Excellent lightweight tent ideal for backpacking or camping with three people

Verified Buyer Reviewed by Andrew in MD from Northern Maryland on Tuesday, September 30, 2014
I purchased this tent initially for car camping for my family -- my wife, daughter, and I plus our small dog. I have an old Kelty backpacking tent that I've had for years, but it's only suitable for two people and is actually heavier since it's about twenty years old at this point. I trust the Mountainsmith name, and I managed to get an amazing deal on this tent through STP.

I took it out for the first time (car camping) this past weekend, and I was very pleased. It's very easy to set up, and I was exceptionally pleased to see that the included tent stakes are actually good quality ones and not the piece of garbage bent aluminum ones that are only useful for recycling. One did bend slightly, but I was pounding them into very hard ground with my hatchet. Still, much better than the usual ones. My daughter and I had the tent up in minutes, and the instructions were easy to follow printed on the tent sack, which is handy. The rainfly is really easy to install with buckles at each corner -- honestly couldn't be any simpler.

I like the copious amounts of mesh on the tent, and the twin doors are nice. One downside of all the mesh is that you require the rainfly if you're using the tent for changing. That's not a negative on the tent, really -- just part of the design which is not unique to the Equinox. Besides, if you're camping in the middle of the forest instead of a campground, it's not really a problem anyway.

Takedown was just as easy as setting up, and the shocking thing was that putting it back into the stuff sack was easy without really trying. I'm typically challenged to roll things up tightly enough to fit, but the Equinox was not a problem whatsoever.

I would recommend a tarp for underneath. I bought one and was glad I did when I found out that our campsite was dirt with gravel and acorns. The tent material seems sturdy, but I wouldn't want to tempt it with sharp rocks and the pressure of feet or knees. The only downside I can think of is that the tent is short inside. Don't expect to be walking around, and I'm on the shorter side for a guy. But there's plenty of room to sprawl out, at least for average folks.

At the weight and size, I would think you'd be hard pressed to find a better tent especially anywhere near the price. I can't vouch for longevity yet, but I expect that I'll have this tent for awhile.
Previous Review “Great tent for the price”
“Great price & relatively high quality” Next Review