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Backpacker Magazine – Gear Guide 2011

Gear Review: Tarptent Moment Tent

An ultra-affordable ultralight solo tent.

by: Kelly Bastone

Tarpent Moment (BP Photo Department)
Tarpent Moment (BP Photo Department)

[ultralight]
Tarptent Moment
Usually you have to pay more to carry less. But this sub-two-pound tent is almost $100 cheaper than some competitors, and still delivers top-notch performance. “Livability is excellent, setup is simple, and it stood strong in 40-mph gusts above Winter Park, Colorado,” reports our thru-hiking tester, who carried this three-season shelter for 2,650 miles along the Continental Divide Trail.

Tarptent achieves the weight-to-cost ratio the old-fashioned way: low overhead. The company is a small operation that focuses on direct-to-consumer sales (with a few exceptions, Tarptent products aren’t available at retail stores). Setup is not ultralight fussy: A single pole arches over the midsection, and built-in carbon-fiber struts support the ends; two stakes complete the pitch (an optional crossing pole makes the tent freestanding, but compromises tautness by tugging the walls out of the smooth, curved shape).

While camped at treeline during fierce weather, our tester appreciated the 6.6-square-foot vestibule, which gave him space to shed soaked clothing before entering the tent. Headroom is above average (40 inches at the peak) and the 84-inch-long floor accommodates six-footers. And over four straight months, the 30-denier ripstop nylon held up to abrasive rock slabs and pine needles. Gripe: The two ceiling vents collapse shut during storms, making the interior muggy in prolonged wet weather. Still, testers deemed the minor condensation a fair tradeoff for this affordable ultralight. $215; 1 lb. 13 oz.

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READERS COMMENTS

Star Star Star Star Star
Zach Leitch
Jan 04, 2013

I carried the Moment during my 2012 NoBo AT thru-hike and I agree with the author's comments and concerns about this tent. The ventilation flap problem can be solved by using little sticks to prop them open. I had mine factory seam sealed ($25) and I'm glad I did. I suggest getting some longer ultralight stakes. Tarptent includes some light stakes that are a little short in loose material. This problem can be solved if you can find some big rocks or logs to place over them in windy weather.

You can't beat the price and you can only beat the weight with something that is not a tent or requires trekking poles, taking away the quick setup of this tent. I'm good at it after 4 months of daily use and I can usually do it in a minute or so, unless I'm worried about the weather. THis tent also packs up extremely quickly, which is great when you're striking camp in the rain and wind. It also packs down very small and is easy to fit in lots of your packs corners, loops, hydration pouch, etc.

There is no better ultralight single person tent under $500 or maybe at all. I've seen everything on the market in 3-season conditions and there are some great tents, but the overwhelming price, weight, and outstanding livability are unbeatable. If you're scared of ultralight/boutique shops, buy a Hubba or the BA UL1. Otherwise get the moment and buy the lightest piece of tyvex you can find to cut in the shape of the tent. I got mine on Amazon from a kite parts source.

Bravo Henry Shires!

Chvmhgvhgv
Sep 20, 2011

Peace Dude

Fggfghf
Sep 20, 2011

Hi

Donald
May 10, 2011

Hi!

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