Best Tent Brands (and Shelters) of 2024

Hilleberg? MSR? Big Agnes? The North Face? Nemo? Kelty? Find out what the best tent brands on the market are in our eye-opening guide.

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Written by: | Reviewed by: Kieran James Cunningham
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Camping out under the stars, listening to the wilderness as you fall asleep, is an experience like no other. However, without a tent, you’re vulnerable to freezing temperatures, high winds, heavy downpours, snow, and bug bites.

While camping outdoors does come with challenges, you can find protection from the elements by investing in a shelter from a reliable tent brand. Some notable brands we’ve reviewed in this article include MSR, Big Agnes, Coleman, Kodiak Canvas, Kelty, R.E.I., and The North Face.

We also guide you in how to select the ideal tent depending on your camping seasons, group size, and transportation plans. Additionally, we highlight key features to look for in high-quality tent brands, including poles, fabric, rainflies, and other features that will enhance your camping experience. You can also find comprehensive reviews on camping tents for various scenarios.

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What Are The Best Camping Tent Brands?

Our selection of the top camping tent manufacturers is shown in the following list.

  • Mountain Safety Research (MSR)
  • Kodiak Canvas
  • Coleman
  • Big Agnes
  • Kelty
  • Recreational Equipment Incorporated (REI)
  • The North Face
MSR Logo

Mountain Safety Research (MSR)

Mountain Safety Research has been manufacturing reliable tents for all weather conditions and camping styles since the 1960s. MSR’s products are built to last, offering a wide range of shelters for camping in the mountains, in harsh terrain, all-season tents, ultralight backpacking tents for minimalist campers, as well as gear tents.

MSR is known for their tent’s ability to withstand freezing temperatures but still function well in the middle of the summer. While their tents can be quite expensive, there are a few affordable models that would be suitable for everyday camping such as the MSR Hubba Hubba NX. However, if you might be in the market for a tent for backpacking or mountain environments, this is one company to look into.

MSR Hubba Hubba NX

MSR’s popular lightweight 2-person tent, the MSR Hubba Hubba NX, is a great all-rounder. Following a 2014 redesign that shaved off a pound in weight, this backpacking tent now weighs just shy of 4 lbs and comfortably sleeps two.

MSR Hubba Hubba NX 2-Person Lightweight Backpacking Tent, Without Xtreme Waterproof Coating
  • 3-season, 2-person backpacking tent that offers the most livable accommodations...
  • Pole geometry maximizes space with 29 sq. feet of floor area, interior peak...
  • Complete setup weighs 3. 9 lbs. and packs down to 18x6 inches; minimalist setup...
  • Includes DuraShield Coating and DAC Featherlike NFL poles
  • Includes tent, one unified hub-and-pole system, rainfly, stakes, and guy lines;...

MSR Elixir 2

The MSR Elixir 2 is an entry-level lightweight 2-person tent. It meets all the basic standards for a decent tent but lacks any extra features to improve practicality or livability. At just under 6 lbs, it’s on the heavier side for backpacking, but for car camping, it provides a sturdy and roomy 2-person tent.

MSR Hubba Hubba NX 2-Person Lightweight Backpacking Tent, Without Xtreme Waterproof Coating
  • 3-season, 2-person backpacking tent that offers the most livable accommodations...
  • Pole geometry maximizes space with 29 sq. feet of floor area, interior peak...
  • Complete setup weighs 3. 9 lbs. and packs down to 18x6 inches; minimalist setup...
  • Includes DuraShield Coating and DAC Featherlike NFL poles
  • Includes tent, one unified hub-and-pole system, rainfly, stakes, and guy lines;...
Kodiak Logo

Kodiak Canvas

The Kodiak Canvas Tent Company, born in the rugged Rockies, has made a name for itself by producing quality tents. Their camping shelters are reliable, comfortable, excel in protecting you from the elements, and offer options to suit almost any need.

Kodiak’s specially invented Hydra-shield canvas makes their tents unique and provides a breathability and air flow that most other tents don’t have. Additionally, Kodiak tents are quality made and are made to last for a very long time. These tents will likely outlive anything you would buy at a department store and are made with a canvas that is not easily susceptible to common rips and tears. The best thing about Kodiak tents? All tents come with a limited lifetime warranty to ensure their customer’s happiness and that the tents function well.

Kodiak Canvas Flex-Bow 6

The Kodiak Canvas Flex-Bow series comes in multiple sizes, with the Kodiak Canvas Flex-Bow 6 offering an impressive 100 square feet and an apex height of 6 feet 6 inches, providing plenty of room for both you and your gear.

Kodiak Canvas Flex-Bow Canvas Tent Deluxe 9 ft x 8 ft (4-Person)
  • Made with Hydra-Shield, 100% cotton duck canvas that is durable, watertight and...
  • Spacious 6'1" ceiling height provides walk-around comfort
  • Two large D-shaped doors (front and back) with #10 YKK zippers
  • Four large windows with no-see-um mesh
  • Flex-Bow Frame: Exceptionally sturdy. Keeps tent taut. Quick and easy,...

Kodiak Canvas Truck Bed Tent

Bringing a new level of meaning to the phrase car camping, the Kodiak Canvas Truck Bed Tent allows you to turn your truck’s flatbed into a palatial tent with a 5-foot high apex. This tent is compatible with most major truck brands.

Kodiak Canvas Mid-Size Truck Tent - 5 to 6 ft Bed
  • Sturdy, 3/4-inch, steel tube frame.
  • Tunnel shaped design maximizes interior space. Tall 5 ft. ceiling height.
  • Packed Size: L:47 W:10 H:10" Weight: 41 lbs
  • 5 windows provide excellent ventilation and openness. Cab access window.
  • Clamp-on rails easily mount on truck bed for secure fit.
Coleman Logo

Coleman

The family company Coleman has been producing outdoor products for over 100 years. Notably, Coleman has 7 out of 10 of the best-selling tents on Amazon and consistently rates well for the quality of their products.

Coleman creates fun and versatile styles of tents that can be used for many different situations. Their “Hooligan Tent” is a cool option that not only sleeps four people but can also function as the perfect spot to watch rain falls without getting wet.

Another interesting option are Coleman’s cabin tents which can fit up to 9 people. Coleman tents are known for their rain flys, which come with nearly every one of their tents. Additionally, Coleman also features a diverse price range for every type of customer budget and are specifically known for making large family camping tents.

Coleman Sundome 2-Person Tent

The Coleman Sundome 2-person tent is a budget-friendly, 3-season tent. At 9 lbs, it’s on the heavy side for backpacking, but if you need an inexpensive two-person shelter for occasional car camping, this could be the ideal choice.

Coleman 2-Person Dome Tent for Camping | Sundome Tent with Easy Setup
  • Weatherproof: Welded corners and inverted seams keep water from getting in;...
  • Wind and rain tested: Strong frame withstands 35+ mph winds
  • Great ventilation: Large windows and ground vent for enhanced airflow
  • Stay connected: E-port makes it easy to bring electrical power inside
  • Easy setup: In 10 minutes

Coleman Octagon 

The Coleman Octagon is a family-friendly tent with a spacious 170 square feet, providing the option to be divided into two separate rooms using the privacy wall if preferred. With a peak height of 6 feet 10 inches, particularly tall individuals won’t have to stoop when entering either.

Coleman Tent Octagon, 6 to 8 Man Festival Dome Tent, Waterproof Family Camping Tent with Sewn-in Groundsheet
  • 360 Degree view plus enhanced ventilation: Six large windows and mesh roof for...
  • Sturdy and easy to pitch family size octagon tent: Colour-coded steel poles for...
  • Single extra large room: With a removable partition curtain to segregate it into...
  • 100 Percent waterproof: Thanks to Coleman's Weather Tec system with 2000 mm HH...
  • Enhanced size: 3.96 x 3.96 x 2.15 m (L x W x H); 1 bedroom: 15.7 sq m total;...
Big Agnes Logo

Big Agnes

The ethos of the outdoor company Big Agnes is that “life is too short to use bad camping gear.” Providing top-quality gear for over fifteen years, Big Agnes offers specially designed equipment to fit a variety of individual needs.

Big Agnes’ tents are designed to focus on maximizing space and comfort while weighing the least amount possible to make a great experience for campers. Big Agnes also tries to create tents that are easily constructed for quick assembly. They have many different categories of tents to fit any one of their customer’s needs and can be found at affordable price points and cool colors.

One such example is the Big Agnes Copper Spur UL 2 which features a cool color, lots of head room, and an ultra light weight for traveling and is our top rated backpacking tent.

Big Agnes Copper Spur HV UL2

The 2-person Big Agnes Copper Spur HV UL2 is a high-end 3-season tent that is super roomy and liveable, yet weighs only 3 lbs! With excellent 3-season weather performance, we’d choose this tent for most expeditions.

Big Agnes Flying Diamond 6

The Big Agnes Flying Diamond series of tents is ideal for those seeking a more spacious tent that can handle extreme weather conditions. Billed for 3+ seasons, these tents come in 4-, 6-, & 8-person sizes and can endure the most challenging of conditions.

Big Agnes Flying Diamond Tent - 6 Person
  • Four-Season, free standing, deluxe car camping/base camp tent
  • DAC combination lightweight aluminum poles with press fit connectors
  • Color coded pole ends, webbing and buckles make setup easy
  • Sport Type: Camping & Hiking
Kelty Logo

Kelty

The brand Kelty was established in 1919 by founder Asher “Dick” Kelty when he produced and sold an outdoor backpack. Later credited with creating the first aluminum backpack, the brand now manufactures a variety of quality outdoor gear, from sleeping bags to tents.

Known for their good quality and affordability, Kelty tents keep backpacking and great camping in mind. Kelty also makes a wide variety of tents for different experiences including their models, Mirada, Outback, and TN2. This variety ensures that any camper with a need for a tent can find something within Kelty’s collection. Most of their tents come with a star-gazing removable rain fly ability and fly vents that keep out even the smallest gnats.

Kelty TN2

The Kelty TN2 is a comfortable and roomy backpacking tent that’s easy to set up and comes at a reasonable price. Similar to MSR’s Elixir 2, the TN2 is a decent entry-level backpacking tent that fulfills all necessary requirements without excelling in any one area.

Kelty TN 2 Tent
  • Seasons: 3
  • Number Of Doors: 2
  • Number Of Vestibules: 2
  • Capacity: 2
  • Minimum Weight: 4 Lbs 4 Oz / 1.93 Kg

Kelty Rover Tent

The Kelty Rover tent is an A-frame offering from Kelty with a traditional pup tent design. Easy to set up, this 3-season tent provides ample floor space for two and your gear.

Kelty Rover Tent (2 Person), Orange
  • The Kelty rover tent is a Classic pup tent, reinvented with updated materials...
  • Classic A-frame tent design
  • Easy to set up and take down tent design
  • Big & roomy footprint
REI Logo

Recreational Equipment Incorporated (REI)

Recreational Equipment Incorporated (REI) is an outdoor company established in 1938. With numerous award-winning outdoor products, including tents, and a commitment to donating millions of dollars each year to the environment, they are a great choice when searching for top-quality gear.

REI manufactures and sells many different styles of tents, including their Tepui Tents which fit over a car for easy camping while traveling. REI makes and sells all kinds of tents for various walks of life. REI is also specifically known for making great tents at an affordable price.

While some of their specialized tents (like the Tepui Tent) can be quite expensive and range over $1000, many of the tents that they make are affordable and durable, like the six person REI Kingdom 6. This makes REI a great option for those who don’t want to spend a boatload of money while trying out camping for the first time.

REI Half Dome Plus 2

A comfortable two-person tent, the REI Half Dome Plus 2 offers spaciousness with numerous internal features for enhanced livability. Positioned toward the lower end of the price spectrum, it provides affordability without sacrificing quality. However, like many backpacking tents in this price range, it does come with a slightly heavier weight weighing nearly 6 lbs.

REI Half Dome Image

REI Kingdom 6

The REI Kingdom 6 earned our top award for the best family camping tent, excelling in all criteria. With a dividable interior and an attachable garage for additional gear storage, it offers ample space for the whole family. While it may not withstand extremely heavy rainstorms or strong winds, it is our preferred choice for a six-person tent.

REI Kingdom 6 Product Image (1)
The North Face Logo

The North Face

Founded in the 1960s, The North Face is an American company offering a range of outdoor gear. Named after the coldest and most challenging side of a mountain, the logo features a depiction of Yosemite’s half dome.

While backpacks and outfitting seem to be North Face’s most popular product lines, their tents are also a great product for cold weather. North Face’s tents are designed for 1-4 people. While their tents are not designed to hold more than four people, they can withstand crazy temperatures while still looking cool with their neat designs. Models such as North Face’s Stormbreak 2 have gained popularity, as the company has expanded into tent manufacturing.

North Face Stormbreak 2

The North Face Stormbreak 2 offers ample ventilation making it an excellent option for summer camping trips. While spacious and suitable for entry-level backpacking, it’s important to note that despite its name, the Stormbreak is not designed to withstand heavy rain, winds, or storms.

The North Face Stormbreak 2, Asphalt Grey/Papaya Yellow, OS
  • Stormbreak 2-Asphalt Grey Papaya Yellow
  • Stormbreak 2-Asphalt Grey Papaya Yellow
  • The North Face
  • Stormbreak 2 Tent

North Face Wawona 6

The North Face Wawona 6 is ideal for those seeking a spacious six-person car camping tent. It is incredibly durable and easy to set up, with ceiling heights that accommodate even the tallest campers to stand fully upright.

The North Face Wawona 6, Golden Oak/Saffron Yellow, OS
  • Fly: 68D polyester, 1200 mm PU coating, water-resistant finish
  • Canopy: 150D polyester, 1500 mm PU coating, water-resistant finish
  • Floor: 75D polyester, 1500 mm PU coating, water-resistant finish
  • Single-wall design is fully waterproof and makes for easy pitching
  • Massive front vestibule has two doors

How To Choose Between The Top Tent Brands?

The questions listed below will help you to find the best tent for your specific needs.

  • How many seasons do you plan to camp?
  • How many people are going on the trip?
  • How are you getting to your campsite?

How Many Seasons Do You Plan To Camp?

The number of seasons you plan to camp will determine the weather conditions your tent should be suited for. Oftentimes, tents made for warmer weather don’t explicitly state this on the label. Conversely, a tent labelled as 4-season will typically have features to withstand cold, wintry conditions but may trap too much heat if used in the summer.

If your plans might take you camping in the winter, then consider looking for a tent that is specifically designed to withstand high winds, snow and sleet, and cold temperatures.Winter tents are often more durable and hold heat better.

Similarly, if your plans might take you camping in the summer, look for a tent with a rain fly. In inclement weather, the rain fly will prevent you and your gear from being drenched. In great weather, you can still look up at the night sky without worrying about waking up with mosquito bites. There are also tents that perform for all weather, but take into consideration what you might need, first.

How Many People Are Going On The Trip?

The number of people on your camping trip will influence tent priorities, including space, storage, and the number of doors. If you’re a solo hiker, choose a single-person tent (or possibly a two-person model for extra space). For a family with five little ones, you’ll want something more spacious. Check our buyer’s guides for specific tent sizes in the following list.

How Are You Getting To Your Camping Spot?

How you get to your camping spot will dictate the maximum weight of the tent you can bring. If you camp at campgrounds and transport all your gear in a vehicle, any tent may work. However, backpackers or hikers may face challenges carrying heavier tents. To assist you in selecting a tent for each situation, refer to our buyer’s guides in the list below.

The heavier a tent, the more it will weigh down a backpack. Larger tents may also take up more space. When searching for the best tent for you, definitely consider how you plan on traveling to your campsite. If backpacking is a favored option, also plan on buying a tent with a very sturdy bottom that can withstand cold temperatures and rocks, since areas not in a campground will not be well maintained.

What To Look For In A Great Tent?

The main features to look for in a quality camping tent are highlighted in the list below.

  • Poles
  • Fabric
  • Rainfly
  • Additional Features

Poles

Tent poles support the tent fabric ensuring structural integrity against collapse or the wind. When assessing tent poles, consider your camping location and potential weather conditions. Tent poles, designed for various situations, are usually made from three materials: aluminum, carbon fiber, and steel.

Aluminum tent poles are much stronger than carbon composite or fiberglass poles. Durability is a major factor in tent poles if you might plan on camping in high-wind areas. However, aluminum tent poles are often more expensive and are much heavier than other types of poles. This means that backpacking with aluminum tent poles might be difficult if you plan on traveling far. Though, if you are taking a shorter hiking trip, the aluminum poles compensate for the slight weight difference in their durability.

Fabric

A crucial aspect of any tent is its fabric. Tents are commonly constructed from various types of nylon, polyester, or the most durable option, canvas. Tents made from cheap nylon may tear easily, feel thin, and be prone to rain and moisture.

Rip-stop nylon fabric is a better alternative to cheaper tent fabrics and will keep you safe, warm, and dry while you are camping. Rip-stop nylon is an excellent option for families with little ones that may not be so careful. This type of fabric can endure shoes in the tent, pushing on the tent poles, and even harsh rain and winds.

When you look at tent fabrics, you should also look for a tent that features material reinforcement. This means that all stress points (the points that are pushed on the most, like the tent poles or the tent opening) are reinforced, and the material is at least four layers thick. When your tent material has multiple layers, it becomes stronger against tears.

Rainfly

A durable rainfly is essential for any decent tent. Most rainflys are detachable, providing the flexibility to remove them in fair weather. This not only exposes a mesh vent on the inner tent for increased airflow but also allows for a bit of stargazing. While non-detachable rainflies are advantageous in wet conditions, their lack of versatility can pose challenges in warmer weather.

The ability to adapt to varying conditions makes a detachable rainfly a valuable feature for campers seeking both protection and ventilation.

Additional Features

A high-quality tent will incorporate additional features to improve overall practicality and livability. These features may include hold-back and loop straps, accessory pockets, and gear loops.

is going to have straps everywhere for easy assembly and easy living. Some examples include hold-back straps for windows and the door, loop straps for the tent poles, and guy lines. If there is any part of your tent that can be opened or tied, it should have some hold-back or loop strap for reinforcement. This prevents accidents, like the tent poles coming undone and flying away or the tent fabric from separating from the tent poles and falling in on the tent in the middle of the night.

Additionally, this feature will help campers if any rips or tears do occur while camping, such as a small tear in the tent door zipper. A strap should be installed in that section to reinforce the door, so there aren’t any worries about the material flying open.

Many good tents offer accessory pockets on the sides of the tent or at the very top. You can store things in these pockets so that they are easily accessible. This is for lighter items like matches, a flashlight, your wallet, or a good book. Some tents even come with a pocket/strap option for your lantern so that it can be tied to the top of the tent. As long as you don’t have a too heavy lantern, you could hang it up in the tent and won’t need to worry about navigating in the dark.

What Are Good Tent Brands For All Situations?

There are a variety of tent brands catering to a range of situations, from tents designed to pitch onto the back of a flatbed truck, to canopy tents for providing shade and shelter. Our list below includes a range of buyer guides for different tent types.

Last update on 2024-05-22 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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BrianBioAvatar

Brian has been an avid hiker and backpacker since he was a small kid, often being taken out into the wilderness on trips with his father. His dad knew everything about nature and the wilderness (or at least that's how it seemed to a ten year old Brian).

After high school, he went to university to read for both a BS and MS in Geology (primarily so he could spend his time outside rather than in a classroom). He's now hiked, camped, skied, backpacked or mapped on five continents (still need to bag Antarctica) & 30 of the US states.

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