Best Backpacking Tents

by Rishabh Goria | Last Updated: July 9, 2020

If you are planning to go for a backpacking trip and have already chosen, the place then the best way to relax after the whole day of backpacking is sleeping and to sleep and protect yourself from bugs or small insects you need a good backpacking tent.

A good backpacking tent will help you store your valuables, and help you get a comfortable sleep in the night, because of which you wake up fresh in the morning and are ready for another day of backpacking.

There are many backpacking tents available in the market and it becomes too difficult for you to choose from them, so where are we, we will help you choose the best backpacking tents by providing a list of best tents and also a buying guide, so that by chance if you don’t like any tents from our list you can check the buying guide get an idea how to identify a good backpacking tent and get it for yourself.

Let’s dive straight in.

Best Backpacking Tents


1. Big Agnes Copper Spur HV UL2:

With the best features onboard, the Big Agnes Copper Spur is one of the best 2-person tent (best backpacking 2-person tents article) you can get.

It has steeper walls, good room for both the people, lightweight and portable as well.

It also has dual doors on both sides for easier entry and with dual zippers with dual vestibules which cover a total area of 18 square feet provide perfect storage for wet as well as dry items.

For two people there is excellent headspace in it and the tent is 88 inches long, 52 inches wide in head and the 42-inch taper down in the bottom is duly noticeable. The pre-bent poles make the walls steeper which contributes to the extra interior volume, also the cross poles provide more height.

You can store your valuables, daily needs, backpacking gears, and stuff in the vestibules so that you don’t miss anything on your trip.

The tent is completely waterproof and is taped with polyutherane tape to seal all the sides of the tent. The floor and the fly are also made durable with a 1200mm waterproof rating.

The four-way hub design makes the tent strong by 25% and increases the interior volume by 20% too.

Talking further about the durability of the product the Big Agnes Copper Spur also contains a nylon rip-stop pattern which provides the maximum strength to it by 25%.

The tent also has a variety of storage options which include 2 interior mesh pockets and a ceiling pocket too, and with the storm flaps on both the vestibules the tent is worth every penny you spent on it.

Along with those mesh pockets, the tent also has two cord routing portals, 8 ultralight aluminium J stakes, and with the two-tone mesh, you can also have an amazing star-gazing experience.

If there are any damages to the product, or if you are not satisfied with the quality of the product then with the perfect after-sales service from the product’s manufacturer’s you can get a replacement if the product gets damaged and if the replacement is not available you can get credit for the same.

The flap over the fly zipper prevents water from entering the tent, also the guy points at the head and foot protect the tent and make it one of the competitors for lightweight tents.

The vent above the head helps to prevent condensation.

You can take this tent to anywhere, and travel to anyplace and experience all adventurous sports using it from sea kayaking to be bagging missions, you can experience everything with the tent.

If you are looking for a backpacking tent for all your backpacking needs, then this is the one you are looking for.

You can also check out other 2-person, 3-person, 4-person tents from the same brand, hope they are useful as well.

Features:

  1. Weight: 2 lb, 2oz
  2. Packed size: 4×19.5 inches.
  3. Head height: 40 inches.
  4. Floor area: 29 square feet.
  5. Two vestibules of 9 square feet each.
  6. It has two overhead pockets one overhead and one at the foot end.
Pros
  • Solid design.
  • More space.
  • Lightweight and durable because of the sturdy and perfect pole construction which also provides flexibility and rigidity.
  • Easy to set up and performs well in rough weather.
  • It is available in two colour options: Gray and orange.
Cons
  • It might be expensive if you buy it considering it for a car camping trip, but if you want to use it repeatedly then there is no better product then this.

2. MSR Hubba NX-2 Person Lightweight:

If you are looking for the best waterproof tent which is very easy to carry and lightweight as well then MSR Hubba Hubba is the best one to get.

MSR Hubba Hubba NX is available as a 2-person or 3-person tent and with its freestanding design, it is one of the favourites too. Made up of 20-denier ripstop nylon or the 15-denier ripstop nylon mesh it is perfect for rainy and wet weather seasons.

With the pole configuration feature, the MSR Hubba provides more headspace and elbow space and can accommodate two people at ease, so that you do not feel cramped up or don’t stamp each other’s legs.

Weighing only 3 pounds and 13 ounces it is very easy to set up and pack as well. The color-coded design helps you to set it up very easily.

It is a bomb-proof shelter that can be used for three seasons and lasts long as well. It does not come in our list of lightweight tents but is not too heavy and not too delicate, it’s just perfect.

The chances of you tearing the tent are very less which means you do not have to fear about where to place the tent and easily camp them at any place you like.

Also, the rugged design helps you to use it not only in summers but also during the snow. There are mesh slides that provide the perfect ventilation, airflow, and protect you from bugs and other insects.

The high-quality fabric also doesn’t allow much wind to flow in and gives you private space as well. The tent also has Xtreme shield waterproofing on the roof which helps to block rain, but you need to seam seal the body and the fly before going for a trip for extra care and protection.

There are different sizes available for you to choose from.

Features:

  1. Floor area: 29 square feet.
  2. Interior height: 39 inches.
  3. Vestibule Area: 17.5 square feet.
  4. Weight: 3.5 lbs
  5. Total packed size: 18 x 6 inches.
Pros
  • It has dura shield coating and DAC feather-like poles which make them lightweight as well.
  • It comes with a 3-year warranty as well.
  • Lightweight and durable as well.
  • You can also car camp using it.
  • The compression sack makes it easy to stow.
Cons
  • It is expensive.
  • The waterproofing is not strong enough to prevent heavy rains.
  • You need to seam seal it at home, for better safety and durability.

3. Nemo Hornet Ultralight Backpacking Tent:

If you are looking for a lightweight option and don’t want to set up the tarp, then nothing better the Nemo Hornet Ultralight Backpacking tent.

The two-door entrance is what we liked the most as you and your friend can very easily get in and out of the tent in a hassle-free way.

If you are traveling alone and need a tent better than one-person backpacking tents (best backpacking one-person tent article) as they do not offer much space, then Nemo Hornet Elite might be a better option to look out for.

Also, it might not be one of the lightest pole-based tents but is lightweight and waterproof as well. There is not much of interior space in the tent, but the dual vestibules allow you to cook your food easily and store your daily need items in it.

Talking about the floor space, two adults might struggle inside the tent. There are also two thermal-rests which help you to snuggle side-by-side.  You can also use sleeping bags (best backpacking sleeping bags) to be more comfortable and get a good sleep in the night.

The two side doors help you get in easily in the tent, and there are vestibules of 6 square feet each which help you store your boots, or other items as well which makes it more comfortable for you.

There is a vertical fly zipper too which is of arc-shaped or semi-circular which can be found in most of the tents, also the Hornet Elite has 2-doors which help you get some awesome view as well as provide good ventilation as well.

There is also an overhead canopy pocket made of ripstop nylon which protects you from harsh LEDs and allows you to illuminate just the right amount of brightness.

Weighing only 1 pound 11 ounces, this double-wall tent is too light for its category. You can also remove the guy line and the tent bag which makes it too light and very easy to carry.

It is perfectly suited for all weather, and you need not worry about its performance. The tent’s fly helps to direct the water incorrect path when it rains. The tent walls also ensure to keep the sleepers even in a storm.

The pole branches at head-end corners and needs two stakes for setting up completely, also the tent-to-pole hooks provide a good advantage if you set it up in warm or cold weather.

Features:

  1. Interior height: 37 inches.
  2. Floor space: 85 x 51 inches.
  3. Vestibule Space: 6 square feet.
  4. Packed size: 19×5 inches.
  5. Packed weight: 2 pounds 1 ounce.
  6. Single DAC 8.7mm Featherlight NFL pole and two stakes.
Pros
  • Lightweight and durable.
  • Water-resistant and waterproof as well.
  • Very easy to set up because of the freestanding poles.
  • Easy to cook food, even with less interior space.
Cons
  • Might not be too comfortable for two people, be ready to cuddle.
  • The light-weight poles might come off during heavy storms, so you need to careful during storms.

4. Nemo Dagger 2:

The NEMO Dagger is a tent that every backpacker wants. It gives you all the comforts which you can get form a car camping tent but also keep the weight of the tent in mind.

The fabric is so lightweight, durable and the extended length and more spacious vestibules which are very much helpful after a day of hiking.

This can be your new shelter and if you are not comfortable with the interior space you can also get the three-person model of the same brand.

The traditional black on top helps you to stargaze without any distraction and less obstruction in the view. The white on the side also gives you more privacy as well.

The Nemo Dagger is designed for ultimate comfort and because of the vertical walls, there is increased headroom. Also, the Featherlight poles are pre-bent which in turn increase space and are easy to carry around.

With two vestibules and two doors onboard you extra storage to keep your gear dry in wet weather. Also, the vestibules are very easy to access so you need not struggle in finding them.

The Dagger also has overhead light diffusers which are made from opaque white fabric which glows from the light of the headlamp, this might be useful while cooking for getting more light to check whether the food is cooked correctly or not, or it might help if you are a bibliophile.

If you think that you can open the doors single-handedly then you are wrong, this might be slightly a difficult task, also the doors open in opposite direction, so you need to sleep head-to-toe so that both the sleepers can access doors and get in and out easily.

The bathtub shaped floor helps to keep the sleepers dry and the fly fastens over the body very easily and prevents sagging and loose edges. Also, the interior is quite enough to fit sleeping bags and pillows (best backpacking pillows) in it, so you can have a comfortable sleep.

Made of 30D nylon fabric the tent is completely waterproof tub floor which prevents from water getting inside the tent. The ripstop fly which is coated with silicon makes the tent reliable and protects it from harsh weather.

You can also add a footprint to improve the durability of the tent floor and you can also add a gear loft to increase the storage space.

It is available in both 2-person and 3-person versions, so if you think the 2-person version offers less space you can always go for the 3-person tent for more headspace and bigger interiors.

If you are looking for a tent that is lightweight and has a convenient design, then NEMO Dagger is the one you need to choose for. So, don’t hesitate and get this backpacking tent as it will be worth every penny spent.

Features:

  1. 30D Nylon fabric.
  2. 15D Nylon Ripstop and no-see-um mesh
  3. Fly: 15D Sil/PU Nylon Ripstop.
  4. 1200mm Waterproof Fly.
  5. 30D Nylon Ripstop floor with 3000 mm Waterproof.
  6. Minimum weight: 3 lb 5 oz.
  7. Size: 19.5×6.5 inches.
Pros
  • Overhead light pockets.
  • Dual-stage stuff sack.
  • Weatherproof and waterproof
  • Lightweight and durable.
  • Comes with a lifetime warranty.
Cons
  • The vestibules require 2 stakes.
  • Might be heavier when compared to other models.
  • There might not be good ventilation along with the mesh.

BUYING GUIDE FOR BACKPACKING TENTS

The most important factor when you are out for buying a tent. You can check the weight of the tent in two ways:

Packed weight refers to the weight of the tent concerning all the accessories with it too.

It also includes the tent, the guy lines, the stakes, repair kit, pole splint, stuff sacks, footprints, and other accessories too.

This is not the exact weight, but the most accurate weight measurement. You can also cut the weight further and ditch some stuff sacks, but you need to compromise in protection.

The guy lines are optional too but again if you are going to a place where you expect storms or high winds then you need to take them with you as they offer much protection.

You can also get ultralight stakes or rocks to secure your tent.

If you want a footprint to be included in your bag then you can use REIs passage or you can also for Marmot’s Tungsten.

 The minimum weight also referred to as the trail weight is the weight comprised of the tent body, rainfly, poles, and depending on the build components there might be a slight difference between the packed and minimum weight.     

If you are in a budget then you need to carry some extra pounds in your bag, or if you are doing a short backpack or if you value space or durability, then get a heavier tent which can save money for you and work fine.

If you are covering 20 miles a day with 30 pounds of load then you need to get an ultralight tent and if you are going to backpack at the place where you expect rains or you are backpacking in wet weather then get a waterproof and weatherproof tent for yourself.   

If you need suggestions from our side, then for people who are healthy backpackers who need to carry everything with them despite the situation we suggest MSR Hubba Hubba and Big Agnes Copper Spur might be perfect in terms of weight and livability.

Another most important factor to consider while buying yourself a backpacking gear is a budget. If you are in a tight budget and want a tent that comes in your budget or comes below 100$ (best backpacking tents below $100) then you need to choose tents of different brands and different quality, but if the price is not an issue for you then we would suggest you get Big Agnes Copper Spur tent as that is the best one you can get for a backpacking trip or even for a camping trip.

Interior space and headspace is an important factor for people who are tall and get one person or two-person backpacking tents, many tents have less interior space because of which you feel cramped up and you might not have a good sleep, so it’s better to check whether the tent has good and more space inside and also good headspace at the centre this, in turn, reflects on the comfort of the tent.

Before buying the tent, you need to check whether the tent can work well in harsh weather or not? Whether it can resist, heavy sunlight, or heavy rains or not? Whether you can use it in wet weather or not? Is it three-season compatible or four-season compatible, these questions are crucial because you never know what might come up?

Also before going backpacking you need to study the place very clearly to get a clear understanding of the area and understand whether it might rain there or are there any chances of a storm or not, as you can prep yourself with the proper equipment and protect yourself.

Design is very important in backpacking, a single flaw in the design of the tent can ruin your backpacking experience. Setting up tents might be a very easy task but always choose freestanding tents for a better experience.

A well-designed tent means it has good doors at the right place, in fact, multiple doors as well, good vestibule space, headroom, proper ventilation, and interior pockets for increasing the interior storage.

If you are thinking to buy a two-person or three-person or a four-person tent the doors play a very important role and the tent must have two doors and multiple vestibules such that both of you can store your essentials in it.

Having different doors means you don’t step on each other or cross each other to get in or get out of a tent, also it makes sure that you don’t disturb others while sleeping and you can get out of the tent very easily.

These tents come with two walls, a mesh tent, and a rainfly. The mesh tent is a barrier and prevents condensation which forms inside the rainfly. Single wall tents do not have the inner mesh tent so you might experience condensation in the single-wall tents. So, you should get double-walled tents for better backpacking experience.

To increase the durability, you need to get better fabric which makes the tent strong and durable as well.

Conclusion:

These were one of the best products that we found from the market; you can let us know what worked out for you in the comments. We hope you liked the article and find the perfect gear which fulfills your needs. If you have any suggestions, we are open to it and you can write to us in the comments.