User Review: REI Hobitat 6
Design: "Three-season pop up Cabin"
Ease of Setup: A novice can do it.
Price Paid: $260
I purchased the Hobitat 6 and used it on a four-day camping trip with my dogs.
I set it up with my sister in late night darkness. It took about 40 minutes because it was dark, we had about six hours of sleep in two days, we were trying to be quiet because it was after quiet hours, and I did not properly prepare by setting it up or reading the directions before taking it on the trip. At only 5'2" in stature I had to jump for the final step - a bar is attached to the top of the tent to hold the rain fly up to prevent pooling water - I had to jump to unzip the opening, pop the stick up, and zip the opening again. Next time it will take maybe 10-15 minutes, even in the dark. I did purchase the footprint and although it is labeled "Hobitat 6" it is about 3' too small for the tent - it doesn't clip in and when we went to straighten it we had to un-stake the tent and roll it up to get to the footprint. I have owned and used footprints on my other tents and this is surely an REI mistake, the footprint will go back to the store.
The sides are so straight that I was able to put my dog's crate (32”Hx48”Lx27"W) only about 6" from the wall! It also fit a queen sized 8” thick air mattress and there is room to bring a side table or portable camping closet if I wish but I just used the top of the dog crate.
Overall we are really hard on tents - my dogs were oblivious to the screen over the door and it withstood having them pop their heads into it for four days. They were able to open the door by nosing the zipper if it was closed to the bottom instead of the top of the door. The side window mesh didn't hold up to my Great Pyrenees jumping on it - she was trying to look out the window to me, but it wasn't meant for dog nails and 100 pounds of downward force so I am solely to blame. I will have to fix the hole in the screen. The tent survived happy dogs romping around in the morning. The poles took a lot of abuse from the dogs and they withstood all they were put through.
We were camping in mixed hardwood forest and it held up to strong wind and rain. There was a wonderful breeze and air movement passing through the tent doors – it was great to get away from the biting flies and take a nap even during the hottest part of the day. I had a wonderful view of the river since the doors are so large. Make sure you stake this tent because it’s not terribly aerodynamic.
I am thrilled with my purchase! I couldn’t be happier! The materials are strong, the shape is right, it’s a freestanding pop up (although I would stake it down). The only thing it is missing is a view of the stars when the rain fly is on it. Although it is about 30 pounds lighter then other brands with steel poles, it is still a car-camping tent.