What is the Right Size?The size of a tent is measured by the number of people that can comfortably sleep inside it, and a 1 man tent obviously means there is just enough room for one. The keyword here is “enough”. There are no standard measurements as far as tent sizes are concerned so while brand A and brand B both offer a single person tent, the sleeping area is probably not the same.
Unless you’re a backpacker and don’t carry a lot of camping gear, opt one size bigger. Even if you are hiking alone, chances are you’re going to need the extra space for the equipment you will be packing, and of course you could always use the additional sleeping area. However if you’re sure you won’t need the extra space and don’t need extra elbow room, a single person tent will suffice. Just make sure to check the specs as some one person tents are more spacious than others.
What Tent Shape is Best?
Single person tents today are available in a wide array of shapes and styles, and it’s a matter of individual preference. Here’s a quick look at the most popular types:
- Ridge tent: also known as A frames, these are the classic tent shapes with a support pole along the top and poles at both ends. Ridge tents are easy to set up and the poles are sturdy enough to withstand extended use. Look for compact ridge tents that are light and have ample room inside.
- Pop Up Tents: also called quick pitch or instant tents, these tents pop up and ideal if you’re new to hiking or backpacking for the first time. There is no need to assemble the poles as they are already in the fabric, and once the frame is released the tent is ready. Because pop up tents are flexible and easy to use they’re ideal for beginners, but use them only in fair weather where there are no strong winds.
- Vis-à-vis: Vis-à-vis tents are often tapered on the ends with a couple of sleeping areas facing one another. These tents can come in either dome or tunnel shape, and there’s an opening in the center with enough room for you to stand up. While these are meant for two people, you might find it useful if you need plenty of room.
Backpacking TentWhether you call it a backpacking or hiking tent, what they share in common is being light, and as you’re on your own this is will be important. Backpack tents are smaller and lighter than regular tents but are waterproof to varying degrees. If you’re going to camp in an open area, make sure the tent is stable enough to withstand the wind, and if you’re going to be on the move the tent has to be easy to pitch and set up.
While searching for the best 1 person tent, you might come across the term “weekend tent”. This is a term used to describe tents for short or weekend hiking / camping. While the term often applies to single person tents, it’s a general term and sometimes used for other types of tents as well.
Inflatable TentsAlso known as blow up or air tents, these are relatively new but gaining popularity among solo campers and hikers because they are so easy to pitch. Instead of the typical pole these tents have beams or tubes filled with air, with the tubes being filled via a pump. While these single person tents are more expensive than regular tents and a bit heavier, it only takes a few minutes to set one up.
Geodesic tents refer to those that have crisscrossing poles that create a triangular surface. This is preferred by adventurous hikers because they are built to withstand strong winds and stable enough to be set up on mountains or exposed, windy areas.
Single vs. Double Skinned1 person tents are either double or single skinned. A single skin tent is comprised of one waterproof layer and is often constructed from breathable fabrics to provide sufficient ventilation.
Double skinned tents are made up of an inner tent that is typically not waterproof and constructed from full or partial mesh. The outer skin is known as a flysheet and is the one that is waterproof. It is the outer skin that provides protection for the inner tent and also offers space between the skins to minimize condensation and assist with insulation.
Double Skin Pros
- Offers better insulation
- Provides superior protection from condensation and rain
- Even if the outer tent is damaged there is still protection
- Heavier than single skinned tents
- More expensive
Single Skinned Tent Pros
- More affordable than double skinned tents
- More interior space
- Does not provide as much insulation
- Provides very little protection if the skin gets torn
Wrapping Up Our Discussion on 1 Man Tents
When shopping for an ultralight 1 person tent, it’s always a good idea to read customer reviews. One of the nice things about buying tents on the web is you now have the opportunity to read what people have to say about it and if the claims being made for it are true. In particular you should focus on aspects like sleeping area and ease of set up and take down as you’ll be doing it alone.