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Suggestions for a 3 person tent

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Just brought a 2 year old Mec tent back for a credit. Seams were coming apart. Now I'm looking for a 3 person 3 season tent in the $300.00 - $400.00 CDN range. Mec sell a lot of MSR tents but most reviews say that they take in water even when new. Anyone here have a recently purchased MEC 3 person tent other than MSR that they can recommend or any other tents you guys can suggest.
Thanks.
Gerald
 
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The problem is that when we have a favorite tent it is not likely to be new or even recent. We have a Marmot Limelight 3 tent that we really like but we have used it for at least six years so I cannot vouch for new. No leaks. I did seam seal last year as I was getting wary of possible water intrusion.

Have a Hubba Hubba by MSR and never had leaky problems but again that tent is really old. It has a LOT of mesh which is not my cuppa. Good solo tent. I got a new one because I got it very cheap . But its not likely I will solo trip again so it sits. New.

But I did not buy from MEC so not sure what they carry.
 
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Thanks YC.

Yes the MSR did have a good rep for leak resistance right out of the factory. We here we do not have the same selection of tents to chose from as you people down there. My problem is that the credit Mec gave me has to be used in a Mec store or Mec online. The Mec selection of tents gets smaller year after year. this is this years 3 person tents.

https://www.mec.ca/en/products/camping-and-hiking/camping-tents-tarps-and-bivies/tents/backpacking-tents/c/1952?f=CFtentCapacity%3A3-person

Seems I'll have to use the credit for something else and get a tent from another source.

Stay safe,

G.
 
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Ten years ago I would have HIGHLY recommended Marmot, these days not so much although they are still better than many other brands.

Two things are conspiring against mid-level tents these days......the ridiculous attempt to reduce weight and the use of cheaper materials (zippers etc.) to reduce costs.

This only leaves the premium brands where you can find reliable quality and well thought out designs.

Another "sickness" that invading camping gear is the need to constantly bring out new models, back in the day tents like the famous Eureka Timberlines would be available virtually unchanged for 20+ years now there are new models every 3 or 4 years, change for the sake of change rather than actual improvements.

Geez, I sound old and grumpy!
 
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Ouch. Just last week our daughter texted her dad for his opinion on "the best" tent for them to buy for canoe tripping etc. No pressure I thought. Ha ha. I suggested MSR, Marmot, Eureka and MEC tents but after checking out their available lines online I was astounded how times have changed. And not for the better. What happened to the selection?! Geez, I sound old and grumpy...and hankering after the good old days. Compromises between quality and price, weight and durability, name brand and costs...this dad is undecided. I told her to shop for used quality for a start. Like that vintage Buick in the barn.
 
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Hilleberg Anjan 3.
Top-quality materials, construction, design and details.
A wonderful piece of gear.

Great tents but far away from the budget and not available at MEC and pretty much not available in Canada! Solid tents but really hot in the summer and all the zippers on our are shot after jay a few years of light use!!
We are waiting on a new tent four our family, for use on bike packing/hiking/sheep hunting trips, a MLD Mondo mid with liner!! Room for more than what we need but we like room, I’m done with crawling on my knees to get in and out of a tent!! For canoe trips we use our 7x7 campfire tent but it ain’t light....
 
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Check out the offerings from Tarptent. Perhaps a bit over your budget, but they are made in the US, so no duty. I have a Scarp II (2-man) with which I have been extremely happy. Their Hogback is similar in design, but sleeps 4.

I own 4 Tarptents including the Hogback. Fantastic Tent.

I’m pretty much done with tents that have a separate body and fly.
 
G

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Just brought a 2 year old Mec tent back for a credit. Seams were coming apart. Now I'm looking for a 3 person 3 season tent in the $300.00 - $400.00 CDN range. Mec sell a lot of MSR tents but most reviews say that they take in water even when new. Anyone here have a recently purchased MEC 3 person tent other than MSR that they can recommend or any other tents you guys can suggest.

Gerald, I don’t know much about MEC’s selection of tents, but to clarify are you looking for a three-person tent to actually sleep three people, or a three person tent to comfortably sleep two?

Two things are conspiring against mid-level tents these days......the ridiculous attempt to reduce weight and the use of cheaper materials (zippers etc.) to reduce costs.

Along with that method of weight reduction the usable sleeping area on many tents has gotten pretty squinchy for the number of person ratings. I have a “two person” Hubba Hubba that I really like. For just me. With a wide-ish sleeping pad I have just enough room on the sides of a book, flashlight and reading glasses, everything else has to go out in the vestibules. The Hubba Hubba has proven reliably waterproof and wind resistant. Both of them, we own two.

As a two-person tent the Hubba Hubba might accommodate two really skinny people. If they spooned all night.

Contrast that with something like the venerable Eureka Timberline 2 man; we slept two adults in a Timberline for decades, and once squeezed in three. With most modern tents I would add a one to the number of people the design claims to accommodate.

I do use a footprint with the Hubba Hubba, and with all our tents, even the old Timberlines and the like. Manufacturers saving weight again, many tent floors are now made with thinner, less water-proofy material.

The retail price for a footprint is crazy expensive for a flat piece material, so I just DIY them using scalloped edge Visqueen plastic, so the footprint doesn’t stick out beyond the tent body on the sides or corners, with duct tape and grommets for pole and stake connections. Easy peezy custom sized and shaped for each tent.

P6220935 by Mike McCrea, on Flickr

P6220936 by Mike McCrea, on Flickr

A couple bucks in materials vs $30 or $40 for a manufactured footprint, some of which don’t fit in reduced size/scalloped edges under the tent as well as the DIYed versions.
 
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I have a pretty new Tarptent, an older Hubba Hubba, and an even older Timberline 2, all of which have been great and any of which I'd buy again. Of the MEC offerings I'd go with the Mutha Hubba based on my experience, and be sure to seal all the seams on the fly and floor before use. Actually, do that for any tent before use IMO. And definitely use a ground cloth.
 
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Not the sexy choice of the masses but I would still recommend a Eureka "Timberline 4" as a good, reasonably priced three person tent. I used them for years in both my college program and guiding business and never had any issues whatsoever. I also like that the parts are interchangeable so you can rob from one to the other in an emergency. A basic "A" frame tent that's still solid and good to go. I'm not sure if Eureka makes them any longer but the "Alpine Meadows" is essentially the Timberline with a hoop in the middle to give more interior space. I had a couple of those as well and highly recommend them too. They just cost a bit more and I never figured it was necessary for my trips.

That's all for now. Take care and until next time...be well.

snapper
 
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Thanks to those who have replied. I also had Timberlines 2 and 4. The children inherited them when they decided to go camping with their friends instead of their parents. It's sad about the MEC's present quality of their house brand tents. There was a time when their tents were top notch.

Had a look at the suggested TarpTents. I prefer free standing tents but the TarpTents are definitely interesting. I presume these tents are not sold in Canada but have to be imported?

G.
 
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...
Another "sickness" that invading camping gear is the need to constantly bring out new models, back in the day tents like the famous Eureka Timberlines would be available virtually unchanged for 20+ years now there are new models every 3 or 4 years, change for the sake of change rather than actual improvements.

Geez, I sound old and grumpy!

Related to model churn disease is shallow review disease. You go looking for a review of a new tent and you get these "unboxing" reviews -- like, I pitched it in my backyard, or heck maybe just on a rug in the living room, and now I'll tell you all about it. The stakes are very shiny! How can someone possibly write a review of a tent without spending a rainy night in it? But by the time you've had it out in the woods a few times the model is discontinued.
 

Glenn MacGrady

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I use a three person tent just for myself. I like having room.

I am extremely pleased with my NEMO Losi 3P, now simply called the 3, I believe. Won many awards. Very light for its spaciousness, vertical headroom, many pockets and versatile fly arrangements. Lifetime warranty. I also bought their outside "footprint" ground cloth, inside "pawprint" ground cloth and ceiling gear loft. For lighter weight, you can just use the fly and footprint.

Currently on sale for U.S. $259 at REI (list $399), but I know nothing about availability in Canada.

There are many video reviews. Here's a short one:

 
G

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I'm not sure if Eureka makes them any longer but the "Alpine Meadows" is essentially the Timberline with a hoop in the middle to give more interior space. I had a couple of those as well and highly recommend them too.

Unless Eureka brought them back at some point I believe the Alpine Meadows was discontinued 20 years ago. We bought discontinued 2-man and 4-man Alpine Meadows at the time, both still going strong if now little used. The separate-piece vestibules from our Timberlines fit those Alpine Meadows.

Identical to the Timberline models, with a wanded center hoop; the center hoop expanded the sides of the tent body for more interior room, and helped keep the fly off the tent walls when wet, a simple design addition that greatly improved an already decent design.

The DIY visqueen footprint in the previous post was made for an Alpine Meadows 4, hence the center hoop/stake out grommet.

On a lot of modern tent design footprints the foot of each pole seats in corner grommets, which keeps the footprint from blowing around/peeking out from under an empty tent. As importantly, when setting up camp in the wind, the footprint can be staked down, instead of tossing a rock or your shoe on each corner in a desperate attempt to anchor it. When the tent body gets unfurled on the footprint just pull the already there corner stakes and anchor the tent body.

I love a proper footprint with scalloped edges, that don’t stick out and funnel water under the tent floor, and corner grommets to anchor things while setting up in the wind. “Proper footprint with scalloped” edges; we have a 3-person Sierra Designs then that came with a (pricey) poorly designed footprint; no scalloped edges and the footprint protrudes out beyond the tent body.

FWIW I’m both an outie and an innie; besides a custom footprint each tent bag has a thin piece of plastic for use if needed as an innie. We haven’t needed the innies often with our tents, but have frequently given them to other folks in need.
 
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