MSR Groundhog Tent Stake

12 reviews
5-star:   9
4-star:   1
3-star:   0
2-star:   2
1-star:   0

Reviews

8

Rating: rated 5 of 5 stars
Price Paid: $19.95

4

Lightweight, strong tent stake with good holding power.

Rating: rated 5 of 5 stars
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $2.50 each

Summary

Lightweight, strong tent stake with good holding power. A tent stake is a low-key, basic item that just needs to work. These do.

Pros

  • Light weight
  • Holding power
  • Design features

Cons

  • Price

 A tent stake is a lowly item that just needs to address some very basic issues:

  • Easy to drive into the ground;
  • Stays put when in the ground;
  • Easy to remove from the ground;
  • Light and small enough to be carried;
  • ...yet durable enough to do its job when replacements are not readily available.

With such a basic list of requirements, you'd think that this would be an easy job to fulfill. Well, anyone who has ever set up a tent more than once already knows that this is not necessarily the case.

First, a glance at the commonly available competition:

  1. Molded plastic stakes:
    Lightweight, relatively inexpensive, but bulky and brittle (by far the most common stake that you'll find left behind by litterbug campers before you... In pieces.
  2. Stamped steel stakes:
    Heavy, moderately bulky (when not carefully stacked), relatively robust, but may be bent if the tip strikes a rock or tree root (although easy to bend back and keep in service.)
  3. Bent aluminum rod stakes (comes standard with most tents):
    Really light and compact, but poor holding power in all but the most benign conditions. Will bend into a pretzel if you so much as look at it funny.

Enter the MSR Groundhog stakes. These have a "Y" shaped cross section, and are made from lightweight aluminum.

This equal-sided "Y" shape, with guy line notches on all three legs, are lightweight, fairly compact, offer better than average holding power, and drive into and come back out of the ground without much fuss.

This non-directional shape is handy in the dark, since you don't have to be sure that the guy line hook is properly oriented when driving it into the ground. While this isn't exactly a difficult task to get right with your eyes closed, once you realize this feature it does become a nice touch.

While they do drive nicely into hard or rocky soil, if it doesn't go in with moderate tapping of the hammer, hatchet, or rock, don't force it! They will bend or break, which I have done.

Also, if using your foot to push these into the ground, stop pushing when you meet any resistance beyond that of soft soil, otherwise you risk bending them (which I have also done).

Which is not to say that these stakes are not durable; they are. There are just a couple of things to look out for.

Another nice feature is the pull loops, which are made using guy line cordage with a reflective tracer. I actually found this to be extraordinarily helpful in locating a stake still in the ground after dark. Just be sure to retie the knot when you first get them; they're a little loose from the factory. This is just a tip, and not a mark against the stakes. It's easier than tying your hiking boots.

The downside? The price! They are made from extruded aluminum. For those of you who don't know, the extrusion process can be thought of being similar in concept to a pasta maker... only you're squeezing out aluminum instead of pasta dough. This is a decades old technology, and is an inexpensive way of forming thousands of feet of aluminum into your desired shape.

The machining cuts to finish the product are very simple, and with aluminum being as relatively a soft a metal as it is means that tooling costs are also low. To top that off, these are being currently made in China. While I do prefer a U.S. made product, I'm not adverse to purchasing overseas goods. It's the cost I'm talking about here.

They — are — overpriced for what they are, and for the low cost of production that they have. That being said, I do still recommend a set of them for your tent. At about $2.50 each, 25 bucks for an average tent will not break the bank... Especially when you consider that you'll get to use them for years to come, and can be moved from tent to tent.

The bottom line is that they are a superior product, and with a little care in using them should last indefinitely.

Now go camping!

4

The MSR Groundhog Tent Stake is a lightweight, reliable…

Rating: rated 5 of 5 stars
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $19 for an eight pack

Summary

The MSR Groundhog Tent Stake is a lightweight, reliable stake that holds in all, but the softest of soils. It has held my hammock tarp in extremely high winds.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Holds well
  • Have never bent one after more than a year
  • Reflective loops making them visible at night

Cons

  • After more than a year, I haven't noted any.

I purchased these over a year ago. After camping in everything but deep snow, I am doubtful another stake can beat the combined quality and weight of these stakes.

My Grand Trunk Funky Forest Tarp is like a sail in high winds. The only time these stakes have not held was in high winds, while camping in a pine forest, where the soil was more pine needles than dirt. A dead branch  placed on top of the stake, solved this problem.


Day-4-Giant-City-Cedar-Lake-39-.jpg
In this photo, both tarps are being held by Groundhog
Stakes. Wind is steady at about 10mph. Soil is damp.

Toss the cheap stakes that come with most tents and upgrade to the Groundhog!

2

Great tent stakes! These are my go-to tent stakes.

Rating: rated 5 of 5 stars
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $20

Summary

Great tent stakes!

Pros

  • Light

Cons

  • A bit expensive!

These are my go-to tent stakes. Very solid aluminum. I have used these stakes for over 4 years now and have not bent one yet.  They are still straight and solid.  The tops of the stakes get banged up a bit from using rocks to slam them into the ground, but that is to be expected.  

I highly recommend replacing the cheesy stakes that come with most tents with these ones.  

2

These are as good as it gets in the Y-stake department.

Rating: rated 5 of 5 stars
Price Paid: $1.15

These are as good as it gets in the Y-stake department. They are sufficiently light considering their legendary strength. The cord-loops make removal easy, and they scoff at my feeble attempts to brutalize them with rocks and hardpan.

I bought 6 to compliment my 6 GoLite Y-stakes.

1

These stakes do a nice job staying secure in the ground…

Rating: rated 4.5 of 5 stars
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $2.50 per stake

Summary

These stakes do a nice job staying secure in the ground due to the design. They are also very light and easy to remove with the attached loop of cord. They are much better than the factory stakes that come with most tents. Do yourself and your tent a favor and purchase the MSR Groundhog Tent Stakes.

Pros

  • Secure
  • Durable
  • Lightweight

Cons

  • Length
  • Price

These stakes are very easy to secure in the ground due to the design. They seem to cling to the earth much better than your typical tent stake. The bright red color and reflective coating on the cable make them easy to spot at night with a flashlight or headlamp.

These stakes are also very light and seem durable as well. I pitched my tarp using these stakes and they seemed to work well.

My main concern is how they might perform in soft, wet ground or very hard ground. I haven't tested them in extreme conditions yet. They aren't very long which could mean the stakes could get uprooted in extremely, harsh weather if not anchored deep.

I am optimistic that the "3-pronged" design will continue to perform well. I also like how easy they are to remove from the ground with the attached cord loop.

G00SE MODERATOR

Welcome to Trailspace, Michael. I can answer that concern! I hammocked in a pine forest in April, where the ground was about 4-6" of rotting pine needles before hitting loose soil. I couldn't keep my tarp staked out in those conditions until I placed a small log on top of each stake. I think in heavy winds I would have been in trouble.


7 months ago
1

Very tuff stake! Beat em' in with a rock, if ya hit…

Rating: rated 5 of 5 stars
Price Paid: $1.95 ea.

Very tuff stake! Beat em' in with a rock, if ya hit another rock on the way down go ahead and hit it a few more times to try and power thru, even if ya don't get thru the stake won't bend!

Has great hold on angled guy outs. Lines hold tight in the notches and stakes come out easily with a pull on the retrieve cord.

I carry six of these along with a few cheap aluminim stakes, I use the GroundHogs on the vestubile entrance since that gets alot of pulling around, and on the main guy out lines to keep things tight.

Well worth the few dollars I spent.

0

Small tent stakes best for lightweight backpacking.

Rating: rated 2.5 of 5 stars
Source: borrowed it

Summary

Small tent stakes best for lightweight backpacking. Powerful for such a small package, but sharpness of points and tips makes for challenging packing.

Pros

  • Small
  • Lightweight
  • Did their job

Cons

  • Sharp

We used these stakes for a 10-day backpacking trip. They were great because they were light, but they were sharp to a fault. The tips of the stakes ripped the tent bag, and eventually the sides of the stakes started to rip the bag too.

They are also very sharp on the tip that extends out of the ground and I had a painful lesson when I stepped on one. They would be better if they had a flatten top to avoid ripping bags and feet.

They are incredibly lightweight and did a great job of holding our tent down even in some very windy conditions.

0

Broken stake. Let me start off by saying I love MSR…

Rating: rated 2 of 5 stars
Source: bought it new

Summary

Broken stake.

Pros

  • Reflective rope
  • Easy to hold tent down

Cons

  • Fragile

Let me start off by saying I love MSR products. I really wanted to like the Groundhog stakes but I just couldn't. 

I was pressing down on one of the stakes last weekend and BOOM! Snap. Broke it right in two.

To justify, I was not pressing with such force that it should have broke. I was shocked, disappointed...then angry! Luckily I carry extra stakes. Like another user said, no stake is indestructible but for the amount of pressure..or lack thereof...I'm shocked that it broke. 

Again, I will always use MSR products, but I won't be picking anymore of these up in the future. 

image.jpg

Franco BRAND REP

Ignore this review because those stakes are a copy not a genuine MSR product.


2 years ago
tiredofwinter

Nope, I sent them back to MSR and they replaced it which was great...but it still broke in the first place. Thanks for your input though.


2 years ago
tiredofwinter

Also..the fake ones being sold have no imprint. These ARE genuine Groundhogs and they are also the exact length/weight. I'm truly sorry you can't fathom the fact one would break but I'd appreciate it if you'd stop spamming my posts.


2 years ago
Franco BRAND REP

This is a case of "do you believe me or your eyes?"
Enlarging your original photo it is clear that the writing is not the same as the one on the genuine MSR, different font...
This was clearly demonstrated in the close up posted in the Gear thread.


2 years ago
tiredofwinter

So REI has fake stakes? The same height/weight as any other groundhog? The fake stakes have no imprint but mine miraculously do? MSR sent me a replacement of a fake stake I sent them? Please stop.


2 years ago
Franco BRAND REP

Would you like to tell use exactly the REI shop you purchased those stakes?


2 years ago
tiredofwinter

Irrelevant. The chinese stakes that are being sold on ebay have no imprint...nor are there any reports of fake stakes having MSR imprints on them. I don't need to prove you wrong, I have enough validation. I'd appreciate if you'd stop trolling my posts though. Go outside!


2 years ago
Ja. R.

It is not normal for aluminum to just shear like that. Usually it will bend before it breaks. Strange!! At least MSR replaced them.


2 years ago
0

Awesome stake for various conditions! I've used these…

Rating: rated 5 of 5 stars
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: MSRP

Summary

Awesome stake for various conditions!

Pros

  • Strong
  • Light
  • Effective

I've used these stakes several times now. They hold well in regular dirt, wet dirt and stand up to hard frozen ground as well. Icy New England soil bent up a few of my standard steel stakes, and then I wised up and got a set of these. They didn't show any signs of distress as I stomped them into the ground!

0

Tough, lightweight and never pull out of soil (snow…

Rating: rated 5 of 5 stars

Tough, lightweight and never pull out of soil (snow is a different story).

I would replace these in a minute if I lost them.

0

AWESOME. super lightweight, super heavy duty. easy…

Rating: rated 5 of 5 stars
Design: tri-point tent stake
Ease of Setup: super easy
Weight: less than 1 once a piece
Price Paid: $3.95 / per

AWESOME. super lightweight, super heavy duty. easy to pound, angle, and guy out with, easy to remove as well w/attached cord. color is easy to see.

The TRI-design makes them very resistant to pulling out 'sideways' through loose soil when you pound them in diagonally.(I use mine to guy out the rain tarp for my ENO hammock)

The only downside is the volume, they take up more space than traditional stakes.

Seem INDESTRUCTIBLE (by normal use that is!)