Reviews and Problems with Black Diamond Firstlight
Showing 1-10 of 13
A tent has a clear primary job—keeping you dry.…
16 August 2010
Summary: A tent has a clear primary job—keeping you dry. The Firstlight fails miserably at this job. BD describes the fabric as “water resistant” which is an overstatement. In an extended light rain or even a short downpour, the fabric wets out and wicks moisture inside. Because it’s a small tent, your sleeping bag, clothes and lots of other things you care about will be in contact with the wet tent walls and soon your entire kit is soaked.
I have owned the Black Diamond First Light for three…
15 October 2008
Summary: I have owned the Black Diamond First Light for three years. I first used it for a 13 day backpacking trip in the New Mexico mountains at a Boy Scout camp called Philmont. It rained every night, very very hard rain. The tent is water proof. During the hardest rain I felt a slight misting inside, but no collection of water whatsoever. The thing is, if you have two people inside, (I did not) some condensation will occur if the temperature/humidify is just right.
First off, let me say what others have said - this…
5 February 2008
Summary: First off, let me say what others have said - this tent is NOT waterproof. It's not meant to be. I think this tent is best described as a softshell tent - meaning it should be used in conditions that are going to be mainly dry, be it hot or cold. It works perfectly as alpine climbing tent, when sub-freezing temperatures mean that any moisture will fall as snow, not rain or sleet. I have been caught out in heavy rain, but nothing too prolonged.
This tent has the distinction of being the first and…
30 November 2007
Summary: This tent has the distinction of being the first and only piece of backpacking gear I have ever returned for a refund. I am amazed by other reviews that describe this tent as being waterproof. I spent a week in the New Mexico mountains in this tent with a group of Boy Scouts. It rained daily, never that hard, but almost constant. I emerged each morning with all of my gear wet. As I would lie in the tent, I could feel a constant mist on my face.
This is by far the best tent I have ever owned. I…
27 November 2007
Summary: This is by far the best tent I have ever owned. I use it generally for 3-season hiking (2-10 day trips) as well as occasionally for winter hiking. Other posters' comments about the waterproofing of the eVent material seem way off the mark to me. I took the 45 minutes to seam seal the tent myself when I bought it, and I have never had any problems with condensation or leaking during numerous rain and snowstorms.
Love the light weight, the ease of set-up and the…
26 November 2007
Summary: Love the light weight, the ease of set-up and the general toughness. However, this tent finally met its match in the Yukon this summer. I had rather painstakingly done my waterproofing job on it, but a blustery 24 hour Yukon rainstorm had me completely soaked inside this tent, which was rather unpleasant. I was wishing for an exterior wall on this tent, while all my buds stayed high and dry in their slightly heavier, double walled tents.
While some may consider the Firstlight a desirable…
28 July 2007
Summary: While some may consider the Firstlight a desirable tent for summer alpine nights, having almost 31 years under my belt guiding in the Rocky Mountains, I have been many times in downpours while camped waiting for breaks in weather to start climbing. I have to say this tent is not desirable for anyone carrying a tent because a tent should GUARANTEE that I am safe from the elements whether it's a light summer rain or a gully washer, both of which are possible in the Rockies...
This tent is weightless, packs small, and sets up…
24 March 2006
Summary: This tent is weightless, packs small, and sets up instantly (my wife timed me at 87 seconds the first time I set it up in the field). While the footprint is small, I really appreciate the headroom. The tent, however, has some major compromises. Condensation is awful, even for a single wall tent. If it's raining outside, it will be raining inside. It only has vents at the top, which means there is no real air circulation in the tent.
Just returned from a trip to Mount Aspiring New Zealand…
19 March 2006
Summary: Just returned from a trip to Mount Aspiring New Zealand March 06. On one particular night, the wind picked up a fair bit. The tent was held down by rocks attached to the guidelines. I had to tie internal guidlines to the poles to keep the tent upright. This ranged from using shoelaces to climbing slings. I did end up with one of the poles bent. The tent held up ok considering the conditions, but the main problem was the leaking.
I took it to Tasmania on a five-day walking trail.…
8 December 2005
Summary: I took it to Tasmania on a five-day walking trail. The tent performed beautifully on first two nights under perfect conditions. When the temperature drops below 3 deg Cel (with no rain), the entire inner EPIC layer of the tent somehow got damp, and water seems to permeate through. It's only when I start shaking the tent during packing, water starts driping inside.