Get breaking news alerts via email

Click here to manage your alerts
Hiking Utah
Tribune Reporters
By Nate Carlisle, Jason Bergreen, Erin Alberty and Brett Prettyman

» Twitter: @UtahHikes

» E-mail

» Subscribe (RSS)

The author's MSR Hubba Hubba in its first use, August 2008.
Gear tip: Set clear rules when you loan stuff out

So, I was getting ready for a camping trip, and I decided to check my tent for functionality. It's gotten a lot of use, though not so much by me. When my husband and I moved in together, our combined gear stash became sufficient for major group expeditions. So we loan out our stuff whenever friends have out-of-town guests or gear mishaps of their own.

Join the Discussion
Post a Comment

Sometimes my gear comes back a little worse for the wear, and that's OK. Since I last used my two-man MSR Hubba Hubba, a few pole segments had bowed in the wind. A zipper caught some grit and needed rehabilitation. Tent pegs were buried in the sand and lost forever. These are camping hazards that I accept when I use it myself. Things happen. So before my trip, I popped the tent up in my living room for a once-over, just to be safe.

Good thing I did.

In the corner, I found a blob of sticky brown gunk with dirt caked to it. Shiny brown dots were spattered near the door.

Seriously. I was about to take this tent into bear country. I only checked it as an afterthought, since I generally assume that people who borrow my stuff will tell me if it is damaged beyond use. It never occurred to me that people were eating inside the tent AT ALL, much less that they would leave the mess behind.

The lesson here: Don't assume anyone knows the rules. Loaned gear often ends up in the hands of novices who can't be expected to simply intuit best practices. Attach a warning label if necessary. Try to reach a clear understanding that the gear will be returned clean, major damages are the lender's responsibility, and for God's sake, no food or drink inside the tent.

— Erin Alberty

Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Top Reader Comments Read All Comments Post a Comment
Click here to read all comments   Click here to post a comment

About Reader Comments

Reader comments on sltrib.com are the opinions of the writer, not The Salt Lake Tribune. We will delete comments containing obscenities, personal attacks and inappropriate or offensive remarks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. If you see an objectionable comment, please alert us by clicking the arrow on the upper right side of the comment and selecting "Flag comment as inappropriate". If you've recently registered with Disqus or aren't seeing your comments immediately, you may need to verify your email address. To do so, visit disqus.com/account.
See more about comments here.
  • Search Obituaries
  • Place an Obituary

  • Search Cars
  • Search Homes
  • Search Jobs
  • Search Marketplace
  • Search Legal Notices

  • Other Services
  • Advertise With Us
  • Subscribe to the Newspaper
  • Access your e-Edition
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Contact a newsroom staff member
  • Access the Trib Archives
  • Privacy Policy
  • Missing your paper? Need to place your paper on vacation hold? For this and any other subscription related needs, click here or call 801.204.6100.