REI Quarter Dome 2
- Easy set up
- Generous interior room
- Lots of features make it more livable
- Big doors
- Rain drips in doors
- No loss in weight from previous iteration
This is the kind of tent just about anyone would like. It’s easy to carry, sets up fast, and has room to spare for two. It would be a category winner if not for a couple minor issues—particularly that rain drips inside the tent with the fly open. Otherwise this tent is a pleasure to sleep in. It’s a great upgrade for an already stellar design.
This is where this tent shines. By playing with the pole geometry designers added 28 percent more head room and 23 percent more foot room in the 2017 version of the Quarter Dome. The poles pitch the walls almost vertical. The two vestibules grew by 60 percent each. And there’s a bunch of pockets and storage options. It’s still a small footprint tent, 52 inches wide at the head end. But it feels bigger than the 29 square feet would suggest.
At 3.8 pounds the new QD is actually a couple ounces heavier than the old QD, but it’s negligible on the back and worth every square inch when it’s pouring out.
Color coding on the poles and corner webbing helps line up the complex pole structure the right way. The multi-hubbed pole is ungainly, but tameable by a solo camper.
The fly hangs almost to the ground on all four sides. Steep walls dump water quickly. Plenty of guyout points, with adjustable cords, snug up loose fabric. The 15 Denier fly is tough but light, and the 20 Denier floor is sufficient for the application. During a night long downpour we didn’t see a single leak or drip inside.
As we mentioned earlier, the storage options seem to be everywhere we look: head, feet, roof. The two doors are large as are the two vestibules, making getting in and out easy. Our only beef is the fly is about an inch short on its door overhang. Just a little more and drips wouldn’t land in the tent. It’s not as bad as some tents, but we had to be quick on our entry and exits.
How We Tested It
The tents in this test were used in the backcountry on rainy overnight trips in Utah, sea kayaking on Vancouver Island, and backpacking the B.C. Coast Range, along with some other forays. With over more than a month of nights in theses tents, we got to know them like they were our own bedroom.
For more reviews beyond this 2017 test, check out our Best 1 Person Backpacking Tents of 2017, Best 3 Person Backpacking Tents of 2017, Best Weekend Backpacks of 2017, along with other hiking and camping related gear tests.
The products featured in this test have been loaned to the Gear Institute. For more on our policies regarding editorial objectivity and sample returns, see here.
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