GGG Staff Picks: Shelters!

GGG Staff

a compilation of 5 shelters and tents

We polled some GGG employees about their most favorite shelter they use on their outdoor adventures. The result is a variety of styles and types of tents, from single-walled to double-walled and free-standing. Check out why each person loves their shelter of choice! 


Big Agnes Tiger Wall UL2

-- Rachel, Operations

Big Agnes Tiger Wall 2 sitting in a field with evergreens and a sunset behind.

My tent is a Big Agnes Tiger Wall UL2. It served us well for 5 months on the PCT for me and my partner – we used it literally every night on trail! It’s super durable, super spacious for two people, and super easy to set up. It’s also quite lightweight for being a semi-freestanding double-walled tent. What I love most is how bright it is: most tents have a dark vibe, but I love the lighter and brighter vibe the pale fabric makes. The rain fly and inner tent are separate, so you can look up at the stars at night if you’d like without the rain fly. Inner pockets on the top towards your feet are wonderful for airing your clothing out at night, and the side pockets by your head are nice for electronics or anything else. The zippers started to not work after 5 months, but we’re getting it fixed up so it’s good as new again! 


Durston Gear X-Mid 1 & Big Agnes Copper Spur 3

-- Cam, Warehouse

 My tent needs are two ends of the backpacking spectrum— I either need a bigger freestanding tent or a one person trekking pole tent:

Cam with his Durston tent in the background outside

I use the Durston Gear X-Mid 1 when I’m going out on my own. The large vestibules, offset poles, and tall headroom make it the right tent for me. I’m 5’ 6” and can sit comfortably in my backpacking chair when I get stuck inside my tent. I like that it can be pitched with the fly and inner connected so that it stays dry if you need to set up camp in the rain. I’ve spent nights in this tent in the Boundary Waters and along trails in Minnesota and Wisconsin, and it has been happy in the small forest clearings I like to camp in. When I take this tent on canoe trips I like to bring smaller tent poles (with variable height) instead of trekking poles. 

Inside an orange tent with 2 peoples feet sticking out of the tent.

When I’m camping with my wife, we bring our Big Agnes Copper Spur 3. Ours is an older model but has never let us down. We have only ever needed to replace the shock cord in our tent poles, despite traveling along many trails and at many music festivals. We like that both sides have big doors with plenty of vestibule room. When going on canoe trips, we like to use low cots and we still have a bit of room for storage inside the tent.

Both of my tents have customized inner storage: I like to add a gear loft or mesh pouches where I like to keep my essential items. It adds a little weight and a lot of usability to my tents, since I like to know exactly where my headlamp is in the middle of the night and have a place to put my glasses where I definitely won’t squish them. My wife prefers a dedicated place to stash her book. 


Gossamer Gear The One

-- Yessica, Warehouse

Gossamer Gear The One shown in 2 photos on the PCT

I love cowboy camping whenever I can, but when that's not possible, I reach for my Gossamer Gear The One. This has been my go-to shelter for the past three years and has served me well through some very temperate weather and some rather sketchy weather situations. I love the versatility of adjustable features, ease of set up, small footprint, deep bathtub floor, tall ceiling and most of all the small packed size. For anyone looking for an introductory single wall, trekking pole tent, you can’t go wrong with The One! 


Six Moon Designs Haven

-- Maggie, Marketing

Six Moon Designs Haven tent on the AZT at sunset

I've been using the Six Moon Designs Haven Ultralight Tent for the past year, and I love it! My friends who had hiked the PCT with it let me borrow it while I hiked the Arizona Trail, and it's now a permanent part of my dryer climate gear kit. I love how easy it is to set up, and how I can sleep under the stars by setting up just the inner net without the outer tarp. I call it my "palace" since, as a solo hiker in a two person shelter, I really get to live a life of spacious luxury in it (without much added weight). It can actually fit into some pretty tight spaces: the outer tarp can easily be spread out over plants since the inner net has even smaller dimensions. It recently got new replacement door zippers so it can continue to be my home away from home! 


Slingfin 2lite

-- Adam, Buying

Slingfin 2lite in the BWCA

When I'm not using a DIY tarp and bivy combo on a solo hike, I'm usually using a Slingfin 2lite tent. It cuts weight by only using two poles and by being low profile at the foot of the tent, while maintaining plenty of headroom to sit up in. While it's not free standing, the living space is quite excellent, especially considering the surprisingly generous vestibules! I've mostly used it in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area so far: it’s a fantastic paddling tent if you're looking to minimize your paddling set up. 



-- Ned, Operations

nemo tent behind a guy sitting on a paddleboard smiling

My shelter of choice for solo trips is the NEMO Hornet OSMO 1P tent. I love how it’s semi free-standing which makes it a breeze to set up, especially in wet conditions. It has a very light trail weight under two pounds, but it’s also super roomy for a one person tent. The internal guy-outs connect the inner shelter to the rainfly which boosts the living space inside. It also has minimal pole structure which makes it super compactable. It's great for bikepacking too!


Hilleberg Anjan 3

-- Ben, Customer Service

Hillebrand Anjan 3 in a sandy area with trees behind.

My favorite tent breaks all the ultralight rules with impunity: it's large, bulky, and heavy. The Hilleberg Anjan 3 tent is a palatial heavy-duty tunnel style shelter that serves as my home away from home. I typically walk fewer miles per day and spend more time in camp than many other hikers, which makes this tent a lot more practical. I appreciate how the front vestibule can be rolled back in sections to provide a wide open view with excellent ventilation, and the fact that it can easily accommodate three six-foot long hikers with ample headroom. Additionally, the fly and inner mesh can be connected, which makes setup and takedown a breeze. Weighing in at 3.5 pounds, this tent isn't for everybody, but the weight is more manageable if you split the weight between hikers. Hilleberg is well-known for offering quick and high quality repairs, giving this tent a long lifespan. The fact you can choose between three colors is a fun twist: just don't look at the price tag.

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