How much do tents weigh?
Tents vary in different weight and sizes. We can’t just give tents one set weight, but we can find the average weight per each size.
First, we have to look at the different types of tent weight; the Packed Weight vs Trail Weight. Then we will then be analyzing 99 tents.. Within these 99 there will be several examples of different sized tents, stating their individual weight along with an average weight based on each tent size, 1 person, 2 person, 3 person, etc.
In short words, a camping tent should weigh anywhere from 1.91lbs to 3.47lbs per individual person. When car camping, “per person” weight is not much a concern when compared to backpacking. Car camping tents range from 15lbs all the way up to 50lbs. Backpacking tents can range anywhere from 2.44lbs to 10lbs. When a backpacking tent begins to overpass a 4lbs per person weight it can become a weight problem. Carrying more weight as a backpacker makes the complete camping experience more difficult.
Packed Weight and Trail Weight
When looking at how much a tent actually weighs you have to keep in mind that there are 2 types of weights measured by tent manufacturers, which are the packed weight and the trail weight.
- Packed Weight, also known as Total Weight, refers to everything included in the tent package right when it is purchased. What is important to notice is that packed weight can vary depending on how much the tent package includes. The packed weight will be heavier than the trail weight.
It can include: the tents main body, poles, footprint, rain-fly, tent pegs, stakes, carry bag, etc
- Trail Weight, also known as minimum weight, refers to the key essentials you need to set up the tent. Many tent campers like to strap the tent on their backpacks and head off into the wild, which is known as backpacking. They prefer the lightest load for the easiest and less painful experience. The trail weight will be lighter than the packed weight.
It will include: the tents main body, rain-fly, and poles
How the list works?
The list will be measured in trail weight when placed under a 4 person tent, anything 6 person and above will be measured in packed weight. The reason for this is that smaller groups are more likely to backpack and prefer to be as light as can be. When camping in a 6 person tent and up, the weight starts to become heavier and heavier, and eventually, they are not backpack-able tents. They are perfect for setting up at the campground, after taking them out of your vehicle.
The categories are divided up into each “per person” tent size and will be averaged out in each category. All the averages will be added to a total tent weight average at the end.
The tents chosen to be analyzed are highly purchased in the tent world.
Tent Weight List
One Person Tents
|ALPS Mountaineering Lynx 1-Person Tent||3.5lbs|
|REI Quarter Dome 1 Tent||2.44lbs|
|REI Co-op Passage 1 Tent||3.39lbs|
|Kelty Gunnison 1 Tent||3.88lbs|
|TETON Sports Mountain Ultra Tent||3.3lbs|
|Marmot Eos 1 Tent||2.08lbs|
|Luxe Tempo Single 1 Person Tent||3.3lbs|
|ALPS Mountaineering Zephyr 1-Person Tent||3.63lbs|
|Luxe Tempo 1 Person Tent||3.3lbs|
|MSR Hubba NX Solo 1-Person Tent||2.44lbs|
|AVERAGE||31.26 / 10 = 3.126lbs|
The average weight of a 1 person tent is about 3lbs. Which is extremely light, and super easy for someone to take out on a backpacking trip alone.
Two Person Tents
|Coleman Sundome 2 Person Tent||7.19lbs|
|REI Co-op Half Dome 2 Plus Tent||4.88lbs|
|REI Co-op Passage 2 Tent||4.81lbs|
|CCTRO 2 Person Camping Tent||4lbs|
|ALPS Mountaineering Zephyr 2-Person Tent||4.69lbs|
|Nemo Dagger 2P Tent||3.31lbs|
|ALPS Mountaineering Lynx 2-Person Tent||5.25lbs|
|MSR Hubba Hubba NX 2-Person Tent||3.44lbs|
|Winterial 2 Person Tent||4.9lbs|
|Kelty 2 Person Venture Tent||4.5lbs|
|Average||46.97 / 10 = 4.697lbs|
The average weight of a 2 person tent is about 4.5lbs. When going on camping trip and you want to carry a 2 person tent, it can easily be split up in two. Each person can split the gear, only having to carry 2.35lbs each! That is very light.
Three Person Tents
|Coleman Sundome 3 Person Tent||8.7lbs|
|Big Agnes Copper Spur HV UL 3 Tent||3.44lbs|
|ALPS Mountaineering Meramac 3-Person Tent||9lbs|
|REI Quarter Dome 3 Tent||4.06lbs|
|ALPS Mountaineering Zephyr 3-Person Tent||5.31lbs|
|Marmot Limelight 3P Tent||6.03lbs|
|Winterial 3 Person Tent||4.1lbs|
|MSR Elixir 3 Tent||4.63lbs|
|Marmot Tungsten 3P Tent||5.84lbs|
|Kelty Gunnison 3 Tent||6.13lbs|
|Average||57.24 / 10 = 5.724lbs|
The average weight for a 3 person tent is about 6lbs. When splitting up the gear equally with 3 people, each individual will carry 1.91lbs. This is considered super light and great for backpacking.
Four Person Tents
|Coleman Sundome 4 Person Tent||10.2lbs|
|Marmot Limestone 4P Tent||10.6lbs|
|Kelty Discovery 4 Tent||9.06lbs|
|MSR Papa Hubba NX 4-Person Tent||5.94lbs|
|ALPS Mountaineering Lynx 4 Person Tent||7.94lbs|
|Kelty Salida 4 Tent||6.63lbs|
|TETON Sports Mountain Ultra Tent 4 man||7.8lbs|
|Big Agnes Frying Pan SL3 Tent||5.06lbs|
|The North Face Talus 4 Tent||6.69lbs|
|REI Co-op Base Camp 4 Tent||14.4lbs|
|Average||84.32 / 10 = 8.432lbs|
The average weight for a 4 person tent is about 8.5lbs. If splitting up the gear equally with 4 people, each individual will carry 2.11lbs. We are starting to get into some heavier tents, but with a low individual carry weight it still isn’t a problem.
Six Person Tents
|Coleman Sundome 6 Person Tent||16.6lbs|
|REI Co-op Base Camp 6 Tent||20.8lbs|
|Kelty Discovery 6 Tent||15.3lbs|
|Timber Ridge 6 Person Family Camping Tent||16.5lbs|
|Caddis Rapid 6 Tent||25.5lbs|
|Coleman 6-Person Instant Cabin||24.91lbs|
|The North Face Northstar 6 Tent||22.2lbs|
|Wenzel Evergreen Tent – 6 Person||17.86lbs|
|Big Agnes Flying Diamond 6 Tent||20.4lbs|
|Columbia Sportswear Ashland 6 Person Tent||16.5lbs|
|Average||196.57 / 10 = 19.657lbs|
The average weight for a 6 person tent is about 20lbs. In most camping cases you will be taking your 6 person tent in a car, and driving into your campsite. However, if splitting up into a group of 6, each person will carry around 3.28lbs. It would be pretty easy to carry per person, but the tent can only split up into so many pieces.
Eight Person Tents
|Coleman Montana 8-Person Tent||24.5lbs|
|Marmot Limestone 8P Tent||22.4lbs|
|Wenzel 8 Person Klondike Tent||27.3lbs|
|Big Agnes Flying Diamond 8 Tent||23.8lbs|
|Kelty Trail Ridge 8 Tent||17.7lbs|
|NEMO Wagontop 8P Tent||30.6lbs|
|REI Co-op Kingdom 8 Tent||22.2lbs|
|EXIO 8-Person Compact Backcountry Tent||15.9lbs|
|Timber Ridge 8 Person Tent||19.36lbs|
|Coleman Evanston Screened 8 Person Tent||26.4lbs|
|Average||230.16 / 10 = 23.016lbs|
The average weight for an 8 person tent is about 23lbs. The tents keep getting heavier when increasing “per person” size. If you wanted an 8 person tent and had 8 people, splitting the weight would be 2.88lbs each. Which we know is fairly low, except tents only split in a certain amount if pieces.
Nine Person Tents
|CORE 9 Person Extended Dome Tent||20lbs|
|CORE 9 Person Instant Cabin Tent||35.1lbs|
|Coleman Prairie Breeze 9-Person Cabin Tent||35lbs|
|Semoo Water Resistant 9-Person Tent||27lbs|
|Wenzel Kodiak 9 Person Tent||35.85lbs|
|Ozark Trail 9-Person Instant Cabin Tent||30.8lbs|
|Wenzel Great Basin Tent – 9 Person||24lbs|
|World Famous Sports 9-Person Camping Tent||22lbs|
|Wenzel Grandview Tent – 9 Person||18lbs|
|Ozark Trail Weatherbuster Dome Tent||23.1lbs|
|Average||270.85 / 10 = 27.085lbs|
The average weight for a 9 person tent is about 27lbs. When camping in a 9 person tent, its hard to pack it up to take on a trek in the wilderness. If somehow you could split up the gear between 9 people, each person could take 3.01lbs.
Ten Person Tents
|CORE 10 Person Straight Wall Cabin Tent||35.5lbs|
|Mountain Trails Grand Pass 10 Person Tent||21.1lbs|
|Ozark Trail 10-Person Family Tent||27.3lbs|
|Coleman WeatherMaster 10 Person Tent||37lbs|
|Wenzel Great Basin Tent||26.6lbs|
|Wenzel Timber Ridge Tent – 10 Person||32.4lbs|
|10 Person Instant Double Villa Cabin Tent||45.6lbs|
|Columbia Sportswear 10-Man Fall River Dome Tent||38lbs|
|Arizona GT 10 Person Camping Tent||26.46lbs|
|Tahoe Gear Olympia 10-Person||44.5lbs|
|Average||334.46 / 10 = 33.446lbs|
The average weight for a 10 person tent is about 33lbs. Which is pretty heavy and you won’t enjoy carrying that alone. If split between 10 people, the individual carrying weight would be 3.34lbs. But we know the tent will not split up that much.
Twelve Person Tents
|CORE 12 Person Instant Cabin Tent||52.5lbs|
|Ozark Trail 12-Person 3 Room||55.23lbs|
|NTK Super Arizona GT up to 12 Person||42lbs|
|Tahoe Gear Prescott 12 Person Tent||31lbs|
|Tahoe Gear Gateway 12-Person Deluxe Tent||39.5lbs|
|Newdora 12 People Straight Wall Cabin Tent||37.3lbs|
|Eureka Copper Canyon 12 Person Tent||38lbs|
|Browning Camping Big Horn Family/Hunting Tent||34.7lbs|
|Tahoe Gear Coronado 12 Person Dome||32lbs|
|Ozark Dark Rest Instant Cabin Tent 12||54lbs|
|Average||416.23 / 10 = 41.623lbs|
The average weight of a 12 person tent is about 42lbs. That is a heavy tent.. not something that can easily be tossed in a backpack. If split up into 12 people, each individuals carrying weight would be 3.47lbs.
Fourteen, Fifteen, and Sixteen Person Tents
|Ozark Trail Base Camp 14-Person Cabin Tent||45lbs|
|Tahoe Gear Glacier 14 Person||41.8lbs|
|Tahoe Gear Manitoba 14-Person Tent||38.1lbs|
|Ozark Trail 14 Person Spring Lodge Cabin||44.95lbs|
|Ozark Trail Family Sized 14-Person Tent||34.2lbs|
|Campvalley 14-Person Instant Cabin Tent||37.09lbs|
Ozark Trail 15 Person 3 Room Instant Cabin Tent
|Tahoe Gear Ozark 16 Person Large Family Cabin Tent||47.3lbs|
|Tahoe Gear Ozark 16-Person Tent||46.2lbs|
|Average||393.64 / 9 = 43.74lbs|
Larger tents start to become extremely heavy. The average weight of a 14, 15, 16 person tent is about 44lbs. A tent at this size should not be used backpacking. It will be used for large groups for a possible lengthy stay.
The total average weight of a tent is 21.056lbs. This number comes from adding each individual “per person” tent average to calculate an overall average tent weight. At 21lbs, this may seem like a heavy tent, however since we calculated up to a 16 person tent we raise the total weight average. Tents range from about 2lbs, all the way up to 60lbs.
What tent size is for you?
It all depends on the number of campers that are staying in the tent, and which type of camping you are doing. The two main types of camping are backpack camping and campground camping. Let’s find out how to choose the right tent.
When backpacking, tents are meant to be light and this is why reduce tent weight into trail weight. The reason for this is that you are actually carrying your tent through it all. Think about it, going on a hike you aren’t carrying the big boxed cooler for lunch are you? Exactly.. It is very similar for backpacking. When backpacking you are packing up a bag to be as lightweight as possible, while still having the key essentials to remain safe.
When backpacking smaller and lighter tents are the best pick. If heading off in larger groups it is better to split up into multiple tents sized from 1 person to 4 person. Having multiple tents makes it easier for packing and carrying. A tent can only be split up into so many pieces, the poles, tent body, and the rain-fly. The average individual carry weight “per person“ through our analysis for 1-4 person tents is 2.374lbs, try aiming for that weight. If it is heavier, make sure you are capable of carrying the extra weight or try considering something lighter.
To get your carry weight average take the tent weight and divide it by the number of campers.
When packing up for the campground it is a completely different concept. Weight is not much of a concern, it is really only about the size. Firstly, you just want to make sure there is enough room for everyone. Having enough individual space inside makes a camping trip much better. The reason weight does not truly matter for a campground tent is because you are packing the tent in your vehicle. Just have enough space in the car and you’re set. You are not worrying about any long treks to your destination, so pack any tent you like and enjoy your trip.
The only time you’ll have to worry about tent weight and size for the campground is if you are traveling on a motorcycle. Tent size must be judged accordingly, make sure it is strapped on well and not too heavy for you. Be smart and safe.
Finishing up, the weight of a tent is much more important when backpacking. When the weight is actually carried by the person, this is when we have to make decisions. We have learned that tents come in all sorts of shapes, sizes, and weights. Make sure that the tent is not to heavy for you or too heavy for anyone else in the group.
Also, a tent can be measured in more than one type of weight, the packed weight, and the trail weight. As we head off in the trails backpacking, we need to be light, whereas going off to the campground we can pack it all. The two types of weights just differentiate the essentials of the tent from the entire purchased package.
Finally, this analysis is to help people get an understanding of how much a tent should weigh. We analyzed popular tents to make it as realistic as possible.
If your tent isn’t on our list feel free to comment its weight below. Also if any information seems to be slightly off let us know!