When fall hits and the air starts to cool, it means hunting season is finally here. Hunters across the nation begin preparation for not only chasing their hunting dreams but also spending more than a fair share of nights out in the hills. And while some have campers to bring along, most folks are breaking out the camping gear and crawling into a tent night after night.
Whether you’re setting up a cozy truck camp or trekking deep into the backcountry, we’ve broken down a list of tents that will serve on all fronts.
Scroll through to see all of our recommended buys, or jump to the category you’re looking for. At the end of our list, be sure to check out our comprehensive buyer’s guide.
- Best Budget
- Best Wall Tent
- Best Rooftop
- Best Ultralight Dome
- Best 4-Season Tent
- Best Stove-Capable
- Best One-Person Minimalist
- Editor’s Pick
- Best of the Rest
The Best Hunting Tents of 2023
Best Budget: Kelty Discovery Trail 2P
Since 1952 Kelty has been creating outdoor products, so they know a thing or two about living outside. Its new-for-2022 Discovery Trail 2P tent ($115) hits on all levels, delivering performance and efficiency at a price that won’t make you choke on your breakfast.
This three-season freestanding dome-style tent tips the scales at 4 pounds 14 ounces. It’s got one door and a generous vestibule provided by the rainfly. Both the rainfly and the floor are made from 68D polyester, with the canopy being No-See-Um-Mesh. On the inside, you’ll find storage pockets as well as a vent to let things air out.
The Discovery 2P comes with two aluminum poles, a bag of stakes, and a Shark Mouth carry bag for easy packup.
One of the coolest features of this tent is Kelty’s Quick Corners. The aluminum poles simply slide into these at all four corners and in no time, the frame of the tent is set. After attaching a few of the tent clips to the poles in place, you’re off to the hills to find the buck of your dreams.
Backpack into the mountains or set up a comfy truck camp. The Kelty Discovery Trail 2P is ready and will make sure you’ve got money left over to hit the burger joint at the end of your hunt.
- Price: $119
- Capacity: 2 people
- Weight: 4 lbs., 4 oz.
- Season: 3
Best Wall Tent: Montana Canvas
Talking about tents for hunting camps without mentioning a traditional wall tent would just be wrong. Montana Canvas keeps the legacy that is wall tents alive with its Traditional 10 Oz. Canvas Wall Tent.
They are the ultimate in protection from the elements and offer about as comfortable living conditions as one could get south of an actual log cabin. Montana Canvas’s Traditional 10 oz. Canvas Wall Tent ($1,490-3,970) is made right here in the USA from grade A canvas. That canvas is treated for fire, mold, and mildew.
A generous dimension of 23x23x26″ provides plenty of room, and the 62 pounds of material provide ample strength. That weight does not include frames, floor, or fly, which are sold separately.
What does come with the tent is a storage bag, stakes, rope (200 feet), and rope tension adjusters. You’ll also get one standard-sized window on the back wall and a zippered (YKK) door with a buckled weather flap. Oh, and let’s not forget about the 5-inch oval stove jack so you can put that stove to use when the temps drop.
The canvas life is a good life. If a traditional cabin-style wall tent sounds about perfect for you, don’t sleep on the Traditional 10 oz. Canvas Wall Tent from Montana Canvas. Sleep in one.
- Price: $1,390-3,970
- Capacity: 6+ people
- Weight: 62+ lbs.
- Season: 4
Best Rooftop: Thule Tepui Explorer Ayer 2p Tent
The benefits of rooftop tents are many, and those benefits translate seamlessly right into hunting camps. For the hunter looking to tap into the rooftop tent world, the Thule Tepui Explorer Ayer ($1,500) will serve you well.
Thule/Tepui is well known in the rooftop tent game, and its Explorer Ayer lives up to the brand’s good reputation. This tent is made from a coated 600-denier and 260G poly-cotton blend that are both UV and mold-resistant.
The 2p model of the Explorer Ayer can sleep up to two people and comes with a comfortable 2.5-inch high-density foam mattress. The total weight of the tent comes in at 100 pounds with a weight capacity of 400 pounds.
On the outside of the Explorer Ayer, you’ll find attachment points for lamps as well as several areas to store extra gear. Inside the tent, there are panoramic skylights and windows that give a view of the stars and also help keep the tent ventilated. And with the four internal storage pockets, you can enjoy some organization in your tent.
Let’s face it. Setting up and tearing down camp takes time, which is time being taken away from hunting. Rooftop tents, like the Explorer Ayer, offer an efficiency that gets you in the field quicker. More time hunting and less time fiddling with camping gear.
- Price: $1,500
- Capacity: 2 people
- Weight: 100 lbs.
- Season: 3
Best Ultralight Dome: Nemo Hornet 2p
Ounces add up to pounds, and pounds equal pain. For the backpack hunter looking to cut weight but still carry the classic dome-style tent that we all know so well, the Nemo Hornet 2p ($400) is as good as they come.
The Nemo Hornet 2p is a three-season semi-freestanding ultralight tent made with comfort and livability in mind. By using top-tier products and innovation, Nemo is able to keep the weight down and space up. And 2 pounds, 6 ounces is all that’ll be weighing down your backpack with the Hornet 2p. All Hornets come with stakes, repair patches, guy-out cord, and Nemo’s Divvy Dual stage stuff sack.
This is a one-pole construction tent, so setup is an absolute breeze, as is not having to juggle with multiple poles in the field. And the poles are clipped onto Nemo’s patented Flybar volumizing pole clips. This helps increase space while keeping the weight down.
There is a door on each side of the tent, with each having its own vestibule for storing gear. This a great feature for those looking to share this tent with someone. You’ll also find a light pocket where a headlamp can be placed to help light up your tent at night.
Backpack hunters need efficiency and effectiveness without compromising performance in the field. The Nemo Hornet 2p tent is a winner in all categories.
- Price: $400
- Capacity: 2 people
- Weight: 2 lbs., 6 oz.
- Season: 3
Best 4-Season Tent: Hilleberg Nallo 2 GT
Hunting season doesn’t stop at three seasons. Those looking for a four-season tent demand exceptional performance and durability. For the best in that category, Hilleberg reigns supreme with its Nallo 2 GT ($970).
Hilleberg has long been known for tents with superior strength and durability. This is why Hilleberg easily lands in the best four-season tent category. Made out of Kerlon 1200 on the outside tent fabric and held up with 9mm poles, this tent is a bomber setup that is ready for the worst of conditions.
Its all-weather construction brings those outer tent walls all the way to the ground, and its tunneled design offers a healthy amount of living space — all of that with only four pegs required for setup.
The Nallo 2 GT is a single-entry tent that can house two individuals and gear. It has a generously sized extended vestibule for this reason. This provides plenty of room to store gear outside of your sleeping quarters. Not to mention that the vestibule is completely enclosed for extra protection.
You can purchase an optional footprint to cover the entirety of the tent floor and vestibule. On top of that, the outer tent and inner tent can be used separately, adding to the versatility of the Nallo.
One word comes to mind for the Nallo 2 GT, and that is “bombproof.” The Nallo 2 GT from Hilleberg is the ultimate in all-weather tent designs.
- Price: $970
- Capacity: 2 people
- Weight: 5 lbs., 1 oz.
- Season: 4
Best Stove-Capable: Kifaru Sawtooth
When the temperatures drop, being able to utilize a wood-burning stove in a tent is an absolute game-changer. The Kifaru Sawtooth ($930-1,330) is a favorite among hardcore hunters needing the aid of a stove for late-season hunting trips.
The name Kifaru stands tall in the hunting community. Kifaru, as its slogan says, makes “gear for life.” From backpacks to sleeping bags, Kifaru knows what it takes to live in the mountains for extended periods of time. The uniquely designed Sawtooth tent was made with durability and practicality in mind.
Coming in at 4 pounds 8 ounces, the Sawtooth will excel whether you’re at the truck or heading deep into the backcountry with a buddy. You’ll get two poles but will have to order your own stakes. Twenty stakes are the recommended number for optimal performance.
Kifaru also offers a footprint for the Sawtooth if you’d like. And, of course, hunters have the option of Kifaru cutting out a stove jack. Sizes of either 3.25, 3.5, 4, or 6 inches in diameter are available. These numbers are based on the stove designs Kifaru sells.
This all-weather tent is held up by a front pole and rear pole, with the entrance located at the front pole. The cool thing about this design is that it offers the efficiency of a tarp with the stand-up room of a tipi.
So, by sleeping towards the shallow end, by the rear pole, the Sawtooth will enable one to stand up toward the front pole and get dressed. It’s the little things that matter, and this one has a big plus.
Home is where the heart is, and Kifaru puts plenty of heart into designing their gear. The Sawtooth is a shining example of that in a stove-ready package.
- Price: $930-1,330
- Capacity: 2 people
- Weight: 4 lbs., 8 oz.
- Season: 4
Best 1-Person Minimalist: Stone Glacier SkyAir ULT
Some hunters like to bring it all and the kitchen sink, while others are true minimalists. If it’s the simple life you’re after in a tent, the Stone Glacier SkyAir ULT ($170) has your name written all over it.
Stone Glacier has only been in the tent game for a few years, but the company has amassed a dedicated following for its minimalist designs. Their SkyAir ULT keeps the pack weight down, tipping the scales at a mere 8 ounces, yet is large enough for two hunters and gear.
The outer tarp fabric is made of nylon 6, 6 ripstop 10D Sil/Sil and is reinforced with nylon 6, 6 ripstop 30D sil/sil. Included with the tent are six stakes and a stuff sack.
One of the ways Stone Glacier keeps the weight down is by doing away with tent poles. Instead, you’ll set the SkyAir ULT up with your trekking poles. One in the front and one in the back. And if you choose, Stone Glacier also offers a mesh insert, flat footprint, and vestibule that are sold separately.
The total weight for all of that with the tent is 1 pound 11.3 ounces, by the way. Still super lightweight and functional.
The Stone Glacier SkyAir ULT. It’s everything you need and nothing you don’t.
- Price: $170
- Capacity: 1+ people
- Weight: 1 lb., 11.3 oz.
- Season: 2
Editor’s Pick: Argali Absaroka 4P Tent
We couldn’t complete this list without adding a quick editor’s pick.
“I have now hunted in the Argali Absaroka 4P Tent ($398) for archery elk season here in Montana, and though I haven’t put it through the rigors of a hard snow or cold temps, the sheer lightweight nature of this tent is impressive. The ability to add a stove to this setup at such a minimal weight means I’ll be able to test this tent throughout the year (with the addition of the insert).
“I can’t report on longevity, durability, or winter hardiness just yet, but to say I’m impressed is an understatement. It deserves a spot in our Best Hunting Tents — until I can prove otherwise.” — Rachelle Schrute, Hunt & Fish Editor
- Price: $398
- Capacity: 4 people
- Weight: 1 lb., 14 oz.
- Season: 4
Best of the Rest
Oh, the Best of the rest: a category for those gear items that don’t fit anywhere else or fit everywhere else. For that, we landed on Cabela’s Alaskan Guide Model Geodesic 4-Person Tent ($400).
The Alaskan Guide Model Geodesic is a classic design that has stood the test of time. Its seven-pole design and 75-denier polyester ripstop construction make for a tent that can handle anything that you can. This four-season dome-style tent includes 24 aluminum stakes, 16 tie-downs, a 2-ounce seam sealer, and a repair kit to boot.
The shape is the real gem here. That, combined with the pole layout, creates an extremely stable platform capable of handling extreme weather. The total weight of the tent is 24 pounds, 11 ounces.
On the outside of the Alaskan Guide Tent, you’ll find reinforced guy line loops. And on the inside, there is a rugged 210-denier polyester oxford floor along with multiple storage pockets for gear.
Also on the inside, there are roof hooks, cup holders, and a gear loft to aid in organization. All of the zippers on the tent are #8 and #10 YKK zippers.
Alaska offers some of the harshest testing environments there are. And after 25 years of testing tents, the Alaskan Guide Model Geodesic from Cabela’s is still standing. It’s the Best of the Rest for a reason.
- Price: $400
- Capacity: 4 people
- Weight: 24 lbs., 11 oz.
- Season: 4
Why You Should Trust Us
We spend a ton of time in the field hunting in various conditions, terrains, and locations. From sweltering heat to sub-zero chill, we’ve hunted through it all. One thing that can make or break a hunt is a bad camp setup.
Our tents are our reprieve from the elements. They give us shelter after being exposed during long hunts, and for the most part, we carry them and their parts on our backs. We’ve learned what matters most and what can be left behind.
We know the value of a strong canvas tent and stove when the temps dip. The lightweight nature of the best backpacking tents versus the protection they offer is at the forefront of our minds.
Rain. Snow. Wind. Heat. Cold.
We’ve been there. We’ve done that. We’ve slept in tents through it all.
Buyer’s Guide: How to Choose the Best Hunting Tent
Choosing Between Floored and Floorless Tents
One of the most significant differences between all of the tents listed above is that some of them have floors, and some don’t. While it may not seem like much, there are some considerable pros and cons of each route. To have a floor or not? That is the question we will explore.
Floored tents are completely enclosed tents with some type of floor that separates you and your gear from the elements. These are the most popular style of tent used for hunting and just outdoor recreation in general.
The biggest benefit to having a floor in your tent is keeping what’s outside, well … outside. And more particularly, I’m talking about the creepy-crawlies. When there is a floor, you don’t have to deal with the possibility of a mouse or spider scurrying across your face. I’ve dealt with it, and it sucks.
Not having to deal with those little buggers is not only less of a hassle overall, but it leads to better sleep. Our tents need to be the place where we reset and recharge. It’s hard to do that with a pesky critter keeping you up.
Along with that, a floor gives a person a dry place to set things down in the tent. Things like extra clothing, electronics, etc. Without a floor, if the ground is wet or covered in snow, you don’t have that luxury.
While having a floor is nice and all, it isn’t all peaches and cream. For one, having a floor often eliminates the ability to utilize a wood-burning stove. The floor can be a fire hazard, and while wood-burning stoves provide a nice warm and fuzzy feeling, the possibility of your “home” going up in flames while you sleep is a different game and not one I recommend playing.
Another downside of a floor is that whatever you bring into the tent on your boots generally stays in the tent. Be it rocks, sticks, mud, etc. — it makes for a mess if you’re not conscious of your footwear. And if you’ve got wet clothes, guess what? Yeah, that water is coming inside with you.
Lastly, this is more for backpack hunting, but a floor is more weight. There is a reason that quite a few backpack hunters prefer a floorless shelter, and this is one of the big ones. Less weight in the pack means less stress on your body.
Floored tents might be the most common tent used throughout the outdoor/hunting community, but floorless tents have been at this game for much longer. Be it Native American tipi-style shelters or just the classic lean-to shelter made out of logs and sticks, floorless tents are the original hunting tents.
There is way more living area in these floorless tents than tents with a floor have, especially when taking the weight into consideration. Two-person floorless tents seem to actually be two-person tents. With a floored tent, a two-person tent really means one person, comfortably. It’s a tight squeeze for anything more.
Believe it or not, sleeping in the dirt within the walls of a floorless tent is also less messy. There isn’t a tent floor to get dirty, and the ground is simply the ground. Fewer worries about mold, mildew, and just general filth: no post-hunt hose-off required.
Floorless tents offer yet another convenience, and that is being able to cook inside your tent. (Be bear aware!). Whether on a wood-burning stove or just a backpacking stove, there is no floor creating a fire hazard. So, when the alarm sounds in the morning, just roll over, fire up the stove, and get the coffee going.
(We don’t recommend cooking inside your tent in high-density bear areas. Eat away from your tent and keep your food in a secure place, whether that’s in a tree or in your vehicle.)
When we take away the floor, we open up the door to potential visitors. Things like mice, spiders, and whatever else is lurking about can freely move right into your humble abode. When temperatures drop, this doesn’t seem to be as big of an issue.
If you’ve done a little window shopping, you may have noticed that floorless tents are more expensive than tents with floors. So, there aren’t as many budget options to get into the floorless game as there are in the floored one. This limits folks from living the floorless life altogether.
Floorless tents usually have a way bigger footprint than floored tents. There are floored tents the size of a deer bed, meaning finding a spot to set one up is much easier. Floorless tents, however, require some more real estate. In really steep country, this could pose a problem.
Floors or no floors, each one of these tents serves a purpose, and some shine brighter in certain situations than others. Try them out for yourself. That is the only accurate way you’ll know if one is better than the other for you.
For instance, I’ve found that I prefer to sleep in a floorless tent when it gets colder, but hate it during warmer months when I’m contending with all manner of bugs. I would have never known that had I not tried. You know what they say:
If at first, you don’t succeed, at least you tried it out and disqualified it from the possible options that might fit you best.
Or something like that.