Review: MSR Hubba Hubba Tent

Most “three-season” tents clearly weren’t designed or tested in Montana. At face-value, three-seasons puts you well into October and November. That can mean multiple feet of snow in the mountains… the perfect testing grounds for the MSR Hubba Hubba 2-Person Backpacking Tent. On a 7-day backcountry hunting excursion, I put this tent through the wringer. Overall it was sturdy, spacious, and light, with large vestibules for ample gear storage. Here’s a closer look at what I liked.

Set-up of this two-person tent was a breeze. In a matter of minutes, my tent-mate and I had this roomy shelter put together, staked out, and tied down—the latter of which was easy with numerous webbing lash-points on the rainfly. For a tent this light (3 lbs., 4 oz.), it felt remarkably sturdy with its carbon-composite poles and 20D ripstop fabric. Not to mention, the seams come factory-taped, making it fully waterproof right out of the bag.

The tent performed great in milder conditions the first couple of nights, staying warm and dry with no condensation issues. Then the snow began to fall, confining our hunting party to the recesses of the tent to play cards and drink whiskey. With 29 square feet of internal area and a 40-inch ceiling, there was plenty of room for three people to stretch out, hang out, and weather the storm. Two large vestibules left plenty of room to shove gear outside, still out of the weather.

Next morning, the tent was snow-loaded but still standing strong. Layering up with a down coat and thick gloves, I encountered the only downside of the tent: the tiny zippers. While fine to operate with bare hands, they’re nearly impossible to grip with gloves on. For a “three-season” tent, that seems like a design issue, but the shoulder seasons in Montana are also far more extreme than just about any other state in the US.

Overall, I wouldn’t hesitate to take this tent backpacking or car camping in the summer months or early fall (it’s light enough I would definitely haul it on solo trips, too). With proper care, the Hubba Hubba 2 will fit the average weekend backpacker's needs for the entirety of the summer season, even on those colder, windier nights. And though the tent stood up to some extreme weather on a hunting trip, it clearly wasn’t designed for cold, wintry conditions. But really, what “three-season” tent is?