Matt Page of Offroad.cc brings forward a compelling argument for the Alpkit Soloist as a prime tent choice for bikepackers. He's drawn to its bike-centric design which stands out by conveniently fitting most bikepacking bags. The 35cm pole length, as Matt points out, slips effortlessly into a frame bag, a detail we can't overlook.
The Alpkit Soloist seems designed with at least one eye on bikepacking, as it packs down very small – small enough to fit easily into most popular bikepacking bags. Also, when folded the poles measure 35cm, short enough to pack into a frame bag.
The tent’s adaptability is another aspect Matt lauds - with its varying weight (from 773g to 1355g) based on different setups. He appreciates the quick setup time, noting it can be done in a mere five minutes. Matt is also impressed by its lightweight yet durable vee-shaped aluminum pegs, the details matter.
His highlight of the 'tarp tent' and 'inner-only' options offers a fresh perspective on versatility, especially for those venturing into varied climates. As Matt suggests, it’s labeled as a three-season tent, and its rain-resistance ratings do back up this claim. However, his observation on the tent’s need for proper orientation in windy conditions is well placed for users new to this style of camping.
A key point Matt drives home is its suitability for average-height riders. He suggests that while those over 6ft might find it snug, it’s certainly more spacious than a traditional bivvy bag.
Comparing it to similar products like the MSR Elixir 1, Matt's perspective emphasizes the Soloist’s edge in terms of weight and value. His bottom line? For those starting their bikepacking journey, the Alpkit Soloist, despite a few quirks, could be a strong contender. And if Matt's height caution is anything to go by, the taller among us might want to pop into one of Alpkit stores to try it out in person.
Check out Matts full backpacking tent review.