You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (2024)

You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (1)

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Camping is one of the absolute best ways to enjoy the outdoors. But without fail, even when we try our best to bundle up, we all make that one trip each year that leaves us cold, miserable, and seriously considering heading home early. But we’re happy to report that all changed when we upgraded from a three-season tent to a four-season tent.

Most tents prioritize versatility for variable weather conditions, with breathability, ventilation, and smaller tent footprints. But in order to be comfortable when the wind is whipping, and heavy snow is falling, a four-season tent is the only way to (quite literally) weather the storm. While some tents cater to serious mountaineers on Everest-like expeditions, we selected some more modest (and therefore, more affordable) four-season tents that are lighter in weight (mostly) and will keep you warm and dry in a snowstorm.

The Best Four-Season Tents

    What to Consider

    Winter camping tents range from light and packable to massive and stove-equipped. All four-season tents are made from waterproof fabrics and are capable of survival in winter conditions, but some are more storm-ready than others. We consider the pole design, style of rainfly, overall weight, and amount of floor space to be the most important factors:

    • Pole Design: These tents have heavier poles and structural designs that are made to withstand high winds and carry the weight of snow, should it start to pile up. But as with any style of tent, some options feature fewer, lighter poles to make them more manageable to carry into the backcountry.
    • Rainfly Style: A true winter camping tent should have a full-coverage rainfly that extends all the way to the ground to limit sideways snow infiltrating your shelter. But some companies have started using a rainfly that falls just short of a full seal at the ground (“treeline” tents), thus improving ventilation and saving weight.
    • Weight: As with any tent setup, weight is an important factor in your preferred style of camping. For winter backpacking, a lightweight option is a must, but it's often worth the added weight to have a tent with extra comforts when snow is on the horizon.
    • Floor Space: Some tents have a modest amount of floor space in the range of 30 square feet, which is pretty tight for two people with winter gear, but should work for one person and a pup. For couples or climbing partners, look for an option with upwards of 35 square feet of floor space or consider sizing up to a three-person tent.

    Check out our picks for the best four-season tents for winter camping, and don't let the cold weather keep you from enjoying the winter sights and sounds of nature ever again. Who knows — you might just have the campsite to yourself!

    Editor's Note: For the purpose of comparability, we selected mostly two-person models (when available), but many of these tents are also sold in three- and four-person models.

    1

    Best Basecamp for Expeditions

    Mountain Hardwear Trango 2 Tent

    You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (10)

    Pros
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (11)Incredibly stout
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (12)Ample space for two humans
    Cons
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (13)Heavy for one person to carry

    Setting up basecamp for winter excursions? You'll want a tent that will stand up to high winds and heavy snow, such as the Trango 2. This four-season tent has a double-wall design with five lightweight poles that provide extra protection from the elements (compared to lighter, single-wall designs), and it's been updated with a rainfly that connects to both the poles and the tent body.

    Weighing in at 9 pounds, 10 ounces, and boasting 40 square feet of floor space plus two doors and two large vestibules, this tent is significantly roomier than many two-person tents.

    The Trango is heavier than a lot of backcountry-angled tents, but we think the added weight is worth carrying for the extra interior space and peace of mind that you'll stay dry and cozy in below-freezing temps.

    If the Trango is too heavy or expensive for you, check out its little sibling — the lighter, more packable, more affordable Outpost 2.

    More: 8 Best Glamping Tents for Camping in Luxury

    Weight9 pounds, 10 ounces
    Doors and Vestibules2 each
    Poles 5
    Sizes2-, 3-, and 4-person

    2

    The Heated Portable Yurt

    White Duck Regatta Canvas Bell Tent with Stove Jack

    You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (14)

    You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (15)

    Pros
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (16)Thick material traps heat
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (17)Incredibly spacious
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (18)Adding a wood-burning stove will change your life
    Cons
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (19)Very heavy
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (20)Time consuming to set up

    When comfort is key and space is unlimited (at the campsite and in your car), a canvas tent with a wood-burning stove is second to none. White Duck makes some high-quality, affordable bell tents, which is why they average 4.7 stars from over 500 reviews on Amazon.

    This tent is much different than most others in this review, but it's a tent that we cannot live without for hunting. The four-season Regatta has sewn-in groundsheet, heavy steel poles with center support, and is made from a hefty, waterproof canvas, which makes it incredibly sturdy and weatherproof when winds are whipping and rain is dripping. There are plenty of screen windows and two screen doors, too, for better airflow when the sun blazes overhead, too.

    The Regatta features a 5-inch diameter stove jack to vent your wood-burning stove (sold separately) and does an excellent job at trapping heat inside when you need it most. It can be paired with this massive awning, which serves as an entryway, a drying station for wet gear, and a covered outdoor cook station.

    Weighing over 50 pounds, this winter tent is a real behemoth. But it's one of the most comfortable options for a family, and well worth the setup time if you'll be out for more than a few days.

    More: 100 Camping Essentials We Can't Get Enough Of

    Weight66 pounds
    Doors and vestibules1 double door, 1 vestibule
    Sizes offered8-, 10-, 13-, and 16-foot
    Poles2

    3

    Most Capable "Treeline" Tent

    NEMO Kunai 3–4 Season Backpacking Tent

    You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (21)

    Pros
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (22)The lightest tent capable of 4-season camping
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (23)Priced like a 3-season tent
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (24)Tapered shape is aerodynamic
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (25)High brow pole prevents snow accumulation
    Cons
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (26)No fold-out snow flaps
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (27)Only one door and vestibule

    The Kunai is Nemo’s three- to four-season backpacking tent, and we think it falls perfectly into this category. It's an excellent combination of weight savings and comfort at a price that's not impossible to stomach.

    This tent has a double-wall construction, using three poles and an aggressive brow pole that forms a tapered profile for aerodynamics that doesn't shy away from intense wind gusts. The inner tent body has large mesh panels and multiple vents for breathability for improved moisture management. And the bathtub-style floor and waterproof full-coverage rainfly seal out snow and rain.

    With just 26 square feet of floor space, one door, and one vestibule, this tent is a bit on the small side for two people. But it's sufficient space for a couple and more than enough space for one person and a dog.

    I’ve used this tent in Colorado for backcountry elk hunting in mid-October, where temperatures varied from the low 50s and sunny-to-low 20s with bone-chilling wind gusts and sideways snow. For weather conditions this erratic, the Kunai was an ideal balance of protection from the elements, packability, and weight-savings.

    Weight4 pounds, 5 ounces
    Doors and Vestibules1 each
    Poles3
    Sizes2- and 3-person

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    4

    Most Bombproof Shelter

    The North Face Bastion 4-Person Tent

    You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (28)

    Pros
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (29)Super strong dome shape holds up to fierce winds
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (30)Floor zips out and doubles as a rescue sled
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (31)Roof vent is adjustable for airflow or heat trapping
    Cons
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (32)Expensive

    Though it's not quite as badass as their top-of-the-line Dome Tent that you've seen in mountaineering films like Meru, this tent is still a worthy alternative, with a price that is much more approachable. It features a double-wall design and full coverage rainfly, with fabrics that are durable and plenty waterproof for camping on snow.

    The Bastion has five hubbed aluminum poles that are super stout, with a high strength-to-weight ratio, and it can be staked out for impressive resilience in high winds. Weighing just under 19 pounds, it's the perfect basecamp for winter adventures when you're not on a movie-making budget.

    This tent's 136 square feet of floor space is plenty for four people and lots of winter gear. Adding two doors and two vestibules, the Bastion 5 is ready to host a whole crew of snow-loving adventurers.

    Weight12 pounds, 4 ounces
    Doors and Vestibules2 each
    Poles5 for tent, 1 for vestibule
    Sizes4-person

    5

    Best for Winter Backpacking

    MSR Remote 2 Tent

    You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (33)

    Pros
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (34)Completely waterproof, even in rain
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (35)
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (36)14 possible guyline attachment points for security
    Cons
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (37)Snow flaps only on vestibules, not on tent body

    For winter expeditions to snow-covered peaks, you'll want a tent that balances weight with comfort and protection from the elements. MSR's Remote 2 does just that — it's a four-season, double-wall tent that withstands harsh conditions and is light enough to stuff in your backpack. With a packed weight of just right around 7 pounds, the Remote 2 is just slightly heavier than one of our favorite backpacking tents, the MSR Hubba Hubba 2, and it's one of the lighter tents in this four-season list.

    The Remote 2 tent has a three pole design — a classic dome shape plus a door-to-door pole for even more stability and headroom. Its three Easton Syclone composite poles are lightweight and designed to flex under stress (rather than break), so will hold up confidently in high multidirectional high winds.

    It's plenty weatherproof, too, thanks to a hefty ripstop polyester rainfly and bathtub-style floor that are completely waterproof, plus fold-out snow flaps that reduce the amount of wind and snow that can blow up under the rainfly.

    With 33 square feet of floor space, it's great for one person and winter gear, but you might want to consider the three-person Access 3 for the versatility of having a two-legged or four-legged partner join.

    Weight6 pounds, 11 ounces
    Doors and vestibules2 each
    Poles3
    Sizes offered2 and 3-person

    6

    Most Versatile Shelter

    Hilleberg Nammatj 2 Bomber Tent

    You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (38)

    Pros
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (39)Impressive in harsh conditions
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (40)Surprisingly lightweight
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (41)Rainfly extends all the way
    Cons
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (42)Only one door and vestibule

    Hilleberg's shelters are a staple among winter campers and mountaineers, and the Nammatj is one of their most popular.

    The Nammatj features thick, 10-millimeter poles that create a low-profile tunnel design that shrugs off high winds with ease and prevents snow loading. Its double-wall nylon body is treated with silicone, making it much more durable than most backpacking tents. And the rainfly and vestibule extend all the way to the ground, making it nearly impossible for snow to creep its way inside.

    Weighing just 6 pounds, 8 ounces, this tent packs a ton of punch in a lightweight package. It's one of the few tents in this review that is genuinely comfortable in sub-zero, polar conditions, yet is still light enough for a strong person to reasonably carry for long backpacking trips.

    Though 31 square feet of floor space is on the lower end, the high ceilings, nearly vertical walls, and oversized vestibule make this tent feel much larger and more livable than many.

    More: 11 Best Down Sleeping Bags for Camping

    Weight6 pounds, 10 ounces
    Doors and vestibules1 each
    Poles2
    Sizes offered2- and 3-person

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    7

    Budget Buy

    GeerTop 2-Person Camping Tent

    You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (43)

    Pros
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (44)Cost is unbeatable
    Cons
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (45)Not ideal for the extreme cold

    By far the cheapest four-season tent in this review, we’d be crazy to recommend venturing out into the backcountry in the dead of winter with this tent. But if you’re camping in cold climates where light snow is a possibility, this tent will provide more protection from the elements than a three-season alternative.

    It’s a double-layer option with a durable, waterproof rainfly, plus a breathable inner layer with mesh and windows for ventilation. The most notable feature is the built-in snow skirt, which keeps snow from infiltrating under the rainfly.

    Weighing just 6 pounds, 7 ounces, this is certainly light enough to take backpacking. With nearly 30 square feet of floor space, it's similarly sized to many backpacking tents, but the side-entry doors and smaller vestibules make this a tight squeeze for two adults.

    Weight6 pounds, 4 ounces
    Doors and Vestibules1 each
    Poles2
    Sizes1-, 2-, and 4-person

    8

    Best Value

    REI Co-op Arete ASL 2 Tent

    You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (46)

    Pros
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (47)Affordable
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (48)Easier to get in and out
    Cons
    • You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (49)Not as stormproof as heavier, pricier tents

    REI’s Arete ASL all-season tent is perfect if you’re on a budget and delivers solid protection in cold-weather camping. It’s another tent that falls in the “treeline” category, which means it’s prepared to minimize suffering in cold temperatures, but not meant to be an igloo-like shelter in a blizzard. This tent has a stout, four-pole design that increases stability, while also maximizing living and storage space.

    Weighing in at just 6 pounds, 5 ounces, it's much lighter than basecamp tents. Just one door provides access to the 32 square feet of living space, but the large vestibule offers plenty of extra room for gear storage.

    We like the Arete ASL for cold-weather backpacking (or car camping) when you'll be moving camps nightly, especially when cold temperatures are highly likely, but not guaranteed.

    More: 9 Double Sleeping Bags for Camping With Your Snuggle Buddy

    Weight5 pounds, 10 ounces
    Doors and Vestibules1 each
    Poles4
    Sizes 2-person
    You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents (2024)

    FAQs

    You Can Camp Year-Around With These Top-Rated Four-Season Tents? ›

    4-season tents are specifically built for use in winter conditions, rather than all year round, when they are likely to be unnecessarily hot and heavy. 3-season tents can handle light winds, general rain and even a bit of snow.

    What does "4-season tent" mean? ›

    4-season tents are specifically built for use in winter conditions, rather than all year round, when they are likely to be unnecessarily hot and heavy. 3-season tents can handle light winds, general rain and even a bit of snow.

    How much warmer are 4-season tents? ›

    4-season tents are warmer and more durable than 3-season tents, and sometimes even lighter. These tents will add about 10ºF in warmth and keep out the snow and wind.

    What is the season rating of a tent? ›

    Season ratings don't necessarily refer to literal seasons. Instead, they indicate how substantial the tent is, and what kind of weather the tent can withstand. One- or two-season tents are generally meant for warm temperatures and little to no rainfall. More “seasons” describe heavier-duty tents.

    Can you use a four season tent in summer? ›

    For those who do more winter camping, a four-season is a great second tent. Made for ski and snowshoe camping, they're also ideal for mountaineering in summer, when snow, wind, and cold are possible.

    Do you really need a four-season tent? ›

    At the most basic level, a 4-season (or winter) tent is designed to withstand extreme weather, holding up to fierce winds and heavy snow loads. A 3-season (or backpacking) tent is designed for lightweight performance and breathability.

    What does 1 season tent mean? ›

    One-season tents are designed for warm, tropical weather without rain while two-season tents can normally withstand light, misty showers and low winds. Neither offer protection from colder temperatures. A popup tent for use on the beach is an example of a tent that would be considered one-season.

    How cold is too cold to sleep in a tent? ›

    Without the right gear, you'll be shivering in your boots and prone to potentially fatal conditions like frostbite and hypothermia. Anything below 20° F is, without doubt, too cold to go tent camping. At these temperatures, the effects of frostbite can kick in in under 30 minutes.

    How much wind can a 4 season tent withstand? ›

    Most tents are designed to withstand average wind speeds ranging from 15 to 40 miles per hour (24 to 64 kilometers per hour). These are typical conditions for moderate camping environments. High-quality tents constructed with durable materials can handle higher wind speeds.

    What kind of tent is best for winter camping? ›

    For high winds and heavy snowfall, a 4-season tent is recommended. 4-season tents have sturdier poles and heavier fabrics than 3-season tents so they can withstand powerful gusts of wind and heavy snow loads. They also have less mesh and the rainflys extend close to the ground to keep swirling snow from getting inside.

    How can you tell if a tent is good quality? ›

    Things to look for in a quality tent
    1. Tested for real life. What type of testing do MEC Label tents go through? ...
    2. Leak-proof. A good sealed seam can withstand a downpour and won't be compromised by the hot sun. ...
    3. Ventilation. ...
    4. Durable waterproof floor. ...
    5. Heavy-duty zippers. ...
    6. Aluminum poles. ...
    7. Serious pegs. ...
    8. Easy to set up.
    Mar 22, 2017

    How many years should a tent last? ›

    Most tents are designed to last a good five to six years. This is a good amount of time for most people and tends to last. This is especially true if you really take care of your tent. A tent can last much longer if you take proper care of it.

    What is the best season to camp? ›

    Late spring, summer, and early fall are the best months for camping due to milder weather and longer daylight hours.

    Can you live in a tent all winter? ›

    While a modern four-season mountain tent – or even a bivvy – may be tolerable for a few nights out in sub-zero temperatures, when it comes to truly living outdoors for an extended period in a winter environment, nothing beats a heated tent.

    Do 4 season tents stay warm? ›

    A 4 -season tent offers more durable fabric, a stronger structure, and cleverly designed ventilation to keep the warmth inside. The flysheet should also be lower to the ground to keep out any snow, rain and gusts of wind to keep you protected.

    How do you vent a tent in cold weather? ›

    Even when it's snowing or temperatures have dropped below zero, I'll leave a couple vents open. Zipping up the vestibule while leaving your tent door partially unzipped will increase airflow significantly while still sheltering you from the wind and the elements.

    How much wind can a 4-season tent withstand? ›

    Most tents are designed to withstand average wind speeds ranging from 15 to 40 miles per hour (24 to 64 kilometers per hour). These are typical conditions for moderate camping environments. High-quality tents constructed with durable materials can handle higher wind speeds.

    What does four seasons mean in a camper? ›

    A rational definition of a 4-season camper to most observers would be one that could be used all year long regardless of the weather or the temperature. The problem is the RV industry doesn't have a true definition for a 4-season camper, and RV marketers are free to call them whatever they want.

    What is the difference between 3 seasons and 4 seasons? ›

    The biggest difference between these two types of season rooms is the level of usage you will experience. A four-season room can be utilized all year long, while a three-season room does not have the same capacity to be heated and cooled and is, therefore, not usable space in too warm and too cold of climates.

    What is meant by a 3 season tent? ›

    A 3 season tent is designed for Spring, Summer, and Autumn. They are typically not suitable for use in extreme winter weather, as they are made to be well-ventilated and light. This is due to the majority of the inner tent being made from lightweight mesh, in order to increase breathability in warmer conditions.

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