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April 2015 Issue
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Marmot Tungsten 2



Our Rating:

At first glance, the Tungsten 2 appears to be a standard free-standing, two-pole, single crossover dome configuration, but it catches you by surprise as you climb inside for the first time. In a word, it’s spacious – 3m² (two vestibules total: 1.38m²). Using simple design elements, it provides ample head and shoulder room, and plenty of length, all in a similar footprint to many other tents with less internal volume.

The first 300mm of each pole is pre-bent to stand vertically, effectively increasing the depth of the sleeping area. A third pole, crossing front-to-back, lifts the tent inner to create a spacious vaulted canopy. Two people sitting upright is no problem, great if you’re stuck inside in bad weather.

The inner carries significant mesh panelling, higher at the head end than at the foot to promote exceptional airflow inside the tent, and to stop breezes blowing across your face. While it’s hard to spot immediately, the tent narrows slightly to the foot end. The front vestibule is larger, while the second offers easy access and satisfactory storage for a pack and boots.

The polyester fly, its lower edges standing quite high off the ground (possibly reducing water resistance in extreme weather), is vented only on one side, but works well in conjunction with the inner’s mesh to move moisture and air. The storm flaps above the fly’s vestibule doors face away from the wind, but their shape makes it possible, if you’re not careful, to drag and drop rainwater into the sleeping area as you enter.

Without the fly, there’s a grand view of the heavens on a clear night, or a mosquito-free retreat for a day’s lounging by the river.

The floor’s waterhead rating is only 2000mm; in Kiwi rain a footprint would be recommended, but will add to the 2180g weight of the tent. But if it’s space you need, the Tungsten is a good all-round, general purpose three-season camping and backpacking tent.

– Paul King