NEMO Aurora Highrise 6 Review
Compare to Similar Products
NEMO Aurora Highrise 6
|Price||$374.89 at REI|
Compare at 4 sellers
|Check Price at Backcountry|
Compare at 3 sellers
$549.00 at REI
$420.49 at Amazon
|Pros||Huge interior, massive front door, stylish design||Spacious, great layout, durable, very family friendly, high value||Huge doors and large vestibule, lots of pockets, highly weather resistant||Quality materials, great height, perfectly sized vestibule||Tall interior, large built-in vestibule, quality materials|
|Cons||Setup is a two-person job, windows are cheap, light on pockets||Not the easiest to pitch, odd bag||Runs warm, views are a bit more restricted||Hubebd poles, single door, awkward bag||Silly rainfly, fabric isn’t super breathable, carry bag too small|
|Bottom Line||A roomy, quality tent, with big doors and a nice vestibule with some style to boot||This tent has one of the best uses of space we have ever seen, a great choice for families or campers with lots of gear||An excellent mountaineering-inspired tent that is ready for both inclement weather and summer fun||An ultra high-quality 4-person tent that makes great use of space with quality components||A simple, quality tent that has more features and room than any other at this price point|
|Rating Categories||NEMO Aurora Highrise 6||The North Face Wawo...||REI Co-op Base Camp 6||MSR Habitude 4||REI Co-op Skyward 4|
|Space and Comfort (35%)|
|Weather Resistance (25%)|
|Ease of Use (15%)|
|Family Friendliness (15%)|
|Specs||NEMO Aurora Highrise 6||The North Face Wawo...||REI Co-op Base Camp 6||MSR Habitude 4||REI Co-op Skyward 4|
|Weight||18.9 lbs||21.9 lbs||20.6 lbs||12.0 lbs||11.0 lbs|
|Max Inside Height||6' 5"||6' 4"||6' 2"||6' 1"||6' 6"|
|Floor Dimensions||8' 4" x 10'||10' x 8'||9' 2" x 9' 2"||7' 11" x 7' 11"||8' 4" x 7' 3"|
|Floor Area||83.3 sq ft||86.1 sq ft||84 sq ft||62.4 sq ft||60 sq ft|
|Windows||2||Mesh top||Mesh top||2||1|
|Number of Doors||2||1||2||1||1|
|Vestibule Area (total)||23.6 sq ft||44.7 sq ft||40 sq ft||23.5 sq ft||19.5 sq ft|
|Packed Size||26" x 9.5" x 9.5"||10" x 32"||11" x 24"||23" x 9" x 9"||9.8" x 27.5"|
|Floor Materials||150D PU Polyester||150D polyester||Polyester||DWR 68D polyester taffeta||150D Polyester|
|Main Tent Materials||68D Polyester/ No-See-Um Mesh||75D polyester||Polyester||68D polyester ripstop, DWR, PU||75D polyester|
|Rainfly Materials||Polyester||75D polyester||Polyester||68D polyester ripstop, DWR, PU||75D polyester|
|Number of Poles||4||4||5||3 hubbed||7|
|Pole Material||Aluminum||DAC MX aluminum||Aluminum||7000-series aluminum||Aluminum|
|Extras||Oversize duffel storage bag, nightlight pockets||Dual exits in vestibule, 3 pockets on back door||4-season||Porch light||Pole-repair sleeve|
Our Analysis and Test Results
As a top scorer in our tent review, the Aurora Highrise 6 is an all-around solid pick for a family looking for overall quality, value, and style. The fully open mesh top, two side windows, and enormous front door allow this tent to breathe when it's hot, and the nearly full coverage rainfly gives plenty of ventilation in the rain. This is a fairly large tent with less-than-ideal window closures, so we wouldn't recommend spending lots of windy, rainy nights in it, but an occasional bad day will be just fine. The 150D PU polyester floor is thick enough to battle dogs and kids, and the aluminum poles feel strong and ready for some wind. With a good tight roll, the tent fits comfortably back into the bag, ready for the next adventure.
Space and Comfort
With 83.3 square feet of floor, a height of 6' 5", and two vestibules, this tent can provide both space and comfort for a family of four. A twin and two singles leave plenty of space for dogs and a changing area, while the large main vestibule provides ample gear storage. The pocket situation isn't the best for a tent this size, but Nemo makes up for that with ample hanging clips and dual vestibules.
One of the best features of the Aurora Highrise 6 is the headroom. The structure allows for good stand-up and walking room, and the massive front door with a stash pocket makes the space feel even larger than it is.
We would be remiss if we didn't give a nod to the funky floor and bright blue look of this tent. While looks are not technically part of our scoring, it's worth noting that this tent is hipper than any other in our lineup, and frankly, that comforting.
Hot weather is no problem for the Highrise 6. With nearly half of the tent being No-See-Um mesh, ample bug-free airflow is a breeze — literally. Cold weather is also handled quite well, with a thick polyester fly that provides good coverage and adequate ventilation. Wind and rain are not as great, thanks to a very flappy side rainfly and some less-than-ideal window coverings. Luckily, the dome-style shape and the thick aluminum poles will keep the tent erect — you just might get a little annoyed with the noise.
The side design of this tent is great and clearly helps the interior feel large, but it comes at the expense of that flappy and loud rainfly. This can be minimized by tightening the guylines at a steep angle, but no matter what you do, you will have to deal with it.
The two side windows really are a drag on this tent's overall weather score. There is just no way to not fully block wind and cold from sneaking in because of the design. Hopefully, the Highrise 6 will get a zipper update someday soon.
The Aurora Highrise 6 comes with standard stakes and guylines that need to be assembled. Our biggest concern with weather resistance is the use of plastic rings for the rainfly. They seem like a weak point should the wind get going on a tent this tall. We'll report back with more information on this when and if we have it.
Ease of Use
Practice setting this tent up at home before you take it into the wild. Trust us, it will spare you some shame and pain. Total setup time with two people was about 11 minutes for us. The main frustrations lie in all of the poles being the same color and the rainfly not having any indication of direction. Once you realize the thickness difference in the poles and the front from the back of the fly, things get much simpler. We are hopeful that Nemo will add some color coding to these in an update, but for now, a quick sharpie will save you a little trouble.
When it comes to getting this tent back in the bag, things are on the tighter side, but not a struggle if you know how to roll a tent well. However, the fabric on this tent does hold air when rolling up, so be prepared to lay on it to get it all out.
When you are in the upper levels of height, floor space, and vestibule space, it's hard not to do well in this category. The Aurora Highrise 6 is a great family option that will give both space and comfort for all. You can easily fit all your air mattresses in here, along with a dog bed and gear. There is also a good amount of privacy for changing, even with the rainfly off.
The two vestibules provide great options to whip up a meal, or if the rain starts to come, the interior space and headroom allow for inside card games, also… timeout corners are included.
Thick aluminum poles, a 150D PU polyester floor, and 68D polyester/ No-See-Um mesh help compensate for some mediocre stakes and a pretty thin bag. The seams are all sealed, the zippers all smooth, and Nemo has a cool tie-down system for the doors that functions really well.
As mentioned above, the rings on the rainfly are questionable at best, as is the longevity of the carry bag. These two seem to be the biggest quality issues, but we will keep you updated after more usage. And the included stakes are very standard yet still large enough and strong enough to pound on with rocks without bending them.
Should You Buy the NEMO Aurora Highrise 6?
The Aurora Highrise 6 is the complete package. It combines many great features, is large enough for the entire family, and has a look that will stand out among the crowd. This tent will impress you and anyone who inevitably stops to check it out. However, it is a bear to set up the first time and really could use a few extra storage compartments. But, all-in-all, if you want something big and unique, look no further.
What Other Camping Tents Should You Consider?
Maybe you want a similar-sized tent with a not-so-similar price tag? Consider the Kelty Wireless 6 a solid option at a much lower price point. You could also consider The North Face Wawona 6, or, if you are looking for another unique and head-turning tent but willing to drop down into the 4-person arena, give the MSR Habitude 4 a try.
Ad-free. Influence-free. Powered by Testing.
GearLab is founded on the principle of honest, objective, reviews. Our experts test thousands of products each year using thoughtful test plans that bring out key performance differences between competing products. And, to assure complete independence, we buy all the products we test ourselves. No cherry-picked units sent by manufacturers. No sponsored content. No ads. Just real, honest, side-by-side testing and comparison.Learn More