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2P tent to choose


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Hi everyone,

I'm new here, but not new to camping. I've done a few backpacking trips and plenty of boat/car camping. Until recently, I was always with my brother or using his stuff. However, now that he moved to Europe (I'm in Canada), I need to get my own stuff, especially a tent.

I've made some researchs and narrowed down my choises to the MSR Hubba Hubba, the Marmot Firefly 2p and the Black Diamond Mesa 2p. I chose those models because I want a roomy 2p tent with two side doors and two vestibules, vertical walls, a lot of mesh to see the stars and to get good ventilation (but not too much in the bottom so that water, sand or others don't backsplash into the tent), ideally vents on the fly for good ventilation and as little condensation as possible, preferably lightweight, but durable tent. I know not all criterias are met for the three models I suggest, but they are the ones that are the closest to my needs.

Having said that, now that I've narrowed down my choices to just a few, I'm not sure which tent to buy. Money is not really a factor to take in consideration. I'm planning on doind mainly summer trips and a few spring/fall trips, mostly by car or boat, but sometines backpacking also. I want something that will be durable but also not too heavy. I would like the tent to last for many years. I also want something roomy enough, especially regargind width (vertical walls) and height. Here are the pros and cons I found about my choices.

MSR Hubba Hubba: It's a lightweight tent, easy to set up, but that got a little less resistance to wind due to it's pole design. Nice verticall walls, but not so much width (floor). Full mesh body is nice, but I've heard some users complaining about backsplash (stuff getting inside the tent from passing between the fly and the ground) when it's windy or when it's rainning hard(is it a big issue?). Also, I've read that the fly doesn't have any vents, so condensation is a problem with this tent (is it a big issue?). I have a MSR stove and it's awesome, are the MSR tents also that great regarding quality?

Marmot Firefly 2p: It's a roomy 2p tent (both width and height), but a little bit on the heavy side. Like the MSR Hubba Hubba, its pole design is less resistant than the Black Diamond Mesa against the wind. However, it seems like a durable tent (considering the materials), maybe a little bit more then MSR Hubba Hubba and Black Diamond Mesa (am I right or wrong about this statement?). There's mesh for stargazing, but less in the bottom, so it's less prone to get backsplashs from outside in bad weather. A nice touch are the vetns on the fly; I guess the condensation would be less of a problem than with the Hubba Hubba (am I right or wrong?). I'm not sure though if Marmot makes as high quality products as MSR (what's your opinion?).

Black Diamond Mesa 2p: It's a roomy tent (a little bit less than the Marmot Firefly 2p, but more than the MSR Hubba Huba). It's weight is also in the middle of the pack. Good resistance to bad weather (wind, snow, etc.) and the half mesh/half nylon walls are god against backsplashs. Nevertheless, the tent is taper, so less roomy for the feet. Also, the floor water resistance is "only" of 2000 mm where the Hubba Hubba and the Firefly are 3000 mm and the fly water resistance is "only" of 1500 mm where the Hubba Hubba and the Firefly are 1800 mm (will this make a difference in real time usage?). Like the Marmot Firefly 2p, this tent has ventilation on the fly, so I guess the condensation would be less of a problem than with the Hubba Hubba (am I right or wrong?). I do not know about Black Diamond's reliability.

So, are my pros and cons accurate. Do you have others to add? What are the reputation of those brands regarding quality and warranty? What tent would you suggest me and why?

Thanks in advance for your hep and your input.


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I am a proud owner of an MSR Hubba Hubba! I have a lot to say about it, and not much about the others. Only because I have had the Hubba Hubba for 8 years now. In fact I just bought the newest version of it and am stoked about the tiny new additions.

First let me say that the tent is somewhat bombproof for the weight. First chances I had to use the tent was in Europe in 2007. My wife and I moved to just bum around the EU and see what we found. The Hubba Hubba took care of us. From cold to hot, from sun to pouring rain... it held its own. Then we returned to Texas in the end of 2007 and put it to even more extended use. We traveled the mountain biking circuit of Texas for nearly 2 full years and camped in between as well. It always took care of us, and split between 2 people it weighs only 2 lbs each. However, carrying the tent itself is just fine by me.

After a few years, I noticed that the seam taping on the inside of the (Orange original) fly started to peal off. I emailed MSR... and they promptly sent a brand new fly, with no questions asked. Now I have a new yellow fly on the original tent body! I have always taken care of my tent and still to this day it is in near perfect condition. I always used a ground sheet also.

I love the freestanding idea also... with 1 pole. 1 POLE!!! I love this feature. Especially in Texas where there are often times of solid rock and no where to stake it out. This makes the tent universal in so many ways. I also find that setup is quick and painless... even in the wind since I have done it so many times.

Another great feature of the Hubba Hubba is that if you wanted to be faster and lighter... you could just take the pole and the fly! This would be totally terrific for those who love bivy sacks. In fact if you don't want to put it up... don't. Only if it is going to rain, then you have made your trip simpler along the way.

In reference to the stargazing bit... it is awesome. I have chosen not to use the fly many nights... only to wake up to a sky full of stars, or a full moon over Enchanted Rock in Texas (Amazing), and I will never regret that I have that option with the Hubba Hubba.

To answer your question about quality and the moisture issues you might have... I believe MSR is great quality. My tent is amazing, and I have used single walled tents for 6 straight months... talk about condensation issues. As for quality... only the best and I guarantee that MSR will back their product without questions. They did for me, and I have many years left of awesome use with this tent. Plus I just got a new one (Green/Grey) and I have not even used it yet. Just that I worked at REI and got it so cheap on ProDeal... I had to do it.

Respond if you have any further questions or comments, and PM me if I don't respond right away. Hope that this helps to get some questions answered.

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Hi jeepingetowah,

Thanks a lot for your very thorough reply. I really appreciate it. It seems like the Hubba Hubba from MSR would be a good choice. If anyone have any inputs about the Mesa from Black Diamond or the Firefly from Marmot (or the general reliability of those brands regarding tents), feel free to jump in.

Thanks again,


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