Marmot Tungsten UL 2P
- Plenty of pockets for organization
- Great weight to roominess ratio
- Simple and fast pitching
- Setting it up solo is harder than most tents
- Full mesh body not good for windy or cold camping
- Fragile feel to lightweight fly
How did they pack so much room, pockets and other handy features in a tent so light? That’s what every tester was left wondering after trying the Tungsten. Few tents can compare to the livability to weight ratio. The trade off is on durability—treat this baby gently.
Marmot says the Tungsten UL has “more space per ounce than any other freestanding ultralight tent”. We haven’t fact checked that claim but we wouldn’t be surprised. The 32 square foot interior is definitely roomy for a two-person tent and especially roomy for one that weighs less than four pounds. The asymmetrical design flares towards the shoulders and narrows at the feet, from 54 inches to 48, plenty of room for the biggest camping pads and stockiest dudes and all their gear. The height is focused over the center, so not a ton of elbow room, but enough for two to sit up and play cards.
Tons of mesh in the body of this tent and a 20 Denier fly equals a small pack size. Less than two pounds per person is easy to schlep.
The two-pole design is simple to set up—an X-shaped pole to the four corners and a truss across the center. Color-coded poles and grommets simplify the asymmetric design. Setting it up solo, the poles tended to pop out of the grommets, but it wasn’t a huge issue. The fly is color coded too.
The fly hugs the ground and is made from a polyester that doesn’t stretch or sag when wet. That means less cinching tight and no waking up with the water weeping through onto the tent. The central truss pushes the fly over the entrance to provide cover for climbing in and out. And the 30 Denier floor is leakproof—after a long night of rain, a small river flowing under it never entered the tent.
Pockets are everywhere on this tent, including one for a headlamp. Drop it in and the fabric diffuses the light to all corners. The two doors are easy to use and large, as are the two vestibules.
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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