L.L.Bean Microlight FS 1


Rating: rated 4.5 of 5 stars
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $169


If you're looking for a lightweight, free-standing, good quality, inexpensive tent this may be the one.


  • Lightweight
  • Inexpensive
  • High quality


  • Needs larger vestibule
  • Tight fit for tall people

If you're familiar with the MSR Hubba, you'll feel right at home pitching this tent. It goes up in about 2 minutes with one double Y-shaped pole and a short cross-pole. The poles and stakes are aluminum and stake-out lines are included.

I didn't experience any significant wind or rain on my trip so I can't comment from experience, but judging from the taut pitch and the fly coverage, I would guess that both stability and waterproof are excellent. I'm 5'10", 200 lbs, and the tent width is just adequate. The floor length allowed a pair of hiking shoes at the foot and a headlamp, and few clothes in a stuff sack at the head, but that's about it.

There is a loop at the top for a light, etc. and two side pockets. The vestibule might hold a pack, but it would be a tight fit. The vestibule is in front of the only door, so who wants to climb out over a pack in the dead of night. I could sit up inside without hitting the top of the tent.

There are two major advantages to this tent: it's light (2 lbs, 11 oz) and it's cheap (compared to the Hubba). I don't mean that to be critical in any way. This is a terrific tent for the price.

I also purchased the footprint (first time I ever did that) and find that it's a little heavy. It has grommets and bungee loops at each corner. However, if you ever want to pitch only the fly, this footprint is going to be your friend.

Minor quibble: the FS-1 door is right-opening and my sleeping bag is left-opening which makes getting in a little more complicated. Wish the tent had two doors, but then it would weight more, wouldn't it.  

Have you owned or used a L.L.Bean Microlight FS 1? Share your experience »

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