The MSR Hubba Hubba NX. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

The MSR Hubba Hubba NX. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

Price: £370
Weight: 1,708g
Colour: grey/red
Packed size: 48cm x 19cm x 14cm
Material: fly, 20D ripstop nylon; inner mesh, 15D nylon
Poles: aluminium
Country of manufacture: Taiwan

The Hubba Hubba is the brand’s bestselling two-person tent and tips the scales at less than 2kg. It’s reasonably compact too and comes in a top-loading bag with drawstring and compression straps, so slotting the rolled-up tent back into its pack was easy.

Poles and fittings are good quality. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

Poles and fittings are good quality. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

The MSR tent pitches inner-first, and putting it up is a simple process. The four corners of the inner tent are pegged out, then the poles, which come as one shockcorded unit, slot into the metal grommets at each corner. The inner then hangs from plastic clips that attach to the poles. A ‘floating’ short centre pole inserts into two grommets over the doors, to give the tent porches their extra sideways width.

The fly then goes over and its grommets go over the pole ends. Each has a tensioning strap and buckle. The two side porches are then pegged out.

There is, however, the option of pitching the fly first and then hanging the inner, which might be an attractive option if you’re trying to keep dry. If you’re fortunate enough to be camping in very warm weather, you can pitch the fly only and use a footprint, available to buy as an extra. The fly can also be rolled half back in hot weather, allowing a nice view of the night sky through the net sections of the inner. If it’s very hot and you’re confident of there being no rain, the inner tent can be pitched on its own.

The double-y construction of the poles gives good stability, especially when the tent it guyed out. There was little movement in the moderately strong winds encountered during testing.

The inner can be used on its own in good weather. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

The inner can be used on its own in good weather. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

The inner is quite roomy for a backpacking tent, accommodating two inflatable mats side-by-side. It has good length too, and will easily accommodate six-footers in its 213cm length.

The end walls of the inner rise almost vertically initially, so there’s no sense of the tent fabric encroaching into the sleeper’s head space. Headroom in the centre of the tent is good at 1m, easily enough for most people to sit up in, or even kneel with a little care. Again, the inner’s roof doesn’t slope sharply so there’s a good feeling of space.

The waterproof (3,000mm head) 30D nylon groundsheet material extends upwards quite a way at each end of the inner and also for a good section of the sides, dipping only at the doors. This gives good draught protection when lying down.

There are doors each side, accessible via the porches on each side of the fly.

The design makes good use of space. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

The design makes good use of space. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

There are extensive mesh sections in the inner tent, so condensation wasn’t a problem, even on cool nights. This does mean, however, the Hubba Hubba is not the warmest of tents. There are smallish mesh storage pockets at either end of the inner.

The flysheet also has Velcro-fastening vents at each end with kickstands to hold them open.

The porch areas are a good size for a lightweight tent and had no problem accommodating a large backpacking rucksack.

The porches’ rain gutters stop drips entering the tent well.

Quality of the MSR tent is very good. The 10 supplied MSR Needle pegs are strong but light; the DAC Featherlite aluminium poles are also very strong, and the fittings are well made and look durable.

The Hubba Hubba NX scored well for space and stability. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

The Hubba Hubba NX scored well for space and stability. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

The design makes very good use of the available space and the Hubba Hubba NX is versatile enough to cope with lots of different weather conditions, though the amount of mesh in the inner means it’s not especially warm, so in very cold temperatures it may not be ideal.

For two people backpacking, the MSR tent can be split for carrying so each has less than a kilo in the pack. There’s enough space and porch area not to feel cramped when sharing, and the two doors mean you don’t have to clamber over the other person to get in and out of the tent. For one person who doesn’t mind carrying the full weight themselves, there’s lots of space inside and under the fly.

Pitching and striking was easy, and the tent was stable in winds. Although aimed at lightweight backpackers, the Hubba Hubba NX is roomy enough for camping out of the car too.

Performance 18/20
Stability 17/20
Room 17/20
Ease of pitching/striking 7/10
Weight 7/10
Quality 9/10
Value for money 7/10
Total 82/100

  • The Hubba Hubba NX was supplied to grough by MSR.

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