A Yurt for The 21st Century

Despite their hideously unsexy name, yurts are actually pretty enticing places to live: they're basically homes you can carry with you. And though they've been a "thing" ever since the nomadic peoples of Central Asia first developed them roughly 3,000 years ago, their design has changed very little since. So the adventurous folks at UK-based Trakke took it upon themselves to bring the yurt into the 21st century. Meet Jero.

Yurts have traditionally been made with cross-hatched wooden frames, but the Jero is significantly sturdier (though remarkably lightweight), thanks to cutting-edge design and manufacturing techniques. That fact is also instrumental to its ability to flat-pack and travel so easily. The entire 135-square-foot shelter, when broken down, can fit in the back of a small car.

To provide beastly reinforcement, the walls are fashioned from marine plywood, and the roof is covered in 15-oz rot-proof and waterproof cotton canvas, which is securely "sewn" to the structure with powerful polyester rope. Come at us, weather.

In fact, the design-cum-adventurer Uula Jero (pictured above), who collaborated with Trakke on the project, and from whom it got its name, spent a year living in a prototype to put it thoroughly through its paces. It passed, big time.

Want to set it up as base camp in the mountains? No problemo. Expecting a bunch of houseguests and need more room? Pitch it in the garden and boom! You've got a new guest room. 

True, it isn't as quick to set up and break down as your four-person Coleman, but it doesn't require any tools, and damn if it isn't worth the extra effort. Just a heads up, it's BYO fur.

Joe McGauley is a senior editor at Supercompressor. He's still wondering about the whole bathroom situation.