All the tents reviewed here stand up to unruly three-season storms, but few deliver the rough-weather comforts of the Compact Light, which is ideal for regions that see plenty of rain and wintry weather year-round. Because the tent body stays clipped to the fly, this non-freestanding hoop design pitches fast and preserves a dry interior during rainy setups. Loops inside the tent make stringing clotheslines easy, and two pockets (by the door) keep doodads organized during weather delays.
The huge, 28.4-square-foot vestibule holds a trio’s wet gear, and its side-zip entry keeps those items from cluttering access to the single, large front door. The steep walls and high ceiling (41 inches) create a roomy feel, and the 34.4-square-foot floor and 90-inch length let testers of all sizes spread out in comfort. And when storms struck, the Compact Light “never rippled in wind that flattened other nearby tents,” one tester declared after howling storms hit Utah’s Green River. Ventilation is outstanding in breezy conditions, and even damp, chilly nights produced scant condensation. But the integrated fly makes it too warm for hot-weather use, and sand sticks to the siliconized nylon. $549; 7 lbs. 1 oz.; bergans.com
The Bear Creek Solo Tent is Paha Que's first backpacking tent. With a full mesh body, it is designed to provide a wide-open, "sleeping under the stars" feeling on dry nights, as well as a dry and secure environment when the weather turns nasty. Designed to fit on a regular or oversized cot, or as a free-standing tent, the Bear Creek Solo will provide complete protection, in any weather. Enjoy bug-free nights sleeping next to the fire, or button up tight for foul weather, this versatile design provides Paha Que' quality at an affordable price.
High-quality 8.5mm T6 6061 shock-corded pole set provides a strong and lightweight frame. Bathtub style floor keeps ground water out so you stay dry. Almost 20 square feet of usable interior space makes this a roomy one person tent, and the rainfly vestibule adds an additional 6.5 square feet of protected space for gear and other items.