I’m Ready to Sleep in the Wilderness

Yesterday our mail carrier delivered to my doorstep my new home-away-from-home, an REI Passage 1 tent:


It was tough to get a taut pitch in the living room, of course. And I couldn’t add the rainfly to the photo, as it needs to be staked down, and I was pretty sure my landlord wouldn’t approve of holes in his concrete floor. But there it is. And I can’t wait to get out in the woods north (or south…undecided as of this moment) of Monson on the AT for an overnight.

And in keeping with a theme that has overwhelmed this blog, it was another amazingly inexpensive purchase. I received two REI gift cards totaling $50 for my birthday in May, and after much research and hand-wringing, I decided on the Passage 1 for my first tent. But I was looking for a cheaper-than-a-yard-sale bargain in keeping with the rest of my gear purchases. So I decided to wait for the ubiquitous “Take X% off any REI-branded Product!” coupon-carrying email to land in my inbox. I had seen one earlier in the year, and doing my version of financially-strapped-hiker math figured I could land this $139 shelter for an amazing price if I was patient.

Well, my patience paid off. At the end of last week, the requisite email arrived with a 25% off discount code attached. In conjunction with my untouched gift cards, I walked away with this great starter tent for $54 and some change. Awesome!

Sure, I don’t need a tent to hike the three miles from the Monson trailhead to the Leeman Brook Lean-to and spend the night on the AT. My sleeping bag and a bug bivy would do the trick for that. But who wants to spend sleepytime flicking aggressive shelter mice off their person as part of their first AT overnight?

Not me.

I’m as thrilled as I can be with my sweet little one-person $54 tent…


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