Kelty Grand Mesa 2
This is the tent we bought to just get us started. We got it on sale for about $80 which is the biggest reason why we got it. As far as tents go it’s not a bad little tent. Weights a little under 5lbs which for two people qualifies it for lightweight status, not ultralight mind you and about 3lbs more than the Henry Shires Tarptent on our dream list but pretty good for the price.
Size: I have been told time and again by people not lightweight at all, that a two person tent just isn’t good enough for two people. Now if you are looking for a two person tent to go with your buddy and you take this tent, you’d better be pretty good friends, but Richard and I fit very comfortably inside. Richard is 6ft and 275lbs, I am 5ft 2in and 150lbs just for reference. We had all of our gear as well besides the bear bag and our shoes inside with us. We used our packs as pillows and had some extra room for water and sweaters. We were both using synthetic sleeping gear and the weather was supposed to be 10% chance of rain all weekend so we weren’t worried about our feet hitting the bottom of the tent not that they really did anyway. Quite honestly if you are looking for a tent that fits two people, gear and has some extra space, you will be disapointed, but if you are looking for just enough space for two and gear this will do it (unless you’re two large men).
Durability: The GM 2 is quite durable the nylon is strong and I feel completely sure it will hold up to a lot of abuse. If you’re in established camps I wouldn’t even really worry about using a ground cloth.
Weather: We’ve only had it out on one total bluebird trip (perfect weather) so I can’t say much to it’s weatherability, but it did do well for keeping out bugs and we had no condensation issues. We are in Ga but it was April and not humid enough to do a good test. Will post more as we use it more. So far as I can tell this thing is probably fairly bombproof.
Overall we are really happy with this tent for what it is. I don’t like putting it in my pack because of the weight but if that isn’t a concern this is possibly my favorite tent in the lightweight category.