The two-person MontBell Crescent 2 is a "hybrid tent" – one side is double wall and the other side is single wall. It’s supported by a single longitudinal pole.
Montbell’s new hybrid Crescent 2 tent is supported by a single length-wise pole similar to their now discontinued Hexagon two-person double wall tent. However, the Crescent 2 is a single wall tent, with a twist: one side of the tent is double wall (with a mesh body and a waterproof fly on that side) and the other side is single wall. Technically, it’s a hybrid tent, since part of it is double wall.
Views of the Montbell Crescent 2. In the head end view (top left), the right side of the tent is double wall. The entry is through a zippered opening in the fly on the right side of the pole. The foot end of the tent (top right) has a high vent. A side view of the single wall side of the tent (bottom left) shows how the canopy extends the drip line out away from the tent. The top view (bottom right) puts all this into perspective; the top of the photo is the double wall side of the tent.
The unique feature of the MontBell Crescent 2 (besides its monopole design) is that the fly on one side of the tent can be rolled up in good weather to provide abundant ventilation and views. The left photo shows the tent with the fly staked out, and the right photo shows the fly rolled up.
By the numbers, the Crescent 2 is a roomy tent. The floor is 96 inches long and 59 inches wide, and headroom is 43 inches at the center. Area is 34 square feet. However, usable space is another matter. Since the tent hangs from a single length-wise pole, the side walls drape inward substantially, greatly reducing inside volume. With two people inside the tent, the occupants are constantly brushing against the tent walls with their heads and shoulders. The limited elbow room is not a real problem in good weather, but is not pleasant in rainy weather when the inside tent walls are wet with condensation.
Entry is through a small zippered mesh door on one end of the tent (left). The door is barely shoulder width and is accessed through a zippered opening in the tent’s fly on the right side. Seen from the inside (right), the door has a wrap-around zipper so it can be completely opened and pushed to the side out of the way.
During southern Colorado’s summer monsoon season, I had the opportunity to test the Crescent 2 in both wind and rain. In 20 + mph winds accompanying a thunderstorm, I found the tent to be quite stable, especially with either end of the tent facing the wind. The Crescent 2 comes with nine 7-inch long Y-stakes which secure the tent very well.
I found the Crescent 2 to be an effective sanctuary in mountain showers and an overnight rain (left), but it is not exempt from condensation on the inside walls (right).
When condensation forms on the inside walls, we found it prudent to sleep in the center of the tent or toward the mesh wall to avoid contacting the wet walls with our sleeping bags. However, while dressing in the morning, it was nearly impossible to avoid brushing against the wet interior walls.
Some further comments on the Crescent 2, both pro and con:
- The tent sets up very quickly
- The footprint available for the Crescent 2 is heavy: 10.2 ounces with stuff sack.
- The tent’s canopy extends the drip line well away from the tent
- Rain falls directly into the tent when the door is open.
- There is only one inside storage pocket, in the rear of the tent.
- The tent is a stealth green color, which matches the forest color very well.
- The tent has a very small entry "vestibule" but there is some storage space under the double wall side of the tent.
Overall during the test period we found that the Montbell Crescent 2 tent grew on us somewhat. Set-up is very simple and fast. It endures wind and storms well. In good weather, rolling up one side gives excellent ventilation and views. However, its limited headroom is inconvenient, and the tent’s trail weight is slightly under 3 pounds, which is heavy compared to the competition. In comparison, the Tarptent Double Rainbow weighs 2 pounds, 7.7 ounces and has two doors and two vestibules, as well as more elbow room inside.
|2008 Crescent 2|
|Hybrid two-person single wall tent (one side is double wall)|
|8.8 mm DAC Featherlight NSL|
|Nine 7-inch aluminum alloy Y-stakes|
|Canopy is 30d polyurethane coated nylon rip-stop, 1500 mm; floor is 40d PU coated nylon rip-stop, 2000 mm; 20d nylon mesh|
|96 x 59 x 45 in (inside headroom is 43 in)|
|Floor 33.9 ft2, vestibule 2.2 ft2|
|Single longitudinal pole, tent clips to pole, wrap-around zipper on entry door, one side of tent has a mesh wall and separate fly that rolls up, small mesh storage pocket in rear, bathtub floor|
|Total weight 3 lb, 1.4 oz (includes tent, pole, nine stakes, two guylines, repair sleeve, three stuff sacks); trail weight (includes tent, pole, stakes) 2 lb, 15.3 oz; manufacturer specification 3 lb total weight|
|Footprint US$35, 10.3 oz with stuff sack|