Just like anything these days, if you want a high quality piece of gear, you are going to have to pay for it. There’s no question that Hilleberg makes some of the best tent rigs on the planet. It all starts with an innovative design by professionals that use the product in places most of us will never see in person. Follow that up with the highest quality materials, and then build in the innovative features that make the durability, usability and safety of these shelters second to none.
With nearly 40 models to choose from the possibilities are vast and believe me, you will want to make your choice wisely as even the most basic of models will run you in the neighborhood of $600. Don’t let the sticker shock stun you too much. Keep in mind, you may never have to buy another tent again as these things are just short of bulletproof. I have had my Allak for nearly ten years now and it still looks like I have used it two or three times max.
ENAN: For the test, I chose two very different tents to compare and contrast. The first is a very lightweight, single man option that might act as an entry-level type rig – the Enan. This tent is small, light, fairly basic and a very solid choice for the backcountry solo hunter. This tent is listed as a Yellow Label option by the crew at Hilleberg, meaning it is the lightest of lightweight options and basically a three season tent. But considering Hilleberg regularly sends tents to the top of Mount Everest, this tent should suffice for any conditions most of us will ever encounter when hunting. A two-season Hilleberg is like a four season tent from most other manufacturers.
ALLAK: The other tent choice was my go-to favorite, the Allak. This tent and I have seen some very serious and dramatically different conditions. From the 90-degree temps of a New Mexico muzzleloader elk hunt in September, to the -10 of the backside of the Grand Teton deep in the Wyoming wilderness in late October. This tent is a two-person option, with all the bells and whistles you could think of. The Allak is a Red Label option, which in Hilleberg speak means, any season, almost anywhere in North America. This tent will perform and keep you safe. It really is like having a collapsible nylon bomb shelter in your backpack.
SUMMARY: These two tents are very different in almost every way – their construction, design, layout, seasonality and capacity – one person versus two. I chose two ends of the Hilleberg spectrum, so to speak, to give you an idea of the vast array of tent options available. Keep in mind, these are exactly that, the two ends of the “low capacity” spectrum, one and two person tents, but there are many options in between that might fit your exact criteria better.
If it’s a simple weight and cost play, the Enan is your choice. At less than 65% of the weight per person and a cost savings of over $300, it’s a very solid choice. Keep in mind; if you are hung up on a two-person tent, Hilleberg also makes a tent called the Rogen that is a lightweight version of the two-person Allak. The Rogen weighs in at just under four pounds and will set you back about $750. If you want a very high quality, all around, two-person tent that you can use in any season in any terrain or elevation and feel 100% solid and safe with, then the Allak would be the best choice.
No matter what type of backpacking tent you are looking for Hilleberg has a tent for you. These two models are at the outer edge of the backcountry-hunting spectrum and there are plenty of other worthy models to choose from that will fit your particular needs and specifications.