Published on December 1st, 2017 | by The Iceman0
Review of the Clam Bigfoot XL2000 Pop-Up Ice Shelter
Summary: Easy to set up and just as easy to take down. The Clam Bigfoot is one of the better medium-sized ice fishing shelters you can find.
The Clam Bigfoot XL2000 Pop-Up Ice Shelter is one of the better medium-sized ice fishing shelters you can find. It might be surprising then that the XL2000 is actually reasonably priced, but the Clam company has always sold their products at fair rates.
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The Clam Bigfoot XL2000 is easy to set up. A lot of “pop-ups” are actually a real pain in the neck. Trying to set them up on a windy piece of ice can be maddening. You pull one tab here only for the other side to collapse. Or you pop up one side only for the whole thing to spin around. The Clam Bigfoot Pop-Up is actually a pop-up. You can get the shelter set up in minutes with just a few pulls.
Just in case you do get a little out of whack, you don’t have to worry all that much. The Clam Bigfoot is made with 600 denier fabric that is super strong. It’s nothing like the cheap plastic you see wrapped around lesser shelters. The poles are strong too. They’re flex tested and not easy to break at all. That’s actually why I bought this Clam to begin with.
How this Clam shelter shapes up
Previously, I was using an Jawbone Shield Hub Shelter. I bought it new but on sale at a local store. It was around a hundred dollars and I couldn’t pass up the deal. Imagine my disappointment when one of the poles snapped on the third use as I was trying to put the thing away. I wasn’t even being rough. The thing just wasn’t that well made.
I am not into my second season with the Clam Bigfoot and I have not had any problems at all. Sure I spent more than twice what I dropped on the Elkton but it was worth it.
The Bigfoot is described as a four man shelter. I find that it is much better for two people. You can fit in three people but if you have some equipment in the shelter and a few holes drilled in the ice under your feet it can get tight. You might be able to fit four guys in the shelter but I don’t think it would be all that comfortable. Two guys and two kids would be a lot more reasonable.
I do have another ice shelter that I bring out on longer and colder sessions. That’s because the Clam Refuge is a lot bigger than the Bigfoot. It’s insulated too. The Bigfoot is not insulated, but it is thick and well made so it keeps out the window and cold pretty well on normal days, especially when coupled with a Little Buddy heater.
The Bigfoot actually stands up to wind pretty well. It has a cool design with a sort of anchor flat built all the way around. Once you screw your anchors into the ice and set the thing up you don’t have to worry much.
The Bigfoot has a big door on one corner with a quality zipper than never freezes or otherwise jams up. It also has nice clear plastic windows so you can see what’s going on out on the ice. That’s nice if you want to watch your tip-ups without standing out in the freezing cool. Of course you can cover the windows up too, and I do when I am jigging over finicky fish.
Perhaps my favorite thing about the Clam Bigfoot is the big bag that comes with. That might sound stupid if you’ve never had to put a portable shelter or tent away in the cold with semi-frozen hands. For some reason a lot of tents and shelters are packed so tight into their bags that it can be nearly impossible to fit them back into their original cases even on a good day. After a long day of ice fishing it is even worse. The Bigfoot comes with a nice big bag that you can plop the collapsed shelter into with lots of room to spare. I love it!
The Clam Bigfoot XL2000 Pop-Up Ice Shelter is available at Amazon.