Zach and I acquired the Kelty TN2 tent straight from the Kelty vendors at Appalachian Trail Days 2016 for a great price. Originally, we were just seeking them out for help repairing Zach’s Kelty pack. When they insisted on replacing Zach’s entire pack for free (considering he had worn it to absolute pieces for 2,000+ miles), we recognized Kelty as a brand we wanted to continue to do business with.
So with Kelty among all the vendors out with their best, newest gear, Trail Days was the perfect place to finally find a trail home we could live with.
And I have been so impressed and in love with the Kelty TN2 ever since.
- Effective Shelter from the Wet
The number one most phenomenal thing about this design is that it keeps you dry.
The waterproof brilliance is in the rain fly. The tent itself is freestanding, and because the rain fly material encloses the body’s structure with the bare minimum of contact, there is no possibility for the material to leak water into the main body, AKA where you are sleeping. Stake out the corners of the fly nice and taut (so water doesn’t pool and drip) and close to the ground. You will be mercifully dry.
We took this tent on our trip through Scotland, and while it rained frequently, even the most powerful gale was no match for the safe haven of our TN2. Not a drop entered the main body, even on the stormiest nights. And most of the time, even the gear we stored in the vestibules were perfectly dry.
Also note, we weren’t even using the footprint.
Our TN2 is classified as a two man tent, and both Zach and I are of average size. It fits us well, with plenty of wiggle room in the main body. There are also nifty pockets at the top of the tent for little things you might like by you in the night such as a headlamp, TP, or a good book.
The ‘Stargazing Fly’ allows for flexibility with the size of the vestibules. When the fly is completely covering the tent its like having an extra tent worth of space in the vestibules. In Scotland we were always able to store all of our gear within the vestibules comfortably.
You can also roll the fly halfway back for stargazing, keeping half the vestibule space. Or, keep the fly in its stuff sack and have an unhindered view of the night sky with the tent’s mesh body. This part of the design is brilliant because it truly accommodates 3 seasons.
Packaged weight: 4 lbs 4 oz.
The weight is a bit more than ideal, but it is easily distributed between two people. Share the weight of the rain fly or the poles to get it down to a more favorable figure.
4. Pitching the Tent
Set up for the tent takes barely any time at all. The tent itself, with the poles and the ‘hug clips’ which are just a quick twist to secure, takes maybe two minutes to assemble. It almost pops itself up into place.
The rain fly takes a little more time because it is important to stretch the material in a way that prevents the possibility of water pooling. But in good, warm weather why even bother? Without the fly it’s like you are cowboy camping, without the bugs.
Kelty provides ‘Tent Cube stuff sack’ to help save room in your pack with the tent, but Zach and I like to forgo the sack and just use our other gear to compact the tent into the bottom of our packs. Either way, it won’t take up your whole pack.
There is so much about the TN2 that works for me and Zach on the trail. As a couple, we can distribute the weight. The cabin size and the vestibules are the perfect size for comfort and for protecting the rest of our gear. The rain fly is incredibly versatile, offering a full range of cover options. And most importantly, unlike every other tent we have tried, this design is amazingly effective at keeping us dry. That’s the most important thing to me and if only for that, I highly recommend this tent.
To check out more specific details and full pictures of the tent in all it’s forms, check out: