Why We Tent In The Trees

Here's the deal: We love trees. In fact, we're down right passionate about them (in a healthy way, we believe). Some look at them and see timber, pulp, and dollar signs. We see trees and our hearts pump faster…. Trees are things of beauty, majesty and inspiration. You can hide away in the trees, shelter within their carpet, survive among them, nourish your soul and feel part of the living landscape.

I was six when I first saw the Ewok Village. I knew then that I wanted to build things in trees and so spent the time to get certified as an architect. I thought that by qualifying, my peers could not look down on treehouse architecture! It's a real thing! I have been lucky enough to have worked with many of the top treehouse design and build teams in the world and could see that they had so much fun working up in the tree tops. That's where I want to spend my time!

The Treehouse Industry and Turning it Around..

Treehouse companies seem to reach a plato in terms if size. The problem is, treehouses are very elaborate to design and completely unique to build! All the companies I worked with were aiming to develop a one-size-fits-all solution. None of them managed to get to that point.

I decided that it would be my mission to make a back packable treehouse. A lightweight, portable structure that employed trees to created a stable a firm framework that could support two or more people. There seemed no point in stepping on the hammock industry's toes – I like hammocks!

After teaming up with Kirk, things moved pretty fast. Kirk's product design background helped refine the Tentsile concept and after 6 months we had created a truly compact and immensely strong design, capable of sleeping 3 people in suspended comfort. We call it Stingray.

What have we started?

We brought Stingray into the world so that everyone can enjoy all the happiness and joy that hanging out in trees brings; an experience to share; a shelter big enough to move around in covered space during those long rainy afternoons; a way to sleep in the woods in supreme comfort over any ground conditions, away from bugs, away from water and mud. We gave Tentsiling to the world because we believe that if we are all hanging out in trees, they can't chop them down....

The image that started it all...
November 11, 2014 — Alex Shirley-Smith


Paul Zedeck

Paul Zedeck said:

How do your “Tree Protector Straps” work to protect the bark and health of the tree? I live in Colorado and many areas ban hammocks or anything being strapped to a tree. Park Rangers in fact will remove items strapped to trees and issue tickets for violating the rule. So how does one get a return on investment for a product I’m not sure I can use at a forest camp ground. Not even sure it’s allowed in the backcountry.
Then there is the issue of beetle kill. Strapping this structure to a beetle kill tree could result in structural failure and harm to the user. Let’s say for arguments sake I can set up a tentsile in the San Juan National Forest backcountry or even at a camp site. How do your customers know which trees are suitable for use? What tools do you provide your customers to identify healthy trees and then how confident are you in your system setup to assure that harm won’t come to the health tree?
Compared to traditional tent camping your product adds unnecessary risk to North American customers who may encounter beetle kill stands in what should be a very simple tent shelter proposition. How does your company mitigate these risks and assure the consumer that use of your product is legal on National and State Forest lands?

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