It’s not often that a piece of gear, let alone a tent, gets a perfect score here on Beyond The Tent. But the Hubba Hubba NX 2 by MSR Gear is the rare piece of gear that blew us away in nearly every category.
This lightweight yet durable 2 person tent is one of the most versatile tents we’ve had the pleasure of camping in.
|Ease of Setup||★★★★★|
Table of Contents
- Our Opinion of the MSR Hubba Hubba NX 2
- Hubba Hubba 2 Features and Specs
- Is Hubba Hubba NX 2 Right For You?
- Setting Up The Hubba Hubba NX 2
- Final Thoughts
Our Opinion of the MSR Hubba Hubba NX 2
In the last month, I’ve had the chance to bring the MSR Hubba Hubba NX2 on two different camping trips into the north woods of Minnesota, Superior National Forest.
Through wind, rain and beautiful nights under the stars, the Hubba Hubba has met and exceeded all of our expectations for a lightweight 2 person tent.
On my last trip, I took 3 of my kids (ages 7, 9, and 12) and my wife into the Boundary Waters Canoe Area in Superior National Forest. We all packed into a Wenonah MN 4 canoe, a huge 23′ kevlar canoe, and headed out for a 4-day trip before school started.
BTW, if you want to learn more how canoes are made, check out this article on Wenonah Canoes here.
Even though my canoe was an ultra-light kevlar, it still weighed 65 lbs. Add in my 60 lb. pack (which I overpacked since I wanted to make sure my wife and kids didn’t have to carry too much), and I was loaded down with over 125 pounds of gear during our portages. I couldn’t afford any unnecessary weight!
I put my wife and 2 kids in the MSR Elixer 4 backpacking tent, while myself and the third kid stayed in the Hubba Hubba.
The lightweight (under 4 lbs.), small pack size, durability, and quick setup were the perfect combination for this trip. I couldn’t fit anything bigger in my Granite Gear Superior Pack, nor did I want any more weight. After we got to our campsite, I was exhausted, but still had to set up the tents, a Nemo Bugout tarp, get water in our Trail Base water filter, and set up a camp kitchen area. The last thing I wanted to do was spend a long time setting up my tent.
Once set up, the Hubba Hubba NX 2 has 29 square feet of floor space, 17.5 sq ft of vestibule space and a 39″ interior height. These are all pretty standard sizes for 2 person backpacking tents.
What made this tent comfortable was the fact that the 39″ ceiling height isn’t just in one point at the center of the tent, but rather throughout the center third of the tent. This allows two adults to comfortably sit upright in the tent.
Four different storage compartments allow you to store gear at the front or rear of the tent just beneath the vents or in the two screen pouches at the top center of the tent. I stored my phone, knife and spare wool socks in the front compartment, base layer pants and shirt at the rear, and a flashlight overhead.
The zippers on the Hubba Hubba are a pleasure. If you’ve used a lot of tents and sleeping bags, you know that zippers can be a pain point. The Hubba Hubba allows easy one hand zipping and unzipping of both the interior and the rainfly, which is really quite nice.
Two entry points and two separate vestibules also add comfort, though this has become a standard for most two person tents.
Weight & Packing Size
For me, weight is one of the biggest factors when purchasing a tent. If you’re a car camper, then weight will matter less.
On my trips, I was already portaging 125+ pounds of weight, so every extra pound mattered.
The Hubba Hubba NX 2 weighs in at a packed weight of 3 lbs 14 oz, which is pretty light for a 2 person tent. Many lightweight 2 person backpacking tents come in around 5 lbs while very few come in under 4.
The tent has a packed size of 18″ x 6″, which means it takes up very little room in your pack.
With a lightweight and small packing size, you’ll have extra room and weight for luxury items or just have less weight on your shoulders.
Weather resistance on MSR tents such as the Hubba Hubba is a hot topic among MSR users.
In 2019 MSR stopped seam sealing their tents and instead switched to the manufacturing process they call Xtreme Sheild.
Xtreme Shield is a two part system of a polyurethane coating and precision stitched seams.
The Xtreme Shield coating actually lasts up to 3 times longer than traditional waterproof tent coatings. You can read more about it here.
However, with this extra durability, there is a tradeoff. While being drastically more durable, the Xtreme Shield system starts off slightly less waterproof.
This is the best way to explain it using a 0-10 rating system:
Say your typical tent starts off with a waterproof rating of 9 out of 10. After 1 year its an 8, 2 years its a 7, 3 years a 6 and so on.
The Xtreme shield starts off at an 8, but stays at 8 year 2, year 3, year 4 and degrades far slower, thus giving the tent a drastically longer lifespan.
You can seal the seams yourself and have the best of both worlds if you choose. To me, this seams (pun intended) like a simple option and I cannot say for sure why MSR doesn’t just go ahead and seal the seams on their Xtreme Shield tents.
For me personally, I like that the tent is more durable and potentially longer-lasting. When I’m paying good money for a tent, I want it to last a long time.
Technically, the rainfly is made from 20D ripstop nylon and has a 1,200 mm rating. Ripstop nylon is a specially woven nylon fabric that resists tearing while the 1200 mm rating means the fabric will withstand a 1200 mm column of water for 1 minute before a drop of water penetrates the fabric.
Ease of Setup
The ease of setup of the Hubba Hubba NX 2 cannot be overstated.
The shock cord poles nearly assemble themselves and go easily into the pole attachment points while the pole clips quickly clip the inner tent to the poles.
The rainfly is slightly confusing the first time you set up the tent, but after that, goes on in about one minute.
A simple feature that makes setup even easier on the MSR is the tensioner straps at each corner of the inner tent and the rainfly. This makes getting the tent pulled tight to the stakes much easier and allows you some wiggle room with your stakes in case you are hitting rocks or roots when trying to stake the tent down.
Altogether, I can typically set the Hubba Hubba 2 up in about 3 minutes.
The takedown is similar but does take a bit longer since you need to fold and roll the tent up to fit into it’s carrying case.
The Hubba Hubba NX 2 is about as durable as a two person tent can get.
First, the rainfly fabric is made of 20D ripstop nylon with 1200mm Xtreme Shield. Rather than try to explain fabrics here, MSR has a great post on their site explaining tent fabrics and what to look for. Check it out here.
The floor fabric is made from 30D ripstop nylon 3000mm Xtreme Shield, slightly more durable than the rainfly. Personally, I find the floor durable enough to not require a footprint in most situations.
The poles are Easton Syclone poles which are the most durable tent poles on the market. These poles are as light as aluminum but more durable than aluminum or carbon and are 80% less likely to fail than either. You can read more about the Easton Syclone poles here.
When you factor in the price vs the durability, lightweight, ease of use and more, the MSR Hubba Huuba NX is a great value at its price point.
It’s rare that you find a tent that you can safely expect to last through harsh weather conditions, uneven ground, and years of harsh camping trips.
Hubba Hubba NX 2 Features and Specs
|Capacity: 2||Packaged Weight: 3 lbs 14 oz|
|Floor Area: 29 sq. ft||Vestibule Area: 17.5 sq. ft|
|Tent Volume: 43 cu. ft||Interior Height: 39 inches|
|Packed Size: 18 x 6 in||Doors: 2|
|2 Rainfly kickstand vents||Reflective Guy-Outs|
|Xtreme Sheild Fabric||Easton Syclone poles|
Is the Hubba Hubba NX 2 Right For You?
The MSR Hubba Hubba NX 2 is a fantastic light-weight two person tent. It’s perfect for backpackers, canoe campers, and other types of camping where you need a perfect blend of lightweight and durability.
While it will work great for car camping, if car camping is your only form of camping, you can save some money and purchase a larger, cheaper, yet heavier tent.
This tent will be a one time purchase that lasts for many years with basic care.
The MSR Hubba Hubba NX 2 is a great all around tent that anyone should be happy to have in their gear collection for nearly any type of camping.
We thoroughly enjoyed using this tent and are excited to try out the Mutha Hubba NX 3 and the Papa Hubba NX 4 soon and give you our thoughts.