The Tarptent Moment DW is a one-person, single-hoop tunnel, silnylon double-walled backpacking tent. It has a fly-and-inner modular design that enables configuration for different use case scenarios in all four seasons. Depending on the options chosen, it weighs between 24 and 44 oz (680 - 1247 g) and costs $325 - $506.
About this Review
This Performance Review is based on our direct experience using the Tarptent Moment DW in three use-case extremes:
- as a minimalist, fly-only shelter for desert travel,
- as a double-wall winter tent in blizzard conditions, and
- as a double-wall three-season tent in heavy rainstorms.
We used the Tarptent Moment DW in desert and winter environments (Drew), and in heavy rain and high wind scenarios (Ryan). In addition, Ryan has extensive experience with similar single-hoop tents (the Hilleberg Akto and Enan, and Terra Nova Laser series), and we provide appropriate comparisons when assessing the performance of the Moment DW in the context of this market category.
- double-wall, dual entry, dual vestibules
- full-coverage fly to block wind, rain splash, and spindrift
- removable inner tent stays dry during setup
- single arch pole, 2 stake design for simple set up and small footprint
- carbon fiber struts raise ends for increased useable space and end ventilation
- fly overhangs entrance to block precipitation when entering and exiting
- fly door can be opened at the top or raised at the bottom to improve ventilation
- optional end-to-end crossing pole improves wind and snow strength, makes tent freestanding
- choice of mesh or solid inner tent
- inner tent width can be decreased to increase vestibule space for storage or cooking
Numbers in [brackets] indicate our measurements.
- sleeps: 1
- seasons: 3-4
- interior peak height: 39 in (99 cm) [39 in]
- inner tent floor width: 20/42/20 inches (51/107/51 cm) end/middle/end [19/42/19 inches]
- inner tent floor length: 84 in (213 cm) [86 in]
- inner tent area: 18.6 sq ft (1.7 sq m) [18.1 sq ft]
- vestibule area (combined): 11.1 sq ft (1.0 sq m) [13.2 sq ft]
- packaged weight (includes fly, mesh inner, struts, hybrid carbon arch pole, stakes, guylines, and stuff sacks): 34 oz (970 g) [35 oz / 992 g after seam sealing]
|fly, struts, and hoop pole||24.1 oz (683 g)|
|mesh inner tent||11.0 oz (312 g)|
|solid inner tent||13.3 oz (377 g)|
|optional crossing pole||6.9 oz (196 g)|
Product Category Overview
The Moment was first introduced as a hybrid (single/double) wall shelter in 2009. Chris Murphy reviewed the original design at Backpacking Light in 2010. A double-walled version was introduced in 2013 and it was updated in 2019. The latest update incorporated the following changes:
- re-engineered arch and fly geometry, for a tighter pitch
- 9 mm arch pole standard, for increased stability
- 3,000 mm hydrostatic head pressure rating for fly and floor, for additional waterproofness
- 2-way #5 waterproof separating vestibule zippers, for better ventilation and more durability
- smaller footprint, for pitching in tighter places
The Tarptent Moment DW is primarily a single hoop, double-wall non-freestanding tent, and we compare it to other tents in this category, including perhaps its best-known competitors, the Hilleberg Akto and Hilleberg Enan.
However, the Moment DW's modularity and component options make it somewhat of a category-spanner that reaches in two different directions. Without its inner tent, it becomes a stable, full-perimeter, floorless shelter. With a solid fabric inner and optional end-to-end crossing pole, it becomes a four-season tent capable of handling blizzard conditions and snow loading. Therefore, much of this review focuses on its versatility.
In this review we thus aim to address these questions:
- Could the Tarptent Moment DW be the only shelter system a backpacker needs, from desert sands to mountain snows?
- What compromises does it make in attempting to be a do-everything tent?
- How does it stack up against other lightweight double-wall 4-season tents?
The Moment DW seems to feature no outstanding innovations in overall design or materials over previous versions or its obvious competitors. Its strengths lie instead in execution and attention to details, and the integration of its design elements to enable performance in a variety of configurations.
Fabrics: The Moment DW fly and tent floor is constructed of 30d ripstop nylon. The floors and fly are silicone-coated for waterproofness. The mesh inner is all mesh above the silnylon bathtub floor. The solid inner is about 2/3rds uncoated nylon and 1/3 mesh above the bathtub floor. Fabric weights are 1.5 osy (ounces per square yard) for the fly and floor, and 0.8 osy for the mesh. Silnylon is well-established as a suitable fabric for lightweight tents. Both Tarptent and Hilleberg are well-known for their robust and highly waterproof silnylon fabrics, with hydrostatic head ratings in excess of 3,000 mm H2O.
Poles: The arch pole comes in either hybrid carbon/aluminum or all-aluminum (+1.7 oz / 48 g, less $18). The hybrid poles feature center (apex) sections of aluminum and end sections of carbon fiber. This arrangement presumably reduces the risk of carbon fiber pole breakage in the sections subject to the greatest bend and torsion. Carbon fiber struts are used to support the ends in Tarptent's unique Pitchloc formation, which Ryan discusses in detail in his review of the Tarptent Aeon Li.
Design: The Moment’s design emphasizes a low wind profile and several different options to facilitate ventilation (to minimize condensation). There are no high corners for the wind to grab. The arch pole gives a rounded tunnel tent geometry at its high point in the center. The dropped ends minimize the leverage of crosswinds and form a streamlined edge to face into headwinds. The arch pole fits into a continuous solid sleeve, which provides better overall tent stability (a debated topic) relative to tents that use a pole clip structure.
Ventilation: With two full-sized entrances and openable ends, the Moment seeks to maximize ventilation. The doors have double sliding zippers, allowing them to be opened from the bottom or the top. The top ends of the door zippers have vent covers to block precipitation when unzipped the first few inches. A flat buckle at the bottoms of the doors allows them to be held closed and maintain the tautness of pitch with the zippers open. The sides of the fly can be raised nearly a foot along the arch pole, and are held up with an adjustable strap and buckle. The fly doors are held open by a strap that reaches from the inside ridge and hooks on to a loop on the outside ridge. The ends of the inner tent are mesh. They can be loosely covered with a solid nylon panel secured by hook and loop. The fly end can be left open or be loosely closed with a solid nylon panel.
Member's Only Content
- Performance Assessment
- Description of Field Testing
- List of Performance Criteria
- Test Methods
- Test Environments
- Our Experience with Similar Tents
- Inclement Conditions Performance - Winter
- Inclement Conditions Performance - Desert
- Inclement Conditions Performance - Heavy Rain
- Livability: Inner tent, vestibule, entry and exit, wind noise, fly-only configuration
- Ease of Setup
- Quality of Materials and Manufacturing
- Issues of Note
- Compared To
- Strengths and Limitations
- Who Should Consider This Product
- Who Should Not Consider This Product
- Recommendations for Improvement
Member's only version is 8,500 words and includes 18 photographs and/or illustrations.
Review Rating: Highly Recommended
The Tarptent Moment DW is really more a tent system than a tent. Its modular design allows hikers to configure their shelter for the conditions expected. There is some tradeoff for this versatility. Although this tent is very storm-worthy, it is not a mountaineering tent. And although it is light, it is not ultralight. But the bottom line is that it will provide a lightweight highly-dependable shelter in nearly all conditions a 4-season backpacker will encounter. It could be the only shelter system a hiker needs. Its primary limitations are aesthetic in nature and related to manufacturing finish quality. When compared to the Hilleberg Enan, the Moment DW offers a similar feature set, with the added benefit of a hybrid carbon arch pole to save a little weight, and an additional crossing pole option to help with snow loading. The Enan offers higher-performance materials and manufacturing quality, but at a price that is almost double that of the Moment DW. Thus, with the Moment DW, you get an extraordinarily versatile tent at a very reasonable price - and that makes it worthy of our Highly Recommended Rating.
- Learn more about our Review Ratings.
Where to Buy
- But the Tarptent Moment DW here.
- Tarptent Notch Li Review
- Tarptent Stratospire Li Review
- Tarptent Moment Review (2010)
- Hilleberg Akto Review (2006)
- Hyperlite Mountain Gear Dirigo Review
- See some Tarptent mods and terrific photography of Tarptents in the wild with our members in The Tarptent Thread in the forums.
DISCLOSURE (Updated November 7, 2019)
- Product(s) discussed in this article may have been purchased by the author(s) from a retailer or direct from a manufacturer, or by Backpacking Light for the author. The purchase price may have been discounted as a result of our industry professional status with the seller. However, these discounts came with no obligation to provide media coverage or a product review. Backpacking Light does not accept compensation or donated/discounted products in exchange for guaranteed media placement or product review coverage.
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