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Everyone, who wants to explore a country, a land, a mountain or just a destination, has to consider many things in order to do it successfully. One of the things is how to spend the night. Accommodation, including hotels, hostels, guesthouses or Airbnb properties are good, and undoubtedly have their advantages, but for some kind of travelers they miss something- an independence and freedom (including freedom from payment). And the solution is the tent. So, let’s take a look at the best tents for explorers and adventure travelers in 2020!
If you travel with a tent, you can sleep almost everywhere (at least in theory). It is not necessary to sleep in a campsite, and you can always find a better, safer and more hidden place to set up your tent, when the night comes. There are excellent tents today, but they are still different, for various geographic zones and weather conditions. For example, you bring your tent that is proper for a hot and humid jungle, it would be not so comfortable in a cold windy desert. That’s why you need to make a choice, according to your preferences.
Tents for explorers and adventure travelers in 2020
There is a really great variety of tents, for various purposes and budget abilities. Many of the tents are not proper for exploring and adventure travel, but only for an afternoon in a park, for a beach, or just for children’s play. But now here I will present some tents for explorers and adventure travelers in 2020, which are best in something, and for some purpose. Best tents for rain forests, best tents for arctic expeditions, best tents for deserts- they are all different and there is no universal tent, which can be perfect for everything.
So, let’s see some important criteria, which can give you some direction in your choice of tent.
Of course- the light, the better. The lighter is a tent, the easier would be to be carried on the back. And while it seems that with no doubt we have to always look to the lightest tent, it still doesn’t mean that it is the best.
Pros: Light tents are easier to bring, while heavier tents are proper only if you camp just beside your car, or if you are really strong.
Cons: If a tent is too light, it may mean that:
– Some important elements are missing
– The quality of the inner construction or other metal parts is low
Or just the price-quality rate is too low.
It is calculated by the number of persons. There are 1-person, 2-person, 3-person, and 4-person tents. There are larger tents too, of course, but now we will focus on the smaller tents, which are more proper for backpacking. The size depends mainly on the floor area and the height of the tent. Its shape is also important for determining how many persons is a tent for.
It is another important feature for the tents, especially if you go camping in wet and rainy areas. It’s difficult to find more uncomfortable situation than a wet and rainy morning when you wake up feeling the cold water in your body, and see your sleeping bag wet, your belongings wet, and no dry clothes to change.
So, a good tent must be designed with good waterproof features. It can be achieved by making it with 2 walls or 1 wall with high waterproof material. In the same time, the material has to be breathable, to prevent condense.
Flexibility and windproof
The flexibility of the rakes is very important if you camp in windy places. You should have in mind that the tent is like a sail. If there is a strong wind, you have to lock up your tent to the ground by stakes, otherwise, the wind may blow it away. If you put your luggage inside or lock up your tent, then you can prevent it, but then the rakes of your tent would bear the whole energy of the wind.
Yes, it happened to our tent, during our second trip in Saiwan Beach, in Sai Kung, Hong Kong. The weather was unstable and windy. We set our tent on the sand, and suddenly a few stronger gusts of wind hit it. One of them twisted our tent so strongly and so quick, that the rake couldn’t endure and broke. So we had to move our tent far from the beach, in the nearby forest, and it was all the time a little awry.
It is important, especially if you go camping in cold places. I remember when we were on a trip to Eastern Tibet and had to camp in Amnye Machin mountain, on 4500 m altitude. Yes, it was summer, but at night the temperature dropped to 0℃. Fortunately, our tent was well protected against cold. But our friends, who didn’t know too much about the tents, have brought a park tent. So they couldn’t sleep the whole night, hugging each other tightly and trying to warm themselves. Yes, we invited them to enter our tent, but they refused (they were a little pride, trying to “proof” that their tent is “good” 🙂
It is another important feature, especially for camping in hot and wet places. If the ventilation system is not good, the air inside could easily become muggy. To achieve good ventilation, the good tents are designed with two doors and vents on the top. It allows some air movement inside the tent. The good ventilation is not only for fresh air, but it helps also against condensing on the tent’s walls.
Needless to say, the higher is the price, the better quality and functions have the tent. However, price is the most important criteria for budget travelers. And since the excellent tents are usually expensive, they have to choose between the not so excellent ones.
As I already mentioned, there is no perfect tent. There are (almost) perfect tents for certain criteria, or tents, designed to be “universal in everything”, which can’t be perfect, but just balanced.
The best tents of 2020
So, let’s look at the best (in certain criteria) tents for explorers and adventure travelers in 2020. Some of the tents are older, from 2019 or even 2018, but until now they are still the best in what they are designed for.
Take a look at the ten best tents for explorers and adventure travelers!
|Nemo Hornet Elite Ultralight Backpacking Tent||1.11 lb = 0.50 kg||Ultralight tent||High|
|Mountainsmith Morrison||4.11 lb = 1.86 kg||Light tent||Low|
|MSR Mutha Hubba NX 3-person||4.5 lb = 1.95 kg||Hot and wet weather||High|
|Featherstone Outdoor Backpacking||5 lb = 2.28 kg||Hot and wet weather||Low|
|Black Diamond Eldorado Tent||5 lb = 2.27 kg||Cold and extreme cold weather||High|
|WEANAS 1 2 3 Person||5 lb = 2.27 kg||Cold weather||Low|
|Hilleberg Anjan 2 GT||4.10 lb = 1.86 kg||Windy weather||High|
|TETON Sports Mountain Ultra Tent||4.5 lb = 2.05 kg to |
9.5 lb = 4.31 kg
|Big Agnes Copper Spur HV UL2||2.12 lb = 1.25 kg||Universal||High|
|Coleman Sundome 4||9.7 lb = 4.40 kg||Universal||Low|
Best Lightweight Adventure Travel Tent (Proper for long trekking)
If you are a backpacker and the light weight is the most important for you, then you have some good options. It doesn’t mean that the lightweight tent is not good for cold, hot, rainy or dry place, it is still good in some level of course, but not perfect, because it is not what it is focused at.
Nemo Hornet Elite Ultralight Backpacking Tent
Weight: 1.11 lb = 0.50 kg
It is one of the lightest tents for 2020. With its ultralight trail weight you can bring it and would almost not feel it on your back. The tent comes with 1 and 2-persons versions. It is with two layers, and good waterproof features. At the same time, it has also a good protection against wall condensation. The tent is easy to set up.
Yes, it is relatively expensive, but its price is really worth, due to its unique features. It is one of the tents, quite closer to the “perfect tent”.
Pros: First- its weight. Then- good waterproof and anti-condensation features.
Cons: The main cons consist of some inconveniently made details, like no vents, not enough stakes and cord connectors, but in general, these are just small problems that only some customers feel.
Mountainsmith MorrisonWeight: 4.11 lb = 1.86 kg
Basically, ultralight tents are more expensive. This one is not the lightest tent, but for its price, it is really worth. Mountainsmith Morrison tent has two doors and is for 3 seasons, which means- not proper for cold winter. It is easy to set up, and it is quite spacious. Features a bathtub floor with taped seams.
Pros: Very good for its value. Easy to set up and spacious. Good ventilation
Cons: Not the lightest of the lightweight tents. Waterproof and windproof features are not the best, although still ok.
Best Tent for Rainy and Hot Weather in the Tropical Rainforest
This type of geographical areas is located mainly in the southernmost areas of the USA (Florida), in most of Central America, the northern part of South America, the central part of Africa, in India, South China, Southeast Asia, and Oceania. It is often rainy, and at the same time hot. So, for such conditions, you need a tent with good ventilation and good waterproof features. It may be not so lightweight, but if you plan camping in such areas, and dry and fresh air is more important for you, here are the best choices.
MSR Mutha Hubba NX 3-personWeight: 4.5 lb = 1.95 kg
This tent is great for hot and rainy places. It is a 3-season tent, not proper for cold winter, but excellent for all other kinds of warmer weather. Its waterproof feature is achieved by a rainfly, which is designed to prevent fabric stickiness. The tent has good ventilation. Also, it is quite light and easy to set up.
Pros: Great waterproof ability, lightweight.
Cons: There are some tents with defects, however, the company is correct enough to replace them with new tents. Not proper for cold weather.
Featherstone Outdoor BackpackingWeight: 5 lb = 2.28 kg
This is a great budget tent for hot places, with excellent waterproof ability. It is a one-wall tent, and the protection against rain is by a rain fly, which is enough good for even heavy and long rain. In the same time, the tent is easy to set up and quite light. It’s not proper for cold weather and strong winds but is enough good for a wide range of warm geographical areas.
Pros: Excellent waterproof with good ventilation. Very light tent.
Cons: Zippers not enough strong.
Best Tent for Cold and Extreme Cold Weather
When I write “just cold” weather, I mean weather with moderate low temperatures, something between 0 and 10℃. It is uncomfortably cold, but not life-threatening. It may be cold and rainy, or cold and dry. Such conditions are common in the high (but not the highest) mountains during the summer season or spending the night in spring or autumn in the moderate geographical areas.
However, extreme cold weather is something different. It is weather with temperatures below zero when a human can freeze to death. The colder the weather is, the higher the requirements for cold proof of the tent are. Such conditions are common for snowy winter in the moderate or arctic/antarctic areas, as well as for the winter in the high mountains or a whole year in the highest mountains like Himalayas, Pamir, Karakoram, and the Tibetan Plateau.
Black Diamond Eldorado TentWeight: 5 lb = 2.27 kg
This tent is excellent for cold weather, with or without snow. Compared with other cold proof tents, this one is relatively light. It is simple to install, with one wall and one door, but with two vents on the top. It has also very good water and windproof level. Proper for 4 seasons, however during a hot summer day, you may feel a little muggy, since the ventilation is good, but not the best. Anyway, this tent is a great option for the adventure travelers in most of the geographic areas on the Earth.
Pros: Lighter than the average cold weather tents, at the same time simple and very good for the other important criteria. A little larger for 2-persons- provided some extra space.
Cons: Not the best ventilation, especially since it has only one door.
WEANAS 1 2 3 PersonWeight: 5 lb = 2.27 kg
Basically, the 4-season tents are more expensive than the other tents, because they require a stronger material, more proper for resisting the cold temperature and preserving the warmth. So the cheap 4-season tents are really worth their price, and currently, WEANAS tent is one of the best budget tents of this kind.
There are two versions of this tent and the better one is the Updated version, using Silicon Coating. It has a very good ventilation system, making it comfortable for hot weather too. Also, it has great water and windproof features.
However, as I already mentioned, there is no perfect tent. This one is proper for cold, but not too extreme cold. And also it is not very spacious actually.
Pros: Great for its price! Very good waterproof, windproof and ventilation features.
Cons: Not enough spacious. Can’t be enough warm for extreme cold.
Best Tents for Windy Weather
Winds can blow everywhere on the Earth. In some places the strong winds are very rare, but still possible. And there are some places with often winds, which sometimes can be really serious, especially during a storm (rain or snow storm). Such places can be cold (which require something to protect not only from wind, but also from cold), and warm, but rainy and wet.
Hilleberg Anjan 2GT
Weight: 4.10 lb = 1.85 kg
This tent is currently one of the best windproof tents in the market. For this purpose, it is designed in tunnel shape. At the same time it is relatively lightweight. It can be used well in harsh weather, such as tropical storm, or snowstorm. The tent is also waterproof, with good ventilation and anti-condensation features.
The tent is durable, with high quality materials. Although it is quite expensive, the amount of money is worth for it. It has excellent reviews from many customers.
Pros: Excellent windproof, good quality materials, comfortable.
Cons: Not so good for extreme cold weather. Some people are not satisfied with the stakes.
This is one of the best budget tents with high wind protection. It has not only strong windproof features but also excellent ventilation and waterproof. Not perfect for cold weather, but still good.
It comes in 4 versions- for 1 to 4 persons. Yes, the weight is a little problem, since it is definitely not among the light tents, but if you don’t have enough money and windproof is important for you, that’s the best tent.
Pros: Excellent windproof, waterproof and ventilation, great for its price.
Cons: Not very proper for cold weather. Relatively heavy.
Best Universal Tent
Finally, if you just plan to travel and camp everywhere, and don’t want to buy 5 different tents, but just look for something universal, there are choices too. Of course, as I said, such “universal” tents are not perfect, and most probably would require no such “extreme”, but more “moderate” travel.
Big Agnes Copper Spur HV UL2Weight: 2.12 lb = 1.25 kg
This is one of the best tents, which are not “professional” in everything, but at least for moderate conditions in every place on the Earth. All the important criteria like windproof, waterproof, coldproof, weight, size and easy set up are well presented. It has two doors and one fly vent.
Anyway, some of the features of this tent still have issues. The main weakness of the tent is its waterproof ability. Basically, it can endure a lot of rain, but in some cases, the water may enter inside. Another weakness of the tent is that its cold proof is not so high. Yes, it can be used in quite low temperatures, but not proper for below 0℃.
Pros: Universal tent, proper for moderate adventurers. A very light tent.
Cons: Waterproof and cold proof are the tent’s weakness.
Coleman Sundome 4Weight: 9.7 lb = 4.40 kg
For its price, this tent is enough good for most kind of traveling and camping. Yes, it’s not proper for extreme and harsh conditions, but everywhere else you can enjoy a good time with this tent. The interesting thing about its waterproof ability is that it uses WeatherTec system with welded seams (see more here).
Pros: Excellent price-quality rate. Good for every moderate condition.
Cons: Only one door. Not proper for heavy rain and too cold weather.
So, do you plan trekking, hiking, or long expedition in the wild areas of the Earth? A good tent would definitely be an important part of your gear and packing list. Everybody is looking for a great experience, without dealing with uncomfortable and even dangerous situations, related to spending a night in the open air. That’s why choosing a good tent is really worth, to have a cozy and safe “home” far from your home.