Published on July 29th, 2017 | by Greg0
Kelty’s Gunnison 4 Tent: An Updated Classic
Change can be challenging, even difficult. It doesn’t matter if it’s a minor change in a soda formula, a new smartphone form factor, or a tweak to a user interface- updates matter. Nothing is perfect, though, and technological progress brings new materials or methods of construction, improvements large and small. And even the most traditional of activities, like enjoying some time in the great outdoors, boast many ways for companies to shake their gear up a bit and make them just a bit better.
The Kelty Gunnison 4.3 Tent is a perfect example of the power of change- this new version for 2017 is a few ounces lighter, but still packs up tight and offers plenty of room (in fact, a bit more space than previously). Each modification on its own isn’t enormous, but taken together, they make for a very compelling update for anyone who is looking for a three-season option which offers a ton of features for the class. We especially appreciate the included foot print and dual-zipper vestibule, which offers lots of storage even if you do fill it up with four kids or a few large adults.
Unlike many tents this size, the freestanding Gunnison 4 sets up fast thanks to an innovative system, and though we do recommend doing it with two people, you can pull it off with a single person just fine. It’s well-sealed against the rain, so even in fairly severe storms, you (and your belongings) should stay high and dry. Zippers and seams were solid, though we did notice ventilation wasn’t great- it’s often a bit of a trade-off and this one felt well-sealed but could get stuffy. One thoughtful feature we hope to see become common: it rolls up and is much simpler to pack than most of the competition.
Car campers who don’t mind extra weight can find something a little more spacious, but for backpackers or trailblazers, this is a fantastic pick. Smaller versions are available for solo travelers or couples; Kelty even offers a fairly unusual three-person edition. Earlier this year, we checked out one of their sleeping bags, and we’ve even seen their awesome inflatable tent, but the Gunnison 4 is a friendly, easy-to-like, good all-around companion. It’s nice to see refinement in our outdoor gear, and as you might expect, it’s the little things- a pocket, a few extra inches inside- that make the difference. Kelty’s Gunnison 4.3 (the new third edition) is available online and in stores now for around $279.