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Big Agnes Fly Creek HV UL2

rated 4.0 of 5 stars
photo: Big Agnes Fly Creek HV UL2 three-season tent

Great lightweight tent, but you have to know how to set it up to make it work.


  • Light weight
  • Quality construction
  • Wind and rain proof when properly set up
  • Small footprint, easy to pitch in tight spaces


  • Light weight means fragile, be careful of branches!


Bought this to lighten my gear, upgrading from my beginner Half Dome 2 (6 lbs). This tent is 2 lbs! (without the tent, pole, and stake sacks).


Read a lot of reviews before buying and it seems the people who like it most take the time to learn how to stake it out properly. It took me a few practice runs, but once you adjust some of the guy-lines and stake it properly, the tent is really sturdy in weather with just 9 of the 11 stakes used.

A very similar tent is the Nemo Hornet, but it has two side doors instead of one front entrance. Both are semi free-standing which means you must stake out the rear. I thought I would prefer the side entrance with its two vestibules, but the front entrance gives the Fly Creek a much smaller footprint. Sites in forested areas are much easier to find.

Been through heavy rain with wind, but with a taut pitch, the tent barely moves. No issues with condensation. There's a double zipper on the door of the fly and I leave a crack at the top as a vent. Water doesn't blow in and enough air moves around I haven't had any condensation issues. The fly clips to the inner mesh of the tent and when guyed out there's a 3 inch gap between them. Any condensation just sits on the inside of the fly and doesn't come through the mesh.

Room & Storage:

I can't see how two people would fit in either tent so one door is fine for me. I just use the extra room for my pack. The vestibule is just for boots. 


I just stuff the tent in the bottom of my pack with my sleeping back, the fly and poles get strapped to the outside. I use Frost King window shrink film (polypro) as my footprint and that just gets stuffed in a side pocket.

Construction & Durability:

Really high quality materials, but again, since it's lightweight you have to be careful with the fragility of the fabrics used. I haven't had any tears, but can easily see how they would happen if you're not careful about branches or other sharp objects. Zippers are small and can get dunked up quickly so you need to keep them clean. I've had mine for 18 months now and everything seems to be holding up well.


Only used for three-season weather, not sure how it would fare in snow. I imagine the steep walls would keep light snow off. I wouldn't want to use this for winter camping, there's too much mesh to keep you warm.

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $350

I bought the two-person as it's only a few ounces more than the one-person and I needed room for my dog.


  • Lightweight
  • Easy to set up
  • Cool little stakes
  • Visible guy ropes


  • Fabric is easy to tear or puncture.
  • Need a ground pad

My first trip I was a little nervous at the light weight, but it held up on several big rains and pretty confident now. My dog's nails did put a few tears in the floor, but fixed easy enough.

I have also used on several wildland deployments and treat this lightweight tent a little more gentle. I skipped the overpriced footprint and made a Tyvex floor that can double as a small tarp when outside cooking in the rain.


Tent has been on several backpacking trips and the weight savings is great, used a tarp a few times and bugs ate me alive. I have taken on two wildland deployments since flying in, weight is at a premium.

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $268 at REI

The bag for this tent randomly ripped, so I contacted Big Agnes to get a new bag, since the tent was under warranty. Customer service denied me a new bag because of "damaging use", yet that was not the case, and the photo I had sent showed a small patch of dirt on the bag.

Therefore, don't allow any dirt, not even a speck, to get on your Big Agnes products or else your warranty won't stand.


  • Decent tent


  • Horrible customer service
  • False warranty

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $250

My favorite backpacking tent has become my favorite use tent. Lightweight and easy to set up by myself.


  • Lightweight
  • Free standing
  • No zippers


  • Close quarters if tall
  • Three season

Quick and easy to pitch by myself, this is a great tent and solid free standing unit. I love the fact that there are no zippers, instead using hooks and loops. Pitches taut and stable in a myriad of conditions. Packs well and is lightweight, so lends itself to backpacking. 

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $200

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