MSR Hubba Hubba Review
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MSR Hubba Hubba
|Price||$412.39 at Backcountry|
Compare at 4 sellers
|$374.89 at REI|
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|$540 List||$449.96 at Evo|
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$329.00 at REI
|Pros||A great deal of space at peak height, versatile fly configuration, two doors||Massive storage pockets, sturdy vestibule shape, dual-tone privacy mesh||Lightweight, high peak height, excellent storage pockets, detachable kickstand vents||Lightweight, good lateral headroom, large side doors, large overhead pocket||Spacious, affordable, included footprint|
|Cons||Poles shed splinters, small doors, challenging to set up rainfly||Comparatively narrow, expensive, difficult to get into stuff sack||Expensive, shorter length, thin rainfly||Small vestibules, tapered footprint reduces interior space||Heavy, bulky poles|
|Bottom Line||A comfortable tent for when you need a combination of light weight and weather resistance, but subpar poles are less than ideal||This tent is an exceptional balance between weight and comfort features with one of the best shapes around||With two large side doors and plenty of headroom, this lightweight tent is a great balance between comfort and weight||A comfortable, lightweight tent for up to three people, great for a weekend or a week||This inexpensive tent is spacious enough for laid-back car camping and light enough for short to moderate backpacking trips|
|Rating Categories||MSR Hubba Hubba||NEMO Dragonfly Osmo 2||SlingFin Portal 2||Big Agnes Copper Sp...||REI Co-op Half Dome...|
|Weather Resistance (25%)|
|Ease of Set-up (10%)|
|Packed Size (10%)|
|Specs||MSR Hubba Hubba||NEMO Dragonfly Osmo 2||SlingFin Portal 2||Big Agnes Copper Sp...||REI Co-op Half Dome...|
|Packaged Weight||3.25 lbs||3.29 lbs||3.18 lbs||3.88 lbs||4.82 lbs|
|Floor Area||29 sq ft||29 sq ft||27.45 sq ft||41 sq ft||35.8 sq ft|
|Packed Size (length x diameter)||19 x 4.5 in||19.5 x (5.5 x 3.5) in||14 x 5 in||21 x 6 in||20.5 x 7 in|
|Dimensions (length x width x peak height)||84 x 50 x 40 in||88 x 50/45 x 41 in||85 x 51/42 x 44 in||90 x 70 x 43 in||92 x 56 x 42 in|
|Vestibule Area (Total)||15 sq ft||10 sq ft||8.4 + 8.4 sq ft||18 sq ft||22.5 sq ft|
|Peak Height||40 in||41 in||44 in||43 in||42 in|
|Number of Doors||2||2||2||2||2|
|Number of Poles||2||1||3||1||1|
|Pole Diameter||Not provided||8.7 mm||8.7/9.3mm||8.7 mm||2 mm|
|Number of Pockets||4||4||7||5||6|
|Pole Material||Easton Syclone||DAC Featherlite||DAC Featherlite NFL, NFL||Aluminum||DAC featherlite NFL aluminum|
|Rain Fly Material||20D ripstop nylon||0D OSMO Ripstop||10D Nylon 66 Ripstop Sil||proprietary patterned random rip-stop nylon with 1200mm waterproof polyurethane coating||40-denier ripstop nylon/20-denier nylon mesh|
|Inner Tent Material||20D ripstop nylon||10D Nylon Ripstop||15D Nylon mesh||proprietary patterned random rip-stop nylon with 1200mm waterproof polyurethane coating||40-denier taffeta nylon|
|Type||Two door freestanding||Two door freestanding||Two door freestanding||Two door freestanding||Two door freestanding|
Our Analysis and Test Results
Once you have the MSR Hubba Hubba set up, it's a decent tent. It kept us comfortable and performed well overall, but it never truly managed to get us excited about using it.
The Hubba Hubba makes the most of its dimensions. It feels both longer and wider than its 84 x 50-inch interior floor space would suggest. This is due to the uniform peak height that stretches from door to door, making it pretty spacious. It is comfortable for two people to sit up simultaneously with enough head clearance along the sides and top. With that, MSR achieves some pretty special volume maximization, given that the 40-inch peak height is just about average. We found that the two side doors are easier to zip and unzip than the typical tent. However, they are comparatively small.
The Hubba Hubba comes equipped with four total pockets; two large ones at the head and foot ends that could each hold a journal and an article of clothing (like a hiking shirt), and two very tiny ones at the apex of the doors, meant for items like a headlamp, gloves or a pair of socks. We aren't sure what to make of the canopy fabric pattern. We like the high privacy panels on the sides, and the mesh opening at the top does allow for a view of the sky, but it's definitely not the same panorama that a full-mesh canopy offers.
The weather resistance of this tent is reliable. The 20D ripstop nylon fly has a little sag to it when it gets wet, but that is a feature of nylon overall. In the end, it kept us dry. We wish that the head and foot ends came with additional lines so they could be staked out away from the tent body.
In terms of wind resistance, the composite material poles are impressively flexible. Each pole segment is very rigid, even a little brittle feeling; however, the pole skeleton as a whole maintains a flexible but stable form in storms.
The Hubba Hubba weighs in at a respectable three pounds, four ounces. Given its interior space, it's an ideal weight for two people.
This tent is well crafted except for the major bummer of the poles. They are strong enough, but in our experience, they shed little bits of material. We specifically experienced the issue during setup when we ran our hands down the poles to get all of the segments to snap in place. We got three splinters before realizing we needed to keep our hands away from the ends of the pole segments. Ironically, the flexible composite material does seem less likely to snap during setup (which is, in our experience, the time when poles most commonly fail).
The 20D floor is a decent balance between sturdiness and weight. The only issue that we experienced was with the stakes. The slender needle structure meant that our efforts to drive a couple into firm ground with the assistance of a rock got them bent out of shape much faster than stakes with a more blunt-force-resistant structure, such as the shovel stake.
Ease of Set-Up
The tent is easier to set up than the average model, but the fly is a little more complicated. The Hubba Hubba has a symmetrical footprint and pole structure. If you are on your own, there is less wrestling with the poles to get them all in place; they stay in the corner grommets more easily than a tent with an A-frame or X-frame configuration.
We found the fly to be confusing. Even with the usual visual reference points (door zippers, logos, etc.), it took a little more time to fasten it down correctly. The severe angle of the door relative to the ground often had us disoriented enough that we were trying to attach a vestibule to a tent corner before we noticed it wasn't correct. That could be a real bummer if you are trying to beat the clock on a thunderstorm.
The Hubba Hubba packs down to a 19 x 4.5-inch roll, which is in line with most of the other tents in our lineup.
Should You Buy the MSR Hubba Hubba?
The MSR Hubba Hubba gets in its own way. We are pleasantly surprised by the headroom and like the two side doors for easy in and out. However, the poles and fly are problematic in a couple of ways, and a variety of minor inconveniences add up. If we had to, we would take it on short and mid-range adventures where distance is not the primary objective, and pack weight is not a significant concern. On the other hand, we would rather spend our dollars on higher-performing models.
What Other Backpacking Tents Should You Consider?
The highest-scoring tent in our review is the NEMO Dragonfly Osmo 2. Not only does it cost less, but it scores better overall and provides a higher level of comfort and ease of setup. If you think you'll be dealing with more inclement weather, the Hilleberg Anjan 2 offers a high level of weather resistance, similar to what can be found in many of the tents featured in our 4 Season Tent review.
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