The North Face Sequoia 4 Review
Cons: Not ideal in strong winds, odd back door, footprint doesn’t stay in place
Manufacturer: The North Face
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The North Face Sequoia 4
$399.00 at REI
|$449.95 at Backcountry|
Compare at 3 sellers
$469.00 at REI
|$270 List||$80 List|
$79.99 at Amazon
|Pros||Tall and spacious, large and versatile vestibule, footprint included||Spacious, great layout, durable, very family friendly, high value||Huge doors and large vestibule, lots of pockets, highly weather resistant||Spacious, easy to pitch, great views, inexpensive||Simple, very cheap, lightweight|
|Cons||Not ideal in strong winds, odd back door, footprint doesn’t stay in place||Not the easiest to pitch, only one door, odd bag||Runs warm, views are a bit more restricted||Fiberglass poles, small pockets, lack of ventilation with the rainfly on||Too simple, cheaply made, not durable|
|Bottom Line||A great summer tent with open views, great ventilation, and an awning-ready vestibule, all wrapped up in quality material||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||Wherever this tent falls short in quality, it makes up for it in size, features, and overall value||A starter tent that works for those looking to get into camping on the cheap|
|Rating Categories||The North Face Sequ...||The North Face Wawo...||REI Co-op Base Camp 6||Kelty Wireless 6||Coleman Sundome Dome 4|
|Space And Comfort (35%)|
|Weather Resistance (25%)|
|Ease Of Use (15%)|
|Family Friendliness (10%)|
|Specs||The North Face Sequ...||The North Face Wawo...||REI Co-op Base Camp 6||Kelty Wireless 6||Coleman Sundome Dome 4|
|Weight||13 lbs||21.9 lbs||20.625 lbs||17.2 lbs||9.8 lbs|
|Max Inside Height||6' 3"||6' 6"||6' 2"||6' 4"||4' 11"|
|Floor Dimensions||8' x 7' 6"||10' x 8'6"||9'2" x 9'2"||9'10" x 8'10"||9' x 7'|
|Floor Area||58.1 sq ft||85 sq ft||84 sq ft||86.9 sq ft||63 sq ft|
|Windows||Mesh top||2||Mesh top||Mesh top||2|
|Number of Doors||2||3||2||2||2|
|Vestibule Area||27.6 sq ft||44.7 sq ft; 21 sq ft||40 sq ft||28 sq ft||N/A|
|Packed Size||27" x 10" x 8"||9.5" x 16.5" x 25.5"||11" x 24"||27" x 8" x 8"||6.75" x 6.75" x 23.75"|
|Floor Materials||140D polyester?||150D polyester||Polyester||68D poly 1800mm||Polyethylene 1000D-140g/sqm|
|Main Tent Materials||150D polyester||150D polyester||Polyester||68D poly 1200mm, 40D No-see-um mesh||Polyester mesh 68D|
|Rainfly Materials||75D polyester||75D polyester||Polyester||68D poly 1200mm||Polyester taffeta 75D|
|Number of Poles||3||4||5||3||3|
|Pole Material||Aluminum||14 mm aluminum||Aluminum||Fiberglass||Fiberglass|
|Extras||Footprint included||Internal dry lines, hang loops, Velcro lantern loop||4-Season||Pole pockets for easy setup||E-Port|
Our Analysis and Test Results
The Sequoia 4 is a spacious warmer-weather tent that's mostly straightforward to pitch after getting the hang of it. The rainfly offers some cool features, including two side windows, two vents, side guyline attachments, and door clips. And, if you bring your trekking poles, you can make an awning with it too. Lots of mesh makes for good views and air circulation, though this lessens privacy considerably. While not the best in inclement weather, this 4-person tent is open, well built, has a clever and useful rainfly, and would make a great addition to anyone's camping gear.
Space and Comfort
The Sequoia 4 feels spacious. A 6'3" height profile and a larger than normal vestibule make the 58.1 sq ft footprint feel grand. And when you prop up the awning, it feels even better. However, the tent's dimensions don't allow for much more than a full and twin air mattress, leaving only a foot or so for standing. If you plan to pack a family of four in this tent, be sure to pack light and leave the dogs in the vestibule. Nine pockets can be found inside the tent; two are quite large and are found above the back door. The included footprint also has an extended area that extends past the door, a perfect place to take off your shoes before entering.
Part of being comfortable is privacy, and while you will have plenty of privacy with the rainfly on, the large mesh front leaves everything exposed once it's removed. Something to keep in mind if you are car camping in hot weather near other folks.
The Sequoia 4 is a hot weather machine. Even with the rainfly on, you have two vents and can roll up the sides to expose two large windows. With the rainfly off, you are free to stare into the sky and enjoy an evening breeze. When the weather turns, this tent will need to be fully staked and guylined. This is true for all tents, but with the Sequoia, the large side profile tends to catch more wind than it deflects. Additionally, you can feel the wind coming inside because the rainfly only comes down partially on the sides.
Rain is also another factor to watch out for. Though the material used on the Sequoia is exceptional, there simply isn't enough rainfly coverage over the mesh to avoid some moisture sneaking in with heavy winds. To put it bluntly, if you are looking for a bad weather tent, look elsewhere. But if you are looking for a breathable, shade-happy tent, the Sequoia 4 is hard to top.
Ease of Use
Color-coded poles and large sleeves make setting up the Sequoia 4 fairly straightforward. The fly is a bit harder to figure out due to its odd shape and tight connection points, but the tent still pitches in a little over nine minutes — on the longer side compared to other options in our review, but still mostly frustration-free.
Teardown is much faster than setup, though the tent does hold air while getting rolled up, and stuffing it into the included bag is a little tight. As we've seen with other North Face tents, the bag is more of a tote than a proper tent bag. The Sequoia weighs in at 13 pounds, and its packed size will leave plenty of room in the trunk for other essentials.
The North Face makes exceptional tents, and the Sequoia is no different. Most of the materials used are high quality; the poles are aluminum, the mesh and windows are 40D polyester, the rainfly is 75D polyester, and the floor is 150D. All of the interior seams are sealed and appear well made. On the flip side, the generic stakes are a bit weak (we bent them on our first pitch), and many of the pole tips pop out during tear down.
For a 4-person tent, the Sequoia is pretty large. The height of the tent makes changing easy, though privacy is non-existent without the fly on. The included footprint with attached doormat is a nice clean touch, and if your camp spot doesn't include shade, the awning feature will keep everyone cool. With the awning down and sealed, the vestibule is fairly large and can cook a snack if you are caught in a storm.
The storage options in the Sequoia 4 are plentiful. With nine storage pockets, two that are oversized, every house member can have their own. The large vestibule also allows for extra gear storage. The extra back door is a nice addition though it is fairly small and renders the three pockets on the door useless.
The price point on this tent is a little steep for what you get and is only a bit cheaper than its much bigger sister, the Wawona 6. However, you do get quality materials, clearly good craftsmanship, and decent design. The color scheme and general aesthetics of the tent are awesome and add to overall value. That said, the good build, flaws, and quirks of the Sequoia 4 simply don't match the price.
The North Face Sequoia 4 is a sound 4-person tent, perfect for warm weather and lots of sun. It's tall, roomy, and capable of housing a family comfortably. With nearly a third of the top being mesh, sky views and star gazing are totally doable while protected from bugs. The vestibule is a great addition, able to hold lots of gear and usable as an awning on hot days. The included footprint is a bonus, though not quite the right size. If the rainfly covered the windows just a bit more and the shape was a bit less vertical, this tent would be a bit more intriguing. Add in the cheaper stakes, strange door storage, odd bag, and poles that pop out of place, and it falls just a little short. Still, all things considered, this is a quality option for casual camping.
— Rob Gaedtke
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