Subscribe Contribute Advertise Facebook Twitter Instagram Forums Newsletter
Best tent for rain
Display Avatars Sort By:
wiiawiwb wiiawiwb
(wiiawiwb) - F
Best tent for rain on 11/16/2010 22:57:29 MST Print View

What are some of the better tents for keeping one dry from the rain in the wet Adirondacks.

Looking for a 2-person tent that is ~3.5lbs or less.

Edited by wiiawiwb on 11/16/2010 23:04:10 MST.

Franco Darioli
(Franco) - M

Locale: @Tarptent
Best tent for rain on 11/17/2010 03:56:32 MST Print View

I would be looking for a tent that has a dry set up for a start, that is fly first or integral pitch (fly and inner together).
Next one that has some sort of protected entry so that you don't get the floor wet when you get in or out.
A solid water resistant inner (tent over there...) would be helpful in catching condensation dislodged from the fly.
Two entrances are better than one. Some head and foot room would be nice too.
I think that I know a tent like that...

Steven McAllister
(brooklynkayak) - MLife

Locale: Atlantic North East
All on 11/17/2010 07:00:23 MST Print View

I think pretty much all shelters are designed to keep you dry in rain.
Some do better in gale force blowing rain than other though.

Greg Mihalik
(greg23) - M

Locale: Colorado
Re: Best tent for rain on 11/17/2010 07:18:51 MST Print View

Consider adding a flat tarp to the load. For continually wet weather it is hard to beat.

It will give you flexibility on the tent, and give you a place to hang out, cook, organize, and pack.

A 10x10 in Spin can be had for under a pound.

As for the perfect 3.5# 2 person tent... good luck. I'll be watching this thread. ;-)

Edited by greg23 on 11/17/2010 07:20:36 MST.

John Donewar
(Newton) - MLife

Locale: Southeastern Louisiana
Re: Best tent for rain on 11/17/2010 07:44:06 MST Print View

Look at the Six Moon Designs Lunar Duo 39 ounce 2 person tent.

It looks like it would fit your requirements.

I use a tarp and bivy myself.

Party On,


Andy F
(AndyF) - M

Locale: Midwest/Midatlantic
Re: Best tent for rain on 11/17/2010 08:30:44 MST Print View

Some options:

- Whichever tent on appeals to you.

- Golite Shangri-La 2 or 3, with a non-Golite net tent for bug season (Golite net tents are heavy)

- MLD Duomid or Supermid (need separate net tent in bug season)

- Oware mids (need separate net tent in bug season)

Personally, I have:
1. 8x10 silnylon flat tarp
2. Shangri-La 3 (SL3)
3. Scarp 2
Options 2 and 3 work well for winter too.

Of these, I tend to use the SL3 the most because it can give the openness and views of a flat tarp when pitched high, at an angle, or with the door and maybe an additional panel pulled back. Yet, it can give full 360 degree protection within a minute. It's also only a little over 1.5 lbs (including stakes) if you use trekking poles, no net tent, and a polycro floor. There's plenty of room for two.

As a side observation, I'd like something lighter for solo use, and am debating about a Shangri-La 1 vs. a Tarptent Moment.

Edited by AndyF on 11/17/2010 08:32:52 MST.

John McAlpine
(HairlessApe) - M

Locale: PNW
Lots of Rain? on 11/17/2010 09:13:01 MST Print View

I would stay away from single wall tents. I have a TT here in the PNW and I get wet when it rains all day. The single wall just doesn't work for me. It may work well for others, but the rain gods just don't like me in a single wall tent.

How about a Big Agnes Copper Spur UL2?

Chris Benson
(roguenode) - F

Locale: Boulder
Copper Spur UL on 11/17/2010 09:27:34 MST Print View

Hey John, do you have a copper spur? If so, what is setup like in the rain?

As for getting wet in tt, my contrail was worse in sustained rain than my gg the one. Spinnaker was better in the wet than sinylon in that case. I don't own any cuban shelters, but would keep tent/tarp fabric type in mind if I were the OP.

Troy Ammons
(tammons) - F - MLife
Best tent for rain on 11/17/2010 09:27:44 MST Print View

+_1 on a tarp + tent.

Basically the lightest tent you can find plus....
A zpacks 8x10 tarp weighs 5.2 oz.
Nice thing about a tarp is you can set up the tarp
and then take your leisurely time setting up your tent, doesnt matter if it has an integral fly, change your cloths under it etc. Also allows for more ventilation in rain which is a huge advantage especially in the summer.

If no tarp the a tent with a large vestibule and a lot of ventilation.

Besides wet gear entry and setting up wet, getting stuck in a tent in the rain for a few hours or a day is no big deal but when it turns into days with the wrong tent setup is when it turns into misery. Been there done it, and even then with a decent vestibule sometimes it was not enough.

The first time I had a real taste of a week in the rain in a tent was in the 70's and that was when I started carrying a large sponge.

The biggest issue IMO is coming into a tent wet. Even before you get out to do anything, you have to make sure everything is setup right so it wont get wet coming in.

You need a place to take your boots/shoes, socks, raingear, cloths, your hat, pack if you have one. Even just going out to take a dump can be a big deal.

Although not ultralight a sweet setup would be like a tarptent squall 2, A 8x10 cuben tarp and a nano hammock for an off the ground chair/lounge.

That would weigh 2.8# plus stakes and cord etc.

Well it might be too comfy so maybe skip the hammock. Besides 2 people would fight over one hammock.

James McDaniel
"Best tent for rain" on 11/17/2010 09:34:46 MST Print View

I've got a copper spur 2 and have been hammered with all day rain several times and was was very happy I had it(I understand it's on the heavier side of your requirements). Of course it keeps you dry but the really nice part is having the double large vestibule setup.

With a lot of rain you have to have a system with what to do with your wet muddy gear and the stuff that you need access too. I keep one vestibule zipped up and access it through the inside door. Then the stuff I need to get in and out with, like cooking and saddles on the other.

I also could lay stuff out nicely in the 'always closed' vestibule to dry over night.

To me, gear management(dry/clean) is critical in wet hiking, more so when it's cold.

I'll probably go with the Lunar Duo eventually but only when I expect fair weather. When I'm alone, it's the hammock.

wiiawiwb wiiawiwb
(wiiawiwb) - F
A few choices on 11/17/2010 10:38:08 MST Print View

A few tents I've considered are:

1) TT Scarp 2 - it is double wall so hopefully it would provide better rain protection than a single wall.

2) TT Double Rainbow and add the attachable inner liner.

3) TT Double Rainbow, Rainshadow2,Cloudburst2 or Squall2 then separately add a tarp of some type.

#3 is attractive because I am not limited to Sil-nylon material and could choose something more water resistant. It's probably also the most expensive choice.

Which of the three combinations do you think would be best for the wet, rainy Adirondacks?

John McAlpine
(HairlessApe) - M

Locale: PNW
Copper Spur 2 on 11/17/2010 10:47:41 MST Print View

Chris was wondering how to set up the Spur in the rain. Trust me that after 40 years of hiking year round in the PNW you get good at it. My tent and rain fly are rolled up together. When I roll out my tent the rain fly is covering the main body. I can make the pole connections by lifting areas of the rainfly (doing my best to keep the main body dry)and erect the tent. It takes practice but works. Sure I get some of the main body wet, but not what you'd get if you erected the tent without being covered.

Alex Gilman
(Vertigo) - F

Locale: Washington
Re: Lots of Rain? on 11/17/2010 11:31:39 MST Print View

Is this tent for solo use or are you going to be using it with someone else in it?


I would stay away from single wall tents. I have a TT here in the PNW and I get wet when it rains all day. The single wall just doesn't work for me. It may work well for others, but the rain gods just don't like me in a single wall tent.

Without starting a "TT" fight that's not entirely true... But suffice it to say they require some practice and well let's be honest they're not the most bombproof shelter out there. BUT THEY'RE EXTREMELY LIGHT!

I'm in the PNW as well and love my single wall Nemo tents. I use the Nemo Morpho 2P when going out with my GF or a buddy + dog. (My buddy is 6ft6 and I'm 6ft1 and we can comfortably sleep in there with gear and 70lb dog) When you split the weight up it's not bad at under 3lbs a person for a bombproof tent.

Honestly, there are other factors to setting up a tent in the rain. For example it takes me much longer to set up my single wall tents but I can do it from the inside vs a really quick set up for a Hubba Hubba from the outside.

Also, if you know it's going to be wet you're already carrying rain gear and all you have to do is use your camp towel to wipe down the tent once it's up. No big deal really.

My "luxury item" is my tent. So I go a bit heavier on them. If you want an awesome single wall tent that you can use in the winter in 80 mile an hour winds as well. Look at the Nemo Andi. It has that "holly crap a bear can't get me in here" feel to it once you're in it. I took it out about this time last year while my buddy was hunting high buck. I would crawl out of it and be surprised it's actually windy and raining out. I was all sleeping snug as a bug not even knowing it was icky out.

Again, are you needing a tent to sleep one person or two?

Edited by Vertigo on 11/17/2010 11:59:35 MST.

Matthew Marasco
(BabyMatty) - F

Locale: Western/Central PA, Adirondacks
re: copper spur setup on 11/17/2010 12:00:25 MST Print View

I own a Copper Spur 1, and I like that technique described above to keep it dry during setup. I will definitely repack my tent like this next time I use the inner (thankfully that won't be until May!).

Previously, I relied on the fact that it's a free-standing shelter and that I usually hike in densely-forested areas to keep the inner dry during setup. I simply find an area close to my intended campsite with maximum tree coverage, erect the tent there without staking it down and attach the fly, then carry it to wherever I want it staked down. This eliminates most rain from getting in, and also has the added benefit of letting you move the tent around and line it up in the most even spot. How many times have you pitched on a sight that seemed flat until you got into bed? The convenience of that alone justifies the slight weight penalty of this compare to something very UL.

Lynn Tramper
(retropump) - F

Locale: The Antipodes of La Coruna
Re: "Best tent for rain" on 11/17/2010 12:54:05 MST Print View

I would go with (well, DO go with) a Double Rainbow plus liner. The liner catches the condensation, the double awnings give you good ventilation and sheltered entrance/cooking areas, and if properly sealed will keep out the worst of the rain. it is also very wind-worthy if you carry trekking poles to buttress it.

/A .
(biointegra) - MLife

Locale: Puget Sound
Re: Re: "Best tent for rain" on 11/17/2010 15:17:01 MST Print View

"I would crawl out of it and be surprised it's actually windy and raining out."

That happens to me all the time...thanks to a gram's worth of foam ear-plugs.

The TT Double Rainbow does sound like it might be a good option for you. I would suggest just buying something and playing with it, then selling on the Gear Swap forum if you want to try something else out. This way you can compare and not spend a lot.

BA Fly Creek is tough to beat for versatility and weight and can be entered/exited without getting the floor wet with the proper technique. Some of the Big Sky Tents (Evolution, i.e.) would meet your criteria quite well.

John G
(JohnG10) - F

Locale: Mid-Atlantic via Upstate NY
Adirondacks on 11/17/2010 15:40:44 MST Print View

I spent 15 years backpacking in the dacks. I used a Sierra designs meteor light and a SD lightning. I think any tent from Big Agnes, MSR, or REI priced around $250 or more will keep you dry in the types of rainstorms typical of that area.

Here's what I found:
A inner made of No-See-Um mesh was fine, and didn't let any condensation drip through, even in windy weather.

Setting up the tent in the rain isn't that hard. Just drape the fly over the inner quickly and then get under it while clipping the inner to the poles. A little rain gets into the inner, but wiping it up with a bandanna only takes 10 seconds and is usually only 1/2 a bandanna worth.

52-54 inches of width and semi-vertical sides made a big difference in terms of being livable for 2 people in rainy weather (especially when getting dressed & taking off wet clothes).

I mostly got wet when trying to get out of the tent - since the vestibule was too long and sloped for me to reach the end of the zipper while kneeling on the tent floor without my back pressing up against the fly.

I also got wet trying to get in/out and being forced to kneel in the mud in order to fit under the top of the vestibule, or reach the zipper etc.

If I had to do it all over again, I'd go with a big light "front entry" tent (TT Rainshadow?), attach a home-made silnylon tarp as a big covered porch, and use a piece of 2-3mm painters plastic as something to sit on while changing, cooking, etc on the "porch".

The reason I'd get a relatively large tent is to make sure it's big enough to eat in during black fly season.

Edited by JohnG10 on 11/17/2010 15:54:13 MST.

Alex Gilman
(Vertigo) - F

Locale: Washington
Single Wall on 11/17/2010 17:00:35 MST Print View

I hate to give advice against the question. But really within your weight specs you can't go wrong with Big Agnes Fly Creek UL2 for solo use and UL3 for 2 people. Get it at REI and if you don't like it take it back and try something else.

If you want a single wall shelter my vote is on the Nemo Andi.

LOL Aaron - As for the "earplugs" crack - I leave 'em at home because they weigh too much. I need to make up for the weight difference somehow. :)
..actually I only bring earplugs with me when climbing Rainier and it's a summit day.


This stuff all has a lot of factors like location, age, shape, philosophy.

Most of us here have made the trade-off on weight vs durabilty to some degree. I pay a weight penalty for having a "bombproof" shelter. Others see that as a waste and use lighter weight shelters and sacrifice a bit of durability. For 90% of the time you're out there a Tarp Tent will do the job. Having a rescue diver mentality it's the 10% that I prepare for, simple as that.

Edited by Vertigo on 11/17/2010 17:09:43 MST.

wiiawiwb wiiawiwb
(wiiawiwb) - F
Follow up on 11/17/2010 17:17:38 MST Print View

This tent would be for me but I'd want it to be a 2-person shelter in case I brought someone else along. Also, I get a little frantic in a small, closed, nylon coffin.

It seems there are many excellent tent/shelters that have a netting shelter topped with a tent. The SMD Lunar Duo, GL Shangri-La, BA Seedhouse and Big Sky Evolution are examples of that. However, they are single-wall tents.

I'd gladly get a bombproof shelter, regardless the cost, as long as it was something I could carry myself, and was not coffin sized. I have three other tents including a Moss. Now that's an absolutely bombproof tent. It snickers at any rain storm Mother Nature could throw at it. They're all too heavy to carry while hiking.

It seems to me that I'd better go with a double wall or single-wall with tarp.

Edited by wiiawiwb on 11/17/2010 17:26:42 MST.

Brad Groves
(4quietwoods) - MLife

Locale: Michigan
Re: Best tent for rain on 11/18/2010 17:40:47 MST Print View

For regularly wet conditions I much prefer a double wall tent. The Big Agnes UL tents are a good bet. Don't forget Big Sky... I'll admit that it's nice to have a tarp in addition to the tent, but it's extra weight. Maybe that's your luxury thing...