We caught up with Dave Housley, Product Developer behind the Laser Compact All Season 2 tent from Terra Nova. Dave is the Product Development Manager behind the Terra Nova and Wild Country range of tents. With over 30 years of experience in the industry, he knows exactly what it takes to design a quality tent:“[I love] being able to make improvements to existing products and introducing new products to the market. I love the outdoors. Creating products so people can get out and enjoy the outdoors for themselves is very rewarding”.
Dave talked about his key inspiration for designing the Laser Compact All Season tent came from seeing what the Terra Nova customers have used it for over the years: “Whilst the Laser concept which was designed to be the first sub kilo tent for fast and light backpacking, we know that it has been used for many other adventures that fall well outside of its original design brief. Whilst it has performed brilliantly, it seemed logical to offer a more tailored version for year-round use”.
“Our iconic Quasar is the go-to four-season tent for mountaineers and expeditions, so was the ideal choice as a base point for the fabrics. Some key components from the Quasar make the Laser more suitable for year-round use. From the success of our Southern Cross models, there’s an increased demand for a quality all-year-round backpacking tent. The Laser Compact All Season models now offer a lightweight option for year-round use”.
The Laser Compact All Season tent is aimed at the all-season backpacker who is looking to keep the weight down but wants a tent that they can rely on. If you’re looking to benefit from year-round performance, then this tent would give you the reassurance you need.
Dave explained: “We have engineered the tents to be as light and strong as possible, whilst including key features for year-round use. The Laser Compact All Season 2 has two doors that allow options for storage, whilst also offering an exit and entry point, depending on the prevailing wind and weather conditions. Having that extra door really does help, even if you are solo backpacking. At only 1.7kg and with its compact pack size, it is still easy to pack into your rucksack”.
There’s a variety of features and benefits that make the Laser Compact All-Season tent a real winner. Dave explains: “The same tried and tested fabrics used for the Quasar and Southern Cross models have been used to add strength and durability. Meanwhile, an extra lightweight but reliable DAC NFL pole can be used in extreme conditions. For extra stability, there’s added extra guy lines at either end of the tent ensuring secure tent pegging”.
“The condensation build-up can be a challenge in any tent”. He continues, “Therefore, in addition to the end vents, there’s an added vent hood over the flysheet door zip. On the Laser Compact All Season 1 there’s one vent hood, whilst on the Laser Compact All Season 2 there’s a vent hood above each door. The flysheet doors also have a two-way zip. This is to help regulate the ventilation. There are also added magnetic closures on the flysheet zip flaps, which allows the zip flap to snap shut as you close. This is a convenient addition in cold and windy conditions”.
“Finally, for the inner tent door, the same lightweight zip used on the Laser is ideal to help keep the weight down. However, the flysheet uses a slightly heavier duty zip from the Quasar for maximum strength. It’s all those little design details that have been thought about to make it a true lightweight all-season tent”.
Combining years of experience with end-user feedback, Terra Nova determines the best combination of design and materials to maximize performance. Meanwhile, fabrics and poles are selected from the best manufacturers from around the world. We then work with specialised factories to produce Terra Nova tents. Dave explained: “If something isn’t to our standards, we work with our suppliers to develop specific areas to our specifications. This is how the Watershed flysheet fabric for the Quasar, and now the Laser Compact All Season tent, came about”.
Terra Nova have their own in house testing facilities for fabrics, poles and other components, but their offshore factories also carry out tests on their behalf before production. These checks ensure that every part of the tent performs as it should.
He continued: “We are also fortunate to have a manufacturing facility in-house that makes our UK-produced expedition series tents. So, if we ever need to try out new ideas or modifications we can do that here. As you can see a lot is going on behind the scenes to make sure that each tent model is as good as it can be”.
The Laser Compact All Season 2 Tent is available to purchase directly from Terra Nova and selected outdoor retailers.