If the devil is in the details, then this is the most unholy tent we’ve ever occupied. Nothing, it seems, escaped the attention of legendary tent designer Jake Lah, who collaborated with Sea to Summit for this two-person, freestanding tent. Naturally (since Lah is the guy behind DAC poles), it all starts with the structure. The single, multi-hubbed pole has an inverted V-shape top section that creates twin peaks and props up near-vertical walls. The design equates to a ton of livable space inside, while still being tensioned enough to prevent water from pooling atop the sil/PeU fly and strong enough to shrug off 25-mph winds when we camped at treeline in Colorado’s Indian Peaks Wilderness. A ceiling vent keeps things from steaming up.
Inside, the canopy provides more than enough headroom for two people, and the 28.2-square-foot floor is larger than most in this category. The fly has four positions: locked down, half-way on for stargazing, rolled up, and propped out into hangout mode. And once the Telos is pitched, marvel at how mundane parts transform into useful accessories. That tent pole sack? It’s also a light bar that snaps to the ceiling; put your headlamp inside and you’ve got edge-to-edge overhead lighting. The two stuff sacks for the fly and canopy? Those snap into the corners to become large, stout storage pockets. An adjustable, overhead storage attic is roomy enough for layers and strong enough for books. And while we’re talking about storage, how come no one has split the canopy, fly, and poles into three separate-yet-joinable bags before? That makes dividing its just-over-3-pound weight with a partner supereasy. The Telos TR2 is the sort of tent we’ve been dreaming about, which makes its arrival feel like an answered prayer.