It’s no secret that overlanding gear (think burley Land Rovers, Roof Top Tents, Jerry Cans, etc.) has become more and more popular with the Outdoor Recreation crowd. Amongst those are vehicle mounted awnings. That thing that attaches to a roof rack and then deploys out to provide a little shelter, be it from sun, rain or snow. They’re ideal for picnics, tailgating, car camping—anywhere you end up parking your vehicle and hanging out. The problem? They’re pricey and sometimes they don’t fit very well on smaller vehicles.
San Francisco outdoor enthusiasts Matthew Pearson and Henry Proegler just launched a Kickstarter Project for a awning product that will work with any kind of vehicle, or even no vehicle at all. It’s called The Moonshade and they sent me a preview sample to check out and review. In short, if you’ve been yearning for an awning on your vehicle but didn’t want the install or cost headaches that come with the majority of those on the market, I highly recommend you get The Moonshade.
The only downside I’ve come across is it’s not quite as quick to deploy as most vehicle mounted awnings that stay attached to the roof rack and are always at the ready. But the difference in time and effort are indeed marginal. And at 9 x 7 feet in size, it’s comparable, if not bigger than, many of the small to medium size rack mounted awnings filling the market.
The plus-sides of The Moonshade run long. It only weighs eight pounds, stores in a durable 32×6″ carry bag with a shoulder strap, includes a number of clever mounting methods and options (suction cups, Velcro straps, guylines, stakes, carabiners, etc.), and the awning itself is made of quality materials: UV protectant coated heavy-duty 420D ripstop polyester (with reflective underside), high-strength aluminum 12mm-diameter cross poles, thick plastic clips to handle the heat or cold (including one in the center on the underside to hang a lantern), and two 19mm- diameter adjustable, 7001 aluminum alloy upright support poles.
The Kickstarter project is running until 16 December, and as of this posting, they just reached their $25,000 goal which means the project is going forward and you can get a discount off of the MSRP of $350 (which is a pretty incredible price for this anyway) by being a Kickstarter project supporter. moonfab.co