Best Backpacking Tents: Sleep and Hike in Comfort

Enjoy a trip into the great outdoors with these compact backpacking tents

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Backpacking to a campsite is a fun experience, but you want to make sure to travel light for a more comfortable adventure. Finding a backpacking tent is crucial for anyone hiking to their campground. They are lighter and can be packed more compactly to reduce weight and save space. Here are some of the best-rated backpacking tents to consider for your next excursion.

  • Best Overall
    ALPS Mountaineering Lynx Backpacking Tent
    Summary
    Summary
    This extremely light and compact 4-pound backpacking tent is easy to assemble and carry
    Pros
    Pros
    It’s designed for one but can fit two. It has a factory sealed fly and floor to protect against the elements. It also boasts extra-large zippers for convenience and mesh walls for increased ventilation.
    Cons
    Cons
    A slight amount of water may leak in during heavy downpours, so you will need to spray it with a water repellant. It doesn’t offer a lot of room inside
  • Best Value
    River Country Products Trekker Backpacking Tent
    Summary
    Summary
    A 2-pound backpacking tent that reaches 7 feet long, 5 feet wide, and 42 inches tall.
    Pros
    Pros
    It’s designed for one but can fit two. It has a factory sealed fly and floor to protect against the elements. It also boasts extra-large zippers for convenience and mesh walls for increased ventilation.
    Cons
    Cons
    It does not include trekking poles. The included stakes aren’t the most durable and may bend. A little condensation may leak through the fabric.
  • Honorable Mention
    Bessport Lightweight Backpacking Tent
    Summary
    Summary
    A roomy two-person backpacking tent with a large domed ceiling and 31 square feet of space.
    Pros
    Pros
    It’s developed with weather-resistant material, a welded floor padded design that raises the bottom slightly off the ground, and it comes with a reflective guideline and aluminum stakes.
    Cons
    Cons
    It is the heaviest backpacking tent on the list at 5 pounds. The zippers may be a hassle.

Tips

  • Purchase a pair of trekking poles to help set up the tent if it does not come with them. They are also used to help keep your balance in difficult terrain when you’re hiking.
  • Set up the tent at your home or somewhere else after you get it to let it air out and allow the fabric to stretch.
  • Construct the tent before its first camping trip to make sure nothing is wrong with it. This will also give you the chance to see how long it takes you to properly set it up.
  • Purchase a lightweight sleeping bag in addition to the backpacking tent to conserve space and weight.

FAQs

Q: What do I need to set up a backpacking tent?

A: While a tent will come with poles and a few stakes, you should bring a small and light hammer to drive the stakes into the ground. You may want to purchase extra stakes just in case the ones you are using bend. If you don’t want to pack a hammer, you can use a rock to pound in the stakes as well.

Q: How do I properly maintain a backpacking tent?

A: Always be careful when rolling out the tent. Make sure there are no rocks or sharp sticks that may puncture or tear the fabric. You should always make sure the fabric is dry after packing it away to prevent any mildew or mold from growing on it. Once back home, you can set it up again and let it air dry.

Q: What is the best way to carry a backpacking tent?

A: This depends on the design of the bag or carrying case it comes in. Many feature straps you can wear as an actual backpack, or you can attach the straps to your backpack. You can also find bags specifically designed to carry tents for hiking.

Final Thoughts

The ALPS Mountaineering Lynx Backpacking Tent is a light, compact backpacking tent that is easy to set up. 

There’s also the River Country Products Trekker Backpacking Tent, which is large enough to fit two people and light enough to hike through any terrain.