPacks gear is made for you right here in our US workshop.

9/21/14 - A few tents, sleeping bags, and a backpack are available for immediate shipment in our Bargain Bin!
ZPacks™ Hexamid Solo Tent or Tarp

Description:


The Hexamid is a six sided pyramid style tent for a solo hiker. It is made from the lightest materials available; .51 oz/sqyd cuben fiber, and optionally .7 oz/sqyd ultralight insect netting.

  • Sets up with just one trekking pole or walking stick adjusted to around 48 inches (122 cm), and a minimum of six stakes. Eight stakes are recommended.

    A Tent pole is available if you don't use trekking poles.

    Set up takes less than 2 minutes, watch the Setup Video!
    Text instructions are also available for the tent or tarp.
     
  • Fixed length guy lines using no-stretch spectra cord make setup easy. No line adjusters or knot tying necessary.

  • Ample space for one person plus gear. The tent is long enough for an average sized person to fully stretch out their arms and legs, and tall enough to sit upright.

    A 6 foot tall person would have about 17.5" (45 cm) of height at the end of their head and feet.

    If you are 6'2" (188 cm) or taller you should consider sizing up to the Solo-Plus which is larger and has extra guy lines for more head and foot room.
     
  • Great ventilation, and a great view through the large screen entryway. 6" of screen around the perimeter allows air flow.
     
  • The screen entryway opens with a single rainbow shaped zipper at the top. A single zipper reduces the likelihood of zipper failure, and keeps zipper weight at a minimum.
     
  • Cuben Fiber is made from Dyneema threads which do not stretch. The tent stays taut all night. Nylon materials by comparison can stretch and sag, especially if it gets wet.
     
  • All the seams are triple stitched and taped, and the tie outs are bonded. No seam sealing necessary!
     
  • This tent is unique in that it has a fully enclosed .7 oz/sqyd
    screen floor
    which keeps 100% of insects, spiders, ticks, etc out!

    You will need a separate ground sheet on the inside, on top of the screen, just like sleeping under a tarp. Keeping the groundsheet separate from the shelter offers the following advantages:
     
    1. Our separate Cuben Fiber Bathtub Ground Sheet works great, but alternatively you can use a Poncho, or inexpensive material like Tyvek for your groundsheet.
    2. On nice nights you can take out your separate ground sheet and sleep under the stars or on the ground under a shelter.
    3. If rain is blowing hard at one side of the shelter, you can fold up the edges of your ground sheet, or shift it away from any spray. Rain spray or condensation runs harmlessly out the screen floor.
    4. You can take out your ground sheet to dry everything out twice as fast.
    5. Normally the groundsheet stays clipped in place and packs up with the tent. You don't ever have to take it out except when you want to!
       
  • Each inside corner of the shelter has a loop and clip for attaching your groundsheet. The peak also has a loop on the inside for hanging a flashlight or stuff sack.
     
  • The expected life span of this shelter is at least one full 2500+ mile thru hike, or many years of casual use with some care. The shelter can also be easily repaired in the field since duct tape or Cuben Fiber Tape sticks well to the fabric.
     
  • All ZPacks gear has a one year warranty against defects in materials or workmanship. Returns or exchanges are welcome.
     
  • For more info check out the Tent FAQs.
Extended Beak:
The extended beak rolls down to block rain spray, deflect wind, and provide some privacy. The beak has an elastic cord which clips to the tent's front guy line. To open the beak just un-clip it and roll it up. The beak adds about 1 foot of vestibule space for shoes, etc. The extended beak is now the default, but it can be left off to reduce weight and price.

When hiking solo the extended beak may not be necessary since you can usually slide your ground sheet towards the back of the tent to avoid any rain spray coming in the front. If you are sharing the tent with a second person or if you want to play it safe keep the beak.

Dimensions (approximate): 
  • Peak Height: 47 inches (119 cm)
  • Length: 9 feet (2.75 meters)
  • Width at center: 54 inches (137 cm)
  • Width at ends: 30 inches (76 cm)
  • Entryway Height: 29 inches (74 cm)

Weight:

  • A Hexamid Solo Tarp including taped seams weighs just 3.7 ounces (105 grams)
  • The extended Beak adds 1.5 ounces (43 grams)
  • Bright yellow 1.25mm Z-Line spectra guy lines add .3 oz (8 grams)
  • A medium 6" x 12" stuff sack that fits the tent and groundsheet adds .3 ounces (7 grams)
  • Six elastic bands and clips to attach your groundsheet to the shelter are included. .5 ounces (14 grams)
  • Fully enclosed bug screen adds 5.0 ounces (142 grams)
  • A Solo Cuben Fiber Bathtub groundsheet adds 3.0 ounces (85 grams)
  • The Total Weight for the tent including all of the above is 14.3 ounces (405 grams)
     
  • 8 Stakes are not included. 8x Ultralight Titanium stakes, and a stake sack will add 1.6 ounces (45 grams), bringing the total packed weight to 15.9 ounces (451 grams).

    These weights are as accurate as possible. Compare carefully! Many other manufacturers leave out seam sealing, lines, stuff sack, stakes, ground sheet etc from their weights.
Photos of a Hexamid Solo Tent:
Click for full size images

Photos of a Hexamid Tarp in Olive Drab:
Photos of the Extended Beak:
Photos of the original white Hexamid Solo Tent from Joe and Sheryl's Continental Divide Trail thru-hike in 2009:

Adventure Writer Keith "Fozzie" Foskett shares his 2 years of experience in this 2014 Hexamid Solo Tent Review
------------------------------------------------

Anish set a new PCT Speed Record in 2013 at 61 days and 17 hours using our Hexamid Solo tent! Her tent was her favorite piece of gear. Check out her review!
*Anish bought her tent at full price and was not sponsored or under any obligation to review it.
------------------------------------------------

"My ZPacks Hexamid gave me a level of comfort and peace of mind which belied it's uber light weight. On the 2012 Tour Divide I could end the long days of riding guaranteed of a good nights sleep, whether in the snow and bear infested forests of Canada and Montana or the bug riddled desert of New Mexico. Without a doubt it played a big part in my recovery and helped me push to the win."
-Ollie Whalley, 2012 Tour Divide Winner
------------------------------------------------

"Joe, I just wanted to let you know that my Hexamid performed beyond my expectations.  Not once during my hike on the Appalachian Trail did I end up wet, nor did the tent sustain any sort of damage."
-Nathan S.

------------------------------------------------

"We are absolutely, 100% convinced we have the best 2-person tent on the trail, even if the Hexamid solo is designed for 1-person.  You should see the looks of disbelief when other hikers see that there are TWO of us in there on full-length Thermarests, with all our packs and gear in there. Their faces turn from disbelief to shock and jealousy when we tell them the weight!"
-Boston and Cubby, PCT 2010
------------------------------------------------

"I just wanted to drop you a quick note to let you know that I finished the PCT on September 10th 2010 and the Hexamid Solo Tent preformed extremely well in all elements.  I am extremely happy with the tent and thank you again for helping me out with my situation back in June."
-Shane S.
------------------------------------------------

"I just wanted to say that I LOVE this tent.  But after two thru-hikes and a few weekend hikes mine is starting to show some wear and tear which is expected.  So I am buying another one.  Doing the Hayduke trail and perhaps the Colorado trail this summer.  Thanks again for making awesome gear."
-Luke W.
------------------------------------------------

"I used my Hexamid for the first time last weekend, and it worked great through an October snow storm. Thanks for making such great gear. I am really excited to use my Hexamid for my AT thru-hike this spring!"
-Caleb M.

------------------------------------------------

"My Hexamid Solo is still in great shape after three thru-hikes, the Appalachian Trail, Te Araroa, and Continential Divide Trail! I'm still using it here on short hikes in Hawaii."
-Dave "Freebird" Osborn
------------------------------------------------


"I just got back from completing the John Muir Trail and I've gotta say, great work on the Hexamid.  It's just perfect ... in a lot of ways.  I got a lot of questions/people interested about it so you might see more orders coming your way." Photo from Guitar Lake
-Matt B.
Ordering:
There may be a waiting list for this item, see the notice at the top of the page.
Hexamid Solo Tent w/ Screen, Extended Beak, and a Solo Cuben Fiber Groundsheet
($430 - Save $25)
Color
Hexamid Solo Tent w/ Screen
(groundsheet sold separately)
Extended Beak:
Color:
Hexamid Solo Tarp (no screen)
(groundsheet sold separately)
Extended Beak:
Color:
Material:
The default tent material is .51 oz/sqyd Cuben Fiber. This material has proven to be plenty strong enough to handle high winds, and your tent will normally not be subject to abrasion or punctures. If it does get damaged (for example by a falling branch), the material is very easy to patch in the field with our Cuben Fiber Tape.

Some people prefer to upgrade to heavier .74 oz/sqyd material for added peace of mind. My own opinion is this material is not necessary, but it also does not hurt other than a small weight increase. It adds $15 to the price, and around 1.5 ounces (45 grams) to the weight. We have it in Dark Green.

Make my shelter in Dark Green .74 oz/sqyd material - $15
Joe Valesko's Review, and questions answered:
In 2009 I tested the original Cuben Fiber Hexamid Solo on a full Continental Divide Trail thru-hike. The trip took 154 days traveling roughly 2,651 miles through the rocky mountains. Over the course of the trip the tent went through just about every type of weather, from gusting wind, to rain storms, snow storms, sub freezing temperatures, etc. I hiked the first half of the trip solo, the second half with my wife Sheryl. We used the same solo tent for the whole trip.  (Gear list)  (Photos)

Won't I get wet if rain is blowing towards the screen door?
Probably not. Ideally the tent should be pitched with the back or sides into the wind. If rain does start blowing towards the door it is easy enough to just slide your groundsheet to the back. You can use your shoes and water bottles to prop up the edges of your ground sheet to give you even more protection, or clip the corners up to the corners of the tent. If you want to play it safe you can add the optional extended beak. On my trip I carried a detachable doorway (which has now been replaced by the extended beak) but I never needed to use it while hiking solo. It was needed a couple times after Sheryl joined me.

How durable is the material?
The tent held up really well over my five month trip. I didn't get any punctures or tears, and didn't have to do any repairs. The cuben material feels paper thin and I was careful with it, but I think it is just as durable as silicone nylon would be. Cuben has the advantage that duct tape (or better yet our Cuben Fiber Tape) sticks really well to it so repairs in the field are a breeze if needed. (Tape will not stick to sil-nylon). I would be comfortable using the same tent on a second thru-hike.

Won't the screen floor wear out quickly?
Surprisingly no! I was careful about picking up sticks and rocks and never got any holes in the floor. Sharp things like needles and thorns that can normally cause holes go right through the screen without doing any damage. If it did ever get a hole, it would likely be under your ground sheet anyways. The screen can be patches easily with tape.

Will the tent fit two people?
The Solo tent is meant for one average sized person. Sheryl joined me for the second half of my thru-hike; with two people the tent was a very snug fit, but it worked for us. Most people would want more space. You will need the extended beak, as there is no extra room to avoid rain spray with two people. We also used a 5 foot wide tyvek ground sheet that we could fold up at the sides. One nice thing though is we both had room to sit upright and cook outside the front. If we were to do it again together we would definitely use the Hexamid Twin with a twin Cuben Groundsheet instead (those weren't available at the time). If I were solo, the solo tent would be perfect.

How does the tent do in strong wind?
Reasonably well, about the same as a typical tarp. Whenever possible choose a sheltered location such as under tree cover. If forced to camp in the open position the back or side into the wind and make sure it is staked out well. The Cuben material is designed for making sails and can handle the stress of high winds.
 
Free Shipping on U.S. orders over $100!
Otherwise shipping is just $3.95 in the U.S., $15.95 Internationally and up.

Please send us an email with any questions!


Who we are:
Joe Valesko founded ZPacks in 2005. He designed and tested all the gear, and has thru-hiked over 9,600 long distance miles including the Appalachian Trail, Pacific Crest Trail, Continental Divide Trail, Te Araroa Trail, and TGOC Scotland. Joe is available to answer any questions about gear recommendations, sizing, trail info, or anything requiring an experienced opinion.

Matt Favero receives your orders, oversees production at our shop, and ships out your orders. He has hiked much of the Florida Trail, parts of the AT, and TGOC Scotland. Matt handles most routine emails about your order. We love feedback and suggestions about our gear!

Please email us for our Address if you need to send any packages. We like to know what's coming! Our Phone Number is not listed. We are able to give a more informed answer via email, and we are normally very responsive. Please email us your questions and we will reply ASAP.