Last Updated: September 20, 2022
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Best One Pole Tents in 2023

On the search for the best one-pole tents around? Not to worry, we have got you covered.

One-pole tents are designed for ultralight backpacking while adding the comfort of a normal tent, rather than a shelter or bivvy. They have come a long way in recent years and today you can find an excellent one-pole tent that will have you sleeping pretty in most weather conditions, but finding that special tent is the hard part.


At A Glance: Our Top 3 One Pole Tents


I have gathered up some of the best one-pole tents on the market, reviewed them, and created a buying guide, just so you can find the best one-pole tent for your needs. Join me as we run through them in detail and suggest my top 3 for you to consider.

Top Product Overview

Best Ultralight
  • Quick and easy setup
  • Solid waterproof rating of 1,200mm
SEE ON NEMO →SEE ON REI →
Best Of The Best
  • Good in colder conditions
  • Holds onto warmth well
SEE ON MSR →SEE ON REI →
  • Very light and portable
  • Affordable for the quality
SEE ON REI →
  • Freestanding and spacious
  • Large door for easy access
SEE ON NEMO →SEE ON REI →
  • Simple to pitch
  • Good access and storage space
SEE ON AMAZON →SEE ON REI →
  • Near vertical walls for lots of space
  • Excellent ventilation at the roof and base
SEE ON SEA-TO-SUMMIT →SEE ON REI →
  • Fits up to 5 people inside
  • Very easy to pitch
SEE ON DOD OUTDOORS →

Best One Pole Tents


Best Ultralight

NEMO Hornet 1 Tent

If every ounce counts on your backpacking trips then the NEMO Hornet 1 Tent is a hard one-pole tent to beat.

This is pretty much THE lightest and most portable one-pole tent on the market. It packs down to 4.5 x 19 inches and has a minimum trail weight of 1 lb. 10 oz. so it really is as ultralight as they come.

Setting this tent up is a breeze, and so is packing it down into the stuff sack. The design ensures a lot of headroom and feels quite spacious inside so you’re not sleeping with the mesh on your nose.

When it comes to bad weather, this tent can handle it. The rainfly comes down to the bathtub floor, and both are treated with silicone and polyurethane to stop water from seeping in.

Being so light does mean that it has cut some corners though. There isn’t much storage space or interior pockets, but there is a small vestibule for your pack.

Also, the fabric is thin to reduce weight so it is best used with a footprint, and be careful with branches as they can rip it.

Overall though, it is a great one-pole tent if you are looking for an ultralight option with some comfort. Here is our full review.

Pros

  • Quick and easy setup
  • Solid waterproof rating of 1,200mm
  • Packs down very small
  • Super lightweight
  • Light diffusing pocket
  • Great breathability and airflow

Cons

  • Better with a footprint
  • A little thin for durability
  • Minimal storage space

Product Information

  • Min. Weight: 1 lb. 10 oz.
  • Packed Size: 4.5 x 19 inches
  • No. Persons: 1
  • Season: 3
SEE ON NEMO
SEE ON REI

Best Of The Best

MSR Access 1 Tent

The MSR Access 1 Tent is the best one-pole tent around in my opinion as it does it all, and some.

This tent is designed to bridge the gap between a 3-season tent and a mountaineering tent. It can handle snow and cold, but not quite a winter storm on an open mountainside.

Setting this tent up is super easy and fast, and once up, its freestanding design means it feels roomy inside. There is enough room for you and your gear, and the vestibule will hold your pack.

It has limited mesh to ensure warmth is held onto, and great ventilation for condensation management and a breeze on warmer nights.

You will find hanging points inside along with an interior pocket too.  To add to this, it is pretty light and packs down small for a tent that can handle such cold weather.

The only downside is that it is an expensive pack but you do pay for what you get, especially in the one-pole tent world, and you get a lot with this one.

Pros

  • Good in colder conditions
  • Holds onto warmth well
  • Light and very portable
  • Handles snowfall well
  • Good storage space
  • Quick to setup
  • Solid ventilation & water-resistance
  • Durable while being lightweight

Cons

  • A bit expensive

Product Information

  • Min. Weight: 3 lbs
  • Packed Size: 6 x 18 inches
  • No. Persons: 1
  • Season: 3-4
SEE ON MSR
SEE ON REI

Best On A Budget

REI Co-op Quarter Dome SL 1 Tent

The REI Co-op Quarter Dome SL 1 Tent is an excellent option if you are shopping on a tighter budget. This is one of the most affordable well-performing one-pole tents around.

To start with, it is very portable weighing just 1 lb. 15 oz. and packing down to 6 x 19 inches. It won’t take up much room or weight in your pack.

The pitch is quick and simple, plus when up it has near vertical walls to provide a roomy feel inside. Access is great through the large door, and the big vestibule makes storing your pack easy too.

You will also find some great internal storage pockets too and hanging loops for gear.

Another great thing is the ventilation which ensures that condensation is minimal and you don’t wake up with any drips or puddles during the night.

The main issue with this tent is that the rainfly doesn’t quite meet the bathtub floors. If it is windy and raining hard, water can get blown in.

Overall, this is an amazing tent for the price but don’t take it out in heavy winds with rain.

Pros

  • Very light and portable
  • Affordable for the quality
  • Vertical side walls for extra space
  • Simple to pitch
  • Vents for good airflow
  • Interior pockets and loops

Cons

  • Not great in heavy wind and/or rain

Product Information

  • Min. Weight: 1 lb. 15 oz.
  • Packed Size: 6 x 19 inches
  • No. Persons: 1
  • Season: 3
SEE ON REI

NEMO Dragonfly 1 Tent

The NEMO Dragonfly 1 Tent is another excellent option if you are looking for a lightweight tent that provides comfort.

Weighing in at 2lbs and packing down to 19.5 x 4 inches, this is super portable, especially while being freestanding too.

Pitching it is super easy and once up, it has a lot of space inside. It feels roomy plus with the large door for easy access and the big trapezoidal vestibules, you have more than enough storage space too.

There are gear pockets inside to organize your gear, diffusing light pockets, and the mesh walls ensure good ventilation and star gazing on clear nights.

The rainfly is great at blocking the weather, as is the bathtub floor. Unfortunately, there is a little gap where they meet and in nigh winds with rain, water can get blown in.

Overall, this is an excellent 3-season tent that provides a lot of comforts, just avoid using it in extreme 3-season weather.

Pros

  • Freestanding and spacious
  • Large door for easy access
  • Big vestibules for storage space
  • Light and portable
  • Torch & gear pockets
  • Good in ok weather

Cons

  • Thin floor - best with a footprint
  • Heavy wind & rain can get through

Product Information

  • Min. Weight: 2 lbs
  • Packed Size: 19.5 x 4 inches
  • No. Persons: 1
  • Season: 3
SEE ON NEMO
SEE ON REI

Big Agnes Copper Spur UL1 Tent

The Big Agnes Copper Spur UL1 Tent talks a big game a delivers on much of it, but it does have some issues. Let’s start with the good first!

This is a freestanding tent which makes it both easy to pitch and very spacious inside. The roof is high in the middle and high enough at both ends plus the D-shaped door makes access easy, and there is great storage too.

You will find interior pockets and a gear loft for things that you want inside. The large vestibule also has more than enough room for your backpack too.

To top it all off, this is also a super light and portable pack weighing in at 2 lbs. 3 oz. and packing down to 4.5 x 16.5 inches.

There are, however, a lot of cons. It is super thin and should be used with a footprint so it lasts longer. The zipper also catches on the fly a lot, and the ventilation is not the best, so condensation might be an issue too.

Pros

  • Simple to pitch
  • Good access and storage space
  • Freestanding & spacious inside
  • Lightweight and portable
  • Durable for being so light
  • Interior pockets & gear loft

Cons

  • Works better with a footprint
  • Quite expensive
  • Zipper on the fly catches
  • Not the best ventilation

Product Information

  • Min. Weight: 2 lbs. 3 oz.
  • Packed Size: 4.5 x 16.5 inches
  • No. Persons: 1
  • Season: 2
SEE ON AMAZON
SEE ON REI

Sea to Summit Alto TR 1 Tent

The Sea to Summit Alto TR 1 Tent features a unique design for a one-pole tent and this makes it tall and spacious but it also comes with some cons.

The tent uses a Unique Tension Ridge™ architecture to create a high tent with lots of space inside as well as better ventilation and a tall door for easy access too.

The ventilation options are excellent as you can use the roof vents in good weather, and the base vents when it rains so no drips get inside.

You will find ample storage space in the vestibule for your pack but there are no interior pockets or gear loft inside either.

It is also a good tent in bad weather and you can pitch it by doing the rainfly first and last if it’s raining or the other way around in good weather too.

The main issue with this tent is that pitching it is overly complicated and it gets annoying, plus it is quite expensive too.

Pros

  • Near vertical walls for lots of space
  • Excellent ventilation at the roof and base
  • Easy access & solid storage space
  • Durable build that lasts
  • Good in bad weather
  • Double pitch options for different weather

Cons

  • A bit expensive
  • Hard to pitch
  • No interior pockets

Product Information

  • Min. Weight: 2 lbs. 1 oz.
  • Packed Size: 4.3 x 17.7 inches
  • No. Persons: 1
  • Season: 3
SEE ON SEA-TO-SUMMIT
SEE ON REI

DoD Ichi One Pole Tent

The DoD Ichi One Pole Tent is an awesome one-pole tent for the family and camping in large groups.

Unlike all the other one-pole tents, this isn’t for ultralight backpacking, it is made as a tipi tent for large groups.

You can sleep up to 5 people inside with ease plus it is tall at 6.5 ft so everyone should be able to stand up inside it too. This also means you will find more than enough storage space too.

It is also an excellent tent in bad weather that blocks rain and wind with ease. Plus, it even has mesh inside to stop small bugs from biting you.

Overall, this is a durable and affordable one-pole tent but it is a bit heavy and bulky for backpacking too.

Pros

  • Fits up to 5 people inside
  • Very easy to pitch
  • You can stand inside
  • Lots of ventilation
  • Mesh to block the bugs
  • Great in bad weather
  • Affordable for the quality

Cons

  • Heavy and bulky
  • Not great for backpacking

Product Information

  • Min. Weight: 10 lbs
  • Packed Size: 23 x 7 x 7
  • No. Persons: 5
  • Season: 3
SEE ON DOD OUTDOORS

What To Look For In The Best One Pole Tents

Portability vs Durability

Most one-pole tents are designed to be as light as possible and this means the fabrics are thinner too. You will have noticed that some of the tents recommend using a footprint with them for this reason, as the floor is thin and can be easily damaged.

When shopping for a one-pole tent, be sure to check the thinness of materials and if a footprint is needed. Sometimes, and in my opinion, it is better to have a tent that weighs a few more ounces that lasts, but that depends on how ultralight you want it to be.

Access, Space & Storage

Three major things to consider are if the inside feels spacious enough, if there is enough room to store all your gear, and whether it is easy to get inside and out.

Look for a tent with a large door for better access and large vestibules for a place to put your shoes and backpack. Interior storage is also handy but a lot of lighter one-pole tents don’t give you any pockets or gear lofts, but some do, so keep an eye out for those.

Weather Resistance

Almost all the tents featured are 3-season tents, bar one 3/4 season tent. This means they can handle heavy rain but you need to ensure that the rainfly meets the bathtub floor, as if there is a gap, water can get blown inside and you’ll get wet when there are heavy winds and rain.

Our Favorite One Pole Tents

Best Ultralight One Pole Tent

The best ultralight one-pole tent featured is the NEMO Hornet 1 Tent. This tent is super light and exceptionally portable, shaving off those precious ounces from your pack. It is also pretty spacious inside, great in bad weather, and a breeze to set up.

You will have to sacrifice some storage space and pockets for the reduced weight though, and if you want it to last, grab a footprint to use with it.

Best Of The Best

The best one-pole tent featured is the MSR Access 1 Tent, in my opinion. This is a tent that you will be comfortable in, in most situations. It is designed to handle snowfall in the tree line, along with the heavy wind and rain of late fall and early spring.

It is also a doddle to set up, spacious inside, has enough storage space, is lightweight, portable, and is just a pleasure to use!

Best On A Budget

The best one-pole tent on a budget is the REI Co-op Quarter Dome SL 1 Tent. This is a super light tent with a lot of room inside, excellent storage space, and easy access, plus it is very affordable for the quality too. It honestly doesn’t put a foot wrong except that strong winds and rain are not its friends.

The rainfly doesn’t quite reach the bucket floor, leaving a small gap where the wind can blow water in during extreme conditions. It is perfect outside of heavy wind and rain though.