The 6 Best Backpacking Tents for Hawaii (For ALL Budgets)
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Backpacking in Hawaii is a once in a lifetime opportunity for many people, so you need to do it right.
This means you need to be prepared and have all the right gear so you can fully enjoy all the trails you take.
It is essential that you choose the best backpacking tent for Hawaii as you’ll be hiking across different terrains and through tropical weather conditions.
However, finding which tent is best for hiking in Hawaii can be challenging, given that there are plenty of options out there. By far the best tent on the market is the Big Agnes Copper (Amazon) tent.
In this article, we have shortlisted the best backpacking tents available so that it is easier for you to choose.
Let’s get started…
Our Best Rated Backpacks for Hawaii
That was our top 3 backpacking tents for Hawaii, now let’s take a look at all of them in more detail. Whatever your style or preference you’re sure to find your ideal tent for any hike from the list below:
1 Big Agnes Copper Spur HV UL
The Big Agnes Copper Tent is no doubt one of the best tents around and would be a perfect choice for any hiking trail in Hawaii.
It’s lightweight and easy to carry, you’ll hardly notice it on your backpack. Not only that, but it’s also so simple to set up and dismantle, it makes pitching up anywhere a breeze.
You don’t need to worry about it ripping, this tent is made from the highest quality materials such as rip-stop pattern nylon, so it’s made to last and withstand all terrains.
Other features include storm flaps, lots of interior pockets and storage space, so there’s plenty of room to maneuver inside.
- 3-season tent
- Made from Rip stop nylon
- Packed weight: 3 lb 14
- Packed size: 4.5 x 20 in
- Head height: 43 in
- Floor Area: 41 sq ft
What I Love
I love how breathable and comfortable this tent is, the weather in Hawaii is very hot and humid so you can unveil the panoramic mesh walls and roof which is amazing. You won’t feel enclosed either as there’s plenty of height and the internal pockets allow you, even more, floor space. Another big plus is how lightweight and easy to carry the Big Agnes is!
- Rip stop nylon
- Highest quality materials
- Very spacious & good height
- Lots of internal pockets & storage
- 3-season tent
- Packable and lighweight
- Zippers can be temperamental
Overall, this tent has it all and is the perfect companion for backpacking in Hawaii. It’s lightweight, easy to carry and most importantly easy to set up and dismantle. It’s spacious and livable, so you won’t feel boxed in. The high-quality materials used will ensure this tent will last you many more trips to come!
2 GeerTop 4 seasons 20D Tent
Best value for money:
If you are planning to conquer Kalalau Trail, Kauai, then you might want to consider opting for a lightweight tent such as GeerTop tent, given that this trail is a 22 miles round trip.
It can easily be assembled by one person and can comfortably fit two persons inside, giving you plenty more time to rest and relax after a long day of trekking.
Aside from that, another notable thing about this tent is that it is built for any type of season. It has a breathable nylon mesh that is appropriate for cold winter weather and an inner tent that increases airflow during hot summer seasons like in Hawaii.
Furthermore, because this tent is versatile to different seasons, you get the most out of your money.
- Cros aluminum pole
- Made out of PU8000D waterproof material
- Silicon coated nylon
- 210T PU 5000 material flooring
- Tape sealed
What I Love
What I love about this tent is that you can bring it anywhere, whether you are hiking in the Alaskan mountains or Hawaii. I also like that it has an inner and outer design that provides shade when you spend time in front of the fire outside. Aside from that, I appreciate the fact that they listen to customer’s feedback improved on the zipper quality, which has received plenty of flack in the past.
- Improved zipper issue
- Easy to assemble
- Ideal for all seaons
- Compact & easy to carry
- High quality materials that last
- Instruction manual could be better
- Thinner groundsheet than others
If you are an avid backpacker, this tent will serve you well because you can use it in any type of weather. It is also lightweight, and it can accommodate up to 2 people. Overall, it is a good investment.
3 ALPS Mountaineering Lynx 1-Person Tent
Best Single person tent:
Enjoy your solo adventure to the Kwailoa trail with ALPS Mountaineering Lynx (Amazon) tent, which is an amazing 1-person tent offering great value for money.
You can assemble this on your own without any kind of frustration, so no need for complex instruction manuals. It is made of polyester with a UV damage protection feature to help keep your skin healthy.
Aside from that, you will also appreciate the extra storage pocket of this then for more organized placement of your valuables. It also has an easy entry and secure doorway with a zipper.
- Poly taffeta floor
- Factory sealed seam
- Polyester fly
- Durable zippers
- Aluminum poles
What I Love
I love that this tent has good inside storage, which makes it easy to organize your things, especially for a 1-person tent, there is actually quite a lot of room inside. You could comfortably sit up without hitting the roof. For its price you get a lot of value for your money, as this tent is made from the highest quality materials, this tent is made to last!
- Spacious interior
- Value for money
- Room for internal storage
- Easy to set up and dismantel
- Hip belt clasp is not that durable
- Could be more padding at the back
Considering its price and benefits, I can say that this is undoubtedly one of the best backpacking tents for Hawaii because it is light, easy to pack, and ideal for different types of seasons should you want to do hiking elsewhere. So, if you’re after a comfortable 1-person tent for Hawaii then this is a great choice.
4 GeerTop 4 Season Dome Tent
Improve your Pipiwai trail experience by bringing with you this vibrant 4 season tent. It has a snow skirt that will keep you warm during winter and mesh to help regulate the temperature inside. Furthermore, its tape-sealed double seam makes it entirely waterproof.
The GeerTop Dome tent (Amazon) is lightweight and can be easily carried in your backpack. Although it’s lightweight, this tent is extremely durable and made from the only best materials.
It has a dome shape design, which makes it easy to assemble for a single person, you’ll have this set up within minutes! Its aluminum poles are sturdy yet light, which makes the entire structure resistant from strong winds and even rainstorms.
- Snow skirt
- UV protection
- Good for two people
- 115 cm high
- With thermal performance
What I Love
I love that this tent has a traditional dome design, which makes it aesthetically beautiful yet functional. Also, although its price is in the mid-range, you get a glimpse of the features from higher-end tents. Having 2 doors is also a lifesaver, the last thing you want is someone climbing over you in the night. Getting this tent future proofs you for other backpacking trips to as it’s a 4-season tent.
- Functional design
- Weather protection
- Mid-range price
- Spacious enough for two people
- Difficult to dismantle
This is an incredible tent, given that it falls under the mid-range price. You’re certainly getting amazing value for money with this one. Its benefits outweigh its slight and small disadvantages. This tent is perfect for any trail, from snow and desert to hiking in Hawaii!
5 Coleman Bedrock 2 Tent
Here’s a tent that is, even more, lighter at only 2.5 kg that would be perfect for a backpacking adventure at Koko Head, Oahu. It is made out of breathable polyester, which is one of the reasons why it is exceptionally light. Aside from that, it is easy to assemble and dismantle for on-the-go adventurers.
The Coleman Bedrock (Amazon) also has a WeatherTec feature that improves the protection it provides from the elements of the weather. It repels water and has a hydrostatic head. It also has an aerodynamic design, which makes it able to withstand strong winds.
This tent is also fire retardant, so no need to worry about your shelter burning while heating up in front of an open flame.
- Made out of 2000 mm polyester material
- Taped seams
- Breathable inner tent fabric
- Fiberglass poles
- No-see mesh
- 93 cm headroom
What I Love
There are two reasons why I love this tent. First is because of its design that enables the user to lay down inside correctly, which is something you do not get from other tents. The second reason is its price. Compared to other tents, this is probably one of the most affordable options.
- Fire retardant
- Quick to assemble and dismantle
- Durable construction
- Easy to carry because it is lightweight
- Very affordable
- Space a little tight for 2 people
- Instruction manual could be better
If you are looking for a budget-friendly tent, then this might be the best one for you. However, you might have to sacrifice space, but then again, it is light, so it does not tire you out when walking long distances.
6 Paria Bryce Tent
Among all the tents in this list, this one is the most lightweight at just an incredible 1.5 kg, which makes it perfect for taking on long trails such as Wahiawa Poamoho trail.
Made from 20D and 40D ripstop silnylon, you can guarantee this tent will last for countless adventures and won’t rip on rocky surfaces.
The Paria Bryce tent is also breathable and features a panoramic mesh body giving you amazing views and fresh air flowing through the tent.
The vibrant yellow color, makes it stand out from the color of nature. Furthermore, this tent has two size options, which are something not present in other alternatives.
- Two-way zipper
- Mesh pockets & back vent
- 12 alloy Y-stakes
- Dyneema guy lines
- Taped seams
- Silicon 5,000 mm
What I Love
I love the fact that this tent has two size options, which also means that by opting for the smaller ones, I could save a few bucks. Aside from that, I also like that it is super lightweight and easy to carry. This strong, durable tent is made to last and won’t weigh you down on your hike.
- Easy to assemble
- Easy to roll up
- Lightweight & flexible
- High quality materials
- Slight condensations in the morning
If you are new at trekking and you are not accustomed to carrying heavy equipment, then this one is perfect for you. Moreover, it is also waterproof so you can use it in any type of weather. For the price you’re getting great value for money and is a great choice for backpacking around Hawaii, it will serve you well.
Criteria for Evaluation
Here are the different factors you should consider in finding the best backpacking tent for Hawaii:
When choosing a tent to bring with you, you should identify the location of your trails. This will determine the type of tent you need, for example, if you’re hiking trails that are rocky and you’re pitching up on rough terrain you’ll need a tent made from durable rip-stop nylon material.
However, if you are an avid backpacker, we recommend that you opt for all-season tents such as the ALPS Mountaineering Lynx and GeerTop 4 season 20D.
Weight & packed size
When walking long distances, bring a massive tent will consume your energy faster. To avoid that, it is best to choose lighter tents that weigh under 2 kilos, especially when you have lower endurance. In the list above, the Paria Bryce and GeerTop Dome tent are good choices.
These tents are ultra-lightweight, the Paria tent only weighs 1.5kg so you’ll hardly notice it attached to your backpack. Make sure the tent you choose is lightweight and easy to pack.
You won’t see much snow in Hawaii, and the majority of hikers on the island are beginners or people on vacation, so most people opt for a 3-season tent, as the weather conditions won’t be harsh either.
That said, if you’re looking for multiple uses out of your tent and are planning on more extreme backpacking then you should consider a 4-season tent. These tents are built to withstand the worst-case weather conditions.
Breathability is an important factor when it comes to achieving comfort and temperature regulation inside the tent, especially during chilly nights. This is why you should look out for tents with mesh materials such as the Coleman Bedrock tent.
Also, if you’re relaxing in your tent during the day, the last thing you want is the blazing hot Hawaiian sun cooking you alive. Therefore I would recommend a tent with panoramic mesh walls and a roof.
They will let fresh air pass through the tent keeping you cool and also providing you with incredible views Hawaii has to offer.
If you have been using a tent for years, then assembling and dismantling complicated tents might not be a challenge for you. However, if you are new to this, going for tents with easy assembly and comprehensive instructions are the best way to go.
The last thing you want on your hike is not knowing how to set up your tent, especially if you arrive at your site during the night. All the featured tents on my list are really easy to set up and dismantle, and for me, this is one of the most important things to look for.
Weather conditions anywhere can be unpredictable, and that applies to Hawaii too. With its lush tropical rainforests, a downpour can happen at any time along with strong winds. Surfaces can be slippy and the terrain can be rough, then the next minute there can be blazing hot sun!
So, with this in mind, make sure your tent is waterproof – to be fair most tents are! You may think Hawaii is all sun, but it does rain and you need a tent that’s up to the job if it does.
Tents are usually defined on a 1-4 person basis. However, this can vary and depends on other factors. Don’t forget you’re going to have all your backpacking gear with you, so a 1-person tent might not be big enough, although it sounds good on paper.
If you like your own space, bringing a lot of gear or you’re larger than average consider getting another person up. I’ve always opted for a 2-person tent, even if I’m on my own, that way I have more room and comfort.
I’ve touched on this a few times previously, however you should take into consideration the floor space, wall space, height, number of doors and vestibules on your tent. These will make your time spent in your tent more enjoyable. For me, with any tent, I always look for one with good headroom!
Lots of tents have great inside pockets and storage solutions allowing you more space and comfort in your tent. Check the storage options of your tent, if there’s not enough or you feel it might be a bit small, consider upgrading your tent to the next size up, for example, switch from a 1-person to a 2-person tent.
Another great way to save space is getting yourself a great backpack with lots of storage solutions, this way you can easily live out your backpack and save space inside your tent.
Quality & materials
Be sure to check the materials used on your tent, you should make sure it’s made from strong rip-stop material, tape sealed, waterproof and double stitched.
Size and weight
Check your trails, then consider what sized tent you should get. You might find that there might not be enough ground space on a particular trail for the sized tent you want. For example, if you’re thinking of getting an 8-person tent, there might not be enough room on the trail.
So, consider getting 2×4 or other variations just in case.
Value for money
Looking for a cheap deal might seem good, however, something this isn’t always the best thing to do. Go for quality first, even if it means paying a little more, it will last you longer and stop you splashing out on new tents each year.
Yes, you can grab a great deal, but just make sure you compare specifications with other tents to compare the materials used.
To summarize, there are many unbelievable trails in Hawaii and choosing the right backpacking tent for you could make or break your overall experience.
Think about the trails you’re taking and what time of the year you’re going. All these factors come into play in deciding what tent is best.
If you want to play it safe I would recommend getting a 3 or 4-season tent, that way you’ll have a great tent for any trail and one in which you can take on many future hikes.
Here are my personal things I look for when choosing a tent: –
- Ensure its quality and materials used are of a high standard
- Ensure there’s enough space to be comfortable
- Ensure its lightweight and easy to carry
- Finally, ensure its easy to set up and dismantle.
I touched on this earlier, but my final bit of advice would be, don’t always go for what’s cheap or on ‘special offer’ – most of the time, they aren’t even on special offer anyway.
Not only that, but they’re also nowhere near as good as the more expensive ones. They’re probably cheap for a reason, and in the long run, it will cost you more money on replacements.
I hope you have enjoyed this post on our best backpacking tents for Hawaii. If you have please share it with your friends and family.
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