There are dozens of high-quality, cost-effective tents on the market these days, but if you’re planning a backpacking trip, you’ve got factors like weight and portability to consider. Your tent needs to be easy to carry without sacrificing waterproofing and campsite comfort.
We spoke to product experts at both EMS (Eastern Mountain Sports) and REI to help point us in the right direction for tents that will carry well, withstand rain and wind, and provide hikers with a cozy home-away-from-home while on the trail.
One of the lightest on the market. Amazon
Clocking in at just two pounds and twelve ounces, the Big Agnes Copper Spur HV UL2 is ultralight, easy to use, and super durable. While the tent is certainly a bit pricey, it’s a worthwhile investment if you plan to do a lot of backpacking and want a strong, full-featured design. There is a four-way high volume hub, double rip-stop nylon fabric, dual-zipper large doors, and two-toned mesh (hello, stargazing).
Holds up against the rain. Amazon
If you know it’s likely that you’ll encounter rain, the MSR Hubba one-person tent is the way to go. (It’s also available for two people). Opt for the additional Xtreme Waterproof Coating, which lasts up to three times longer than a standard coating. At just 2.9 pounds, the set-up features a freestanding design with 18 square feet of floor area and plenty of vestibule space.
Easiest to pitch. Amazon
This tent from Teton sleeps one and weighs in at only 4.6 pounds. Hikers will find nice airflow and reduced condensation, thanks to the mesh canopy. This tent is on the more affordable end of ultralight backpacking tents.