Brand: Big Agnes
Model: Copper Spur HV UL 4
Set up enough lightweight group tents and you’ll find yourself asking the same question: How are four people supposed to fit in there? The answer is usually “uncomfortably.” But the Copper Spur HV UL 4 fits four, full stop. Even testers up to 6’2” had the space they needed on our trip. But that’s not enough to be a category-leading tent for five years.
We’ve been using the original since it came out—the backpacker’s take on the 100,000-mile test—and slept everywhere from forest to slickrock, meadows, swamps, and sand, and the ultralight floor is still intact and waterproof. In fact, with the exception of a few snags in the mesh and a tiny hole in the fly, this tent hasn’t required much beyond routine maintenance.
The pole structure is simple and expansive, and color coding on this year’s model takes the final bit of guesswork out of the pitch. Weatherproofing is superb: With the mostly mesh canopy, condensation never builds up, and the tent has proven its strength again and again against light to gusty winds, heavy rain, and the occasional snow storm. And if that wasn’t enough to make it the best in class, consider the dimensions: 57-square-foot floor, 50-inch head height, 14-square-foot vestibules, and it weighs only a few tent stakes over 5 pounds. That’s less than 1.5 pounds per person. Luxury rarely comes this light, so when it does, make your move.