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The Best 4-Season Tents

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Best 4 Season Tents

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This is a gear review about the best 4 season tents for winter.

If you are looking to go backcountry skiing, mountaineering, climbing or winter hiking, you’ll need is a sturdy winter tent. A strong 4-season tent that can withstand string wind and keep you warm when the weather is cold outside.

4-season tents provide a solution to providing a strong, durable, and comfortable space that keeps you protected from the elements to enable you to enjoy doing what you love. 

However, with so many tents available, each offering a host of benefits and containing different features, it can be difficult to narrow down which is best. 

To make things a little easier for you, I’ve put together a list of the best 4-season winter tents available. Whether you’re looking for something suitable for mountaineering, hiking, climbing, or base camping, there’s something for everyone.

Best 4-Season Tents 2021

The Best 4-Season Tents in 2021 are:


Best 4-Season Tent 2021

Mountain Hardware Trango 2

Weight: 9lb 10oz / 4.4kg
Pros:
> Made using robust DAC Featherlight NSL poles
> Large vestibule space for extra storage
>Waterproof construction
> Dual canopy and mesh doors for increased ventilation
Cons:
> Heavy

The Mountain Hardwear Trango is a solid performing 4 season mountain tent. The tent offers a unique bathtub-shaped floor design is heavy compared to some tents but it is strong and just as waterproof and many heavy duty rain jackets, you will stay dry. 

This tent offers a robust frame that has a three-point connection. The poles connect the tent body, its frame, and fly. The guy points to ensure that this connection is sturdy and secure.

Having this feature ensures maximum protection from harsh weather conditions as the poles with resistance against becoming brittle and snapping. The tent’s canopy fabric also provides added protection as it is made from 70D nylon taffeta.

Comes in a 2P version, 3P version and 4P version.

All of the size models have large vestibules, even the Trango 2 offers a large vestibule space with ample space for storage. This provides a conveniently usable space as well as extended headroom.

Overall, this is one of the best 4-season winter tents for mountain sports.

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Best Expedition 4-Season Tent 2021

The North Face Mountain 25

Weight: 8lb 13oz / 4kg – 2P
Pros:
> Accommodates two
> Reflective guylines
> Good ventilation
> Solid Tent
Cons:
> Heavy

The North Face Summit Series Mountain 25 tent is a great 4-season tent ideal for mountaineering. This tent is made from a superior lightweight design that can withstand harsh weather conditions.

Made from durable nylon with a ripstop weave, the tent’s canopy is extremely hard-wearing and water-resistant offering protection from water and snow. 

The Summit Series Mountain 25 tent poles are DAC poles that are robust and withstand harsh winds.

Even if the weather conditions take a turn, this tent is easy to assemble and disassemble as it includes added sleeves, clips, and snow stakes for pitching in frostier conditions.

This tent’s guy lines are reflective, offering added security by providing a visible mark that will help to identify the tent after a long day of hiking.

This two-person tent provides a great amount of storage with a large vestibule for storing larger gear and hanger loops for storing smaller belongings. 

Overall, this is one of the best 4-season North Face tents, it is one of the best winter tents for the backcountry that has proven itself on many expeditions across the globe.

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Best Lightweight 4-Season Tent 2021

Nemo Chogori

Weight: 8.1lb / 3.7kg
Pros:
> A sturdy external pole structure
> Lightweight and easy to carry
> Made from nylon which is a durable material and silicone treated fabric for added strength
> Great ventilation
> Storage solution
Cons:
> Very lightweight and may not be strong enough for the very worst conditions.

Nemo’s Chogori tent is ideal for mountaineering or backcountry ski touring. This tent provides a sturdy structure designed with a robust external pole frame.

This feature enables for quick and easy setup and contributes to increasing the protection of the tent by increasing its durability. The tent’s freestanding design also makes it easy to assemble and disassemble. 

The Nemo Chogori 4-season tent also includes a ventilation system that helps to reduce levels of condensation.

It also includes vestibule space to create more storage and guy-out points for increasing its protection against harsh weather conditions such as extreme wind. 

The canopy fabric is made from 20D nylon ripstop which is very lightweight but durable enough for all but the very worst of conditions. The silicone-treated fabric increases durability and works to ensure that the tent can withstand conditions of snow and rain.

It comes in a 2P and 3P version.

Overall, this is one of the best lightweight 4-season tent for mountaineering and ski touring in the backcountry.

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Best 4-Season Tent for Bicycle Touring 2021

Hilleberg Nammatj 2 GT

Weight: 6lb 6oz / 2.9kg – 2P
Pros:
> Strong canopy material
> 10mm robust poles
> Comfortably accommodates two

> Lightweight construction
> Customizable space
Cons:
> Expensive

The Hilleberg Nammatj 2 GT tent is ideal for winter camping and hiking. This tent is great in all conditions as it can be used for base camping and alpine camping. It has long been a favorite expedition bicycle touring tent.

Suitable for use in areas of high altitude, this tent performs well as a sturdy camp for expeditions in harsh weather conditions. Equally, it’s a great option for lighter use as a reliable and robust tent. 

With a canopy made from Kerlon 1800, this tent’s outer fabric along with its 10mm thick poles makes for a highly stable and durable structure that keeps out the elements. 

The tent consists of a single entrance to maintain a reduced weight. Past the entrance is a large vestibule that offers ample space for storage and casual use. The vestibule connects directly to the tent but can also be left attached and pitched separately.

It comes 2P and 3P version.

Overall, this is a one of the best Hilliberg lightweight 4-season tents for lightweight travel in extreme conditions.

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Best 4-Season Tent in Australia and New Zealand 2021

Macpac Olympus Two Person Tent

Weight: 6lb 13oz / 3.1kg
Pros:
> Unique four vent air system for increased ventilation
> Strong canopy material
>Robust structure
> Aerodynamic design
Cons:
> Only available in Australia and New Zealand

The Macpac Olympus two-person tent is ideal for alpine camping. This 4-season tunnel tent is a great choice for hiking and climbing in harsh weather conditions. Its unique three-pole tunnel design increases its durability.

This aerodynamic design works to improve the tent’s stability and ability to withstand high winds, torrential rain, and snow.

With a dual entry point way, ample space, and a front vestibule, Olympus offers stability and comfort providing a great amount of space for two. 

The tent canopy is made from a nylon ripstop with a silicone coating. This material is not only strong, but it also offers waterproofing and UV protection making this a great tent choice for use in all weather conditions. The floor on the Macpac Olympus is more waterproof than most of the tents in this review and as waterproof as most rain jackets.

The tent also includes an internal mesh double-wall, storm/ snow flaps, and a unique four vent air system. These features contribute to improving the air circulation in the tent to improve ventilation. In doing, so the tent offers increased breathability which makes for a comfortable and airy space. 

Overall, this has been a long time favorite of New Zealand and Australians for ski touring and winter hiking trips. This is the one of the best 4-season tents in Australia and New Zealand and worthy enough to take on any extreme alpine trip anywhere in the world.

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Best 4-Season Tent Basecamp Tent for Australia and New Zealand 2021

Macpac Aspiring Three Person Tent

Weight: 10lb 5oz / 4.7kg
Pros:
> Large vestibule for extra storage, cooking, and shelter
> Improved ventilation with a unique air vent system
> Durable material and sturdy structure
> Water-resistant
Cons:
> Only available in Australia and New Zealand

Macpac’s Aspiring tent is a great choice for a basecamp shelter.

This three-person tent is designed with a geodesic structure which enables it to withstand harsh weather conditions such as extreme winds and an accumulation of heavy snow load.

With a robust frame made up of five DAC Featherlite NSL poles, the tent provides a large, open, and secure livable space. 

With a nylon ripstop canopy coated with silicone and a factory sealed seam, this tent provides waterproofing and maximum protection from UV damage. With this protection, the tent offers a durable and sturdy base. 

The tent comes with two large vestibules with built-in snow flaps for ventilation.

Not only do the vestibules provide a great space for shelter, storage, and cooking, the added feature of an air vent system will work to promote continual airflow and improved circulation that will help to reduce condensation without compromising the tent’s insulation.

Overall, if you are looking for the best alpine tent in Australia or New Zealand then the Macpac Aspiring is it. Unfortunately, this tent is only available in these countries.

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Best Ultralight 4-Season Tent 2021

Black Diamond Eldorado Tent

Weight: 5 lb 1oz / 2.3kg
Pros:
> Storage solution
> Easy to assemble

> Simple and compact
Cons:
> Single-wall fabric suitable for low to moderate weather conditions

Black Diamond’s Eldorado tent is ideal for mountaineering. This tent has a traditional compact mountaineering tent structure. Though simple, it offers great space and additional storage. 

Eldorado’s design makes this tent an ideal choice for a short excursion. It has a single entry with an optional vestibule. This feature makes for easy customization to accommodate your needs.

The vestibule creates a great storage solution as it provides ample space for storing your gear and possessions. 

This tent is hassle-free and offers an easy setup. With only two aluminum poles included, setting up this tent couldn’t be quicker or easier.

Eldorado is an ideal tent for climbing or hiking as it is easy to assemble and disassemble and has a small footprint making it easier to carry.

Overall, this is another great single walled mountaineering tent best suited to lightweight alpine climbing and summit pushes on high mountains.

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Best of the Rest 4-Season Tents for Winter 2021

Marmot Thor 2

Weight: 9lb 5oz / 4.2kg
Pros:
> Easy assembly
> Pole vestibule for maximised space

> Water-resistant
Cons:
> Heavy

Marmot’s Thor 2 is ideal for mountaineering and alpine expeditions. This free-standing tent has a robust structure making it a great choice of shelter for taking on adventures in harsh environments.

The Marmot Thor 2 may not be on the very best of the best list of tents above but that does not mean you should discount this tent. It is a serious mountain tent built for people who want to abuse it in the worst weather.

The tent offers a simple and innovative design that provides a sturdy and comfortable space. The tent provides two vestibules offering a great amount of storage space. It also provides extra space at the front for additional storage.

With ample storage, this tent is great for longer excursions. 

The tent is quite breathable for a mountain tent. With full-coverage fly feature vents and snow flaps, Thor 2 has good airflow and ventilation which helps reduce ventilation.

Regardless of the weather, with a barebone setup and a simple structure, Thor 2 is easy to assemble and disassemble.

Overall, this is one of the best Marmot 4-season tents for mountaineering and alpine expeditions.

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Black Diamond Hilight 2P Tent

Weight: 3lb 15oz / 1.8kg
Pros:
> Customizable space
> Ultralight
> Stable and secure
> Unique ventilation system
> Durable material
Cons:
> Single wall is not as weather resistant
> Very small as a 2 person tent, better as a solo tent

Black Diamond’s Hilight 2P tent is ideal for ultralight alpine style mountaineering. This two-person tent offers a comfortable and spacious environment. As with several other tents on this list it is a seriously awesome tent that is uber lightweight and worthy of a look.

This tent consists of a steep sidewall construction which improves its stability. For additional security, the tent comes with an exit rope that goes through the ceiling. This acts as an anchor that enables the tent to situate on steep ground.

A new and innovative flow manifold design works to ensure high-quality ventilation that reduces condensation by drawing moisture from the air and out of the tent.

In doing so the tent improves breathability which is ideal for occasions where you may be in areas of high altitude. 

The Hilight 2P tent is made from a high perseverance 30D poly fabric. This material offers durability and reliability in harsh conditions. This tent could either be used by two people or a single person.

With a removable vestibule, you can make the space your own and increase or remove the storage as you wish.

Overall, this is one of the best single wall mountaineering tent for alpine style mountaineering.

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Nemo Kunai

Weight: 5lb 3oz / 2.3kg
Pros:
> Tapered design for extra protection from harsh weather conditions
> Customisable space
> Storage solution

> Versatile design
> Ultra lightweight
Cons:
> Very lightweight material may not be suitable for extremely windy conditions

Nemo’s Kunai tent is best suited to lightweight mountaineering or lightweight alpine expeditions. This tent can withstand full mountainous exposure without shifting making it a great choice of shelter for your lightweight backcountry adventure. 

With a unique structure and robust frame, Kunai is highly adaptable and durable. It’s made with a DAC pole frame and a brow pole and tapered profile which is designed to withstand high wind, torrential rain, and snow.

Not only does it offer weather protection, but it is also ultra-lightweight, making for easy portability. 

The tent comprises a large and spacious vestibule which is a great storage solution. This space is also convertible making it even more adaptable.

With a strut vent at the zipper and a large vent door with a mesh window, Kunai works to improve the airflow throughout the tent. The ventilation system increases air circulation to improve the air quality. This feature makes Kunai a great choice of shelter for use in areas of high altitudes.

Overall, this is the best ultralight 4-season tent for mountaineering and alpine expeditions.

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Marmot Hammer 2 Person Tent

Weight: 4lb 14oz / 2.2kg
Pros:
> Simple design

> Storage solution

> Reliable ventilation system
> Customizable space
Cons:
> Single-wall fabric suitable for low to moderate weather conditions

Marmot’s Hammer tent is ideal for mountaineering. This two-person tent serves as a simple and reliable shelter choice for low to moderate adventuring.

This tent provides a great amount of space for two people as it comes with a removable vestibule as well as internal storage for smaller belongings. This is a great choice of tent for shorter excursions or alpine camping. 

The Hammer tent’s vestibule has built-in snow flaps and an internal guy out system. These features provide great ventilation as it improves the airflow of the space. This results in improved air quality and a reduction in the level of condensation. 

This tent’s free-standing design also makes for easy assembly and disassembly which is convenient for when you’re making regular stops.

Overall, this is best suited to be one of the best lightweight alpine tents for alpine style climbing trips in the mountains.

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Buyers Guide

Categories of 4-season tents 

With so many different types of 4-season tents available, each tent can be put into one of three categories. The categories of 4-season tents include mountaineering, basecamp, and treeline.

Mountaineering 

4-season mountaineering tents are designed to withstand the conditions of high alpine environments. These types of tents are often considered for their weight and their ability to protect against wind.

Mountaineering 4-season tents tend to be waterproof and lightweight making them easier to carry. This is a great feature as mountaineering 4-season tents are designed to be used for light adventures and summit pushes. 

Basecamp 

4-season base camp tents are designed for base camping in cold weather conditions. 4-season basecamp tents tend to be heavier than mountaineering tents as they are not designed to be moved and carried so often.

These types of tents are designed to be more sturdy and more comfortable as it’s most likely where you’ll spend a lot of your time.

To ensure that the basecamp tent is comfortable, most tents have features that include a double-wall design for increased insulation as well as increasing ventilation and preventing condensation.

Treeline 

4-season treeline tents are designed to be the most agile of the three categories as they are designed for lighter winter adventures.

Whilst these are great for mild adventuring in lighter winter conditions, it’s advised that these tents aren’t pushed to the limit such as using them in exposed mountainous environments as they aren’t as strong or durable as the other two categories.

However, these tents are great for doing things like recreational winter camping.

Features To Look Out For 

4-season tents are essentially designed to withstand extreme winter weather conditions. They are the best type of tent for anyone looking for protection in the cold. However, there’s a wide variety of types of 4-season tents available.

Each type caters to different needs. What someone may need for mountaineering will be different from what another person needs for base camping/ tree-lining. The variation in the tent features includes differences in their level of protection, weight, and space.

Ventilation and condensation

Whether rain or shine, you’ll want to be in a breathable space that feels well ventilated. Good ventilation in a 4-season tent is essential especially when you’re amidst harsh weather conditions.

There are two features you can look out for to ensure your tent is well ventilated. The first is that there is a good source of fresh air. Tents with mesh windows or guy-out points are great for promoting airflow and increasing ventilation.

The second feature to look out for is whether the tent has a double wall. Having a double-walled tent works to improve ventilation and reduce condensation. Having these features in a tent will make it more comfortable by improving breathability. 

Durability and strength 

When it comes to facing harsh weather conditions, you’ll want to know that your tent can stand the test of time. To ensure you have a durable tent, ensure that the cover is weather resistant and UV protectant.

Having a cover that is abrasive resistant is a bonus as it will prevent wear and tear and ensure the longevity of your tent’s life. 

Storage 

If you’re planning on undergoing a longer trip, it’s important to ensure you have enough storage space for the equipment you’re going to use. Ensuring that you have ample space for your gear and space that will keep it safe and dry is essential.

For increased storage, look for a tent with a vestibule. A tent with a vestibule acts as an additional space for storing your gear.

If you don’t need a tent with as big a space as a vestibule, many tents offer internal mesh storage pockets that offer great space for anyone with minimal equipment. 

Tent poles

Ensure that your tent poles are made from a robust material that can withstand harsh weather conditions. Having a weak tent pole could result in the pole becoming brittle and snapping.

What you want to look for is a metal pole such as aluminum with a long connector joint which will increase its strength. Having a tent will also improve durability as well as provide easy assembly. 

Tent Stakes

Tent Stakes for use in snow and expedition style trips will be needed. They will be longer and wider than normal camping tent. Take a look at the Best Tent Stakes for Snow guide for further info.

Waterproofing 

Waterproofing is definitely a feature you’ll want to look for in a 4-season tent. After all, if you’re looking to purchase a 4-season tent, you’re probably looking for something that can withstand all weather conditions, including torrential rain.

Having a waterproof tent offers several advantages. Not only does it do its job of keeping you dry, if you have a tent made from polyester, the material will also work to protect you from UV damage.

Having a waterproof tent with seals is a great way of taking extra precautions to ensure that no water will seep into your tent and disrupt your comfort. 

Frequently Asked Questions 

What’s the difference between a 3-season tent and a 4-season tent?

4-season tents are designed for use in the toughest of weather conditions and the harshest environments of rain, snow, and wind.
These tents are made with a range of features that ensure that they offer the protection needed to withstand different environments.
Whilst some, such as the base camp 4-season tents are designed for comfort and others such as the mountaineering 4-season tent are designed for lightweight, all 4-season tents are designed to be robust and durable.
4-season tents are made from a more robust material compared to the 3-seasons tent and they include more features that make them stronger and more durable such as having more guy-out points, more venting options, and sturdier poles.

Conclusion

With so many options of great 4-season tents available, making your choice will be no easy task.

However, what this list shows is that there are so many brands offering fantastic features and benefits that will make your adventures more comfortable and enjoyable.

This post has given you all the information and tips you need to help you narrow down your decision and find your perfect 4-season tent. 


Another one of the Best Hiking Gear Reviews from BikeHikeSafari.

Best 4 season tent for winter backpacking

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About the Author:
Brad is an Australian who has completed the hiking Triple Crown after he hiked the Pacific Crest Trail, Continental Divide Trail and Appalachian Trail. He has hiked on every continent (except Antarctica) and has cycled from Alaska to Ecuador. He is an expert on outdoor gear currently living in Sydney, Australia.

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