Best Backpacking Tent for 2 Person

Whether you’re going backpacking for a cozy weekend away with your partner or camping in your backyard, a good tent is essential to keep safe and warm. When and where you’re going camping determines your initial needs. Desert climates, winter months, and rainy weather can all change what factors you need to consider in a tent.

For a quick peek at some of our favorite tent designs, check out our list below.

Quick Summary

  • If you’re doing looking for the best tent on a budget, check out the Coleman Sundome Tent:
    • 35 square feet, 4ft high
    • Inverted seams, welded corners, and rainfly included
    • Withstands 35mph winds
  • If you’re after a tent that stands up well on rugged terrain, the ALPS Mountaineering Lynx 2-Person Tent has you covered:
    • 37 square feet, 4ft high
    • Included tent rainfly adds extra storage space
    • Sets up in 10-15mins
  • If you’re looking for the best tent for backpacking, Big Agnes Fly Creek HV UL Ultralight Tent may be the way to go:
    • 28 square feet, 3ft 4in high
    • Weighs a mere 1lb 15oz; trail weight is 2lbs 5oz
    • Includes a full-coverage rainfly
  • If you want our best overall recommendation, take a look at the MSR Hubba Hubba Lightweight Tent (with a waterproof coating):
    • 29 square feet, 3ft 3in high
    • Complete setup option weighs 3.5lbs and packs into 18x6in space
    • 3-year limited manufacturer warranty

Who Should Get This?

2-person tents are not good for campers who are bringing more than two people, extra gear, or multiple children. They are also frequently not ideal for long trips.

2-person tents are ideal for weekend camping enthusiasts. They are also good for solo backpackers with extra gear. Due to their low height, they can also fare well in areas with high wind.

Best Backpacking 2-Person Tents: What to Look For

Seasonality

3-season tents are built to withstand all but the roughest winds, rain, or heavy snow. These are good for warm or mildly chilly/rainy weather. If you are someone who likes to hike through most of the year, a 3+ or 4 season tent will be a better option. If you need a winter weather tent, you’ll need to be careful in your choice, as you don’t want to get stuck in a snowstorm and have your tent collapse.

Weight

The weight of your tent is an important consideration if you ever hike to your campsite. Most of the time, you are going to be trading weight for space. Heavier tents will have more room and greater durability, while lighter tents will be built for long hikes and may break easier. However, some mountaineering backpacks are built of lightweight, heavy-duty materials to provide both. These tents will usually cost more in the short-term.

Livability

“Livability” is the word to describe all of the features that make you want to be inside your tent. The biggest factor here is often how much space a tent has. You will want to examine the floor space of the tent, as well as how tall the tent is. If you’re going to spend a lot of time inside your tent with another person, you may want a larger floor plan that you can stand in. You may also want a tent with more vertical walls, as slanted walls will cut down on your living space.

Best Backpacking 2-Person Tents: Our Picks

1. Best For Budgets: Coleman Sundome Tent

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The Coleman Sundome Tent is a versatile, weatherproof option for those on a limited budget. It has 35 square feet of space and a 4-foot height, so you will have plenty of room for yourself, your tent buddy, and your gear. It is designed with inverted seams and welded corners to safeguard against leaks. This plus the included rainfly will keep you and your valuables dry in even the rainiest climates. It can also withstand wind speeds up to 35mph, so you can have peace of mind that you and your tent are not about to blow away at the next gust.

What We Like:

  • Well-built for spring, summer, and fall use
  • Designed to be rainproof at the seams
  • Withstands winds up to 35mph

What We Don’t Like:

  • Not designed for cold or stormy weather

>> Check Price on Amazon <<

2. Best For Rugged Terrain: ALPS Mountaineering Lynx 2-Person Tent

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The ALPS Mountaineering Lynx is a sturdy design built with space and comforts in mind. It has netted windows on all four sides to provide a cool summertime breeze. The included rainfly can be used to cover the tent both in case of rain and when you’re ready for some privacy at the end of the night. The rainfly can also be set up to double as a gear storage space, giving you peace of mind that the extra gear you brought along won’t sit out in the open. It has two doorways to provide both you and your tentmate a way out without stepping on each other in the middle of the night.

What We Like:

  • Four windows for ventilation and enjoying nature around you
  • UV-damage resistant rainfly
  • Extra storage space

What We Don’t Like:

  • Provides little privacy without the rainfly
  • Weighs 5 pounds 12 ounces, making it one of our heavier selections

>> Check Price on Amazon <<

3. Best For Backpackers: Big Agnes Fly Creek HV UL Ultralight Tent

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The Big Agnes Fly Creek Tent weighs a mere 1lb 15oz unpacked (2lbs 5oz packed), making it the lightest choice on this list. This is a good option to consider for those who are taking extended trips and need room in their tent for a second person without packing the pounds into their bag. It comes with a full-cover rainfly, waterproof tape in every seam, and an extra-thick waterproof coating on the rainfly and tent floor. This can be a lifesaver for those hiking in especially rainy locations or months. Having your tent rained in on the first night of a week-long backpacking trip bodes a wet floor for the rest of your nights.

Note: the footprint is sold separately. If you’re going hiking for more than one night, it is recommended to purchase a footprint as well to avoid floor tears.

What We Like:

  • Less than 2lbs
  • Completely rainproof at the seams when under the rainfly
  • Utilizes a dry vestibule entry system

What We Don’t Like:

  • Footprint not included

>> Check Price on Amazon <<

4. Best Overall Recommendation: MSR Hubba Hubba Lightweight Tent

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If you’re looking for the best tent overall to last through the years and rugged terrain, the MSR Hubba Hubba with Xtreme Waterproof Coating might be for you. This tent comes with a doubly-thick waterproof coating on the floor and rainfly of the tent. Though this increases the cost some from the non-waterproof coating option, it might be a cost worth making for those going on extended trips in rainy locations. Who wants to wake up to a tent full of rain in the middle of the night?

The MSR Hubba Hubba provides 29 square feet of space and just over 3 feet of ceiling. Though this is smaller than some other options, the rainfly can be used to add an additional 17.5 square feet of safe, dry storage space for your gear. This means that you can have the inside of your tent all to yourself and your sleeping bag buddy and peace of mind that your gear is safe until morning.

Note: the footprint is sold separately. For frequent or mountaineering campers, it’s recommended to purchase the footprint before your first big hike.

What We Like:

  • 3-year limited manufacturer warranty
  • Extremely waterproof design
  • Over 46 square feet of combined space between the tent and vestibule

What We Don’t Like:

  • Footprint not included

>> Check Price on Amazon <<

Useful Tips and Resources

If you’re going camping for the first time, one thing to consider might be setting up your new tent at home to practice. This guide from REI includes not only step-by-step video and written instructions to set up a tent, but also other tips for tent camping. It’s not fun to get stuck in the middle of a rainstorm and realize you don’t know how to set up your shelter.

It’s also a wise idea to reserve your campsites ahead of time, when possible. This means you will know what it looks like and where you can set up before you arrive. It will also keep someone else from stealing your spot and leaving you with nowhere to sleep for the night.

To check out some other cool tent camping tips before you pack out, check out this video.

Final Words

Tent camping can be an excellent way to get into nature and learn more about the people you love. However, the key to a successful camping trip is to bring the right gear along with you – especially your tent. Selecting the right tent before you go will give you peace of mind that your nights will be warm and your mornings well-rested.

Questions or thoughts on our choices? Suggestions on types or styles of tents, tents in general, or other aspects of choosing the right gear? Let us know!

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