Why I picked a MegaLight
The search for an ideal main fleet shelter continues. I was never entirely happy with the Shangrila 2: lack of broadside wind stability and the need for two poles. What floor space it does present is quite useable (and Golite is foolish if the rumors of it being discontinued are true), but there isn’t all that much.
Ergo a traditional, square mid. This one.
This Megalight canopy is 25 oz seam sealed and with the fire tags removed. The included (burly) carbon pole is 11.6 oz. It adjusts from 64.75″ to 76.5″ (at minimum insertion of the adjustment piece. You could get another centimeter by pushing strength further than I personally care to). Pitched as above the mid is 68″ tall, and 104″ corner to corner, which makes the factory specs very generous. It comes with 8 crappy, generic aluminum stakes, a nice sil stuff sack, and a link for using two trekking poles as the main support (something I doubt would work well in significant conditions).
Work on the tieouts is good, but not outstanding. Any denser stitching would foster tears in the fabric under load. Box stitching over a greater area would be ideal.
The difference between actual and the “useable” listed dimensions highlights one of two difficulties in comparing one mid to another. The other is the degree of caternary cut, on both the horizontal edges and the vertical sides. Some is necessary, least great fabric tension still allow flapping edges, but generous cat curves make it difficult to lock the edges to the ground, and steal height when that obstacle is overcome. This after Kevin Sawchuck told me he sold an MLD Supermid in favor of a Megalight when he discovered that the advertised peak height was with the middle edges several inches off the ground.
I picked the Megalight because I worried that Golite and Oware had too little cat curve, and MLD too much. Plus MLD has a wait, doesn’t include a nice center pole, and is more expensive. I can see myself adding some linelocs to the Mega, and probably a jack for the wood stove I’m building. Otherwise, the yard pitch looks good, I like the circus tent colors, and we’ll see how it goes.