Gear Review: REI Arete ASL 2 Tent

A four-season tent that truly can be used year-round.


In the Rockies, where altitude makes summer nights nippy, I use four-season tents year-round. The Arete fits my bill, since the limited mesh can be covered with zippered panels. It pitches in a flash—feed the two crossing poles through sleeves and clip the third across the front to support the door.

The vestibule is big enough for gear, cooking, even a crouching body. The freestanding dome held strong in 20-mph gusts and several inches of fresh snow. Space is tight for tall guys, but the low weight, easy setup, and weather protection is worth the tradeoff.

Best For

Year-round campers who need more warmth than a three-season tent but less protection than a mountain bombshelter

Tester Data

> Kelly Bastone (other testers: Katie Herrell, Dennis Lewon)

> Duration April to June

> Locales/conditions CO; wind, snow

> “Despite the limited mesh, the Arete ventilates well enough to make condensation a nonissue.”