Dec 5, 2016517 views

A good light tent for 3 people.

I have two daughters and I would like to take them backpacking and I need a good tent thats light and can house all three of us and provide gear protection.
What would this community recommend?
MikeMD, AlexPk, and 1 other

It depends on how old/big your daughters are.
I will offer that I have done 1 adult (me) and two "almost teen" girls (nieces) and my 55lb mutt in a Zpacks Duplex, with some gear inside and some in the vestibules on both sides, and we were very comfortable. Girls and dog slept cuddled for warmth, and none of us was touching the bathtub sides. It would be very hard to get much lighter.
In this tent, two adults plus dog plus some gear fit fine, we do it routinely. No way to handle three adults, even with *everything* in the vestibules, unless you have a very open marriage. :-)
I'll "third" Tarptent. I can't speak from experience about the other models mentioned (Cloudburst 3 and Double Rainbow), but I do use the Tarptent Hogback for backpacking. It's wonderful! Advertised as a four-person tent, I think it has perfect room for three people and gear (gear inside the tent rather than in the smallish vestibules), and it weighs barely over 4 lbs. You could fit four in it, but it would be fairly tight. With three, we love it!
I second Tarptent -- I have the Double Rainbow, and although it's advertised as a two person it could even sleep three depending on the age/size of your daughters.
In my experience Tarptent is generally of comparable weight to most "UL" gear -- not as light as some but with a larger footprint and volume. The build quality is great (everything is made in the USA!), and, in my opinion, it is a bit more rugged than some of the other UL tents and can take a little more abuse. Price is great, too, especially compared to some of the other offerings (Big Agnes, North Face, MSR, etc).
The downside is that you must seal the seams yourself, or have Tarptent do it for an extra $35.
I like to take 3 (sometimes 4) of my kids backpacking and camping with me. The GoLite company that went out of business a while back, is back and re-branded as "My Trail Co." Their pyramid shelters are pretty versatile because they come with the shell (can be pitched alone), a nest (can be pitched alone), or pitch them together. My kids like feeling a little more secure when sleeping, and these tents provide good flexibility and low weight. Using your trekking poles for set up instead of the included pole, saves even more weight. I actually have the pyramid 4 from before they were re-branded, I believe the tents were called "Shangri La".
Check out the Tarptent Cloudburst 3 ..with the optional third pole it can even handle snow. I love it. Another good option is the MSR Mutha Hubba. I personally find the Cloudburst 3 to be unique in how diverse, quick to set up, and roomy it is.