Help! Just bought a tent

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Went to tent exhibition with daughter who wanted a canvas mansion to take the kids away; saw an £80 tent for £18 and bought it.

Definitely need advice on getting lightweight tent pegs - they weigh more than the rest of the tent equipment put together; then what about light, effective sleeping bag; best panniers; are those waterproof sacks worth having?

I'm thinking of getting one of those lightweight racks - max capacity 25kg - is that too optimistic for a few days - 1 week jaunt?

Just when you think you're mature, you go and do something like this.


Comrade Member
Limoges or York
The best panniers are Ortlieb or Carradice. I use Carradice super C because they hold a lot and are waterproof so long as you don't go swimming with them! Altura are cheaper, although I haven't tried them they get good reviews.

WRT racks, I use a Blackburn aluminium rack but have used cheap copies without any problems.

A good supplier for cycle touring stuf is Spa Cycles in Harrogate. They are very helpful, prices are usually good and they do a prompt mail order service in my experience.

Tim Bennet.

Entirely Average Member
S of Kendal
At that price your tent has got probably got steel pegs. Any lightweight camping / climbing type shop will have a range of both angle pegs and skewers in aluminium.

These will be much lighter and work well in ordinary ground. The only problem with lightweight ones occurs when the ground has been baked hard for months as in a typical southern European summer. September camping around the Mediterranean can be tricky as these sorts of pegs don't like being hammered home.

For these conditions you either need a completely free standing tend, or put up with carrying some steel ones (if only to make a hole for the other sort) or get some specialist ones from North Face, MacPac or MSR, who all offer titanium options. However you will easily exceed your total outlay on the tent buying just 4 or 5 of these pegs. Best left for that trip to the US where they make excellent souvenirs.


New Member
Basic camping kit: tent, sleep mat, sleep bag.
Mat choices are basically closed cell foam mat, ditto with ridges, or self-inflating mat. The last is the most comfortable. Thermarest are the best known; there are cheaper copies.
Sleeping bags: two main choices, being down or synthetic fillings. Down is lighter and packs smaller, synthetic stays warm when wet (unlike most down bags) and is cheaper.
Tent pegs: replace with aluminium and take one heavy duty peg to make holes for the others.
Racks: depending on your bike type, it will ride better with front bags as well as rear.
Bags: Altura are reasonable kit. I have Carradyce bags, including watertight ones for the mtb, but I use Karrimor or Carradyce front, very large Altura rear.


Über Member
Thanks all. Partner came back with a foam matress with a space blanket-type liner which weighs nothing and some plastic pegs which look like the sort of things you attack sharks with.

Grateful for the sleeping bag advice Tony, I guess we have to do a cost benefit assessment. Why are additional front racks better?
Front racks help to balance the bike.

A handlebar bag will be useful for important stuff like wallet, house keys, camera, and things you want to have close to hand.

Bring some duct tape (you can wrap a couple of feet of it around your seat post if you don't want to bring a roll). Bring a few large and small cable ties. They'll both be very useful - I once saved someone's Dunwich Dynamo with some duct tape.

Get a few correctly sized spokes and bring them with you too. You can zip-tie them to your frame. You may be able to repair your own broken spoke, or you'll help out the local bike shop if you have the right size.

And bring a chain tool and know how to use it!!!!!!! I can't stress this enough and I never go without mine.

And a Swiss Army Knife.

Edited to add: Waterproofing is good, but a reuseable bag from a supermarket will be cheaper and possibly as good as a waterproof liner.
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