The REI Arete ASL is our Best Buy winner for being the best bang-for-the-buck for 4 season tent. While it scored okay overall, we think its the best four-season model you can buy for the least money. While it will work for a variety of four-season applications, it isn't a go-anywhere, do-anything shelter as it doesn't provide the top-notch storm protection required in the world's most extreme environments. It is excellent for summer-time mountaineering on peaks like Mt. Rainier and winter camping near-and-below treeline, but it doesn't fare as well in moderate-to-strong winds as several other models in our review. However, it is reasonably lightweight, moderately spacious, and it is $200-$400 less than many similarly designed tents.
REI gave our Best Buy winner a makeover this year. The new tent is pictured above, and you can get the complete scoop on the changes below.