15 Best Kelty Tents to Buy Online [Reviewed]

Kelty tents have pretty much been around since the establishment of the company, back in 1952. Plenty of other outdoor gear are also part of their inventory, including backpacks, camp sleeping bags, shelters, tarps, and camping chairs.

In terms of a brand, they describe themselves as spontaneous, adventurous, and inspiring. They seem like a playful brand that has a true passion for the outdoors, so we want to see whether that translates to their tents.

Not only that, but there are just so many tents to choose from. Some Kelty 1 person and 2 person tents are hugely popular with backpackers and hikers. Kelty 4 person tents are favorites of couples and families. We’ve also seen some Kelty 6 person tents with interesting and different designs.

Most Versatile Model
Kelty Night Owl Backpacking and Camping Tent (2019 - updated version of Trail Ridge tent) - Lightweight Design plus Oversized doors with spacious interior
Most Durable Model
Kelty Grand Mesa 4 Backpacking 4 Person Tent
Most Spacious Model
Kelty Tallboy Camping Tent - 6 Person
Kelty Night Owl Backpacking and Camping Tent (2019 - updated version of Trail Ridge tent) - Lightweight Design plus Oversized doors with spacious interior
Kelty Grand Mesa 4 Backpacking 4 Person Tent
Kelty Tallboy Camping Tent - 6 Person
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Most Versatile Model
Kelty Night Owl Backpacking and Camping Tent (2019 - updated version of Trail Ridge tent) - Lightweight Design plus Oversized doors with spacious interior
Kelty Night Owl Backpacking and Camping Tent (2019 - updated version of Trail Ridge tent) - Lightweight Design plus Oversized doors with spacious interior
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Most Durable Model
Kelty Grand Mesa 4 Backpacking 4 Person Tent
Kelty Grand Mesa 4 Backpacking 4 Person Tent
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Most Spacious Model
Kelty Tallboy Camping Tent - 6 Person
Kelty Tallboy Camping Tent - 6 Person

With so many tent model lines, choosing between them also comes with the challenge of sifting through their best uses – we want to help you differentiate which ones are best for things like family camping, kayak camping, remote camping, and so on.

So, take a seat, grab some snacks, and get stuck into our comprehensive review of the best Kelty tents. From the Kelty Salida to the Kelty Night Owl, we’ve handpicked the best and we’re going all in.

1. Kelty Night Owl Tent

Kelty Night Owl Tent

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Ideal For: Backpacking, Family Camping, Kayak/Canoe Camping, Bike/Motorcycle Camping

Sizes Available: 2p, 3p, 4p

Weight: (2p) 5.6lbs, (3p) 6.3lbs, (4p) 9.1lbs

Camping can get a little unpredictable (which is half the fun of it, anyway), and sometimes we lose track of when the sun goes down. That’s where the Kelty Night Owl comes in – it’s specifically designed to make set-up highly visible in dark environments. It’s got several high-vis spots around the canopy, and the rainfly is brightly illuminated with a grey and blue high-vis coating.   

The Stargazing Fly is in full swing here, as well as the use of color-coding for the corner webbing when applying the fly. Each size has a similar dome shape, but with an extended floor plan that increases leg-stretching room.

Night lamp pockets diffuse light for late-night reading sessions or when you need to organize things hands-free. Almost all of the walls are mesh except for minimal 68D polyester paneling, which is actually part of the inner bathtub floors.

Features:

  • Robust Aluminum 2-Pole Framework
  • Stargazing Fly with High-Vis Design for Late-Night Set Ups
  • Shark Mouth Carry Bag for Effortless & Quick Packing

Popular Questions:

Why is the 4p so much heavier than the 3p?

The 4p jumps in weight by a little less than 3lbs due to the overall floor area of the 4p. It is significantly larger, in fact, by around 10sq feet more. It is also taller by 19in. With a wider floor area and taller peak height, there are more material used and longer pole diameters (9-9.5mm for the 3p and 13mm for the 4p). This all contributes to a heavier total weight.

Could I use it in cold weather?

Since there is quite a bit of mesh, we don’t recommend using this line for 4-season camping. It won’t retain as much body heat than if you were to use a 4-season-specific tent. What’s more, the framework wouldn’t hold up against snow.

 

2. Kelty Grand Mesa Tent

Kelty Grand Mesa Tent

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Ideal For: Backpacking, Hiking, Remote Camping, Kayak/Canoe Camping, Bike/Motorcycle Camping

Sizes Available: 2p, 4p

Weight: (2p) 4.1lbs, (4p) 6.13lbs

The Kelty Grand Mesa has been updated and is ready to go for your next backpacking venture. We should note, though, that the 2p is suitable to carry on your back, but the 4p should be shared between two, three or four people since there are heavier than the average backpacking tent.

Now, when we say it’s been updated, there was an older version of this line. It used to have less mesh and different vestibule designs – you can see that in the 6p version, which has now been discontinued by the manufacturer. A 3p size is available in one of the older versions. The rest of the sizes share all the same features and design, just different capacities.

Featuring just two poles, set up is seamless. Hug-clips are attached in certain places to stretch out the corners to maximize space. A single D-door gives a wide area to get in and out, and is covered by a vestibule from the fly that can be used for storage.   

Note: For more info on all the sizes and features available, check out our Grand Mesa Tent Review

Key Features:

  • Durable 68D Polyester & Canopy Plus Thick 75D Floor
  • Hard-Wearing DAC Pressfit Poles Enhance Stability
  • Effortless Set Up with Color-Coded Poles

Popular Questions:

Is there any way to improve ventilation?

Since there are minimal vents on the fly, there are definitely alternatives that allow a good amount of airflow to get inside the tent when it’s covered. First you’ve got the vestibule area, which sits just above the ground and acts like a large vent. Then, you can bring extra guy lines along to pull out the side and back points to keep the fly further away from the inner canopy. This creates better airflow.

How does it hold up in rain and storms?

This is a double-walled tent, which means you can pitch it with or without the fly since it is thicker than average. It also means there is more leakage protection, as the materials are thicker and more resistant to water. The floor has a waterproof rating of 1800mm, so overall we’d recommend using these tents in light to medium rainfall.

 

3. Kelty Tallboy Tent

Kelty Tallboy Tent

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Ideal For: Summer Camping, Family Camping, RV Camping, Car Camping

Sizes Available: 4p, 6p

Weight: (4p) 9.14lbs, (6p) 12.15lbs

Equipped with their classic X-pole design, the Kelty Tallboy pretty much says it all in the name. It’s made for campers who want that extra headspace to move freely – basically there’s no more lying down to get your pants on or crouching your neck when walking around.

A taller tent does mean a little less wind resistance, though, so it’s for that reason we think it’s ideal for summer camping in mild weather. The rainfly is also half-coverage, so again, it’s designed for mild conditions, like light winds and rain. We like how you can close the mesh window using an interior panel, which heightens leakage protection.

With such a tall tent, we appreciate that they’ve used fiberglass poles to increase wind resistance as much as possible.

Features:

  • Open-Plan Dome Interior with Maximum Headroom
  • Protective Canopy & Closable Mesh Window
  • Robust & Compact Telescopic Fiberglass Poles

Popular Questions:

Is it too big to set up and take down by myself?

The Tallboy line does have a streamlined set up, but since they are quite tall, we suggest assembling them with a buddy to make things go smoother and faster. The free duffel bag it comes with also helps with the process – it’s got a large opening and long shoulder strap for hassle-free transport.

 

4. Kelty All Inn Tent

Kelty All Inn Tent

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Ideal For: Backpacking/Hiking, Remote Camping, Kayak/Canoe Camping, Bike/Motorcycle Camping, Summer Camping

Sizes Available: 2p, 3p

Weight: (2p) 3.9lbs, (3p) 4.9lbs

The Kelty All Inn line blends comfort and practicality without creating unnecessary bulk or weight – an ideal combo when you’re backcountry camping. It has such an interesting design that looks somewhat like a tunnel tent, but isn’t quite that shape. There is one front vertical wall, a dome-like center shape, and an outward leaning rear wall for maximum usable room.

For small-capacity tents, we’re very pleased with the amount of doors. The 2p has two doors and the 3p has three, which makes entry and exit carefree and fast.

Above the door is the Genius Visor, which is a venting system that reduces condensation while keeping you protected from rain and winds. On the back wall is another vent, which has a lovely cross breeze when the mesh window on the other side is opened.

Features:

  • Double Vents for Increased Air Circulation
  • Front Vertical Wall & Triple Ridge Poles for Optimized Space
  • Sturdy & Lightweight Aluminum Framework

 

5. Kelty Late Start Tent

Kelty Late Start Tent

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Ideal For: Backpacking/Hiking, Kayak/Canoe Camping, Bike/Motorcycle Camping, Remote/Backcountry Camping

Sizes Available: 1p, 2p, 4p

Weight: (1p) 3.5lbs, (2p) 4lbs, (4p) 6.4lbs

“Adulting is hard…setting up your tent shouldn’t be” – this is the beginning statement that Kelty themselves use when describing the Late Start tent line. These tents are designed to set up and disassemble lightning fast, which is perfect for those times where the weather is starting to get rough, night time has snuck up on you, or you’ve woken up late and need to get going ASAP.

The unique part about this line is the pole sleeve design which is called their Quick Corners – the sleeves are very short and are located right near the ground. This makes inserting the poles extremely simple and fast, as you don’t need to feed them through long sleeves.

Then, there are clips to connect the mesh to the poles, and color-coded buckles to fit the fly. Everything has been specially created to make assembly as speedy and straightforward as possible.

Features:

  • Pre-Bent Poles, Short Sleeves & Clips Make for Rapid Set Up
  • High-Vis Illuminated Points Allow Assembly at Night
  • Pre-Bent Poles Enhance Spaciousness

Popular Questions:

What kind of weather is it suitable for?

This line is made from 68D polyester all around, has a waterproof rating of 1800mm, a full-coverage fly, and low-profile dome shape. Considering all these aspects, this line is ideal for medium winds and rainfall. It can also work well in summer, because the inner canopy is fully mesh.

What is the pack size?

The pack size for each capacity is as follows:

  • (1p) 15” x 7” x 7”
  • (2p) 17” x 7” x 7”
  • (4p) 18.75” x 7.5” x 7.5”

Also, it’s worth noting that the carry pouch has a shark mouth opening, which makes stuffing the tent an absolute breeze as you don’t need to push it through a tiny opening.

 

6. Kelty Sequoia Tent

Kelty Sequoia Tent

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Ideal For: Summer Camping, Family Camping, RV Camping, Car Camping

Sizes Available: 4p, 6p

Weight: (4p) 19.8lbs, (6p) 22.7lbs

The Kelty Sequoia is a towering tent line with a cabin-dome-tunnel hybrid design. Yep, it pretty much combines all three shapes to create a unique structure that feels extra roomy and livable inside. The 4p has 60sq feet of floor area with 35sq feet of vestibule space, and the 6p has 87sq feet plus 42sq ft. of vestibule space.

The two main differences between this model line and the Tallboy are that this line has a full-coverage fly and is much heavier. The Tallboy is perfect for casual trips, while the Sequoia is suited to those who want flexibility in camp locations and weather conditions. It’s also great for long-term trips.

Set up consists of a user-friendly clip and grommet system, which can be done by two people. With double ridge poles, the walls are extremely straight to allow camping cots to fit comfortably against them. The front door is colossal, so you won’t need to bend down when getting in or out.

Features:

  • Immense Floor Area & Vestibule Storage Space
  • Rear Adjustable Rainfly Vent Boosts Ventilation
  • Full Coverage Fly for Privacy & Protection

 

7. Kelty Salida Tent

Kelty Salida Tent

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Ideal For: Backpacking, Hiking, Remote Camping, Kayak/Canoe Camping, Bike/Motorcycle Camping

Sizes Available: 1p, 2p, 4p

Weight:  (1p) 3.6lbs, (2p) 3.14lbs, (4p) 6.1lbs

First up is this backpacking-friendly model that comes in three different capacities. If you’ve seen the Kelty Outback tent before then you might notice the similarity in designs, but we prefer the Salida as we believe it outperforms the Outback in comparison.

Suitable for 3-season use, each capacity is pretty much the same except for an obvious difference in size. All of them have interior storage, bathtub flooring, a freestanding structure, D-door, a single vestibule, and the same hard-wearing materials.

Set up is straightforward and speedy for each size, with an equally fast take-down. 2 poles are all you need for the structure, and we love how they collapse in sections for a compact pack size. 360° mesh panels offer high breathability and a great view. A full-coverage rainfly with 100% taped seams has got you covered from sudden downpours.

Note: For a full analysis of all this tent has to offer, check out our Kelty Salida Tent Review on our dedicated page. 

Features:

  • 68D Polyester Walls & 68D Nylon Flooring w/ 1800mm Waterproof Rating
  • Cube Carry Bag Streamlines Storage
  • Innovative Hub Clips Make Assembly a Breeze

Popular Questions:

Does it come with a footprint?

No, this particular model does not come with any kind of footprint. You can use a regular tarp, or purchase a specially designed footprint from Kelty themselves. It’s recommended to use one in order to lengthen the lifespan of the tent, as it reduces the risk of holes or leaks.

Is there much cross ventilation?

You can achieve quite a bit of cross ventilation, even with the fly on. You’ll notice some additional sections on the back and sides of the rainfly that can be used to pull-out the fly from the base of the interior tent. This creates a vent, which encourages a fresh cross-breeze throughout.

Does it come with stakes?

Each size comes with low-weight stakes for backpacking and hiking, although we suggest taking more heavy-duty ones if your pack-weight allows, especially if you’ll be experiencing high winds.

 

8. Kelty Sunshade Tent

Kelty Sunshade Tent

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Ideal For: Family Camping, RV Camping, Car Camping, Picnics, Festivals, Beach Days, Backyard Events

Sizes Available: 78sq feet of Interior Space (12.6ft each side)

Weight:  12.2 lbs

Ok, this isn’t exactly a full-blown tent per se, but it is certainly just as useful. As the name suggests, this acts as a sunshade that keeps the UVs out and cool, shady comfort inside. A tripod framework comes with three poles that are equal in length for a simple set up.

This canopy comes with three panels, but you get an additional wall that is removable and can be attached to any side. This means you can adjust it to cover you for the whole day as the sun moves around. As well as sun blockage, that wall also protects from a bit of wind.

There is quite a lot of space underneath, 78sq feet to be exact, so you could probably fit four average camping chairs and a small table in the middle. Pack it all up in a shark mouth duffel bag, which makes stuffing it inside way easier than a regular opening.

Features:

  • Guyline Storage Pockets for Additional Stability
  • Detachable Side Wall for Customizable Shade
  • Tall & Roomy Interior Height of 87 inches

Popular Questions:

Can you purchase additional side walls?

No, it does not look you like you can purchase additional side walls. That being said, we don’t see that as a disadvantage – this canopy has been specifically designed so that a single added wall can protect you from the sun since it’s detachable.

Does it work in rain?

We’ve noticed that this can work in some light rain, but don’t expect it to protect you from medium to heavy downpours. It’s intended for use as a sunshade rather than a rain cover, since the walls don’t come down to the ground.

 

9. Kelty Wireless Tent

Kelty Wireless Tent

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Ideal For: Family Camping, Car Camping, RV Camping, Motorcycle Camping

Sizes Available: 2p, 4p. 6p

Weight: (2p) 6.9lbs, (4p) 11.2lbs, (6p) 16.4lbs

Made for those who want to disconnect from the outside world in an effortless way, the Kelty Wireless focuses on an uncomplicated set up and overall laid-back experience. Perfect for casual adventures, these models come with Quick Corners, hug-clips, and color-coded webbing for a seamless set up process.

On the vestibules the zippers are located close to the doors, so you won’t need to feel around when trying to get in and out. Since the roof is all mesh, you can achieve a comfortable flow of air even with the fly on. 68D polyester and 40D no-see-um mesh work together to protect you from wind, rain and bugs.

Features:

  • Two Vestibules for More Storage Space & Leftover Interior Room
  • Vents on Full-Coverage Fly Allow Airflow
  • Durable Fiberglass Hybrid Poles for Better Wind Resistance

 

10. Kelty Gunnison Tent

Kelty Gunnison Tent

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Ideal For: Backpacking, Hiking, Remote Camping, Kayak/Canoe Camping, Bike/Motorcycle Camping

Sizes Available: 1p, 2p, 3p, 4p

Weight: (1p) 5.3lbs, (2p) 6lbs, (3p) 6lbs, (4p) 6lbs

The Gunnison line is a big one – within each capacity, there were several different updates that went from .1 to .3. So there was a 1.1 version, 1.2, and 1.3, a 2.1 version, 2.2 and 2.3, and so on for the 3p and 4p. The .1, .2, and .3 versions don’t correlate to the sizes (as in, they don’t mean those tents will fit 2.2 people inside), they simply indicate the upgraded version of the original capacity.

The thing is though, these .1, .2 and .3 versions are no longer classified that way – the most recent version of the tent in all capacities is the .3 version, so they no longer title the tent “Gunnison 2.2”, “Gunnison 1.3” or “Gunnison 4.3”. The .3 design is the most recent and only design you can find.

These tents have a cool, geometric shape that is designed to optimize livable space. The 1p and 2p are a little thinner in width, while the 3p and 4p are basically dome shapes. Each one has double vestibules created by the rainfly, and one of them transforms into a canopy using trekking poles.

68D polyester is used throughout the whole line, from canopy, to floor, to fly. Two D-doors are massive for convenient entry/exit without disturbing your tent mate. We like how the fly comes all the way down to the ground for added protection against rain and cold winds.

Features:

  • Geometric Mesh Paneling for Airflow & Privacy
  • Full-Coverage Fly with Double Vestibules
  • Bonus Footprint Included

 

11. Kelty Circuit Tent

Kelty Circuit Tent

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Ideal For: Backpacking, Hiking, Remote Camping, Kayak/Canoe Camping, Bike/Motorcycle Camping

Sizes Available: 1p, 2p, 3p

Weight: (1p) 3.7lbs, (2p) 4.2lbs, (3p) 5.6lbs

The Kelty Circuit range is a simplified backpacking line built for 3-season use. There are no different shapes or design choices here, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. All three sizes are simple domes, but seem to maximize space as much as possible by stretching out the walls and featuring a massive base area.

Color-coded poles allow a speedy assembly. They ensure you get the right alignment every time. All three have a single D-shaped door, which is great for reducing the overall weight as there are fewer zippers. The 1p and 2p sizes give a little more privacy in terms of polyester coverage, but the 3p allows wider views with almost full mesh walls.

Weather resistance is still a priority with this line. 66D polyester taffeta blend makes up the floor, canopy, and fly, while the mesh is a thick 40D no-see-um. The fly almost touches the ground with impressive full-coverage, and will keep you dry and warm.

Features:

  • Effortless 2-Pole Design with Expanded Walls
  • Convenient Interior Pockets & Gear Loft
  • Robust 7000 Series Aluminum Poles Increase Wind Resistance

Popular Questions:

How portable is it?

While these aren’t ultra-lightweight models, the carry bag included with this line ensures you have more room in your gear for all the essentials, not just your tent. It is a compact stuff sack shaped like a cylinder that will slip right into your bag without taking up much space.

 

12. Kelty Acadia Tent

Kelty Acadia Tent

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Ideal For: Family Camping, Car Camping, RV Camping, Motorcycle Camping, Festival Camping, Winter Camping

Sizes Available: 2p, 4p, 6p

Weight: (2p) 6.9lbs, (4p) 11.5lbs, (6p) 13lbs

For recreational camping or festival campouts, the Kelty Acadia is a modern-looking line with simple features. Their most recent version is an upgrade from their old model – this time with neon green accents and higher polyester lining for more privacy.

Each one is reminiscent of a dome, but with a modern twist – a ridge pole at the roof enlarges the interior space for way more room than you’d expect from these capacities. At 5ft 11in the 4p is tall enough for most people to stand up in, and at 6ft 2in the 6p you won’t feel like you’re crouching at every move.

Equipped with their Stargazing Fly and a full mesh roof, it offers beautiful views. Double doors and vestibules increase the roomy feel even more.

Features:

  • Upper Ridge Pole Expands Interior Space
  • Big Double-D Doors with Jingle-Free Zippers
  • Full-Coverage Fly with Twin Vestibules for Storage

Popular Questions:

Can I set it up by myself?

Even with the largest size in this range, you can set it up by yourself since the process is so hassle-free and has a freestanding structure. There are just two poles which form an X-shape to maximize stability without adding too much to the overall weight. Continuous pole sleeves make things smoother, and hug-clips attach in seconds.

How do I attach the fly?

The seam-taped fly is extremely simple to get on and off. It attaches using side-release corner buckles, which are also highly secure. If things get particularly windy, there is added security with hook and loop sections on the underside of the fly.

 

13. Kelty Outfitter Tent

Kelty Outfitter Tent

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Ideal For: Family Camping, Car Camping, Remote Camping, Kayak/Canoe Camping, Bike/Motorcycle Camping

Sizes Available: 2p, 3p, 4p

Weight: (2p) 6.6lbs, (3p) 7.5lbs, (4p) 8.91lbs

The Kelty Outfitter is one of the most heavy-duty and durable in terms of materials when compared to the rest of the Kelty tents. (Not saying the others aren’t durable, but we’re noting that this tent has one of the thickest floors and highest waterproof ratings.) It can even be repaired onsite, which is a huge advantage when you’re camping over a long period.

Apart from a dense 75D polyester construction, the rainfly comes with taped seams and is loaded with additional guy out points. It has a waterproof rating of 1800mm, which is pretty standard for this brand, but in combination with the 3000mm rating on the floor you’re getting a high-standard of protection.

A full mesh roof works with vents on the fly to give you decent air circulation – we like how you can control airflow using the Velcro kickstands on the vents. All three capacities have double D-doors and vestibules, so you’re getting consistent features throughout the range.

Features:

  • Highly Durable 210D Nylon Floor with 3000mm Waterproof Rating
  • Rainfly with Guyline Storage Pockets for Better Organization
  • Color-Coded Poles & X-Frame Streamline Assembly

Popular Questions:

Could it work as a 4-season tent?

While this is classified as a 3-season line, we think it could perform well in colder temps. This is because the mesh is only located on the roof, and the fly is full coverage which eliminates rain and winds from seeping through. It may not work well with snow, though, since it’s not designed to withstand heavy snow loads.

 

14. Kelty Trailogic TN Tent

Kelty Trailogic TN Tent

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Ideal For: Backpacking, Hiking, Family Camping, Bike/Motorcycle Camping, Kayak/Canoe Camping

Sizes Available: 2p, 3p, 4p

Weight:  (2p) 4.13lbs, (3p) 5.8lbs, (4p) 6.15lbs

The Trailogic TN is a hit with summer campers, since it’s got such huge mesh paneling that stretches almost all the way down to the ground. This means that even with the full coverage fly on, wind can flow upwards and into the tent from the bottom for some ventilation.

Speaking of the fly, it’s got one of the most unique designs we’ve seen. It may not look like it at first glance, but we’re impressed by the cool Stargazing design that lets you watch the stars at night by rolling it down halfway. As you and your partner sleep shoulder-to-shoulder, you can gaze at the night sky, and when it starts raining or it’s time to go to sleep, you can close it up by reaching through the window – you don’t even have to get out of the tent.

Other notable features include the asymmetrical framework and innovative snap clips. The clips make set up a total cinch, and the asymmetrical poles stretch out the side walls for more headroom and overall livable space. Double D-doors make things feel even roomier, plus one is oversized so you can get in and out without bothering your camping buddy.

Features:

  • Asymmetrical Pole Structure Maximizes Space
  • Tons of Airflow with Full Mesh Roof & Walls
  • Rainfly with Dual Vestibules for Additional Storage

Popular Questions:

What materials is it made out of?

All sizes within this model range are made from the same materials. The canopy is a 14D no-see-um mesh (which means it is mosquito resistant), the floor is a thick 45D nylon, and the rainfly is a 40D coated nylon for extra protection.

How durable are the poles?

Each one uses DAC Pressfit poles, which are aluminum. DAC are a Japanese brand who have been designing tent poles since 1991. The Pressfit line are 3-season poles for winter and expedition camping, so they’re extremely strong and designed to prevent breakage.

 

15. Kelty Trail Ridge Tent

Kelty Trail Ridge Tent

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Ideal For: Family Camping, Car Camping, RV Camping

Sizes Available: 2p, 3p, 4p, 6p, 8p

Weight:  (2p) 6.3lbs, (3p) 6.5lbs, (4p) 10.14lbs, (6p) 15.1lbs, (8p) 17.11lbs

Dubbed the home away from home, this model comes in a huge range of capacities to accommodate different types of campers – from couples to families and friends; you can find the perfect size to suit your next trip.

Designed as freestanding, the set up process is straightforward for all sizes. The DAC Pressfit poles slip through the sleeves like butter. On all corners you’ll find some Connect Clips, which make it easier to secure the tips of the poles. Finally, there are the hug-clips, which literally hug the poles by clipping on in seconds.

Without the fly you get some decent privacy with a few polyester panels, but you get full coverage with the fly when you need it. We would like to see a few more vents on the fly, but it looks like you can pull out the vestibules further to create ground ventilation. The doors are a blend between teardrop and D-shape, giving a spacious entry/exit.  

Features:

  • Stargazing Fly Allows Closure From Inside Tent
  • Upper Ridge Pole Stretches Roof & Walls to Increase Spaciousness
  • Vast Mesh Roof & All-Coverage Fly

Popular Questions:

Can I use the smaller sizes for backpacking?

The 2p and 3p could possibly be used for backpacking, as their minimum trail weights are 4.15lbs and 5.12lbs respectively. While not light enough for ultralight backpackers, those weights would suit short trips.

Can it be set up by one person?

All sizes up to the 6p could definitely be set up by one person, although you may need two people for the 8p if you’re not experienced with installing larger tents. Since the assembly process is made easier through several features, it doesn’t take as long and is more user-friendly than some other models we’ve seen.

What storage options do I have?

You’ve got multiple storage options throughout the whole line. The fly creates dual vestibules at the front and back, which act as porches to keep gear out of the way of the sleeping area. Inside there are some storage pockets, including a few ambient light headlamp pockets and a gear loft.

 

How to Choose a Kelty Tent

Type – What Kind of Camper Are You?

Most of the model lines we chose on the list are backpacking tents; however there are some other designs that are made with specific uses and campers in mind.

For example, the Tallboy is made for those who love their headroom and need something extra spacious and camp in a low profile environment. The Sequoia is similar, but offers full protection for people who like camping in slightly rougher conditions. Then there’s the Night Owl, which is high-vis for all those late-night-set-up campers out there. Or the Sunshade which is perfect for casual campers.

Even with the backpacking tents, there are certain features that differentiate each one and suit different kinds of adventurers. Things like whole mesh walls, interesting rainfly designs, different door orientations, aluminum or fiberglass poles, or varied floor area.

Use – How Many Campers Will There Be?

This factor not only relates to the amount of campers, but also to how you will use the tent. Will you be backpacking? Hiking? Going on a road trip with a car or RV? Do you need something lightweight to fit on your bike?

In our review, we’ve labeled what each tent is ideal for, so that you can make an informed decision before making your purchase. For instance, you won’t need a full-coverage rainfly if the weather looks clear.

In terms of capacity, you should camp with half of the people that are suggested. So, if you’re a family of 3 or 4, a 6p or 8p tent will be much more comfortable than a 3p or 4p.

Price – How Much Are You Willing To Pay?

On a general level, Kelty tents are typically reasonably priced when you look at the materials, construction, and overall designs. Some of their 4p models are under $200, which is a steal when you compare them to some other 4p versions on the market – these Kelty designs aren’t cheap, but they aren’t all for extreme high-end campers either.

So it’s like they’ve hit the sweet spot in terms of a balance of price and good quality materials.

It all depends on your budget, the type of weather you’ll be facing while camping, and how many people are camping with you. The bigger the tent, the more expensive the price, since there is a higher volume of materials. The price will also increase when the tent is constructed to withstand rough conditions.

Weather Resistance – What Conditions Will You Be Camping In?

Speaking of rough conditions, let’s talk about weather resistance and how that will affect your choice.

A general rule to follow in relation to winds is how tall and boxy the tent is. The Tallboy and Sequoia models are super spacious, but have almost vertical walls – this means they won’t perform as well in extreme winds than if you were to use a low-profile dome, like the Outfitter. Therefore, those two would be perfect for summer or spring camping.

For autumn and winter (not snow, as none of the tents we’ve mentioned are suitable for extreme snow conditions) something with a full-coverage low-sitting fly (like the Gunnison or Trailogic) would work well to protect from rain and cold winds. Thick flooring helps prevent holes and leaks, and some models even come with a free footprint.

 

Conclusion on Kelty Tents

We’ve scoured through countless Kelty tents to bring you the best model lines on the market. We chose these models based on their broad range of uses that will suit all kinds of campers. Whether you’re a casual camper, need a tent for a festival, camp on the regular, or are a first-timer, each line on our list offers something different for everyone. After studying so many of these tents, we can tell how dedicated this brand is to quality. We love how they think about the needs of different campers, and accommodate by incorporating innovative and modern designs.

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