Hilleberg Akto

14 reviews
5-star:   10
4-star:   3
3-star:   1
2-star:   0
1-star:   0

Reviews

7

Extremely high quality materials and build. Storm…

Rating: rated 5 of 5 stars
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: about $500

Summary

Extremely high quality materials and build. Storm proof; a heaven from the elements in the backcountry.

Pros

  • High quality materials and build
  • Stormproof
  • Feeling of security when using this tent
  • Sets up dry in the rain
  • Excellent vestibule

Cons

  • Heavy for a lightweight setup
  • Can be prone to condensation
  • Needs a lot of room to set up
  • Not free standing

I have used this tent for 7 different trips so far in weather ranging from 30 - 50 degrees.  The tent is advertised as a four-season tent. It is a true double wall tent with full nylon inner tent.  I initially bought this tent for three season (fall, winter, and spring) use knowing its design would become very hot in the warmer temp ranges.  

I am not going to repeat the pros and cons I noted above, but add a few things (bad first then the really good):

  • The flatter ends of the tent will load up with snow. I am an experienced winter camper but don't like the idea of having to use deadmen to hold the 10 stakes in the snow. I plan on buying a Hilleberg Soulo which is free standing for winter use.
  • The tent requires a decent amount of real estate to stake out. Even in the backcountry, with designated camping areas, its sometimes hard to find a good spot for it. My Big Agnes Fly Creek UL1 requires much less space.
  • It's a fairly heavy tent for single use. I did lighten it up by replacing the guy lines with lighter cord purchased from z packs and replaced the heavy metal zipper pulls with cheaper cords ( I think I saved 6 ounces...)
  • While condensation builds up on the inner side of the outer fly, once the sun comes up, I leave all the vents open and it dries out while I eat breakfast and get ready for the day.

Good stuff

  • Storm proof! high
  • Sets up easily
  • The inner sets up along with the fly so when it's raining the inner tent does not get wet. You end up with a very dry tent no matter what (you can see this on YouTube if you don't get it)
  • Vestibule is large and overhangs the inner tent so you can keep it open in the rain if not at an angle.
  • Great venting options for temperature control (two at foot ends and one at top of door)
  • Fairly spacious inside
  • Pitches taut and secure. Good proven design with a lot of history
  • Most important, I carry the extra weight of this tent because it makes me feel safe. I have a place to go that's warm and dry at the end of the day, no matter what happens during the day. I lighten up on some other luxuries and use a quilt, which I don't love but works along with the safety and security of this tent. 

p.s. Hilleberg now makes a mesh inner tent to replace the nylon inner tent so this will become my summer tent as well.

In short, the Akto is too heavy to be used for high milage trips or long trips over a week but for weekend to week trips, knowing the weather could be bad or any other situation it will be my go-to tent.

Hope this helps.

rob5073

Great review! I'm sure Tipi Walter would disagree with the fact this tent is too heavy for high mileage trips. He carries his Hilleberg Keron on his trips! I have a Soulo and yes you are right, that thing sheds snow easily. It is a little heavier than the Akto.


6 months ago
trouthunter MODERATOR

I have been looking at this tent for a while now, I live in the Southeast US so I would opt for the mesh body probably. I may get one in a couple years, but I have a good solo tent that will do for now. Thanks for the review!


6 months ago
5

I've been camping for 40 years, and had numerous tents,…

Rating: rated 5 of 5 stars
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: £240 in 2000

Summary

I've been camping for 40 years, and had numerous tents, but this hurricane defying, quality tent knocks spots off them all and it must be the best 4-season 1/2 person tent on the market which is ideal for all conditions. I've had mine for 12 years, travelled thousands of miles, done no maintenance and it's as good as ever.

Pros

  • Quality of workmanship.
  • Superior flysheet strength.
  • 100% reliable.
  • Spacious.
  • Simultaneous inner/outer and easy erection.

Cons

  • Mine is old so maybe design has changed but minor quibbles are the single velcro attachment holding the cover over inner mesh window (now not working) and the toggles holding the rolled up outer and inner doors are too small and slip out easily.
  • Both of these can be solved with a needle and thread (but I still haven't done it!)

I've had this tent for 12 years now, buying it new, with no research, at an outdoor shop in Holland in 2000, because I immediately liked the look, quality, weight and design of it. Since then it has travelled thousands of miles with me on long distance bike and hiking trips, and more than a thousands nights of use. I have never done any maintenance at all and everything works as well as it ever did and it is still totally reliable in absolutely all conditions.

This tent takes me 5 minutes to erect — the inner and outer erect together but if the outer tent is very wet at pack-up time they can easily be separated and packed separate. This also allows the outer to be used alone as a tarp tent. With fine adjustment possible with the guy rope system it can be made very taut.  

It has been buried in snow, blasted by gale force winds, etc. but the most extreme weather was on a 3-month cycling trip in New Zealand when I was hit by a hurricane in Fjiordland, the lake rose 10 feet and I was stuck in my tent for 4 solid days with horizontal driven rain for much of that time.

Not one single solitary drop of water found its way in (although some pegs were ripped out the first day because I had not been expecting a hurricane and hadn't put the stakes in well enough). Only by the fourth day was the inside starting to get damp but this was mostly due to me hanging wet clothes around the place. Contrary to reports, condensation in this tent is no worse than any tent I've had. It always stays on the inner side of the flysheet.

It is fantastic to know that whenever I put it up I can either sleep with the side door open and gaze at the stars just like being in a tarp, or zip cosily up with everything easily stowed in the tent and vestibule and know that whatever the weather throws at me I will be dry and safe and have enough room in the vestibule to cook while the tempest blows.

4

Top quality materials and unquestionable warranty.

Rating: rated 4.5 of 5 stars
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $375

Summary

Top quality materials and unquestionable warranty. You get more than you pay for and the company stands behind the product.

Pros

  • Quality materials and components
  • Intelligent design
  • Lightweight and compact (for durable design)

This is my second Hilleberg tent and my go-to kit for my solo adventures. My other tent is a Staika that is more of an expedition tent than a pack tent. I am primarily an adventure motorcyclist and a backpacker second. When I backpack, this tent is somewhat heavier than other competitor's offerings but far more durable. My previous lightweight packer was a GoLite that only survived two seasons.

So far this tent has handled two more trips than the tent it replaced without showing any deterioration. After many seasons in the desert, a hybrid tent like those produced by Hilleberg are simple the best in every environment. The MSR tents are light and compact but you'll wake up after windy desert nights covered in sand because you can't seal the tent up like a Hilleberg. That's just as bad as being wet, IMO. You can go to a mesh inner with an optional kit if you want. 

All the claims the company makes about this tent are true, so I'll refrain from pilling on the adjectives of a superior product and move on to what are some idiosyncrasies you need to know about this tent. These are not detractors per se, but just some things to consider.

This tent can be pitched direction specific. If you pitch this tent up where 15+ MPH wind will hit it directly from the side, it will flutter more than a longitudinal pitch (head or foot into the wind) will, no matter how many guys you set off the tie points.

One night the tent oscillated all night like a kite does sometimes and made for a very sleepless night. Possible I could have picked a better spot, but who knows. I doubt any other tent except a Hilleberg Black Series would have done better. If there is wind and rain, pitching foot into the wind is more stable in the wind (and more restful) but will result in rain coming on to your bag if you open the door. Head in works the best when you have any directional rain. 

Get a footprint. The quickest way to destroy a tent like this is to start working holes in the floor on hard ground. Everything else on this tent will handle most anything you (or the weather) can dish out except a torn floor from a sharp rock.

schifferj

Excellent review! I've had my Atko a lot of years now. I use the soft in hand Tyvek 1443R that is waterproof, extremely durable, lighter, and cheaper than the Hillberg footprint. It is pure white with no brand names on the fabric, and awesome for footprints. You can buy it from Amazon or a number of sellers on Ebay.


5 months ago
3

Excellent, lightweight and spacious solo tent. Thoroughly…

Rating: rated 4 of 5 stars
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $465

Summary

Excellent, lightweight and spacious solo tent. Thoroughly contemplated design, sturdy construction, adaptable features, and high quality materials. Intense focus on lightweight backpacking, but addresses other concerns well within that constraint.

Pros

  • Sturdy construction
  • Light weight
  • Secure pitch

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Bad for warm, buggy environments

I've taken my Akto on multiple trips now, and would buy it again several times over. On my first trip with it, I stopped to set it up and just finished the pitch as the bottom fell out and a torrential downpour was unleashed. I quickly stacked down the last couple of guy lines and then dove inside the dry inner to recover from the soaking I received during setup.

Setting up this tent in the rain is where you can truly appreciate its design. Many tents you set up the inner tent which suspends from the poles, and then stretch a fly over the top of the poles. The Akto's design instead has the fly suspended by the single hoop pole, and the inner tent suspends from the fly. The end result is that during set up, the fly is always covering the inner, and thus the inner is never exposed to the exterior elements.

There's a few downsides. You can find lighter weight tents, but not many lighter weight 4-season tents. The outer allows for decent ventilation, having 3 vents; two down low at each end of the fly, and one at the peak of the door. However, the inner tent only has one mesh window at the top of the door; above about 60 degrees the Akto inner becomes extremely hot to stay in. The door can be opened at the top and bottom to alleviate this problem, but in buggy areas this will allow some insects into the inner tent.

As lightweight gear goes, the Hilleberg starts off good but not great. The guylines and stakes are two elements ripe for improvement; they both come in at decent weights, but you can drop close to 200 grams by upgrading these elements to lighter weight alternatives.

Hilleberg offers an excellent mesh inner tent which solves the heat problem. I purchased this later to solve it and I'm satisfied, though it does beg the question of if the Akto is a 4 season tent, or a 3 season tent that includes winter as one of the seasons. I replaced the guylines with ZPacks 1.25mm Zline and linelocs to drop weight from 6g/m to 1g/m. I replaced the tent stakes with Terra Nova 1g Skewers, dropping the weight/stake from 11g to 1g. With ten stakes for this tent, along with ~15 meters of guylines, these weight cuts can add up.

This tent is one of the best on the market, is easily worth its purchase price, and gives you a safe space to take shelter in the backcountry. It suffers in some environments.

2

My go-to tent! I'm not sure how long Hilleberg has…

Rating: rated 5 of 5 stars
Source: bought it new

Summary

My go-to tent!

Pros

  • Fast easy pitch
  • Light weight

I'm not sure how long Hilleberg has been producing Akto tents but I've had mine going on seven years now and it's out in the woods being used by either myself or one of my friends at least 14-15 nights per year in all sorts of weather conditions.  It truly is a four-season tent; if there is weather that it can't handle I do not want to be out in that weather.  

I'm just a skosh under six feet tall and the tent is of sufficient length for me in an long sleeping bag. With the larger zero degree and below bags the tent tends to "fill up" a bit and the bag will touch the inner tent wall, usually on the foot end.  In temperatures below 15 degrees frost will sometimes form on even on the inside of the inner tent - last time out that frost was about 1/4" thick.  Of course when you get up all that frost ends up inside the tent but that's pretty much par for the course when winter camping.  

One trick I've learned to eliminate condensation with this little tent is to hang a candle lantern from the loop at the peak.  This creates just enough air flow to keep the great ventilation system working and pretty much eliminates condensation.

Hilleberg now produces a mesh inner tent for the Akto which I feel would make this an awesome summer tent in warmer climes. I intend to add one of those to my inventory this summer. 

Overall this is an awesome little tent — of all the tents I've owned and tried it remains my favorite year after year.  

1

I have to agree with these stellar reviews: this tent…

Rating: rated 5 of 5 stars
Price Paid: $400

I have to agree with these stellar reviews: this tent is the deal, bombproof, fast pitch, wind defying, featherweight, and the green hides really well. Will not leak and rolls up and packs fast, unparalleled craftsmanship in both manufacture and material.

I now welcome foul weather forecasts; weather is no longer a deciding factor.

BUY THIS TENT.

1

Having only been a serious hiker for two years, I…

Rating: rated 5 of 5 stars
Design: four-season solo hoop-tent
Sleeps: 1
Ease of Setup: easy
Weight: 2 lbs 14 oz
Price Paid: $345

Having only been a serious hiker for two years, I have slowly become more involved in the pursuit and the gear. When I realized that fair weather hiking was no longer gonna satisfy my backwoods jones, I very methodically began evaluating all the four-season solo shelters I could find. After months of consideration, I finally decided to go with the Akto.

All that research was time well spent; I am so satisified with this tent that I cannot imagine being happier with another product. I hike in the East, so I was concerned by some of the reviews touting condensation problems. I found that this problem can be easily corrected by using a candle-lantern which will simultaneously dry the moisture and heat the air inside the tent in cold conditions.

This tent is not to be used in hot muggy conditions, but why would you carry a four-season tent in those conditions anyway? Space is ample, setup is super easy (the tent, fly, and footprint are clipped together even when stored), pitch is secure.

Only two nit-picking complaints: the pegs should be replaced with something like Mountain Hardwear Y-pegs, and the inner tent window has a kerlon cover that velcros over the mesh at one point rather than zipping along the perimeter. Overall, it is a fantastic solo shelter for wintery conditions.

1

I posted this on the lightweight backpacker site and…

Rating: rated 5 of 5 stars
Design: solo 4 season
Sleeps: 1
Ease of Setup: 4-10 pegs
Weight: 2 lbs 12 oz minimum
Price Paid: $340

I posted this on the lightweight backpacker site and thought others might be interested. Since I posted this, I thought I would add that the tent is probably not suitable for dry, very warm, buggy conditions. That said:

I bought an Akto from Sweden about two years ago. Have used it extensively in the Japan Alps, the French Alps, and in the alpine mountains of Taiwan, where I live. It's excellent and makes camp a real pleasure.

The real key to it is the fly fabric, three-times silicone coated both sides ripstop nylon. If you go to the Hilleberg web site they give you a run down. I think the fabric is made by Carrington, in the UK, or it is equivalent to that.

In France the Akto weathered extremely high winds (over 100m/s) and here in Taiwan it has been through torrential sub-tropical downpours. It's a tent that makes you feel secure, especially important, I think, when you're going solo in deep backcountry.

I outfitted the Akto with an additional hefty .433 pole, recommended for winter use. Given the possibility of a sneak typhoon here, I thought it would be best. I once sat out a typhoon in a Marmot Bastille--a true bomb shelter but with a trail weight of 4.5 kg, too much.

Condensation in the Akto: even with the vents open, or again, even with the vestibule door open, there is always some condensation. Sometimes when I sit up in the tent my head would brush against the inner and touch the fly, but the water doesn't pass through the inner. Hilleberg says that you could carry water in the permeable inner fabric. So condensation has never been a problem. I just like to wipe the inside of the fly with a cloth before packing so that I don't carry a little extra water weight.

Inner: The fabric quality and gold color of the inner make a pleasant place to lounge around in. With the exoskeleton design (one pole in the outer fly), the inner can easily be quickly detached to create a little more space or air if you need. (If it's a very warm day, the inside is hot).

Vestibule: big enough for all your gear and cooking. and if you want more temp room, just undo the inner.

I modified the tent by adding a small rain flap over the outside door. Hilleberg people balked and said it was unnecessary, but I find it allows me to keep the outer door zipped open at the top, allowing for a bit more ventilation in the tent since the two vents are both placed low. In addition, I changed all the zipper pulls, taking off the metal pulls that come with the tent and putting on triptease pulls that look nice with the gold of the inner and don't jingle.

You can use the outer alone as a low weight reliable tarp for two, but there wouldn't be room for gear.

Before i bought this tent I considered other solo tents including the Mountain Hardwear Solitude and Microswift (really just roomy bivies), as well as the various single pole solo tents.

Exped Equipment in Switzerland (www.exped.com) makes a very light solo tent that looks like Eureka's "solitaire gossamer" better made and might even sleep two. But the Akto offers more "livable space" since you can sit up. And unlike the NF Canyonlands and other one pole solo tents, it could be much more reliably weatherproof and *durable*.

Since i go alone in some occasionally nasty country, i want a tent that is reliable and weatherproof. (This is why I shy away from tarps--after having been caught in part of a typhoon in a tarp--but does anybody have any recommendations on how to use them in high winds and heavy rains?). Akto gives me that PLUS a low weight. I think if you take confidence from your shelter, this is a great one to have.

Hilleberg's service is excellent and your tent bears the name of the person who sewed it. Plus, now you can order directly on-line.

Friends, I want reliability and durability, not just excellent space-to-weight ratios. I wonder who agrees with that?

Liked this tent so much that I bought their Nallo 2 (net weight 4.3 oz) and the luxuriously spacious Nammatj 2GT (6.3 oz). Everybody who has seen the Akto--except frustrated mosquitoes--has been impressed by their function, light weight, and reliability.

You probably need to seal the seams on the floor at least. On the floor there are no major seams, just little circles at the five corners where the inner attaches to the outer. I sealed mine and have never had a leak, even in torrential day-long downpours.

Akto compresses to a very small size, something like 5" x 15" or less.

0

Ive been backpacking ever since I was a small child…

Rating: rated 5 of 5 stars
Price Paid: $350

Ive been backpacking ever since I was a small child with my family. Most of the equiptment I own was passed down from my father, all heavy and old. After I started hiking alone I had problems carrying my heavy gear long distances. First I tryed a cheap Eureka solo tent, and it worked well until it rained on a night just above freezing temps and I got totally drenched. Pretty much sucked. So I studied all the reviews on solo tents looking for something that could stand strong winds and rain. This tent is the best quality solo tent I could find. I've had it in many heavy rainfalls for several days. I don't get wet anymore.

0

The best "one man" tent there is! superpleased!! Sunny…

Rating: rated 5 of 5 stars

The best "one man" tent there is! superpleased!! Sunny day, after 15 minutes the sky was totaly dark...15ml. rain in 20 min, 20-25 meters/sec vinds at kebnekaise, no problem....

0

I bought this solo tent for winter use. It's the lightest…

Rating: rated 5 of 5 stars
Design: 4 season tunnel tent
Sleeps: 1
Ease of Setup: extreenely easy
Weight: 2lbs, 12 oz
Price Paid: $340

I bought this solo tent for winter use. It's the lightest 4 season tent I could find on the market. It has plenty of interior room for a person and some gear, plus a large vestibule which is large enough for a backpack, boots and cooking. It uses a single aluminum pole across the center, with a rod in each corner to help suspend it. Like all Hillebergs, it features their suspended inner tent, which allows you to put up the tent and fly as one unit. Ventilation is from both ends and a vent above the door.

My first use of this tent was at Camp Sherman on Mt. Rainier, where high winds proceeded to destroy all the other tents at the campsite. I watched as the Mt Hardware, Sierra Designs and North Face 4 season tents were all destroyed, but the two Hilleberg Akto tents in our group survived without damage. Hillberg's fly fabric for this tent is 4 times stronger than others, and this is their lighter fabric. I now have 3 Hillebergs, and recommend them highly for 4 season use.

Customer service is top notch, and I highly recommend contacting Petra Hilleberg in Redmond Washington if you have any questions.

0

I bought the Akto three years ago, and had it with…

Rating: rated 4 of 5 stars
Design: 1 Person lightweight 3-4 season
Sleeps: 1
Ease of Setup: fairly wasy - care must be taken to get it really straight.
Weight: 1.7 kg
Price Paid: c. 360 Euro - about USD 330

I bought the Akto three years ago, and had it with me on trekking trips in the Pyrenees and in Lapland. I am not very tall and tend to travel with little gear, so the Akto turned out to be extremely spacious.

The packed tent is short enough to be put on top of a slim backpack without being an obstruction (important when you walk through dense forest).

Cooking under the apsis was no problem. The ventilation works well. During several thunderstorm nights in the Pyrenees, I was impressed by how well tent resists strong winds and torrential rain -and how quickly it dries afterward.

I would definitely recommend to buy Hilleberg's 'footprint' (a sheet that goes below the tent) in order to protect the tent from rough underground. It only weighs 40g or so.

The only qualms I have is that the inside pocket is not large enough, and that maybe there should be another fastener on the outer tent wall to hold the rolled-up door.

I would definitely buy this tent again.

0

I have had my Hilleberg Akto for about 2 years now,…

Rating: rated 5 of 5 stars
Design: 4 Season
Sleeps: 1
Ease of Setup: Extremely easy to set up!!
Weight: 3.1 lbs
Price Paid: $340

I have had my Hilleberg Akto for about 2 years now, and it never stops impressing me! I like going by myself and I do not like carrying a heavy tent. At first I was a little reluctant to get a one person tent, but after seeing the Akto, with its 3.1 lbs, big vestibule and good sized inner tent, I decided to try it. I am glad I did! I am 6'1 and 230 pounds and I have plenty of space with all my gear and plenty of room to cook. The vestibule has great room and all the materials and workmanship are excellent. My last trip brought on a big storm, but my little Akto had no problems in the harsh winds. Despite the storm it only took me about a minute to pitch the tent, since the fly sheet and inner tent are attached, which makes it very simple to set up and keeps the inner tent dry and away from the rain. It is the best one person tent I have ever seen!

-1

A good solo tent, but it has been surpassed by the…

Rating: rated 3.5 of 5 stars
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: over $200

Summary

A good solo tent, but it has been surpassed by the Tarptent Moment DW for several reasons.

Pros

  • Nice interior space for one
  • Good vestibule
  • Decent ventilation

Cons

  • No snowload resistance
  • Higher winds can be a problem

Having used an Akto I can say that at the time I was very happy with it. And its pioneering design paved the way for similar Tarptent designs.

But it is now a slightly dated design.

Having owned a Moment single wall I can say I like it much better for three-season use, especially with its crossing pole and the mod to the X-ing pole I made so it ran INSIDE the canopy.

Now Tarptent has the Moment DW (double wall, like the Akto). Its advantages over the Akto are:

  1. Two doors and vestibules
  2. Better ventilation with two doors, end vents, top vents and sidewall slide-up option
  3. Faster setup with 2-stake end triangle design
  4. Better wind and snow load resistance due to its end shapes and the optional X-ing pole (See above review regarding the Akto "oscillating all night" in a windstorm.)
  5. Somewhat lower price than the Akto with made-in-USA quality equal to Hilleberg
  6. Two inner options — full netting or ripstop W/ net top vent
  7. Lighter weight

AND, the Moment DW can easily have the X-ing pole shortened and made to support the fly from the inside, giving even more support against wind and snow load.