Top 10 Best Four-Season Tents

Top 10 Best Four-Season Tents

For most of us, nothing beats camping in the quiet winter landscape; if you think it’s going to be hard, don’t! It’s not as cold as you’d think, as long as you bed down in a four-season tent. The 4-season tents are built specifically to withstand the rigors of that fourth season. They come with a sturdy construction designed to shed snow as well as insulate, stop wind, and release moisture from inside the shelter. If you’re one of those summertime only campers, who wouldn’t even try to get your gear together and go out during the blustery months, then here is a challenge for you to snap up a winter tent and give it a try!

What to Look For

Although most models are designed for winter and mountaineering use, it's important to remember that there is still a broad spectrum of tents under the "4-season" umbrella and each tent excels at something specifically.

Wall (Single or Double)

Double wall tents performed well in other seasons and therefore are the most versatile and adaptable and single wall tents generally perform poorly during warmer and more humid three season use.

Pole

o Freestanding – It’s the lightest and most compact; can be pitched in small spaces and have high static strengths for snow loading. Best for alpine climbing and high altitude mountaineering.

o Self-supporting – Best for base camping and mountaineering; many people often lump self-supporting tents with freestanding.​

o Tunnel – It performs fantastically in high winds if positioned into the wind and is great for polar explorers and ski touring. It’s the lightest type of double wall tent and has the most space for lowest weight of all types.​

Water Resistance

This basically means how well a tent can protect its inhabitants from the outside environment, whether that is snow, rain, sleet or wind.

Fabric

The fabrics range from ultralight non-waterproof windbreaking materials to super strong and relatively light silicone-coated nylon and all the way to the super beefy laminets.

Weight

A lighter and more compact tent is nearly always less versatile and comfortable for extended hangouts and is often not quite as strong in gnarlier weather.

Ventilation

Remember to keep condensation as one of the top criteria while selecting a tent as it can make your sleeping bag wet and the tent heavier with accumulated moisture.

We have picked out 10 awesome 4-season tents to make the job easy for you!

Top 10 Best Four-Season Tents


Hilleberg Jannu 2

It’s a tremendously strong and very light two-person tent. It is known for its strength, light weight & excellent snow-loading resistance. It is easy to setup & self-supporting dome tent. It has Outer tent fabric of Kerlon 1200 and the poles are 9mm thus making the tent very lightweight and giving extra stability. The dome construction with multiple pole crossing points provide snow load handling capability.

Dimensions - 93 x 57 (Floor)

Weight - 97.3 oz

Number of Doors - 1

Occupancy - 2

Pros

  • Strong sidewall
  • Resistant to snow loading
  • Great ventilation
  • Easy setup and pitches quickly from outside
  • Single entrance tent with single vestibule configuration allows for easy entrance and storage space while keeping the weight ratio very low

Cons

  • Light for winter but heavy for the other three seasons
  • A bit on the expensive side

The Hilleberg Jannu 2 tent is a total steal if you need its world-class strength and durability. It’s recommended for high altitude alpine climbing and mountaineering applications that demand the ultimate static strength. It’s great for short and long trips in less harsh environments and conditions in all seasons like the forests in winter and summer.

ALPS Mountaineering Tasmanian 2

It is a 4-season, 2-person tent and offers reliable shelter from the elements and wind-shedding stability for your year-round backpacking adventures. This tent is loaded with features. It has 7000 series aluminum poles, a full-coverage fly with two vestibules to help store your gear, additional pole on the fly (imagine the storage!) and uses extra-large #8 zippers so opening doors and vestibules are a breeze every time.

Dimensions - 10 x 10 x 30 inches

Weight - 6.5 lbs

Number of Doors - 2​

Occupancy - 2​

Pros

  • Free-standing pole system
  • Easy assembly, pole clips quickly snap over tent poles
  • Weatherproof shock cord
  • Ample storage
  • Factory sealed fly and floor seams give best weather protection

Cons

  • Setup is easy but repacking isn’t
  • Opening of the pole storage bag is rather small

The ALPS Mountaineering Tasmanian 2 provides plenty of space for you and your fellow backpacker, with nearly four feet of head space, two doors and mesh storage pockets for keys and headlamps.

Black Diamond Fitzroy

The Black Diamond Fitzroy is a strong and spacious 2-person single wall expedition tent. It’s great in the worse of weather conditions. It comes with pole-supported door awnings over zippered vents and 4 interior mesh pockets.

Dimensions - 40 x 60 x 93 inches

Weight - 6.95 lbs

Doors -2

Occupancy - 2

Pros

  • 4-pole, steep-sided design with optional vestibule
  • Double doors with internal mesh panels
  • ToddTex single-wall fabric
  • Optional ground cloth

Cons

  • Hard to set up
  • Poor ventilation
  • Heavy, bulky and slightly on the expensive side

For a single wall tent, it almost competes in its weight and level of storm worthiness as many of the double wall tents. It’s great for base camping, high altitude mountaineering and alpine climbing in burly stormy venues.

Mountain Hardwear Trango 2

It’s the best value double wall expedition dome tent. It provides solid performance and value & hence has become the top choice for many mountaineering guide services. The extra space let's you go on three-person trips too, and also make it more comfortable for all-purpose use. It has guaranteed watertight construction with fully taped fly, taped 'bathtub floor' construction, welded corners and welded guy clip anchors. Rain room tested.

Dimensions - 9 x 8 x 23 inches

Weight - 9.55 lbs

Doors - 2​

Occupancy - 2

Pros

  • Weatherproof
  • Spacious - lots of storage space
  • Big vestibules
  • Transparent windows

Cons

  • Heavy
  • Condensation at times
  • Not a fast setup

The Mountain Hardwear Trango 2 has been around since 1995 and has only gotten better as it's gotten older. The vestibule has snow flaps that hug the ground to seal out wind and spindrift, fully-welded guy-out points and zipper flaps, and waterproof zippers for extra weather protection.

Sierra Designs Convert 2

It offers solid year-round performance minus the normal trade-offs associated with any winter tent. This tent features a convertible design, unmatched ventilation and an external pitch using ultra-light materials, making it the most livable and functional 4-season tent available. With its Convert series of tents, Sierra Designs set out to develop the first true four-season tent that will function just as well in a summer environment as it would in a winter one. This resulted in a hybrid double/single wall tent. Condensation is prevented by the sides and top interior of the tent being made with a breathable canopy fabric.

Dimensions - 7 x 14 x 22 inches

Weight - 5.25 lbs​

Number of Doors - 1

Occupancy - 2​

Pros

  • Full-zip waterproof window panel
  • Breathable interior canopy fabric at sides and top
  • Freestanding
  • Large Drop Door
  • 15" Integrated Awning Poles

Cons

  • Non-Reflective Guy Lines
  • Ventilation isn’t great
  • Limited storage space

We recommend the Sierra Designs Convert 2 for high altitude alpine climbing and mountaineering. The tent in the fastpack mode (no vestibule or jakes corners) is very lightweight and compressible which makes this a true 4 season tent. For this money you will not be able to find a better truly versatile tent that is still strong in harsh 4 season conditions.

Black Diamond Firstlight

The Black Diamond Firstlight is a compact two-person, four-season tent built for the weight-conscious climbers and is based on the I-Tent’s expedition-specific design with steep walls and a simple floor shape to optimize living space and increase headroom. The tent has all seams double sewn and the stress points are reinforced for durability. It’s easy setup with two equal length DAC Featherlite poles. Ventilation is great due to the small rear window and the door being covered with no-see-um mesh

Dimensions - 42 x 48 x 82 inches

Weight - 3.31 lbs

Doors - 1​

Occupancy - 2​

Pros

  • 2 interior mesh pockets - Zippered mesh panels at rear and door for ventilation
  • Extremely lightweight and easy setup
  • Breathable fabric reduces condensation
  • Proprietary NanoShield single-wall fabric and 2000 mm floor

Cons

  • Tiny pockets
  • Not waterproof - once the fabric gets old its coating no longer sheds water well

The Black Diamond Firstlight tent is a great value and we recommend it for winter alpine climbing. It performs best in below freezing conditions, where all precipitation is frozen, and it's superlight and packs down tiny inside a backpack.

The North Face Mountain 25

The tent performs very well and offers a great value for use in even the most extreme conditions. Designed in such a way to withstand winter storms, winds, and downright bone-chilling temperatures, The North Face Mountain 25 Tent is a stout 2-Person 4-Season shelter ideal for every weather. It’s the most compact tent in the Summit Series.

Dimensions - 86 x 54 in (floor)

Weight - 7.75 lbs​

Doors - 2​

Occupancy - 2

Pros

  • Dual doors- poled front vestibule
  • Reflective guy lines
  • Glow-in-the-dark zipper pulls
  • 8 interior pockets & mesh vents

Cons

  • Heavier than most models
  • Pole sleeves aren’t quick to set up

The North Face Mountain 25 tent delivers extremely durable, high-mountain protection for 2 in a strong package. It is built to take on howling winds and the cold, wet snow so you can hunker down and make it further up the mountain the next day. We recommend it for general and high altitude mountaineering and base camping.

Mountain Hardwear EV 2

This was created by legendary mountaineer Ed Viesturs who teamed up with Mountain Hardwear. This has become a staple for serious alpine adventurers that are looking for a shelter that offers the ideal balance of strength, weight, and size. It has a good space and still weighs just over 4.5lbs, no more than a standard 3-season double-walled backpacking tent. This is better than other single wall tents as it has longer length and increased strength from a third pole.

Dimensions - 23 x 9 x 7 inches

Weight - 9.5 lbs​

Doors - 2​

Occupancy - 2

Pros

  • Lightweight, easy to setup & super strong
  • Great for tall people
  • SVX windows for a brighter interior and visibility of exterior conditions
  • DAC Featherlight NSL poles

Cons

  • Design of the vestibule entrance is less than ideal
  • Poor ventilation in calm conditions
  • Poor condensation management

The Mountain Hardwear EV 2 is a single-walled monster and designed to stand up to the worst snow, wind, and alpine storms Mother Nature dares to throw at you. This is a stellar expedition tent for bold winter pursuits, namely high altitude mountaineering.

Black Diamond Ahwahnee

The 2-person Black Diamond Ahwahnee Tent is well-ventilated and astonishingly light & will keep you and your gear protected four-seasons out of the year without the weight penalty usually associated with winter shelters. It has a low profile design that sheds both wind and weather and is great for anyone who plans to travel across multiple climate zones and elevations. It comes with a single-wall construction which eliminates the need for a separate canopy and fly, and two huge side doors deliver massive amounts of ventilation.

Dimensions - 45 x 53 x 90 inches

Weight - 9.54 lbs

Doors - 2​

Occupancy - 2

Pros

  • 3 internal aluminum poles for easy setup and 2 interior mesh pockets
  • Waterproof breathable ToddTex single-wall fabric
  • Freestanding
  • Taped seams prevent dripping water or morning dew
  • Multiple stakeout loops provide secure anchoring in windy locations

Cons

  • Slightly on the expensive & heavier side
  • Interior is tough to clean because of the Todd-Tex
  • Cross pole is hard to insert

The Black Diamond Ahwahnee is a unique single wall tent, with huge doors, lots of head room, and large awnings that allow you to ventilate as long as it’s not too windy. Along with comfort and livability, durability is Ahwahnee's best attributes. It’s a versatile year round tent for everything from summer backpacking, fall base camping, to winter mountaineering.

Hilleberg Nallo 2

The Hilleberg Nallo 2 is world-class tunnel tent; it performs well in high winds but not as well for snowloading. The Nallo has many attributes that contribute to its strength and durability- the most important is its outer tent fabric, Kerlon 1200, which is likely the third strongest woven fabric found in any tent. Ventilation is a key component of tent design and the Nallo does well at managing condensation.

Dimensions - 87 x 52 (floor)

Weight - 5 lb 1 oz

Doors - 1

Occupancy - 2

Pros

  • Outer tent fabric is Kerlon 1200 and the poles are 9mm, which make tent very lightweight and give stability to tent
  • Tunnel construction provides maximum space to weight ratio which is an ideal choice for mobile journeys
  • Separable inner and outer tent for simultaneous pitching
  • Spacious and strong for its weight

Cons

  • Zipper pulls are hard to grab with gloves and rattle in high winds

The Hilleberg Nallo 2's salient feature may be its light weight, but it is still fully able to handle all season, all weather adventures. This explains why this tent is the first choice of those needing the lightest weight tent that still offers all-season, all weather functionality- wilderness photographers, professional climbers, hunters, and other adventurers who have to carry large amounts of gear, as well as long distance hikers, who want to get more out of carrying less.

Conclusion

All packed and ready to go? You’ve got your new sleeping bag, your trusty gear, the perfect pair of hiking boots & now your humble abode! Get ready to head out on the trail for a few nights under the stars. Whether it’s a weekend getaway at the lake or a two-week trek in the Rockies, these are the tents you’ll need for your adventures this year.

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