Arguably, an essential part of any safety conscious hiker’s kit. Imagine you’re out in open moorland, or atop Scafell Pike, the weather takes a turn for the worse. We’ve all been there, right?
Well, if you’ve been there as a group (two+), you’ll know that a storm shelter can be vital in such a situation. Not just that, but shelters are perfect for pulling out even on a mild day, just to get out of the rain or cold. These conditions can dampen not just you and your kit, but worse, your spirits.
Erecting a tent may not be practical, and the surrounding environment may not be so forgiving. I took a look at Vango’s Storm Shelter 400 and at just 0.55Kg and a reasonable 20x12cm pack size, this particular version is designed for four people. I tried out the ’400′ with just two people, and within only a minute of sitting inside the shelter it was already noticeably warmer.
Very distinctive and orange
The distinctive bright orange 3000 Protex shell stands out with reflective tape across the top, and boasts a crystal clear viewing window for you to peak outside to see how the weather is doing (or keep an eye on your group).
Two netted vents make fresh air available and the whole shelter packs into either of the vents for storage meaning that everything that’s in or on the shelter, is used; keeping the weight down. On either side, you’ll find an extra strip of fabric to tuck underneath yourself as you sit down. The draw string enables you to pull the base in tight once all members of your party are in place.
The shelter is remarkably easy to pack away as it just stuffs back into it’s attached vent/bag, so as soon as you’re ready to get going again, you’re all set. More importantly, as soon as that first rain drop hits your head, it can be whipped out to start protecting you and your group.
As you often find with Vango kit, the build quality is reassuring, and the Storm Shelter won’t disappoint. All in all, this is one of the best shelters I’ve used.
I never go out either by myself, or with a group of Duke of Edinburgh Award participants without a group shelter and from my experience with this great piece of kit, I’ll be packing the Vango Storm Shelter with me in future.