When you’re camping, shelter, and how you’re going to find it, is a very important topic. Not only should a tent protect you from the elements it should also be comfortable with good ventilation to stay cool, have netting to keep the bugs at bay, and be easy to set up. We recently tried the Flashlight 2 FL by Sierra Designs and are happy to report that it fulfills all of the above requirements. And more.
The Flashlight FL is a three-season tent that is well vented for summer’s hot temperatures; is extremely spacious; and incredibly lightweight tipping the scales at less than 3 pounds. For anyone that wished to avoid lugging extra weight into the backcountry the Flashlight FL should be a consideration.
Setup – Pitching this tent is a breeze. With six stakes, and just a few minutes, you’ll have a taut and dry shelter to take refuge in. How easy is the setup of the Flashlight? It’s this easy!
Unconventional – This isn’t the pup tent from your youth. The Flashlight has a large open feel thanks the two vertical poles that form the main support structure of the tent.
Open and Airy – With a peak height of 46 inches the Flashlight offers plenty of space for sitting up without brushing the ceiling.
The sides along the long axis are covered in mesh and can be opened completely giving you even more ventilation and views on both sides.
Protection –The Flashlight’s awnings and single wall design has kept us dry through multiple storms. Over each of the large side entry doors of the Flashlight is an awning that extends out about 8 inches to provide a welcome dry patch in front of the entry doors. These awnings allow you to keep the doors open for maximum breathability even while it’s raining.
The retractable gear closets on either side of the tent do a fine job of keeping small to mid size items dry and to the side of the doors which is a really nice feature that keeps you from climbing over gear to get in or out of the tent.
The downside of this arrangement is that larger items (such as saddles or bear boxes) won’t fit in the closets. Covered cooking space is also at a minimum.
Lightweight – With the fly and tent body combined not only is setup easier but the tent’s weight can be dramatically less. The Flashlight weighs less than three pounds making it one of the lighter two person tents available. When stowed in the included stuff sack the tent fits easily within the confines of a standard bear box.
What We Liked: The Flashlight has a huge amount of interior space for conflict free movement for two people. The tent’s low pack weight and volume make it easy to carry. Setup is easy breezy without the hassles of a bothersome rainfly. Ventilation is superb. In short the Flashlight works and works well.
What We’d Change: For backpackers the closets are fine but for horse campers, storing larger items such as saddles and packing equipment is a concern. Having larger gear closets or a different configuration would help.
Learn More: For more information on the Flashlight 2 FL visit the Sierra Designs website.