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.
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.
Video: A tour of the inside of the Montbell Crescent 2 during a rainstorm.
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.
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.
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