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2002 Serum Run and will be used again for 2005
|The Arctic Oven has long been the gold standard in winter
and Arctic Camping in Alaska. This tent is made in Alaska by Alaska
Tent & Tarp, and comes in a variety of sizes. The Arctic
Oven is made to accommodate a stove for warm winter camping. It
has been tested and improved over the years and remains the ideal tent
for winter travel and base camps. This is not a backpacking
I purchased the 10 Foot Arctic Oven, which weights approx. 40lbs and
sells for $1175.00. (Pictured above)
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|I purchased the smallest front loading stove
Alaska Tent & Tarp sells, which is more than adequate for heating
the 10ft Arctic Oven in sub zero weather. You must or should
purchase the stove pipe, stove pipe damper & damper sleeve,
and spark arrestor, as separate items. The Stove sells for $85,
the total being $133.00 complete with stove pipe and parts. The
Stove measures 9.5"x9"x12" and weights approx
6.75lbs. The stove is manufactured by Kni-Co MFG out of
Willowa, Oregan www.kni-co.com
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|In researching tents for the Serum Run I
found multiple sources tout the Arctic Oven as the ultimate winter
shelter. In my selection weight was not a major concern. I
wanted a tent that could be set up quickly in harsh conditions and could
be heated, and can withstand severe winter storms.
Since I plan to use the tent for years to come, I also wanted to
insure that it would be big enough for at least two people to spend long
cold nights in comfort, with room to dry out gear and move around.
Since winter nights are long, I want to be able to lounge in the tent in
comfort instead of cramped and in a sleeping bag. I decided
the 10 foot Arctic Oven should allow plenty of room for
everything plus the heat stove.
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|Field Tested and Proven in Arctic conditions
|Made to set up quick even with gloves or mittens
|All components are heavy duty arctic grade materials
|Made in Alaska, so any repairs or problems can be dealt
|Roomy - Umbrella type design allows plenty of head and
|Heat Stove equipped
|Warm and comfortable for 2! Like
having your own portable cabin.
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|Weight: At about 40lbs for the 10 foot tent it is not a
|Cost: The 10 foot tent sells for $1175.00 plus stove
Risk of suffocation: This is a very well sealed
tent. You must insure that the air vents are not blocked.
Condensation: The poles are inside the outer tent where moisture
collects. The joints of the poles are nice and snug, however
moisture does collect between the joint and will freeze, making separation
of the poles difficult. I found heating the joints with the wood
stove (removed from the tent), made separation easier.
Arrestor will Clog: After 4-6 hours you may start getting smoke
backing up into the tent. If so, you need to go outside and knock
the build up off the spark arrestor.
Picking up my Arctic Oven
Tent I found it nicely rolled up in a very large heavy duty stuff type
page. The bag is about chest high on me, more then enough
room to pack 2 plus 10 foot Arctic Ovens in. The
poles and stakes come in smaller separate bags. A bottle of Seam
Sealant was included, and it is suggested that you seal any floor seams
prior to use, which is a simple process.
The stove is small, light and
simple, yet sturdy. The stove pipes nest for transport, but they
do not fit inside of the stove. Include is a damper section of
stove pipe and spark arrestor.
The tent and stove together
make a fairly large and heavy bundle. However it can be packed separately,
the inner tent, outer tent, and stove, making no one package to large or
Click on the images for larger view
This is (Top to
bottom), the inner tent, outer tent, poles, then stakes, with a 12"
ruler in for scale.
After sealing the floor seams,
I attempted my first set up of the tent. With the temperature hovering at about +5 F, it was a simple process, and was up and ready
for the stove in less 20 minutes, while wearing heavy gloves. That
includes taking a few digital photos along the way. This was
a one person set it up.
I could see where one person
might have difficulty in high winds, but I think two people could set it
up even faster, even in windy conditions.
The poles are a nice sturdy aluminum
that are shock corded, making assembly quick and easy.
The Inner Tent
A canvas cloth was included for laying under
the stove to avoid damage from ash or sparks. Installing the stove
was just a matter of setting it inside, pushing the stove pipe through
the provided stove jack, and slipping on the spark arrestor. (It
is best to burn a fire in the stove outside before using the stove to
burn off the production oils that remain. Which I did.)
Later that night, armed with
a small cardboard box and some news paper, I zipped myself in the tent
with the temperature at about -2 F. I burned a few pages of newspaper
and through the small box in (a video shipping box), and was able to
dampen down the air intake and stove pipe to adjust the burning as
desired. Within minutes it was warm enough to be comfortable
without a jacket.
The white interior of the
tent make it much easier to see and illuminate. With the air
intake on the stove open you can see well enough to move around the tent
and find shoes or gloves just from the light of the flame in the
The Arctic Oven was
wonderful on the 2002 Serum Run! Our first night of camping it was
at least -20F. My musher, Dave Talbert, and I lounged comfortable
in our polypro underwear before we crawled into the sleeping
bags. We let the fire in the heat stove die at night, so it did
get cold in the tent. Upon waking up, I slipped an arm out of the
sleeping bag to light the stove. Ten minutes later we were up, out
of our sleeping bags, (still in our polypro underwear), and stuffing our
sleeping bags into their stuff sacks. Dave and I both had to
chuckle at the idea of putting sleeping bags away as our first task.
Normally when winter camping the last thing you want to pack up is your
sleeping bag, as you tend to lounge in the bag while eating and then
dress as you crawl out of the bag. There was not a drop of moisture
on the interior tent walls. The outer tent had a layer of frost on
it which simply fell off with a tap or shake of the tent.
Remarkable how well the moisture escapes the inner tent!!
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Tent & Tarp makes and sells the Arctic Oven Tents. They
are located in Anchorage and Fairbanks.
100 E. International
link to: Alaska
Tent & Tarp
The 10 foot Arctic Oven sells for $1175.00. The small
stove and hardware for it totals about $135. You can also get a
floor protector, ground cloth, and an add on that transforms the outer
door flap into a vestibule.
The Arctic Oven comes in a smaller 'Pup' tent design
(which they say can be heated with a candle lantern) up to a 10ft x 20
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