Easton, a Utah-based outdoor company, recently released a new ultralight shade shelter called the Sundial. The Sundial has already received industry accolades for being the lightest shelter on the market (2 pounds), and the most versatile as you can use it in sitting or standing positions. Plus, it packs to the size of a sub sandwich, making it ideal for light backpacking.
It's designed to get you out of the sun and into the shade, but on my recent trip to the unpredictable Uinta Mountains I found myself seeking shelter from a different element—rain, and plenty of it. The sun would have been a welcome guest.
Regardless of the situation, I packed this damn thing in and it better be worth the 2-pound investment. Since the weather wouldn't cooperate, it seemed befitting to rename the Sundial: the Raindial. To my surprise it was intuitive and easy to set up, quickly getting me out of the rain and under shelter. The Raindial kept me dry in the worst weather; there were no leaks or drips coming through its waterproof fabric.
So for two days the rain poured down and for two days I remained dry. I am sure the Sundial would make for a great sun escape, but you just might find yourself in a different situation like mine and you’d be grateful you packed it along. Use it solo, or shelter two friends or a dog...pick whoever you like best. Total floor space 29.5 inches, max height 84 inches. $99 www.easton.com
Review by Brooks Forester