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Topic: Best Free-Standing 1 person 2 season tent, under 3 lbs - your opinions please?< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 02 2012, 9:51 pm  Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Subject says it, I guess.  I'm currently using a North Face Slickrock that I've had for 15 years.  Great tent, I love it, but it weighs 4.1 lbs.  And it's really bigger than I need when it's just me.  

Would like to be under 3 lbs if possible.  I don't use trekking poles (I am currently reconsidering but do not want the tent to be dependent on them).  I like a truly free-standing tent.  

Would very much appreciate your opinions.  Currently I'm leaning toward the EMS Velocity 1.  Quality is more important than price, but I don't think I can swing a cuben fiber tent...

Thanks!

Mark
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 02 2012, 9:58 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

If you're not looking to break the bank then I suggest a Big Agnes Fairview 1. It's a freestanding 3 season tent. I think it weighs just over 3 Ibs though, but you could probably modify it to cut the weight down. It's pretty roomy for a solo, but not too roomy. Last time I checked you can get one at the REI Outlet for around $150.0..

Here is a review if you're interested.
http://www.writerinthewild.com/2010....nt.html


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 02 2012, 10:02 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

If you can find it, you should consider the REI Chrysalis. It shows up every so often at REI as a closeout item.

I've had it for about 2 years now and it's a great freestanding solo tent. The configuration is somewhat different so if you're over 6 ft tall, you may not fit.

It's got a full rainfly that creates a usable vestibule for boots and pack. And it weighs 3 lbs 5 ounces. You can use just the footprint and fly as an option and that weighs just slightly more than 2 pounds.
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 02 2012, 10:06 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

37 oz light enough ?

"The Moment"


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 02 2012, 10:08 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I love my Six Moon Designs Lunar Duo and my Go-Lite's, etc. but my one-person three-season tent is a Big Sky Revolution.  It weighs a hair over 2 lbs. with carbon fiber poles.  It is the only 1 P I've kept because it is free-standing, light, and well-designed.

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 02 2012, 10:59 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I've been using the Big Agnes Seedhouse for years now.
Here is an old review
Details
I like it so much, I recently bought the newer, even lighter version. Currently testing it, and love it even more.
I highly recommend it.
Seedhouse Review
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 03 2012, 12:23 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I don't know about the best, but I have an REI Quarter Dome T1 which I love.  REI states it's weight at 2 lbs, 14 oz.  I upgraded my stakes and added a tyvek groundsheet and it weighs 3 lbs, 5 oz but serves me great.  I just returned from a six week bike tour in MT, WY, ID and WA on which I used it nearly every night comfortably and without any problems whatsoever.  Just my 2 cents worth.

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 03 2012, 8:40 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Thanks for the replies.  I was not familiar with a couple of these.  

writeronthestorm -- Fairview 1 looks like a nice tent, but weighs almost as much as my current tent (I saw one place said it weighs "3 lbs 16 oz", an interesting concept :) ).  

Dabrador - Chrysalis also nice, but also a wee bit heavy.  Both the Fairview 1 and Chrysalis seem to be no longer available (possibly could be found, but I think too heavy anyway).

swt - I had not focused on the Moment.  I was looking at the Rainbow.  Moment is intriguing.  Generally, I have had a sense that these various "tarp tents" made for use with trekking poles were not so great when used with the "optional" tent poles instead.  But this one is interesting.  

tn - I had not seen a Big Sky Revolution.  That is a very cool looking tent, and I love the gray color.  A quick search suggests Big Sky is a PITA and doesn't fill orders well.  Any thoughts, anyone?

tlb - Seedhouse 1 is also very intriguing.  But if I'm not mistaken, it is one of those designs where the pole on the back end goes down to a single point, and while technically "free standing" it really needs to be staked, at least at the back?  Not my preference....

Same re the REI Quarter T1, not really free standing.

Any further thoughts?  

Anyone use a Black Diamond Firstlight?  Others?
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 03 2012, 8:54 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

JMO but, if you want to save weight, I think you're limiting yourself a lot by insisting on "true free-standing".  While I can understand not wanting a tent that relies on trekking poles, I contend that there are almost no situations where you couldn't set a tent like the REI Quarter Dome or, better yet, an MSR Carbon Reflex (which is what I'd get in your shoes...)

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 03 2012, 9:02 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(TigerFan @ Oct. 03 2012, 8:54 am)
QUOTE
JMO but, if you want to save weight, I think you're limiting yourself a lot by insisting on "true free-standing".  While I can understand not wanting a tent that relies on trekking poles, I contend that there are almost no situations where you couldn't set a tent like the REI Quarter Dome or, better yet, an MSR Carbon Reflex (which is what I'd get in your shoes...)

You're probably right.  I'm old and old fashioned.  :)  All the tents I presently own (other than my monstrous car camping tent) are "dome" style tents (REI Trail Dome, etc).  I have always loved being able to just pop them up, anywhere.  I even set them up in the house to clean them and check them out before using.  And it seems like there's always some situation where you have a nice flat spot, but one of the damn corners is right on top of a big rock or something.  Plus, in easy weather, I can leave the stakes at home and save weight.  With the Slickrock, I sometimes just use two stakes, for the vestibules, and that holds it in place.  

Am I arguing with myself?  I dunno.  I just can't seem to shake the notion.  And there are some nice free standing lightweight tents out there....
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 03 2012, 10:00 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Just trying to give you a different viewpoint you may not have thought of (although I don't want to discourage you from getting the features you want). You could either save weight by leaving the stakes at home...or by getting a lighter tent that isn't free-standing.

I was a free-standing diehard but now have a shelter that requires a minimum of 12 stakes to stay up...but is 5 man and weighs under 3lbs including the stakes.


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 03 2012, 11:40 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

TT Rainbow. Use rocks or logs as stakes. It needs 5 in no rain conditions and 6 in rain

I don't hike with hiking poles either but the rainbow is my go to tent on trips without my wife.


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 03 2012, 12:13 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(jmarklane @ Oct. 03 2012, 9:02 am)
QUOTE

(TigerFan @ Oct. 03 2012, 8:54 am)
QUOTE
JMO but, if you want to save weight, I think you're limiting yourself a lot by insisting on "true free-standing".  While I can understand not wanting a tent that relies on trekking poles, I contend that there are almost no situations where you couldn't set a tent like the REI Quarter Dome or, better yet, an MSR Carbon Reflex (which is what I'd get in your shoes...)

You're probably right.  I'm old and old fashioned.  :)  All the tents I presently own (other than my monstrous car camping tent) are "dome" style tents (REI Trail Dome, etc).  I have always loved being able to just pop them up, anywhere.  I even set them up in the house to clean them and check them out before using.  And it seems like there's always some situation where you have a nice flat spot, but one of the damn corners is right on top of a big rock or something.  Plus, in easy weather, I can leave the stakes at home and save weight.  With the Slickrock, I sometimes just use two stakes, for the vestibules, and that holds it in place.  

Am I arguing with myself?  I dunno.  I just can't seem to shake the notion.  And there are some nice free standing lightweight tents out there....

If you have an REI nearby, you might consider asking to set up a Quarter Dome 1 in the store.  It sort of falls in the "semi-free-standing" category in that in only needs a minimal number of stakes to set.  In practice, they're much closer to a free-standing tent than, say, a GoLite ShangriLa.

I use trekking poles, so my solo fully-enclosed tents are in the 27oz range but I think tents like the QD are a great compromise since they give you the "dome" space that you're looking for, but saves weight by taking advantage of the ground to give it structural rigidity.


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 03 2012, 12:30 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(TigerFan @ Oct. 03 2012, 12:13 pm)
QUOTE
If you have an REI nearby, you might consider asking to set up a Quarter Dome 1 in the store.  It sort of falls in the "semi-free-standing" category in that in only needs a minimal number of stakes to set.  

Well said.  The tent itself is entirely freestanding.  The fly does require staking out but I've never found that to be a problem.

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 03 2012, 1:50 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Take a long look at the Tarptents.   I've set up my Double Rainbow freestanding with trekking poles and it works pretty well.  The Moment (under 2# !) doesn't need trekking poles.  I can tell you my Rainbow has been through some stuff and has never disappointed me.

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 03 2012, 4:18 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Thanks for the continuing ideas.  

Tigger, I appreciate the thought (and have been fascinated by your posts about that tent).  But although I can maybe see going to "semi-free standing", I don't imagine myself going to a tent that requires trekking poles.  Not at this point anyway.  

eggs -- The Rainbow looks like a great tent, but it is definitely not a free standing tent without two trekking poles.  Right?  Has to be staked at all four corners plus the fly....

TF and hikerjer - I will be going to REI either Friday or next week to take advantage of this supposed sale (which I haven't received notice of), and I will have them get out of QD1 and set it up, thanks for the suggestion.  

And tarpon6 -- I have been studying the Tarptent selection carefully.  The Moment does look interesting.  With the "optional" pole you have to use if you don't use trekking poles, it still comes out to only 2 lbs 5 oz.  It's a definite possibility.  

Thanks!

Mark
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 03 2012, 4:24 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(jmarklane @ Oct. 03 2012, 8:40 am)
QUOTE
tlb - Seedhouse 1 is also very intriguing.  But if I'm not mistaken, it is one of those designs where the pole on the back end goes down to a single point, and while technically "free standing" it really needs to be staked, at least at the back?  Not my preference....

You are correct with the pole alignment coming down to a single point in the back. However it doesn't really need to be staked down and I haven't done so on many occasions. But staking it down certainly makes it roomier and more solid.

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 03 2012, 4:33 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(tomas @ Oct. 03 2012, 4:24 pm)
QUOTE

(jmarklane @ Oct. 03 2012, 8:40 am)
QUOTE
tlb - Seedhouse 1 is also very intriguing.  But if I'm not mistaken, it is one of those designs where the pole on the back end goes down to a single point, and while technically "free standing" it really needs to be staked, at least at the back?  Not my preference....

You are correct with the pole alignment coming down to a single point in the back. However it doesn't really need to be staked down and I haven't done so on many occasions. But staking it down certainly makes it roomier and more solid.

Right, thanks.  Same as the MSR Carbon Reflex I think (and a few others).  I'm gonna see if I can find one somewhere to look at, thanks.
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 03 2012, 4:33 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

BTW, in the subject, I meant to type "3 Season Tent", not 2.  My typing skills are diminishing with age.  Just thought I'd clarify that, not that it much matters I guess.
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 03 2012, 8:05 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Just a comment on the Moment.
Forget about trekking poles and the way they are used with other TT shelters.
The Moment stands up and works with two pegs using the standard hoop pole.
If you like it freestanding and or want to increase wind/snow resistance, then you can use the optional crossing poles.
In the end you still need to peg it down and I would strongly suggest to add the two guylines to the main pole making that 4 stakes all up.
However I don't see how a tent like the BA mentioned above or the MSR CR1 can stand up and function without the two stakes at the back as well as the other stakes to keep the fly in place.
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 03 2012, 8:20 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I don't know how I didn't think of this one,
Microlight FS1
It's a freestanding 1 person, light, and only costs about 170. L.L.Bean makes great stuff.
With the Big Agnes Seedhouse, it's free standing yes, but for full room you'll want to stake it out, or stuff your backpack into the bottom end to hold the walls out better.
But honestly...you should ALWAYS be staking out your tent anyway...
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 03 2012, 9:14 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(Franco @ Oct. 03 2012, 8:05 pm)
QUOTE
Just a comment on the Moment.
Forget about trekking poles and the way they are used with other TT shelters.
The Moment stands up and works with two pegs using the standard hoop pole.
If you like it freestanding and or want to increase wind/snow resistance, then you can use the optional crossing poles.
In the end you still need to peg it down and I would strongly suggest to add the two guylines to the main pole making that 4 stakes all up.
However I don't see how a tent like the BA mentioned above or the MSR CR1 can stand up and function without the two stakes at the back as well as the other stakes to keep the fly in place.

Thanks, Franco.  Your knowledge of these tents is appreciated.  But when you say the Moment still needs to be staked out... I'm not sure I follow?  Also, when you mention using it free-standing "with the optional crossing poles"... isn't that just one long pole?  Not following?  I'm very interested in this tent, but I do want actual free-standing (and I get the point about the BA and CR1 needing to be staked).  Could you set up the Moment on solid rock (for example)?  Or on a tent platform with no anchor points?  (I have canoed through areas where platforms were the only option, another reason I have long preferred a true free-standing tent.)

Thanks!

Mark
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 03 2012, 9:18 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(treelinebackpacker @ Oct. 03 2012, 8:20 pm)
QUOTE
I don't know how I didn't think of this one,
Microlight FS1
It's a freestanding 1 person, light, and only costs about 170. L.L.Bean makes great stuff.
With the Big Agnes Seedhouse, it's free standing yes, but for full room you'll want to stake it out, or stuff your backpack into the bottom end to hold the walls out better.
But honestly...you should ALWAYS be staking out your tent anyway...

Thanks for the link on the LLB tent.  I go to the main store a couple of times a year, and I've seen that tent on display, very cool.  However, comments suggest it weighs in at 3 1/2 pounds, a bit much.  My much larger and rock solid old North Face is only 9 ounces heavier.  

On the comment about how one should always stake a tent anyway...why?  I've camped in a dome tent without staking many many times.  If I'm in a wooded area, for example, without much wind, and I set up camp, put my bag and pad in the tent, and climb in to sleep in it shortly...why does it need to be staked?  Just curious your thinking, much appreciate any thoughts here.  I'm learning a lot that I didn't know before (eg, after years and years of carrying a Svea123, I now carry a Trangia :) ).  

Mark
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 03 2012, 9:25 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

@ above
I have personally been in a few situations where my comrades haven't staked out there tents, or even haven't staked them out well, and regretted it.
Storms come out of nowhere (at least around here) and I've saw tents full of gear being snowballed through the woods. Everyone steps out sometime. Tents are practically sails under the right conditions.
Even with cheap stakes, I saw a loaded tent with people inside fold near in half, as the side taking the wind came unstaked and buckled up under itself, bending the aluminum poles along the way. It nearly folded in half. Sure, the people held the tent to the ground mostly, but the tent was wrecked.  
Even the best freestanding tent is intended to be staked out. There is little structural integrity if the walls are allowed to bend in the wind and sway in the wind. Most lightweight tents should also be guyed out for additional protection. You never know when the weather will change.
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 03 2012, 9:40 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(treelinebackpacker @ Oct. 03 2012, 9:25 pm)
QUOTE
@ above
I have personally been in a few situations where my comrades haven't staked out there tents, or even haven't staked them out well, and regretted it.
Storms come out of nowhere (at least around here) and I've saw tents full of gear being snowballed through the woods. Everyone steps out sometime. Tents are practically sails under the right conditions.
Even with cheap stakes, I saw a loaded tent with people inside fold near in half, as the side taking the wind came unstaked and buckled up under itself, bending the aluminum poles along the way. It nearly folded in half. Sure, the people held the tent to the ground mostly, but the tent was wrecked.  
Even the best freestanding tent is intended to be staked out. There is little structural integrity if the walls are allowed to bend in the wind and sway in the wind. Most lightweight tents should also be guyed out for additional protection. You never know when the weather will change.

Hm, very good points, thanks.  As I was reading your post, I had a vision of myself getting up to pee in the middle of the night and my tent blowing away.  :)

Advice is much appreciated, thanks!

Mark
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 03 2012, 11:36 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I'll try with some photos..

The Moment with the extra pole as in this picture :


is fully freestanding. So you can pick it up move it plop it  down and it holds the shape..
In practice as pointed out you need to stake it down so that it does not fly away when not inside.
(that is the same for ANY tent regardless of the design)
However unlike many "freestanding" tents you do not need stakes to keep the vestibule out or the fly from touching the inner because it is mostly a single wall tent.
On a platform without the extra pole you still need only to anchor the two ends so two pegs/hooks/rocks will do the job.
Something like this :


but not needing the side stakes (at the door) because the pole keeps the fly out, there
Now don't get confused, the one on the platform is a Notch, basically a Moment that uses trekking poles (the ends are the same...)

On rocks, well you use rocks/sand bags/logs , like this :


Note that the bricks  just sit on top of those end guylines, no mods needed.
BTW, I am not telling you that it is the right tent for you, just explaining how it works.
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 04 2012, 12:02 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

A great tent and well presented, as usual.  Thank you, Franco.
I'm not being facetious, I really enjoy your informative posts.  
Hell, I want to buy a Moment now!   :angry:


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(toesnorth @ Oct. 04 2012, 12:02 am)
QUOTE
A great tent and well presented, as usual.  Thank you, Franco.
I'm not being facetious, I really enjoy your informative posts.  
Hell, I want to buy a Moment now!   :angry:

Are you sure you don't want a Notch?
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 04 2012, 12:30 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(big_load @ Oct. 04 2012, 12:05 am)
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(toesnorth @ Oct. 04 2012, 12:02 am)
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A great tent and well presented, as usual.  Thank you, Franco.
I'm not being facetious, I really enjoy your informative posts.  
Hell, I want to buy a Moment now!   :angry:

Are you sure you don't want a Notch?

Hell, I want them all.  I do like the beefier look of the Moment for only 4 oz. more it seems but, as far as that goes, I am still pretty happy with my Big Sky.  I only go solo a handful of times a year but I am always "tickled" with my Big Sky and enjoy using it.


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 04 2012, 5:59 am Skip to the previous post in this topic.  Ignore posts   QUOTE


(jmarklane @ Oct. 03 2012, 4:18 pm)
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eggs -- The Rainbow looks like a great tent, but it is definitely not a free standing tent without two trekking poles.  Right?  Has to be staked at all four corners plus the fly....

Mark,

Yes without trekking poles you need a method to stake it be it rocks, boulders, logs, or stakes.

I only mention it because of the amount of room from head to toe. When sleeping in the Rainbow your head is not inches from the tent shell when laying down. I had a Atco

It sounds like we have you at least thinking you should stake your tent. We saw one tent go tumbling in AK 2 years ago. It was full of sleeping gear in 47mph winds. Also a BA tent got torn up in those winds that same trip. The Rainbow did wonderfully

If you want to see the Rainbow in action have a look here

The teepee in the distance is also mine. You can see how pushed in the wall is from the wind


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