Marmot Limelight 2P
Source: borrowed it
I needed a lighter tent for a backpacking trip and didn't want to lug around an 8 lb tent. This is a very solid choice with a good price point (especially if you can find it on sale). It has great durable rip-stop nylon and doesn't weigh down my backpack. I wouldn't recommend using it for two people unless you want to be extremely close to them and not have your gear in the tent with you, but that true of any 2-person tent.
- Easy setup
- Very tight for two people
- Won't stop a strong breeze from coming in
Setup: Very simple and easy. Just took a couple of minutes.
Stability: It didn't rain when I used it, but it held up to some fairly strong winds.
Ventilation: It is perhaps a bit too ventilated, because when I wasn't in my sleeping bag I was freezing and the walls allowed a lot of wind to come through the vents.
Room: Very tight for two people, and even tight for a person with gear, but it serves its purpose and the rain fly can hold gear too. Can be a bit of a pain to get in and out of.
Packability: It packs small and is pretty light. Not the lightest on the market, but much lighter than anything else I have and for the stability that it offers it's extremely light.
Construction: Very thin rip-stop nylon, should hold up well over time, and poles seemed very solid.
Conditions: I hiked in some hills in Eastern Missouri with it and was impressed. It didn't rain during the four day hike, but it got a bit chilly at night.
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: 170$
I chose this tent after a long search. I used it for two and a half months in every weather except snow, and this tent is just terrific! Strong, light, easy to set up, very well ventilated. Marmot got it right on every part of it (except the stakes). Totally recommended!
- Very well ventilated
- Easy to set
- High quality materials and manufacture
- The rain fly zipper is a bit hard to reach
- Cause of high ventilation doesn't stop cold breeze
- Stakes are not good enough
I used this tent many times on different grounds and environments, and I absolutely love this tent!
Weighing maximum of 2 kilos, you can't get much lighter than that for the same dimensions and price.
I've been to thunderstorms that lasted 3 days, I've been to cold weather, hot rainy weather and high winds, and this tent was perfect in any condition. While raining the tent kept on high ventilation, there were no leaks or condensation, no water getting in from the sides or anything like that. While in hot weather the mesh did its job in keeping the bugs out and the breeze in.
On high south winds on the Croatian Islands (called Bura) where most of the tents around me got flat, this tent stood still like a fortress. I had to use every anchoring point it had, but I had no worries for it to be blown away or for the poles to break. In cold rainy weather I experienced cold wind getting into the tent, of course because of the high ventilation. So I think it might not be the best choice if you know you'll be in cold weather most of the time.
The building and material quality is superb and I didn't had anything been broken or torn, the fly stood in high tensions and it looked very rough and strong, the poles as well. The footprint and floor overcome stones and twigs, only the stakes got bent too easily and I would definitely recommend to replace them. I got the MSR Groundhog and they had no problem with any kind of ground.
As for space, this tent is larger than most other tents in the same weight and price category. I'm 1.75 meters and thin and I could easily fit with another person and a bag in it.
It's very easy to set up, without any complex parts or methods, rain fly fits perfectly and very quickly. Easy to fold back, lots of storage space inside.
I'm happy that I chose this tent, and I'm looking forward to use it for a long time.
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: 220 US in Chile
Please explain the difference between tent Limelight "FC" and Limelight without "FC!
- Light (2 persons)
- Flexible, resistant to extremely high wind in the south of Chile, trekking in the National Park Torres del Paine, 100 kms wind
- Can be very cold due to wind getting into the tent
- The external cover is too short!!
Excellent performance in 30 days trekking in the south of Chile and other areas. Need to extend the external cover for wind protection.
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $119 on sale
Overall a decent tent but a tight fit for two average-sized guys. Quality construction and excellent waterproofing.
- Very stable when properly guyed out
- Quick, easy setup
- Footprint included
- Great ventilation
- Single vestibule
- Definitely not ultralight
I've been a fan of Marmot products for several years thanks to quality products that hold up to a lot of use. The Marmot Limelight 2 is no exception — a quality tent for the right price.
My partner and I have used my 3 season, 3 person ALPS tent until last year when I decided to make the switch to something smaller and lighter. After looking at a number of tents within my price range, I settled on the Limelight since it included a footprint and gear loft.
Setup is a breeze and takes a single person 8-10 minutes to pitch and completely guyout. The stakes are high quality with a hexagonal design that helps prevent them from bending like a standard aluminum stake. The only issue was that on arrival, I was shorted one guyline.
Ventilation in this tent is exceptional. We just got back from a trip in the High Uinta Wilderness where we were rained on daily and had overnight temperatures of about 40°F. We didn't experience a single drop of condensation and had 0 leaks with all the rain. Also, given the weather we were having, the window in the vestibule was a nice addition making it easy to decide whether or not to sleep in.
There are a couple of drawbacks that are more of an inconvenience than a deal breaker. First, the tent is small for two average sized guys. I'm 5'9" and 170 lbs, and my partner is 5'8" and 180 lbs. We're a tight fit in the Limelight and having a single door and vestibule means one of us has to climb over the other when nature calls in the middle of the night. It's also not the lightest tent on the market, so if you're an ounce counter, go with something ultralight.
Ending on a positive note, the reflective guyout points are a bonus and once you've got it all staked out, it stands up to substantial wind, rain and even snow. All in all, a high quality tent for a great price.
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $199
Previously I used a Eureka Timberline 2 tent. This tent was good in cold temps, inadequate in warm to hot temps. Also the rain fly was inadequate in wind driven rainstorms.
The Marmot Limelight 2 is far superior to the Eureka. The shape and design make it FAR less susceptible to high winds. The Marmot rain fly covers so much better providing more protection/cover and a covered entry. Much more stable and QUIET in high wind.
Costs a little more than the Eureka, but WELL worth the extra expense!!! The Marmot 2 is great for 1 person camping. If you need a tent for 2, go for the Marmot 4, you won't be sorry.
- Easy set up
- Ventilation is great
- Excellent rain/weather protection
- Great stability in windy conditions
- Original stakes are only fair. Replace them with "groundhog stakes". You'll have a solid tent.
- If you're a lone backpacker/hiker you may find this tent a little heaver than your liking.
I spent a lot of years camping with the Eureka Timberline 2. Also spent a lot of years experiencing its shortcomings. When it wore out I got the Marmot Limelight 2 tent.
Man, what a difference, like staying in a Motel 6 compared to a Hilton. Had I known I'd have gotten the Marmot years earlier. The Eureka tent weighs 5 lbs. 13 oz. The Marmot weighs in at 5 lbs. Weight isn't a big factor with me because I travel/camp by motorcycle. Comfort is a BIG factor with me.
Because of that I have to add an additional point. Again the Limelight 2 has great ventilation in hot weather. However I also camp in extreme cold weather (20 degrees and below). In these temps, especially with wind, the great ventilation can prove to be somewhat of a disadvantage. To this end I spent an additional $40 on velcro and tent material to make up easily attachable covers to cover the lower vent mesh. With this modification I can say that this Marmot Limelight 2 tent serves me VERY comfortably in 90 degree heat all the way down to 0 degree cold.
Man wish I'd come across this tent years ago!
PS, Whatever tent you go for, do yourself a favor and get the "groundhog" stakes. When the weather goes bad they'll make the difference between you sleeping through the night or your tent collapsing, getting you up in the middle of the night to deal with it.
Design: three-season freestanding dome
Ease of Setup: Easy
Weight: 5 lbs
Price Paid: $188.95
I've never been one to crave sleeping outdoors. As an amateur landscape photographer I enjoy hiking, it's just that many of the locales I wish to photograph are more than a day hike from the trailhead, ergo, I use a tent. While I've had the pleasure of borrowing tents for much of my life, the Marmot is the first I've owned myself.
What I like about it.
I don't think anyone has found the perfect design for erecting a tent, but the system Marmot uses here is a winner. It is possible for one person to set both main poles simultaneously before raising the tent body. I did it once before using the tent and I was comfortable enough to take it into fair weather. Marmot has videos on their site that demonstrate the system quite well.
The tent also breathes well. This tent is not a 4-season tent, but as I mentioned in another review I found myself camping in sub-freezing temperatures one night in March. There was remarkably little frost built-up under the fly and on the poles, and there was no noticeable condensation (and no frost at all) on the inside of the inner tent. Don't forget when setting up to open the rear fly vent. They've sewn in a short metal pole and some velcro to open a small gap in the back of the fly. This is what's keeping you dry overnight.
What I don't like.
If I had my way I wouldn't carry the whole package myself. At 5 pounds it's at the average for 2-man backpacker tents. Over rough terrain that ends up being heavy enough for me to contemplate splitting the load between two people. That's nice for the trail, but it complicates setup and tear down. One can no longer simply roll or unroll the the tent from the stuff sack directly onto the site. That's also another sil-nylon stuff sack, adding $15 or so to the amount invested into the setup.
As others have mentioned, the zipper on the rain fly is difficult to reach from inside the tent. I have to kneel on the ground in the vestibule to reach it. This isn't a problem on warm, dry ground, but if you find yourself camping after a bit of rain you may end up tracking some dirt back into the tent.
I would also label the included gear loft as mostly useless. You might be able to stow your deck of cards or a small paperback up there, but it isn't useful for the personal items of two tentmates.
I really thought the single-door design would be a big drag, but it hasn't been yet. I may just be lucky in that my usual tentmates don't get up in the middle of the night. Your experience may be different, depending on the sleep behavior and/or bladder size of your tentmate. Marmot also advertises the sizable vestibule as a place to stow gear. Here in the Midwest we are typically required to loft our packs onto poles, cables, or into trees as to not attract coyotes and other smaller critters. Other parts of the country have similar requirements for different critters, but the end result is the same. It is still a useful place to keep your footwear. Finally, I should mention that the tent seems to have a versatile guy-out setup, but I have not used it. Don't expect to guy the tent without buying more poles though. There are a couple extra, but not that many.
The bottom line.
The Limelight is pretty affordable for its feature set. For its small premium over other models you get a full-coverage rain fly, clip-based setup, and an included water-resistant ground cloth. If you were originally considering something like a Eureka Timberline, consider the Marmot Limelight as a better value.
Price Paid: $199
Best tent for the price.
I just spent a week in it in WV with one thunderstorm to test it out. I stayed bone-dry. Also, the easiest tent in the world to set up. I'm going to buy the 3P version also.
Design: three season; free standing
Ease of Setup: Very easy
Weight: less than 5 pounds
Price Paid: $99.99
I actually purchased a Marmot Nyx on E-Bay and they sent me a Limelight by mistake. I'm not upset by the substitution.
I'm not able to give a full review, however what I have experienced so far is great; and I haven't even spent a night in it yet!
This past weekend I spent a night in my sister's Kelty Grand Mesa tent during a backpack trip on the AT. Not a bad tent, and take down was fairly easy. My Marmot tent didn't arrive until the day after my hike.
Just playing around with it today, I was very impressed. I set it up in probably about 4-1/2 minutes, including the fly. My wife crawled in and we found that it would indeed have enough space for two with decent room for gear in the vestibule. All the seams are sealed well, and it included both a gear loft and a footprint! Those two items would have added another $40-$50 to the Nyx.
The quality appears to be top-notch and it packs down to 6"x18" with a packed weight of about 4-3/4 pounds. I can also use just the footprint and fly and keep the weight to just a few ticks above 2 pounds.
I hope to submit a more complete review in the near future, but I probably won't get out on the trail for at least a month or so. I guess I'll at least set it up in my yard and sleep out in a heavy overnight rainstorm. But I'm confident that this tent will fit my needs perfectly!
Update: February 10, 2010
As I had stated a few months ago, I wanted to submit a more thorough review on this tent. This puppy rocks!
I have slept in it in the middle of July during a hellacious thunderstorm that dropped 2" of rain overnight. I have been more than comfortable in it just last month when it was 5 degrees F with a -15 degree windchill and I awoke to 3" of new snow on the ground.I felt safe in it when a bear investigated me at 3:00AM on the Appalachian Trail in PA. on December 18, 2009. (Yes, black bears don't completely hibernate!)
In short, this thing has taken everything I've thrown at it.
Every once in a while, you buy something and you say, "Boy that's the best $100 bucks I spent in a long time." Well, in my humble opinion the Marmot Limelight fits that description. It does everything I could ask of it and more. No, it's not a true four-season tent (I'm still considering one), but I'm truly impressed with it! You could do far worse than the Limelight, but probably not any better for the money. And that's what I call a great value.
Design: 2008 Spring Model
Ease of Setup: Very Simple. And Solid.
Weight: just over 5 lbs.
Price Paid: $160.79 at BackCountryEdge.com
Awesome tent. One of my first reviews, and first time out, but very easy to set up and break down. Great clips, and it was just amazing some of the small things they add into tents.
That being said, don't think I'm going easy on this review. I didn't have a chance to use it in rain, so I won't act like I was able to. But I did use it for a couple of days in the GA backcountry and it just felt so solid.
Front doorway is great getting into, easy to get out. The footprint that is included is great, along with the gear loft!
I used the gear loft so much. It's an awesome little bit of extra engineering. Tent feels like a house when staked and guyed out. Doesn't vent absolutely great, but we also didn't have any wind. Like, none at all, it was a bummer.
All in all, a solid one person tent with room, for two people. Be ready to say hi to your neighbor, but shouldn't be too bad. I'd share this tent, knowing how excellent it is.
Two inside pockets, and the rainfly has a stitched in stick that opens a little in the back like the Stingray model to help for ventilation. In wind I bet body parts it would vent well.
Happy customer for sure.
Design: 3 Season Free Standing
Ease of Setup: Very Easy
Weight: 5 lbs
Price Paid: $169
Light yet durable and well put together. Easy set up. I used it this weekend in 30+ MPH winds w/ no issues at all. I have not used it in the rain yet but based upon what I have seen so far I don't see any problem in the rain.
Came w/ a free footprint which is a $20 average bonus.
My only issue: I hate crawling over the zipped down door. I wish Marmot could have made the door w/ a C design like so many others where the door hangs in place when unzipped and you can move it out of your way. My fear is snagging the door climbing in and out of the tent as the majority of it is screen.
Design: 2P freestanding
Ease of Setup: Super easy
Weight: 5 lbs
Price Paid: $175
Awesome tent. Really easy to set up, great ventilation, and very watertight. I slept in this on a very windy night and felt no draft at all. I am 6'3" and can lie down very comfortably without touching either end of the tent.
Remember though, this has only one door and vestibule. The Earlylight is basically the same tent but has dual doors and vestibules. Came with a free gear loft and footprint.
Design: 3-season free standing dome
Ease of Setup: easy
Weight: about 5lbs with bags
Price Paid: $165 with free footprint
Great tent for the money. I have yet to use it on a backpacking trip and would probably just go with the fly and footprint to save weight and bulk. Have used it several times for car camping with great success. Handles strong wind well and absolutely no condensation was present due to the great ventilation. If it packed down smaller I would give it 5 stars but this can easily be worked around by sharing the gear among your fellow backpackers.
Design: "three-season freestanding dome")
Ease of Setup: Easy set-up
Weight: 4-5 pounds
Price Paid: $189
I bought this tent due to my old (20+years) Eureka Timberlite had seen better days. After many trips the coating was shot and leaked on the last two trips. I did some research and the Limelight 2 seemed like a good fit for my usage (motorcycle and quad camping).
The packed size was not too bad. Setting the tent up is a breeze, nice pole design and clips work great. The vestibule will be a nice addition since the old tent did not have one. The free footprint is good quality and a nice feature without spending extra money.
The gear loft is small and also included with the tent. Small items will fit nicely in it and out of the way. The storage pockets are nice but only one can be accessed when laying down since they are on either side of the door but this is a minor issue.
I haven't tried it in the rain yet but the taped seams are well done so I don't see the rain being a problem. The floor design should also be very good in wet weather. With a good amount of netting the tent stays fairly cool. The fly has a vent that opens and with a little wind it is noticeable inside the tent. The size for 2 people would be crowded but for one it is very roomy.
Overall the Limelight 2 is a quality tent for the money.
Design: limelight 2p
Ease of Setup: Very easy
Weight: 4+ pounds
Price Paid: $$$
Quick and easy to set up. Holds up nicely to wind and rain. Came with a free foot print and gear loft. The gear loft seems sort of pointless. I can't remember what I paid but the price was good for the quality of the gear (may have been on sale at Campmor).
Only two complaints and they're subjective:
1) When unzipping the door from the outside it has a tendency to want to fall to the outside, in the dirt/mud. It's an easy situation to remedy yet it stands in my mind as a point to mention.
2) Zipping the vestibule closed from inside is akin to working yourself into a yoga position. You really have to lean forwards and stretch to get it that last couple of inches.
I would not hesitate to recommend this tent to anyone looking for a three season tent. Another note- I use this tent alone; just me and my pack (an external framed Kelty). If the capacity were to be in the plural the fit would be tight. And with two people you definitely would not be bring your packs in.
Overall a great tent.
Design: three season
Ease of Setup: easy
Price Paid: $225
This should be a helpful comment. I've owned a generation of this Limelight for a few years now. It's been rock climbing in AZ + SoCal, winter camping in lake effect temps and snow and two dozen rain soaked Oregon nights among tons of others. This tent has held up through all of it.
If you take care of this tent it'll take care of you - no doubt. Good ventilation in the warmer times, but knocks down drafts in the colder temps. Well designed - very simplistic but has some bells and whistles. The rain fly leaves no exposure of tent walls but the vestibule could have been a little bit bigger.
Best part is it packs small and light. nice touch: has a ring on the celing to hang a light via a biner - a backpacker's chandelier if you like. 4.5 stars.
Design: 3 season freestanding dome w/fly
Weight: 2 plus pounds
Price Paid: $189
This is a very well designed tent. It has been through some serious rain and wind storms with me and i always stayed dry. i travel alone so for 2 people this tent is small unless it's an adult and child or two smaller people.
the little window is very handy, ventilation is excellent, the poles are a dream, they almost put themselves together, the color is nice and bright on dreary, dark days, stakes are first class, zippers are stout, fly is well made and solid. for me bike touring alone, this tent is ideal.
Design: Three season freestanding dome.
Ease of Setup: Very east to set up, clean up, and take down.
Weight: 5 lbs. max.
Price Paid: $150
Took this tent to Zion NP for its maiden voyage. Hiked a twenty mile loop in some dicey conditions (windy and cold). This tent was quite sturdy and kept up warm for the night. It does only have one door so if you have to frequently "step out" for the night, you had better be the one sleeping by the door. Other than that, light weight is a plus, reflective less trip ups at night, with plenty of stash room for odds and ends.
Overall a great tent! Would recommend!
Ease of Setup: Very Easy
Price Paid: $240 Canadian
Lived in this tent with my wife for a month through rainy season in Panama and did not get wet once inside the tent.
It is an amazing tent with many good features, packs up super small and weighs little and most importantly can handle the elements.
Price Paid: $170
One somewhat irritating point - the fly only fits one way, with no easy 'this goes here' feature. The tent is actually somewhat narrower at one end. Fine, good to reduce pack size / weight, but makes putting some mark on a corner necessary. I got some reflective tape & seam glued 4" of tape to corner of fly and tent body.
Otherwise excel, does the job for not that much $$$.
Price Paid: $179.99
The tent is made very well for rain, this is why I bought it. This tent weighs 6.2lbs. not 5lbs. like it states.
Hiking 14,000 foot peaks means weight is an issue. I am disappointed that I may have to purchase a new tent over 1.2 lbs but that is another thing that I was looking for. They should not mislead the customer into purchasing this tent.
IF WEIGHT IS AN ISSUE DON'T BUY THIS TENT.