MSR Hubba Hubba NX 2-Person Backpacking Tent
We're torn about having tents in our emergency kits. On one hand shelter is super important. On the other, our plan would not be to bug out to the woods during an emergency, rather head to some kind of structure.
The main reason for this is weight: tents can be heavy. Sure, you can get the ultra lite ones, but they can cost nearly $1000! No way.
You can get a great tent for under $100, like the Coleman 4-Person Dome Tent, but you're not getting something designed to be light and portable.
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There is a middle way: you would have to spend about $400 but you can get a 2 person tent that is packable, waterproof, and light-weight at 3 lb 8 oz. That's the Hubba Hubba NX by MSR.
What Is The Hubba Hubba Good For?
Designed to be used by backpackers, the MSR Hubba Hubba NX pack small and offer lots of technologies that other brands and tents cannot in a package that can easily be carried and deployed fairly quickly.
It is a three-season tent, so meant to be used in all but the coldest environments. It has space for two people inside, and 2 packs outside in the vestibule space.
The new Xtreme Shield Coating technology which is applied to the fabric of the tent is an ultra-durable coating which is formulated to resist fabric stickiness (hydrolysis) and is considered much better than standard coatings in repelling water from the interior of the tent.
That coating is backed up with precision-stitched seams with very tight tolerances to aid in keeping the water out.
(We already pointed out the weight at 3 lb 8 oz. You can make that lighter if you wish by replacing the body with the Hubba Fast & Light Body and the rainfly.)
So what does all this mean to us if we are planning for an emergency? It means that you can actually carry this thing around, it will protect you from rain and moisture (as much as any tent can) and won't crap out on you when you need it most.
That said, it is still only a tent. A real shelter built out of wood or stone will always be better and should be your primary goal.
You can beef up some of the protective elements of a tent by putting it under a tarp, and by adding an MSR Universal Footprint (2 Reg) underneath. But all of that means pack weight and extra space, so plan accordingly.
Other Features We Like / No Like
Beyond what we mentioned above, there are a couple of other features we would like to call out, since they are relevant to anyone interested in this type of tent, or for someone planning on using it while backpacking / camping.
It's roomy: I like the way the poles splay out along the top of the tent. This allows for a decent amount of headroom, and gives space to the occupants to move around and sit up. I like the vestibules on the outside which makes space for packs and things. You don't have to drag your bags and packs and boots etc into the tent to keep them dry.
The poles: they are composite, light weight and strong. Whatever these are made out of they are neat.
I also like the kickstand vents and rainfly adjustments.
The colors mainly. Not that there is anything wrong with them, they are nice if you are wanting to be visible. If you want to be a little more low-key, then white and red is probably not the way to go. Nothing that can't be fixed with a more muted colored tarp.
Where to Get One
You can also get them direct from MSR.