The Best One Person Tent for Lightweight Backpacking

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If you’re in a rush and want to find out what the best single person tent is, we recommend the ALPS Mountaineering Lynx One Person Tent.

For some, camping is a way to have a unique family vacation. Pack up the cabin tent, grab a few cots to sleep on, and don’t forget the grill because kabobs are for dinner tonight! For others, camping is a means of exploration, adventure, and escape, which means being weighed down with a lot of gear is antithetical to their purpose.

Tents are especially well known for adding a lot of bulk and weight to your pack, and sometimes even a 2 person tent is still too much…tent. If you feel the same way, take a gander through this review where we’ll be talking about some of the best one person tents.

In this article, we’ll be reviewing the following one person tents:

Space

tent pitched on cracked desert land

If you want to go with a single person tent, hopefully you know what you’re getting into when it comes to space. Gone will be the days of storing your pack and boots inside the tent with you. In fact, you might even have a hard time fitting you in the tent, if you consider yourself to be a big person. A one person tent is essentially a glorified bivy sack – there’s enough there to keep you sheltered from the wind and rain, but barely enough to keep you from feeling claustrophobic.

Of course, if you just see your tent as a place to crawl into for a few winks of sleep before getting on with your life, there’s nothing better than a single person tent. Just remember that your gear will be outside, unprotected if a storm rolls through. Make sure you have a good backpack rain cover to help keep the weather from wreaking havoc on your food and spare clothes.

Weight

Possibly the whole reason you’re getting a one person tent in the first place is because of the weight. If weight doesn’t matter to you, than you might as well upgrade to a 2 person tent and give yourself that extra room to move around in and store your gear.

Many single person tents hover around the 2-3 pound mark, while it’s common to find 2 person tents in the 4-5 pound range. That additional pound or two might not seem like much, but if you’ve ever been backpacking before, you know that every ounce counts. Some folks even take this philosophy so far that they cut their toothbrushes in half in order to stay lighter. If that sounds like something you would do…well, no judgment here.

At the end of the day, will you really feel that extra pound? Probably. When it comes to backpacking, never underestimate the fatigue that extra water bottle, lantern, or other item will give you after carrying it for your 8th straight hour. It does add up, and the difference between a single person tent and a 2 person tent is substantial.

Easy Setup

tent and bike set up next to trees and a lake

If you’re buying a one person tent, you’re probably camping by yourself. That means, you’ll have to do everything by yourself, including the process of pitching your tent. No one wants to waste time with complicated instructions, or mechanisms that are hard to put together. Finding a tent that’s simple to set up, even when you’re alone, is one of the top qualities that we look for in a product.

Durability

And finally, it’s incredibly important to find a shelter that’s going to hold up for a long time. Camping is rough, especially on your tent which is taking the full force of the wind, rain, and other elements. Maybe it’ll survive your first couple of trips, but what about a year or two down the road? Some tents start off strong, only to have their poles snap or the waterproof coating come off after a handful of uses.

Occasionally, a tent that’s normally great will have a bad egg. An error might occur during manufacturing, or it could get damaged during the shipping process – in these cases, there’s not much you can do other than make sure the company has good customer service. Other times, the tent itself is faulty in general, no matter which one is sent to you. These are the ones we want to avoid.

Best One Person Tent Reviews

Clostnature One Person Tent


I always like to save my dessert for last, so I’m just going to jump into what I don’t like about Clostnature’s tent first. Simply put, it’s heavier than I want to see in a single person tent. 3.7 pounds might not seem like much (and it’s really not), but I’ve definitely seen better out there as well. But of course, if you don’t mind, that’s what really matters here.

Other than that, it’s hard for me to find anything to complain about. I’m a big fan of the bathtub style floor, since I feel it’s the best way to protect yourself against ground water. The rainfly is also great at repelling water, and it’s easy for one person to throw on top and strap down into place.

There are 2 aluminum poles, lightweight and incredibly durable, which makes for a solid structure that’s still easy to pack up and carry. There aren’t any sleeves to slide the poles through either, so you don’t run the risk of accidentally putting a hole in the fabric. Just place the ends of the poles in the corner grommets, and snap the tent clips onto them to lift up the roof.

Pros:

– Bathtub floor
– Weatherproof material
– No pole sleeves
– Well ventilated
– Rainfly doesn’t touch the interior mesh, helping reduce condensation buildup

Cons:

– Weight
– It’s not very tall

ALPS Mountaineering Lynx One Person Tent


The Lynx one person tent is powerhouse, great for rough conditions of any kind. Set up is simple, and can be done in under 2 minutes, if you’ve had a little practice under your belt. The tent is freestanding, using 2 aluminum poles to keep it upright, so it’s incredibly easy for one person to put it together. Just make sure you stake it out properly, otherwise water may get in because the rainfly isn’t able to direct the flow like it was designed to do.

If you’re a bigger person, you might notice that the tent doesn’t really leave much room for anything other than you. However, it’s still incredibly comfortable, and having it hug you so snugly means that it’ll heat up fast and keep you warm during the night.

And just because it doesn’t have much internal storage (though there are quite a few mesh pockets), it doesn’t mean you can’t keep your gear protected. There’s a vestibule that you can stake out, creating a good amount of shelter for such a small tent. Depending on the size of your pack, you could easily hide it under the rainfly, and possibly your boots too.

Pros:

– Very durable
– Good sized vestibule
– Fast and easy setup
– Well insulated
– Nice ventilation

Cons:

– Footprint sold separately
– A bit on the heavy side, though it’s not as bad if you replace the steel stakes with aluminum ones

Featherstone Outdoor Backpacking Tent

With a minimum trail weight of 2 pounds, 11 ounces, we’re finally entering the territory of ultralightweight backpacking. Part of the reason Featherstone’s backpacking tent is so light is because of the single pole construction. It’s considered semi-freestanding, but don’t worry about it falling over when you don’t want it to – once you’ve got everything set up, it’s not going anywhere. But because it only has one pole, it’s incredibly easy to pick up, shake out, or move to a new location with minimal effort. I have a 3 person tent with a similar construction, and absolutely love this aspect of it.

In terms of actual design, it’s very similar to the MSR Hubba Hubba, but at a fraction of the cost. Quality doesn’t seem to be an issue, as the stitching is well done, and the bathtub floor is thoroughly taped and sealed. It’s a tight squeeze, especially for larger folks, but that’s not something you can complain about too much if you’re getting a one person tent.

Pros:

– Lightweight
– Well designed
– Sealed well against the weather
– Bathtub floor
– Single pole for easy setup and mobility

Cons:

– Rainfly is a little difficult to attach, unless you’re great at tying knots

TETON Backpacking Tent

A one of a kind on this review, we’ve got our first and only pop-up tent to talk about. Yes, you heard that right: it’s a one person pop-up tent. TETON’s backpacking tent made something that was already easy to put together even easier to set up.

To get it all ready for the night, all you have to do is roll it out, stake it down, lock the poles in place, and pull the drawstring. It’s that simple. Of course, with the addition of the fancy mechanisms needed to make setup this easy, you’re putting on a few pounds of weight. At 5 pounds, you’ll have to decide whether the added convenience is worth the weight. For me, it wouldn’t be, but for other’s I’m sure it would.

The rainfly is waterproof, though it doesn’t extend all the way to the ground. For full coverage, you’ll have to get the Elite rainfly, sold separately for an extra $20. In all, it does hold up against the weather like a champ, and it only takes a handful of minutes to take it down again. If sleeping on the ground isn’t your thing, it is possible to pair this shelter with a cot, to lift you off the ground a few inches.

Pros:

– Nearly instant setup
– Can be converted into a tent cot
– Does well in bad weather
– Quite comfortable when paired with a cot

Cons:

– Honestly, you’ll want to buy the Elite rainfly
– Heavy for a one person tent

Kazoo Backpacking Tent

Known for being eco-friendly, Kazoo only uses recycled materials for their tents, and this product is no different. Weighing in at 3.3 pounds, it’s about what I would consider average for most single person tents. And you know what? I can live with average in this case.

The tent is freestanding, making use of a couple aluminum poles for support. It’s double layered with mesh on the inside and the waterproof rainfly on the outside, helping you to stay both dry and well insulated. The large D shaped door offers good ventilation, and an easier way to get in and out of the tent (though, that can be a struggle no matter what the door shape is).

Additionally, it also comes with decent tent stakes, which is more than can be said about most shelters out there. If you want a vestibule, you’ll have to stake out the entrance flap, which isn’t too big of an issue, on dry nights especially.

Pros:

– Decent weight
– Made from recycled materials
– Doesn’t struggle in bad weather
– Comes with good stakes
– Freestanding with good ventilation

Cons:

– Doesn’t come with a footprint

In Conclusion

tent set up in a green forest

Single person tents are great for those of us who like to explore – and sometimes, when we want to escape from other human contact as well. Most often, you won’t find them in a traditional campground, because the weight of the tent doesn’t matter as much in a car camping situation. No, these tiny titans are often reserved for true backcountry adventures.

Considering what they’re used for, we liked the ALPS Mountaineering Lynx one person tent the most. The weight is average, but it’s possible to get it under 3 pounds if you make a few adjustments (such as switching out the stakes for lighter versions). The design also makes it easy to trap body heat, helping you to stay warm if you’re camping at elevation or during the colder months. Wrap that all up with how easy it is to put together and take down, and the ALPS tent is a great option for backpackers of all kinds.

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Spencer Yeomans

Spencer Yeomans

A lover of the outdoors, and especially the mountains, Spencer has always enjoyed pushing people to step outside their comfort zones. His mission is to help others get out of their homes to have fun and stay active in nature.

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