Arguably the most important aspect of choosing a tent is understanding what you need if for. Knowing the conditions you are most likely to use it in will help you narrow down your options effectively. The following groups of tents will suit different people and the activities they most regularly do.

Ultralight Backpacking / Adventure Racing Tents

Carbon Reflex Series

Aimed at the ultra minimalist, probably doing a mountain marathon the Carbon Reflex tents achieve very low weights and yet are still two skin shelters with their own poleset (i.e. you don’t need trekking poles to pitch them.

Compromises to achieve these weights are head height, completely mesh inner tent, not freestanding and Velcro instead of a zipper on the vestibule entry.

Technology that makes it possible; Easton Carbon ION poles, 7Denier fabrics (15D on floor), Durashield coating on the flysheet and Xtreme Shield coating on the floor.

Weight (two person tent): 844g excluding pegs and bags

Models available: 1, 2 & 3 Person


Freelite Series

Ultra lightweight, two skin freestanding tent minimising the compromises of the Carbon Reflex series. The 15D flysheet rather than the 7D used on the Carbon Reflex will extend the life of the tent relatively speaking.

The inner tent is 100% mesh which does not suit everyone and the freestanding nature of the tent does nevertheless require at least two pegs to pitch it properly.

There are a few extra inches of internal head height and the Freelite uses Easton Syclone poles which are virtually indestructible. With Xtreme Shield on both the flysheet and floor the Freelite offers a high degree of protection despite its low weight.

Weight (two person tent): 844g excluding pegs and bags

Models available: 1, 2 & 3 Person

Lightweight Backpacking Tents

Hubba NX Series

MSR’s best selling series of tents offer a great compromise between living space, features and durable 20-30D nylon fabrics with a Durashield coating.

The lightest MSR series that offers combined mesh and fabric inner tents to give a good balance of warmth, ventilation and privacy.

Completely freestanding the Hubba series are easy to pitch with pole geometries that offer great wind resistance. Also available are Fast and Light ‘bodies’ that are enhanced footprints that replace the inner tent with a much lighter option for trips where insects won’t be a problem.

Weight (two person tent): 1610g excluding pegs and bags

Models available: 1, 2, 3 & 4 Person

There are also 1, 2, & 3 person ‘Hubba Tour’ models available with extended porches for bike packing or when you just need more space.

Access Series

MSR’s Access series is probably the best all round tent series they produce – these tents have a four season rating , a good amount of space and a virtually full fabric inner tent (which you need for a four season tent).

Using 20 and 30D fabrics with Easton Syclone poles the Access offers good durability and protection. The pole configuration ensures it’s very stable in the wind.

This tent is ideal if you want a tent for all seasons, its tough enough for Scottish winter backpacking but light enough not to resent carrying it in the summer months.

Weight (two person tent): 1622g excluding pegs and bags

Models available: 1, 2 & 3 Person


Backpacking Tents

Elixir Series

The Elixir series are for when weight is not as important an issue. Using 60 and 70D fabrics the Elixir series will last longer than lighter tents. Modelled on the Hubba series pole configuration they have a good mix of mesh and fabric on the inner tent.

Heavier fabrics are easier to manufacture with so these tents are cheaper to make and can be offered at competitive prices, they even include a footprint.

Weight (two person tent): 2118g excluding pegs and bags

Models available: 1, 2, 3 & 4 Person

Remote Series

The remote series tents are 4 season tents constructed using heavier weight fabrics for durability and longer life. They are also slightly bigger than the most popular tents to reflect that you might be camping in remote areas and extreme weather, a bit more space goes a long way to improving your lot.

Weight (two person tent): 2862g excluding pegs and bags

Models available: 2 & 3 Person

Guideline Pro Series

Built to last up to 3 times longer than consumer grade tents – aimed at professionals using their tent far more than the mainstream. It uses Easton oversized Syclone poles and 70D fabrics with Xtreme Shield coatings and other features designed to extend the life of the tent.

Weight (two person tent): 2924g excluding pegs and bags

Models available: Only one size (2 person) is available

Alpine Tents

Twin Sisters Series

Single skin, 4 season shelter with included poles, but can be used with trekking poles. Doesn’t come with a floor or footprint but these can be bought as an optional extra, without then the shelter is ideal if you are using bivvies and the weather could get pretty bad.

It’s a simple shelter fitting a particular niche.

Weight (two person tent): 1224g excluding pegs and bags (902g without the poles)

Models available: Only one size (2 person) is available

Advance Pro Series

Single skin, freestanding shelter designed for alpinists as a basic protection for getting out of the weather at high altitudes. Tough 20D and 30D fabrics and Easton Syclone poles ensure strength and durability.

In common with tents falling into this category there’s no vestibule, it’s a shelter for resting or sitting out some bad weather in an environment where condensation is unlikely to form.

Weight (two person tent): 1284g excluding pegs and bags

Models available: Only one size (2 person) is available