REI Dash 2 (2-Person, Double Wall) Tent Review

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Home Forums Campfire Editor’s Roundtable REI Dash 2 (2-Person, Double Wall) Tent Review

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    Stephanie Jordan


    Locale: Rocky Mountains
    Adam Kilpatrick
    BPL Member


    Locale: South Australia

    The performance in that is a bit disappointing but I guess you can't have everything.

    Daryl and Daryl
    BPL Member


    Locale: Pacific Northwest, USA, Earth

    For my use the two beefs with this tent would be:

    (1) Condensation on the high bathtub floor walls that would touch my sleeping bag and

    (2) Lots of mosquito netting combined with skimpy fly makes for a cooler nights sleep. I prefer lots of solid fabric and a full coverage fly.

    This probably says more about me than the tent, however. Most lightweight tents have these two problems and most people I know aren't bothered by them. Addressing these two beefs would also add some weight to the tent.

    I agree with the positive conclusions of the review.

    Rex Sanders
    BPL Member


    Locale: California


    Why did you choose the Tarptent Scarp 2 instead of the Double Rainbow for comparison to the REI Dash 2? The Double Rainbow is much closer in specifications. And you reviewed the Double Rainbow in 2006!

    Still, the REI Dash 2 is now on my short list for a two-person tent.


    — Rex

    Will Rietveld
    BPL Member


    Locale: Southwest Colorado

    Rex, the Double Rainbow is a very nice tent but it is not double wall. The sides are double wall, but the ceiling and ends are single wall; overall the tent is a hybrid.

    Sam Farrington
    BPL Member


    Locale: Chocorua NH, USA

    The bottom left photo in the 4 exterior view photos shows well how open the fly is to the wind on all sides of the tent. While ventilation is important, I like to bring the fly to the ground, or very close to the ground, on at least three sides of the tent. That is to prevent, or at least greatly reduce ballooning in high winds, which can inflate and shake a tent canopy to failure, while in the meantime, making life very unpleasant for the tent's occupants.

    Daniel Pittman


    Locale: Central Texas

    Great review, especially the comparison charts. I'm glad REI is starting to embrace lighter gear, and this tent looks like a great deal. I'm a tarp/bivy guy, but I'll need a real tent to get my GF to go camping with me. Guess I know what to spend my dividend on now!

    Michael Driscoll
    BPL Member


    Locale: Monterey Bay

    Samuel brings up a good point; but then I was one of four trying to set up a Big Agnes Fly Creek 2 Platinum in the wind & having a tough time of it a while back… I also wonder if the change of REI return policy is allowing for this kind of design and what they may have coming out in the future…

    Thanks nice review Will…

    Phillip Asby
    BPL Member


    Locale: North Carolina

    That is a step forward offering from REI. Out Scout Troop has a bunch of halfdome 2's which are IIRC roughly 6 pounds each – although they've stoop up to hard scout use rather well which is beyond what these materials are intended to endure.

    I have and LLBean Microlight FS2 as my 2 person tent which is a hair under 4 pounds – and is obviously not amongst the lightest of options although it remains a great tent that I paid IIRC about $165 for new using a 25% off camp coupon (list was only 200ish) so it's a lot less expensive. I've used it as a solo tent and it sure is roomy. Weight coming from 30 denier silnylon which was pretty advanced for a mid market shop like LL Bean but not advanced by BPL standards I guess.

    Still the weight of some of these two person options make them really appealing in lieu of, say, my BA Seedhouse SL1 which weights nearly as much as the Dash 2.. and is a good bit smaller…!

    Dale Wambaugh
    BPL Member


    Locale: Pacific Northwest

    Good photos. Those top views really show the coverage.

    It's light, but I don't like the fly— too little coverage on the foot end.

    Kerry Fristoe


    Great article, however, I wish Mountain Hardwear's SuperMega UL2 had been included in the comparison.New Mexico

    Will Rietveld
    BPL Member


    Locale: Southwest Colorado

    The MH SuperMega 2 deserves to be on the list. Here's the specs: minimum wt 34 oz, floor area 27 sq ft, 1 end entry, 36" of headroom, $450. Floor dimensions not provided.

    Ivan Dominguez
    BPL Member


    Locale: Canary Islands

    Interesting tent for recommend.

    James Marco
    BPL Member


    Locale: Finger Lakes

    Will, I think you are correct with the reversal to the wind. The strongest section of any tent should be towards the wind. This will leave the weakest sections supported by the internal air pressure. However with this tent, due to the mesh and high ventilation, I doubt there will be any loosening of the stakes.
    Good review!

    Vitaliy Galeta


    I am really surprised to see that there is no GoLite Imogene UL 2 in comparison chart.

    Will Rietveld
    BPL Member


    Locale: Southwest Colorado

    Thanks for pointing that out. The GoLite Imogene 2 is another good comparison. Specs are: minimum weight 40 oz/floor area 29 square feet/one end entry/$300. Floor dimensions not provided.

    Diane Pinkers
    BPL Member


    Locale: Western Washington

    I'd be curious to know how this tent holds up in conditions like the Olympics or other wet climates. I'm thinking that the condensation might be worse, and the vestibules are not going to keep gear dry either.

    John Nielsen
    BPL Member


    Locale: Matanuska Valley, Alaska

    The Anjan 2 targets the light weight backpacking couple as well. It is heavier, mine is down to 52 ounces, has one entrance (tunnel tent), and good space. What sets it apart in my view is that it is comfortable in Alaskan Alpine 3 season storms. It received one negative review initially that reported splashing water coming in under the fly, the zipper leaking and some other leak. I have not experienced that. Others have reported no problems as well. I particularly appreciate that normally the poles are attached to the fly so the inner tent is easily removed. This really helps keep the inner tent dry as the fly goes up first and the inner can be easily taken down first and stored separately during nasty weather. The outer makes a great day shelter for cooking and living in. Several configurations are possible making it very flexible.

    It received several awards. It is not for every Backpacking Light enthusiast, but I'd be curious as to what others here think about it relative to the light weight backpacking couple.

    Michael Ray
    BPL Member


    Locale: Midwest

    I'd be interested whether it can be setup in a downpour without soaking the inside. Once you have the fly up, how difficult is it to pitch the tent under it?

    Andrew Martin
    BPL Member


    Locale: PacNW

    I was also a little disappointed by the wind/snow performance buy stopping by REI in Seattle last week to check out a Dash 2, I'm not surprised. If the poles at the foot-end hub went all the way to the corners like they do on the Copper Spur or Hubba Hubba NX, the wind and snow wouldn't be a problem.

    Speaking as a 3+ year owner of a Copper Spur Ul2 I can say that wind does not cause arch inversion.

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