2016: Hammock Camping Life on the Appalachian Trail
Erik Barstow Tests the Grit of the Nubé Stratos
Marine Veteran-turned photographer and survivor of Lyme's disease, Erik Barstow hiked 1000 miles of the Appalachian Trail using a prototype of the Nubé Stratos.
In 2016, I hiked 1,000 miles to the northern terminus of the Appalachian Trail. I carried a prototype of the new Nubé Stratos™ system over 800 miles, through some of the hardest and most spectacular country there is to hike on the East Coast. The Stratos's lighter design required only 4 tent stakes to set up and with long distance hiking requiring that every gram you carry counts, the lightweight design was perfect.
After a long days' hike in the 100-Mile Wilderness of Maine, photographer Erik Barstow enjoys relaxing in his Nubé Stratos. Photo by Jon Constable.
The Stratos performed beyond my expectations. It’s light, strong and kept the bugs out. The bugs in Maine are out of a horror novel- with black flies, mosquitos and deer flies all fighting for the chance to take a bite out of you! The StratoShield allows you the capability to cowboy camp, observe the stars, and not get destroyed by insects. Don't worry those mosquitos were always waiting for me to come out of my StratoShield! Sometimes they looked like a gang taunting me to come outside and play. Meanwhile it was awesome being inside the protection. I can't believe I saw hikers in the 100-Mile Wilderness without bug shields for their hammocks! It looked beyond miserable. That being said, commitment to stay on task is really difficult- the comfort and protection provided almost makes it impossible to get out in the morning and crush 25 miles on the Appalachian Trail!
As a photographer, location is everything. Setting up my camera gear for photographing under the Stratos was perfection. I can run my time lapse under the Stratos in the 11 feet of space and have plenty of room to hang in my Pares hammock and listen to the shutter slide every 10 seconds.
Photographer Erik Barstow snaps a few shots of the stunning fall scenery around Gentian Pond off of the Appalachian Trail.
The pre-determined shape of the Stratos takes the thought out of setting up a normal tarp and deciding where you think the water will come in.
The asymmetric design of the Nubé Stratos offers efficient rain, wind and sun protection right where you need it!
After 1,000 rugged miles on the Appalachian Trail's northern terminus, the Stratos definitely held its own- if it can make that hike a breeze I'm sure it can withstand any terrain a hiker with his heart on exploring can throw its way!