Outdoor Retailer: The Hoopla over a 4P Tent

We head to Outdoor Retailer Summer Market this week, and there's so much new backcountry gear to cover we're previewing some that has already caught our eye, like this shelter for four that weighs less than two pounds.

Mountain Hardwear Hoopla 4

Mountain Hardwear Hoopla 4

Is that right? I thought when I saw the weight on Mountain Hardwear's Hoopla 4. It was. One pound, 10 ounces. For a four-person shelter.

How do you make such a light four-person shelter? You make the floor optional, require a trekking pole, and design a whole new tent type (according to Mountain Hardwear), using structural fabric as the frame and a "revolutionary" Trussring suspended ring overhead to create an interior peak height of 50 inches and 64 square feet of floor space.

How much space is that really? Mountain Hardwear says the Hoopla 4 is "an 11th essential emergency shelter for day hikers, a minimalist backpacking shelter that seats four, a through-hiker's dream." (MSRP $350)


We'll get and share full details, plus pictures and videos for closer looks, on much more outdoor equipment and apparel at Outdoor Retailer, August 3-7, in Salt Lake City.

What would you like to see or hear about as we cover the show? Tell us below.

Stay tuned for regular updates and announcements from OR here. Subscribe to our blog and news RSS feeds for real-time updates of our daily show coverage, and follow our tweets from the show floor on Twitter.

Filed under: Gear News, Outdoor Retailer


Robert Rowe
0 reviewer rep
1,238 forum posts
August 1, 2011 at 8:24 p.m. (EDT)

Can someone (Alicia?) interpret " 11th essential " ?   Is that supposed to be added to the proverbial "10 essential things  ... " ?

Kinda like when Nigel Tufnel  (in "This Is Spinal Tap", the movie)  turns his Marshall amplifier's volume knob  up to 11, when it only goes to 10 ???

Where do they get these "marketing types" ??


1,731 reviewer rep
3,962 forum posts
August 2, 2011 at 1:33 a.m. (EDT)

See now I am totally confused, I thought the 11th essential was toilet paper...

Alicia MacLeay (Alicia)
2,008 reviewer rep
4,462 forum posts
August 2, 2011 at 11:35 a.m. (EDT)

Yes, they're referencing the 10 Essentials, which I'll point out often already include emergency shelter.

125 reviewer rep
3,522 forum posts
August 2, 2011 at 3:14 p.m. (EDT)

Rick-Pittsburgh said:

See now I am totally confused, I thought the 11th essential was toilet paper...

No, the 11th essential is whiskey.  You can use poison ivy in lieu of TP, but nothing substitutes for whiskey.


2,710 reviewer rep
1,516 forum posts
August 3, 2011 at 12:26 p.m. (EDT)

The 11th essential is, of course, bickies.

125 reviewer rep
3,522 forum posts
August 3, 2011 at 8:15 p.m. (EDT)

pillowthread said:

The 11th essential is, of course, bickies.

No no! Pizza, steak, jerky, beer and whiskey are the five essential food groups - everything else are just optional dietary supplements.  (There is a strong argument for including BBQ ribs, however.)


1,066 reviewer rep
716 forum posts
August 10, 2011 at 4:06 p.m. (EDT)

Back to the Hoopla...


Very clever design BUT - no coverage of the entrance when entering & exiting, no vestibule for packs and boots/shoes. Thus not on my list of tents to buy.

However, that hoop design will likely be found again in future tents by MH and others.

0 reviewer rep
1 forum posts
August 10, 2011 at 6:52 p.m. (EDT)

If I had to choose between spending the night in a tiny sleeping chamber w/ a vestibule for my gear or this tent where there’s room for everything inside and then some, I’d choose this.  Tipis and Yurts don’t have vestibules.  Wouldn't want to do it with 4 people though.

0 reviewer rep
1,156 forum posts
August 10, 2011 at 11:45 p.m. (EDT)

This is a cool idea, I hope it works in the field. For that weight you would have a very large 2 person tent.

0 reviewer rep
1 forum posts
August 18, 2011 at 1:42 p.m. (EDT)

Other than the "revolutionary" Trussring suspended ring this thing looks just like a Black Diamond megamid.  When we did the east Buttres on Mt. Whitney a few years ago, my friend brought his megamid or one pair of people (it's described as a 4 person shelter), and we simply took the poles of my NF Westwind and the fly only - left the tent at home.  Had the same solution - a single wall outer shelter with no floor.  But both have doors.  Megamid specs put it at just over 2 lbs.

0 reviewer rep
1 forum posts
August 22, 2011 at 2:06 a.m. (EDT)

I saw a Hoopla 4 being field tested.  The square footage is almost identical to my Chouinard Pyramid but the Hoopla is 6-sided instead of 4, has more vertical walls (because of the hoop) and a lot more internal volume and usable space than my Chouinard even though it’s shorter, short enough to where they were using a regular hiking pole w/o an extension.  It seems the floating hoop breaks up the run of fabric from peak to ground and that could be why it was so taut.   Set up was far quicker than my pyramid; they used alignment tabs.  They also said it stuffs into a Nalgene bottle (just the fabric, not the stakes and hoop). It’s a not a pyramid, tunnel or dome tent -- MHW calls it a Ring Pole tent.  I’m a fan. 

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