In January 2012, I posted about whether it’s better to shelter or tent. I’ve reproduced the discussion below. But now there may be a big disadvantage to sleeping in a shelter versus choosing a tent. Hantavirus! This nasty affliction is spread by rodents, especially mice. Mice habituate shelters, and hikers tolerate them.
In the picture above, hikers can hang their food, but they are lying ducks for mice scurrying around during the night. Hantavirus is a severe illness. http://www.timesunion.com/news/article/Case-of-hantavirus-in-Adirondacks-confirmed-3973769.php
They are convenient, but a tent, especially for sleeping, has advantages.
Privacy – You aren’t a stuffed sardine when it gets crowded.
Warmth – A tent with a rainfly is warmer than an open shelter.
Better Sleep – You are not poked, or kicked, or outsnored.
No Mice – Those critters can drive you nuts!
So why choose a shelter to sleep in?
Convenience – Less hassle. No need to unpack and set up a tent; no need to dismantle and re-pack the tent in the morning, possibly in the rain.
Clothesline – Many shelters have them already. Easy to rig up, or simply hang garments from nails and hooks provided. Clothes are protected from outside weather.
Ease – Can sit and lean against a wall to read, journal, contemplate (I’m sore, I’m tired, I wish I had a pizza and beer.)
- Johns Hollow Shelter to Brown Mountain Creek Shelter (birts.wordpress.com)
- NPMA Estimates 21 Million Rodents Are Seeking Food & Shelter (blogpestcontrol.com)