Sustainability: The first challenge in creating eco-friendly tents? Eliminate PFCs, a class of chemicals used for waterproofing that are likely carcinogens. (For more eco gear, see page 108.) Fjällräven innovated a four-layer silicone treatment that’s applied to both sides of the nylon fly and canopy walls (20-denier and 15-denier respectively). Designers skipped toxic fire retardants (so the tent is not available in eight states or Canada) and eschewed taped seams (require chemicals) for a polyester thread with a cotton sheath that expands when wet, creating a waterproof seal.
Weather protection: Of course, an eco-friendly tent still has to work. Our Alaskan tester weathered 40-mph winds, snow, and rain in the Talkeetna Mountains. “There was a lot of flapping, but the tent never budged thanks to its low profile and 18 guyouts.” Ding: In cold and damp weather, testers struggled with condensation unless they rolled up the fly at the head or foot.
Livability: The massive 22-square-foot vestibule has plenty of room for packs and cooking. But interior headroom is tight: Peak height is 37 inches.
Durability: The silicone-treated walls held up equally well to an Alaskan snowstorm and four consecutive days of North Carolina rain. The tent showed no dip in water repellency over the six months we used it.