Way back in 1983 Sierra Designs released the original Flashlight Tent, it was the first 2 person ultralight tent design to tip the scale below 4lbs or 1.8 kg. It quickly became a best seller with campers and an iconic tent in the annals of out door gear. Fast forward 34 years and the Sierra Designs Clip Flashlight 2 Tent has been redesigned and re-released. The new and improved Clip Flashlight 2 Tent has more interior space, a taller peak height, more gear storage, with an updated design, fabrics and hardware. It’s now not only lighter on weight but also on price.
A simple a sleek design when the rain fly is on.
This single door, single vestibule two person tent is relatively light weight and compact but won’t break the bank. It’s ideal for those looking for an inexpensive tent that won’t sacrificing too much quality to hit a price point that’s reasonable for most. It’s all mesh body provides great ventilation and clips to the two collapsible DAC poles, hence the name sake.
Weighing only 1.53kg and packing down to a respectable 18 x 6” size, the Sierra Design Clip Flashlight 2 Tent is the epitome of affordable, light weight design. A bathtub construction floor and high sidewalls prevent rain and moisture from getting inside. Even the fly’s front door side wings help keep wind and weather away from the entry point of the tent while not obstructing the view to the outside. Dual zippers and a built in tie back allow you to roll the fly’s entrance door up and out of the way. Should you have two trekking poles, these can be used to stake the door in an awning configuration for mid day shade. Zipping down the door creates a large vestibule area for gear storage, but be aware that the gear will impede your easy access to the tent interior. Two large sewn in pockets on the inside of the tent also provide gear storage for smaller items that you need to keep handy.
Overall livability of the Sierra Design Clip Flashlight 2 Tent is very high as it offers up 30sq ft of interior space, just enough room for two people without any extra. The 42” interior peak height provides enough head room to sit up, change or pack/un-pack your things. While the side vestibule configuration of the Sierra Designs Flash 3FL Tent and Sierra Designs Lightning 2 UL Tents are preferred by this reviewer they also add weight and complexity to the tents designs. While the Clip Flashlight 2 Tent keeps things simple and provides just enough space for everything and everyone, an unobstructed tent entrance is also a must, so the dual side vestibule design on the Sierra Design Flash 3 FL and Lightening 2 UL tents are pure genius. Also check out our review of the Sierra Designs Lightening HT 4 Tent if you are looking for the ideal family tent.
Generous side pockets.
The Sierra Design Clip Flashlight 2 Tent is an affordably priced, light weight tent that packs down to a modest size. It’s simple two pole design keeps it light and small but when erected provides enough interior space for two. It’s a solid tent for those on a budget or anyone wanting a compact tent that you can use on multi-day backpacking trips. It’s livable interior means that you can wait out a rain day in relative comfort with out having to pay for it by lugging around a bulky heavy tent. While the interior is not overly spacious it does have good ceiling height at the head end of the tent where it matters most. The Clip Flashlight 2 Tent’s interior space is right in the sweet spot at 30 square feet, not too big and certainly not too small.
Another big plus with the Sierra Design’s Clip Flashlight 2 Tent is the fact that you get their ‘Night Glow’ light accessory. It’s a light diffuser made out of the same fabric as the tent’s fly and it creates the illusion of increasing your headlamps luminesce output buy diffusing light throughout the tent. Very handy at night and when tent bound on dark storming day, and best of all it’s super compact and light.
The only down side of the Clip Flashlight 2 is that it’s not a free standing tent, meaning that it has to be pegged (and pegged well) or else it will come crashing down. Since the two poles are independent, the pegs give the tent all of it’s structural integrity and hence it does not do all that well in really windy situations. The fly helps consolidate things and make it more rigid but if a few pegs came loose in the night you’d be in trouble. I would be sure to always peg out the guide lines as these really help to make the tent more sturdy, especially in wind. With the version of the Clip Flashlight 2 Tent that I received there were not enough metal pegs included to sufficiently secure the tent, this could have simply been an over sight however. The pegs themselves were also not as high end as those that have come included with the Sierra Designs Flash 3FL, Lightenting 2UL and Lightening HT 4 Tents, another way Sierra Designs has kept the price reasonable on the Clip Flashlight 2 Tent I suppose.
Overall, the weight to space ratio of the Sierra Design Clip Flashlight 2 Tent can’t be beat and when you factor in it’s price tag, you’ve got a real winner. If you’re looking for a two person tent with a unique design that has two vestibules instead of one and a larger clutter free entrance then the Lightning 2 UL Tent is another Sierra Designs tent worth considering, it won our Gear of the Year Award after all.
Price: $319.99CAN / $199.95US
Weight: 1.53kg / 3lbs 6oz
Number of Doors:1
Number of Vestibules:1
Gear Storage Area: .82sq m / 8.80sq ft
Interior Area: 2.79sq m / 30sq ft
Internal Peak Height: 107cm / 42”
Packed Size: 18 x 6” / 46 x 15cm
|Interior Space 2/2
Did we miss something? Are we totally out to lunch? Let us know what you think. People like/dislike gear for different reasons so chime in below and we'll get a well-rounded evaluation. You'll need to login or register before you can comment but it only takes a few seconds, then you're good to go.
We built this backcountry skiing community for you, the passionate skier, and hope you enjoy the hard work we put into all the reviews, routes, videos and posts we create. It’s been free from day one but that doesn’t mean it’s not a valuable resource. If you enjoy this web site and value the content we create for you, then please support Backountry Skiing Canada by donating today. Thank you!