Retailing around £400 (more for Green and less for Grey I see on many sites) the MSR Hubba Hubba NX (or Hubba NX2 as I’ve seen listed) is MSR’s light 2 man, 3 season tent and has been gaining a lot of popularity across social media so I bagged one to replace our aging but bomber TNF Tadpole 2 – lets see how it faired on a Scottish Autumn wild camp. As this is only 1 test I’ll circle back to a fuller review some time in 2021 for some long term updates.
I’m not a massive wild camper just to be clear, I enjoy it for the most part but with my hate of midges and being 6’1 and getting on (in my 40’s) I’m not sure I’m completely designed for it – that said the mini adventure nature of I do love and the walk in’s views. sunsets (with a nice dram ideally), empty summits and sunrise’s do tend to be amazing so well worth the aching back and lack of sleep!
After a recent Ben MacDui wild camp I decided I wanted to try and drop weight in the pack so after some forum asking landed on and bought the Hubba Hubba NX for my wife and I , and I grabbed a Hubba NX 1 man for myself to do solo’s or with mates for climbing/bagging or just getting out in the hills (I’ll review that in time).
Lets do stats first.
The 2 Man Hubba Hubba come is 2 deployment options so can vary in weight but shipped with its standard pegs and in its full inner and outer mode and stuff sack the pack weight is listed at a really quite light 1.72KG. Removing the stuff sack could save you a few grams but its no worth it for me as it cinches everything down tight and neat. One small weight reduction I make is to swap the standard pegs for MSR’s Groundhog Mini’s (at 10g a peg). These are aluminium Y-bar design which is a proven strong approach and grips well. Its in this mode I used the tent.
The lightest config for the Hubba Hubba is the Fast and Light setup coming in at tiny 970g but this is just the rainfly, frame poles and a footprint (extra) – not ideal for a midge infested Scotland but good for those tarp sleepers out there who maybe want a more enclosed form factor.
Interior dimensions (for 2 remember) are a pretty adequate 1.27m wide (50″) by a very generous 2.13m long (84″) – I’m 6’1″ and can lie flat out with no touching of the fly which is superb! Internal height peaks at 1m(39″) which i was impressed with when needing to sit up , get in and out etc . The frame deign also means you get width at height as well not a sharp peak so both could sup up easily. Width wise its pretty good but if sleeping head to head its going to get pretty close so choose your camping partners carefully.. or go head to toe!
You have a handy apex gear loop for hanging headtorches etc (Tip : Always carry a couple of carabiners for gear hanging on camping trips!)
What I really like is that the Hubba Hubba has a zip door and gear vestibule on each side so no climbing over one another to get out, cook etc These have a usable area of just under a metre each side – enough I found for a rucksack, boots, water bottle and still have easy access in and out or to run a stove.
For the real stat heads – the total “liveable” space comes in at 1217L for main body and 48L for the combined vestibules. Living internal footprint is 2.7m sq with added 1.62m sq for the vestibules.
The inner is a hybrid of a bottom bathtub design with the upper being mesh which not only reduces weight but helps massively with condensation and air – it does of course mean its going to get that bit colder in very low temperatures but its designed as 3 season tent so really using in Winter (especially Scottish) is outside its deign parameters.
The “bathtub” floor is 30D Ripstop nylon rated at 1200mm HH due to its Durashield polyurethane and silicone design – more than enough for usual terrain but for for very uneven or boggy terrain (or just to keep it protected ling term) you may elect to buy the optional MSR Footprint – coming in around £45 (may vary) but for me this adds weight… and I’m trying t reduce it! The upper section is walled in 20D ripstop nylon with DWR and topped with a 15 Nylon mesh. While light it doesn’t feel flimsy to me at all and at no time was I being overly careful handling. Very good construction in my opinion.
The frame system is a DAC Featherlite NFL one , designed specifically for quality fast and light backpacking tents and helps keep that weight down. Connected by elasticord the poles interlock very easily and quickly to form a main “H form” for corners ands roof ridge plus a shorter cross bar to add width at the internal apex. The inner then clips onto the bar along its length and voila you have a bathtub and mesh freestanding inner set up in under 5 mins – less if needed. Adding the fly again is VERY quick – read 2 monites or so and it connects to poles at the corners with a simple eye slot design.
The fly itself is made of 20D, 1200MM ripstop Durashield polyurethane and Silicone with guy points, those 2 easy 1 way zip and velcro vestibule doors and 2 very clever “leg stand” vents on each end to aid airflow if desired. Doors can be tied back on both outer and inner by the usual eye/loop type affair. At head and foot internally you also get neat mesh pockets for phones, hat etc which always saves a 2am root around trying to find stuff!
Being a 3 season tent I wouldn’t suggest this would stand up to very high winds (think 60Mph Scottish gales) , its high apex design and the pole design are perfect for 3 season and we did get winds around 25mph on our pouting that caused the Hubba no concerns – I haven’t personally tested it in higher winds but general feedback from others is its outside parameters.
I do know the guys over at MyOutdoors have tested in some pretty gnarly conditions so keep and eye out. They do have a great site for lots of things but I hope you remember to come back and see us here 😉
The Hubba Hubba (like its 1 person sibling) comes in 2 flysheet cover options – Silver/Grey or Green (which I opt for). Both use the Silver/Red inner.
First impressions then.
With 2 sleepers using air mats , big sleeping bags and each with a pack we have enough room for a pretty comfy nights sleep. No issues with snagging zips or not being able to get in or out the tent. Opening the inner door allowed me to stay in bed and get a brew on with the Jetboil which makes getting up and about much more palatable on a very cold frosty Scottish morning. Plenty leg room, never once was I touching the inner sides (something I did suffer in my Tadpole 2) . Clearly the mesh is cooler and of course as winds pick up you get some air flow but the reduction in condensation and associated frost was a a real bonus and on a warm summer night this would be brilliant.
Honestly – very impressed – this is a light but very well functioning 2 person tent. Superb living space and vestibules, nice touches with vents and that hybrid mesh design, well constructed and a confident feel to the materials. For 3 season use at this price point, and for someone of my height this is a great option – highly recommend having a look. There are lighter offerings up the price foodchain and some cheaper but smaller ones around – this is a great sweetspot offering for my money .
Important note – and I encourage all to follow and share with others – All camps we undertake follow the Leave No Trace ethic – anything carried in is either consumed or carried out. Latrines are dug away from watercourses and paths and topping replaced. No open fires are lit. Colour choice (green) acts to lessen impact on surrounding aesthetics and no drones are ever employed again to minimise “modern” impact on others in the area. After camp is removed we walk the area to double check no litter or kit remains and any rocks moved for seating, wind protection are replaced as found.