Marmot Limestone 8 Review
Our Analysis and Test Results
The Limestone 8 is among the best of the best camping tents in our lineup, and rightfully so. This tent boasts an impressive 130-square-foot sleeping area that can quickly turn into two rooms with a removable room separator. The high-quality construction, paired with a "No-See-Um" full mesh top, thick 14.5mm DAC DA17 aluminum poles, and a 68D PU coated polyester fly, mean this tent is built tough. Overall, the Limestone 8 is a great choice when space and quality are your primary needs.
Space and Comfort
This tent ranks among the best in this category thanks to its large footprint, 22 pockets, dual doors, and great height. This is the largest tent in our lineup at 130 sq ft of floor area — enough room to fit a family of six plus a few furry friends. Space in the Limestone 8 shouldn't ever be an issue.
For a tent this size, we would have liked to have a bit more room in the vestibules. Measuring in at only 32 square feet total, cooking in a storm will be tight. But thanks to the optional awning feature, if it is just a drizzle, you should still be well covered.
Not only are there a plethora of pockets on this tent, but they are also well designed and well-positioned. Dual floor pockets in six locations, large ceiling pockets, and plenty of hooks and headlamp storage make organizing phones, lights, socks, and dog treats a breeze.
The Limestone is also at the top of the pack when it comes to height and standing room. With a max height of 6' 5" and pre-bent poles that help keep the walls vertical, feel free to practice yoga; you will have the room to do it in this tent. The additional storage or sleeping room is slightly shorter than the main room but plenty tall enough for kids and most adults to stand in. A great feature, and being removable is a big plus.
The entire back of the tent is a white translucent shade, while the roof and front are all mesh. When positioned properly at your campsite, this clever design allows for both privacy and great viewing.
The Limestone 8 is a dome-style design, giving it a slightly wider stance at the bottom for better wind and rain deflection. Despite its large stature, the tent performed well in our wind and rain tests. The poles are thick aluminum and snap together with ease, and the same high-quality materials can be found in the included stakes and guylines. Of note: the poles are pre-bend constructed, so yes, they are supposed to look like that and weren't damaged in shipping.
The main fly easily connects to the tent with quick clips and can be further supported with the included, already attached, and ready-to-use sliding guylines. These sliding guylines are an awesome feature allowing for two points of contact on the tent while only needing one stake in the ground. This also allows for more movement in the wind without losing tightness.
Rain rolls off the 68D PU coated polyester fly and is nicely vented thanks to four top vents and an extra zippered vent at the floor of the main area to help with airflow. The guylines also feature easy lockers for snugging up the lines quickly and easily.
You can enjoy some added shade when the rain stops and the sun comes out, thanks to the awning-ready vestibule door. You will, however, need to bring your own poles as they are not included.
Ease of Use
This tent took two people 11 mins and 6 seconds to go from bag to fully pitched, staked, and guy-lined. While much longer than many of the other tents in our lineup, this is to be expected for an 8-person tent.
Consistent with nearly every other Marmot tent we have tested, the poles are buttery smooth to connect, the clips snap with ease, and the rainfly glides over the tent intuitively. Add to that color-coded poles and clips and easy to press in stakes, and you have a hassle-free pitch. About the only struggle we had erecting this tent was debating whether the top two gray poles went over the main poles or under. In case you're wondering, they go under.
Teardown is as smooth as the setup. Whoever manufactures Marmots poles should get a bonus. They slide right out of the tent guides and easily fold back up into their included pole bag. Likewise, the clips easily snap off, and as long as you are not a totally lazy tent roller, everything fits back into the bag nicely. And thanks to the breathable fabric, you are not left with an air bubble at the end of the roll as you are with some cheaper tents. When all is said and done, the Limestone 8 weighs in at 21 pounds 3 ounces, but that is the price you pay for an eight-person tent like this one.
This category is all about how well people, furry friends, and the baggage they bring fair with the tent. How does the Limestone 8 stack up? Pretty darn well. It not only gets the family-approved sticker, it gets the extra-large, bring-a-friend sticker too.
A full-sized air mattress, two dog beds, and all the gear easily fit in the main room, while two single pads and some extra bags fit in the spare room. This is a huge tent. And not only is it roomy, but it features 22 pockets and loads of stash space for just about anything you had in your pockets or pack.
Should the entire family be stuck in this tent during a storm, you can do some light cooking in the vestibule, but it will be tight. There is, however, an extra door for the kid's room, a nice touch should anyone have to use the restroom at night.
Quality is synonymous with Marmot in our experience. The Limestone (both the four and the eight-person) scored among the best in this category for many of the same reasons already mentioned.
From the stakes to the mesh, zippers to the seam-sealed floor, poles to pockets, it is hard to find a reason to ding the Limestone on quality. One could argue the floor pockets use a cheaper, stiffer material. But any way you look at it, this tent is well made.
Should You Buy the Marmot Limestone 8?
The Limestone 8 has all the room, great materials, and a well-thought-out feature set. It is both tall and wide, and the pre-curved poles give this tent an open feeling. But these awesome traits do come at a cost. This tent is one of the highest-priced tents in our lineup, but it is also one of the biggest. If you are looking for an extra-large, higher-end tent and are willing to pay for it, then don't hesitate to go all-in here; you will not regret it.
What Other Camping Tents Should You Consider?
If you're looking to sprawl out and have a high-quality camping experience, you should seriously consider the Marmot Limestone 8. However, if you are willing to trade a little sleeping space (and a little less cash) for a much larger vestibule area, then consider our Editors' Choice, The North Face Wawona 6. On the other hand, if you are on a tight budget but still want a larger tent, the REI Co-op Skyward 4 is our choice for overall value.
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