The 11 Best Camping Tent Brands

Published on 05/19/2023 · 13 min readIn the market for a new tent for your camping trips this summer? Be sure to check out this list of top tent brands to help narrow down your search!
Hunter Reed, Camping Expert
By Camping Expert Hunter Reed

Photo by Tommy Lisbin

Camping is a fantastic way to disconnect from the hustle and bustle of everyday life and connect with nature. However, to make the most of your outdoor adventure, you need to have the right equipment, and a high-quality tent is high on the list of must-haves.

With so many tent brands on the market, it can be overwhelming to know where to start. Lucky for you, we've put together a list of the best tent brands that are known for their reliability, durability, and comfort. Whether you're a seasoned camper or a beginner, these brands offer a range of designs and materials to suit your needs and preferences. So let's dive in and explore the world of tents!

Big Agnes

Established in Colorado in 2001, Big Agnes quickly became a popular name in the tent and camping gear world. They have a particularly loyal following among backpackers and lightweight enthusiasts who prioritize ease of use and portability without compromising on durability.

Big Agnes employs a few key technologies in their tents, including high-quality ripstop nylon fabrics, aluminum alloy poles, and aluminum stakes (which significantly reduce the overall weight of the tent without sacrificing strength).

Their tents often feature intelligent designs that maximize living space and provide excellent ventilation, ensuring a comfortable camping experience. Big Agnes has tent models suited for backpacking, car camping, and even extreme weather conditions. Best of all, their tents come with a lifetime warranty, so rest assured that if your tent does have any issues, Big Agnes will take care of you!

The brand utilizes environmentally-friendly materials in their products, such as recycled and Bluesign-certified fabrics. They actively support conservation organizations through partnerships and donations, showcasing their commitment to environmental stewardship. Big Agnes also promotes Leave No Trace principles and educates outdoor enthusiasts on responsible camping practices!

Black Diamond

Black Diamond, though maybe better known for their reputation of producing high-quality climbing and mountaineering gear, is also a big name in the tent world. Founded in 1989 by a group of passionate climbers, the brand has deep roots in the climbing community, which has greatly influenced their product offerings.

Their expertise in climbing equipment translates well into their tent designs. They incorporate their climbing knowledge and technical expertise to create tents that excel in rugged conditions. The brand's tents are known for their durability, weather resistance, and thoughtful features that cater to the needs of mountaineers, backpackers, and avid outdoor adventurers.

One key tent technology that Black Diamond employs is their proprietary ToddTex fabric, which offers exceptional waterproofness and breathability. This high-quality material, combined with precision engineering, ensures that their tents provide reliable protection and comfort in various landscapes and weather conditions. Notably, their Firstlight and HiLight tents have gained recognition for their lightweight design, easy setup, and robust construction, making them popular choices among alpinists and mountaineers tackling challenging terrains.

One of the most outspoken names in the outdoor industry in regard to environmentalism, Black Diamond has made sustainability a key focus of the brand. They’ve implemented measures to minimize waste, increase the use of eco-friendly materials, and support environmental initiatives.

Hilleberg

Founded in 1971 by the intrepid explorer Bo Hilleberg, this brand has an intriguing origin story that echoes the wild spirit of the outdoors. Fuelled by his passion for challenging the elements, Bo set out to create a line of tents capable of conquering the most unforgiving terrains on the planet.

Hilleberg has become a beacon of innovation in the tent industry, renowned for their cutting-edge technology and unwavering commitment to quality. Their tents are a testament to Swedish precision and attention to detail, crafted with the utmost care to withstand the harshest conditions Mother Nature can unleash. But what truly sets Hilleberg apart is their unique tunnel tents, designed to be a fortress against the elements. These tents offer supreme stability, generous space, and a remarkably lightweight design, making them the go-to choice for mountaineers and athletes recreating in extreme conditions

This brand is unique because they focus solely on tents and put all of their efforts into making the best possible tents for extreme campers. They are trailblazers in utilizing top-quality materials, such as the legendary Kerlon fabric, which is a fusion of strength, durability, and feather-light performance. With sustainability at their core, Hilleberg ensures their products endure the test of time, offering repair services and employing eco-friendly manufacturing practices that minimize waste.

Hyperlite Mountain Gear

Any ultralight backpacker is familiar with the name Hyperlite Mountain Gear. This brand specializes in ultralight gear for outdoor enthusiasts who prioritize weight savings and durability.

The low weight and incredible durability of their gear are mostly thanks to their use of Dyneema Composite Fabrics (formerly known as Cuben Fiber). This ultralight, high-strength material (a tensile strength 15 times greater than steel) provides exceptional tear resistance and waterproofness while maintaining an impressively low weight.

Targeting the ultralight and thru-hiking communities, Hyperlite Mountain Gear's tents are designed to meet the specific needs of long-distance hikers and those seeking to reduce their pack weight without compromising on protection and comfort. Sustainability is also a focus for the brand, as they utilize eco-friendly manufacturing practices and source materials with low environmental impact.

Kelty

With a rich heritage dating back to 1952, Kelty has been a trusted companion for campers and outdoor enthusiasts for decades. The brand was founded by Dick Kelty, who crafted his first backpack in his garage and soon became a pioneer in outdoor gear innovation.

Kelty is known for producing durable and affordable tents that cater to a wide range of campers, from new campers to seasoned pros. Their tents are designed to withstand the rigors of outdoor life while providing comfortable and reliable shelter.

Kelty offers a diverse spread of tent options, including models suitable for backpacking, family camping, and more. This brand is a favorite among many types of campers, but specifically, those looking to get high-quality gear without breaking the bank!

Marmot

Marmot has been at the forefront of tent innovation since its establishment in 1974. Their tents are a great blend of durability and versatility, crafted with meticulous attention to detail, incorporating features like rugged fabrics, robust aluminum poles, and intuitive setup systems to ensure a seamless camping experience. One of their iconic tent models is the Marmot Limelight, a popular choice among backpackers and campers seeking a combination of comfort, reliability, and ease of use. These tents offer spacious interiors, ample headroom, and pockets and vestibules for gear storage, making them ideal for weekend getaways and extended camping trips.

While catering to a diverse range of outdoor enthusiasts, Marmot is particularly renowned for their expertise in mountaineering and alpine camping. Their collection of mountaineering tents are specifically designed to withstand strong winds and heavy snow loads. They feature reinforced structures, snow flaps, and durable materials, providing a safe and protective shelter for climbers and adventurers conquering the world's highest peaks.

In addition to their outstanding tent offerings, Marmot is committed to sustainability and environmental stewardship. They actively strive to minimize their carbon footprint and reduce waste by using recycled and responsibly sourced materials in their products. Through initiatives like their partnership with the Bluesign system and their commitment to ethical manufacturing, Marmot aims to create gear that not only excels in performance but also respects and preserves the natural world.

MSR

MSR (Mountain Safety Research) is a renowned outdoor brand with a rich history of innovation and reliability. Established in 1969, MSR has been at the forefront of outdoor gear design and engineering, earning a reputation for creating high-performance equipment.

MSR is known for its exceptional tent technology, which focuses on durability, weather protection, and lightweight design. One of their key tent technologies is the Xtreme Shield waterproof coating, which ensures superior water resistance to keep you dry in the harshest weather conditions. Additionally, their tents often feature a combination of advanced materials and construction techniques, such as durable fabrics, sturdy poles, and precision engineering, to withstand harsh winds, heavy rain, and snow.

Catering to all different types of outdoor enthusiasts, MSR offers tents suitable for various user preferences and landscapes. Their backpacking tents are particularly well-regarded, providing a balance between lightweight design and ample space for comfortable sleep. MSR also offers expedition tents designed for extreme conditions, mountaineering tents for high-altitude adventures, and family tents for group outings. Whatever your outdoor pursuit may be, MSR has a tent that meets your specific needs!

In terms of sustainability, MSR has made notable efforts to minimize their environmental impact. They prioritize responsible manufacturing practices and the use of eco-friendly materials whenever possible. MSR is an active member of the Outdoor Industry Association's Sustainability Working Group, demonstrating their commitment to promoting sustainability within the outdoor industry.

Nemo Equipment

Nemo is a brand that prides itself on creating tents that cater to a diverse range of camping styles and environments. Whether you need a backpacking tent, a car camping tent, or something in between, Nemo Equipment offers tents that prioritize spacious living spaces and user-friendly features.

One of the brand's main focuses is to enhance the camping experience in terms of comfort, versatility, and durability. One of their key tent technologies is the AirSupported Technology, showcased in their unique line of air-supported tents. These tents utilize inflatable beams instead of traditional tent poles, providing a lightweight and efficient setup without compromising on strength and stability. This technology enables campers to pitch their tents quickly and easily, saving time and effort on the campsite.

Sustainability and environmental responsibility are key focuses at Nemo. They actively collaborate with organizations like the European Outdoor Conservation Association (EOCA) and 1% for the Planet to support conservation efforts and give back to the outdoor community. By choosing Nemo Equipment, outdoor enthusiasts not only gain access to top-notch gear but also contribute to a greener future.

The North Face

The North Face, a legendary name in the outdoor industry, has established itself as a leading tent brand since its founding in 1966. Known for their unwavering commitment to quality and performance, The North Face offers various types of tents designed to cater to the needs of outdoor enthusiasts across various landscapes and climates.

One notable technology is their Geodesic Dome design, which provides exceptional stability and resistance against strong winds and harsh weather conditions. Looking at almost any image of snowy basecamps whether it be Everest, Aconcagua, or elsewhere, you’ll almost always recognize at least a few if not all of the tents as the North Face VE25 tent. This tent is a go-to choice for mountaineers and adventurers seeking reliable shelter in extreme environments. Below is the well-known professional climber Hilaree Nelson putting her skis on next to her frost-covered VE25!

While The North Face doesn't target a specific niche, their tents are favored by outdoor enthusiasts of all kinds, from extreme mountaineers like Hilaree to family campers. They offer a wide range of tent options, including lightweight backpacking tents, spacious family tents, and expedition-grade shelters. No matter where you’re camping, you can rest assured that their tents are built to last and can withstand the rigors of outdoor adventures.

The North Face is also dedicated to sustainability efforts, implementing initiatives to reduce their environmental impact, including the use of recycled materials in their products and support for environmental organizations and initiatives. By choosing The North Face, campers can trust that they are investing in reliable, high-quality gear from a brand committed to preserving the natural world we all love to explore.

Sea to Summit

Born in 1990 in Perth, Western Australia, Sea to Summit was founded by Tim Macartney-Snape, an accomplished mountaineer who famously became the first Australian to climb Mount Everest from sea level to its summit. Inspired by his passion for adventure and a desire to create innovative outdoor products, Tim set out on a mission to deliver gear that would elevate the outdoor experience to new heights.

Sea to Summit is a brand that understands the diverse needs and preferences of outdoor enthusiasts, catering to a wide range of campers with their exceptional tent offerings. From rugged snowy mountain terrain to serene lakeside retreats, Sea to Summit has a tent that fits every type of camper in every type of situation.

For solo adventurers and lightweight backpackers looking for a one-person tent, Sea to Summit offers an impressive lineup of ultralight tents. These tents are designed to be compact, lightweight, and easy to set up, allowing you to venture deep into the backcountry without being weighed down.

For families and larger groups who might be looking for larger six or eight-person tents, Sea to Summit has a variety of spacious and comfortable family tents. The family-style tents offer tons of features to keep you more comfortable such as a higher ceiling, ample headroom, multiple doors, mesh windows and vents for airflow and minimal bugs, and divided sleeping compartments to ensure everyone has their own space. Sea to Summit also caters to extreme adventurers and mountaineers with their line of expedition tents. These robust and weather-resistant shelters are engineered to withstand harsh conditions, high winds, and heavy snow loads.

Sea to Summit actively engages in environmental initiatives, incorporating recycled materials into their products and promoting responsible manufacturing practices to minimize their ecological footprint.

Zpacks

Zpacks is another prominent player in the ultralight gear world. The brand was founded in 2005 by Joe Valesko, who set out to create lightweight gear that could withstand the demands of long-distance hiking. What started as a small operation in a basement has evolved into a respected brand known for its quality gear.

Similar to Hyperlite Mountain Gear, Zpacks is best known for its cutting-edge tent technology and use of Dyneema Composite Fabrics (DCF), formerly known as Cuben Fiber. This ultralight, high-strength material is renowned for its exceptional tear resistance, waterproofness, and durability. Zpacks harnesses this technology to create tents that are incredibly lightweight while providing reliable protection against the elements. Notably, their Duplex and Hexamid tents have become popular choices among ultralight backpackers due to their spaciousness, easy setup, and impressive weight savings.

Catering to the needs of long-distance hikers and weight-conscious adventurers, Zpacks targets a niche audience seeking to minimize pack weight without sacrificing functionality. Their gear, including backpacks, sleeping bags, and accessories, follows the same ultralight philosophy, offering optimal performance with minimal weight. This company also prioritizes reducing waste, recycling, and minimizing their environmental impact, showcasing their commitment to responsible outdoor gear production.

Final Thoughts

Photo by Simon Berger

As you embark on your next camping excursion, armed with the knowledge of the top tent brands in the industry, let the adventure begin! From the lightweight wonders of Zpacks and Hyperlite Mountain Gear to the rugged reliability of Black Diamond and Hilleberg, each brand brings its unique flair to the world of outdoor shelters.

Whether you're a solo backpacker seeking the freedom of the mountains or a family looking to create lasting memories in the great outdoors, there's a tent out there for you! If you’re still not quite sure which one is perfect for your situation, reach out to a Camping and Hiking Expert here at Curated and we can give you some personalized advice! Now, go forth and camp with confidence, knowing that your tent is backed by the expertise and quality of the best in the business. Happy camping!

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