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Sierra Designs Flash Backpacking Tents

Award-winning Sierra Designs Flash tents are lightweight, roomy, externally-pitched shelters that provide ventilated refuge in a matter of seconds. Two doors and two vestibules provide easy access to gear while steep walls give a liveable feel.

Sierra Designs Flash Backpacking Tents Video

We are going to take a closer look at Sierra Design’s series of Flash tents. I have got the Flash 2 here behind me. The tent is also available in a three person and a four person version. Really unique architecture and external pitch to these tents that really makes them stand out in comparison to the standard double wall backpacking tent. There are two different poles in play on the Flash tents. It looks like there is a lot more there, but the main architecture is made up of a double hubbed design. There is also a cross pole or a brow pole here across the center of the tent that increases the verticality of those walls and kind of gives the Flash its shape. As you can see, there is not a rain fly stretched over the top of this tent. That extra pitch allows you to stand over the staked out tent, pull the tent body into place, stake out each side of the vestibule panel and without a separate rain fly, you have got a perfect free standing tent. There are two doors and two vestibules on each size of the Flash. Here on the two person tent you are looking at eight and a half square feet on both. The vestibules are identical. So streamlined space, but definitely enough room to get packs, boots and other gear in and out of the rain without eating up any of the internal space of the tent. Inside the Flash 2 you definitely have ample room for two backpackers. Eighty-five inches in length so actually some really nice length and 50 inches in width. Standard sleeping pads are 20 inches wide for back packing so definitely room in there. It is light weight enough that you could carry it as a solo backpacking shelter. Definitely not something I would consider an ultra lightweight structure, however. Thirty-nine inch peak height. Definitely ample room overhead for a backpacking option. Hybrid design here so, again, as we mentioned, there isn’t a separate rain fly on the tent, but there are some unique venting options inside the tent that functions better than a standard single walled tent might. While the Flash does not have a traditional rain fly that stretches over the tent itself, there is separation between an inner mesh ceiling and then the exterior portion of the tent, the portion that functions like a rain fly in protecting the interior of the tent from rain, from moisture. On either end of the inner tent body there is a closable panel so you can get a little extra privacy if you need it or you don’t want air flowing or so much air flowing through the tent. You can close that up, but it allows you to maximize that air flow. So unlike a single wall tent where you have got really poor breathability and can have some serious condensation build up because of that, the Flash has elements that diminish that effect. It should be noted that there is pretty ample mesh here on the side walls of the tent. Again, that makes it different from a single wall tent. So that also helps in breathability. You do have the ability to hold open a door, clip it open, same thing with that external panel that stretches over the vestibule. So you really can get a lot of air flow going through here if the weather cooperates. As far as internal organization, there are gear loft loops. A gear loft is not included. It is sold separately. And there are also some small pockets at one end of the tent that help get smaller gear items up and off the floor and keep them in easy reach. In terms of protection from the elements, the rip stop nylon exterior of the Flash does have a PU coating that bolsters its waterproofness. Taped seams throughout the tent, again, bolstering that protection. If you are looking for a little bit more protection beneath the tent, you may want to look into purchasing the custom fit footprint available for Flash 2, the Flash 3, the Flash 4. Not included, but sold separately.