Review: Sierra Designs Meteor Light CD [ 3-man, 3-season tent ]

Review: Sierra Designs Meteor Light CD [ 3-man, 3-season tent ]
Retail: $290, MBstores.com is offering this tent for only $209.95. (Limit time offer, expire soon.)

Product Description
This is one of the most popular tents on the market, and it's no mystery why. Like a good climbing partner, the freestanding Meteor Light is strong, versatile, accommodating, easy to live with, and cheerfully endures weather that would otherwise seriously bum you out. Three poles of equal length make for quick pitching, and the mesh ceiling allows stargazing and fresh air inhaling. Best of all, the Double-Zip Adjustable Vestibule can be configured as a sun shade, a half-vestibule, or a large storage space.

Retail: $290


Reviewed by: Alex, a Backpacker from Washington, DC
Date Reviewed: 7/23/2002 9:25:17 AM
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
This is quite simply the best three-season, two-person, general use tent on the market. Unlike many other brands, Sierra Designs is accurate when they list how many their tents sleep (ever try a North Face two-person tent? More like one person and gear). I have been using mine for about 7 years now, and it has never let me down. It sleeps two adults plus gear and my 50 lb. dog very comfortably. The vestibule is a bit small, but adequate for boots, etc.

As for weight, it is not the lightest tent of its type on the market. But it isn't the heaviest either. I'm not sure if that guy who complained that his Meteor Light weighed in at 10 lbs. had a properly working scale. Mine weighs a tad over 5 lbs. Big deal--split the fly, poles, tent, and stakes into two groups and give them to two people.

When this tent eventually reaches its retirement age, I will definitely get another Sierra Designs tent.
 

 
 
  Reviewed by: Lewis G., a Day Hiker from Arlington, WA. USA
Date Reviewed: 5/26/2002 5:45:28 PM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
I wanted a light weight tent to backpack with my 11-year old son. I read the reviews and visited Sierra Design's website and thought, "the SD Meteor Light CD sounds like everything I could want in a tent". I ordered it online and 8 days later a box arrives.

I lifted the box, which felt quite heavy, and thought, "opps! feels like they sent two tents by accident".

WOW! Was I suprised when I opened the box and found one heavy, Metero "not so Light" tent inside. It felt like a 10 pound weight. When I placed it on a scale, no suprise, the tent was 10 lbs!

(Note: That's two pounds heavier than my Eureka Mountain Pass 4 XT tent a 4-man tent).

I'm disappointed with Sierra Design's deceptive and false advertising. Here's my advice to Sierra Design's management team:

1) Quit supporting oppressive goverments (a.k.a. China and Korea) and STOP exploiting underprivledged people.

2) If you're going to export AMERICAN jobs to 3rd world countries, have the decency to pay these poor people more. Don't feel you're doing these people a favor by giving them a job that pays a few cents a day!

You're welcome to prove me wrong by making a public annoucement outlining the salary/benefit policies for the workers you employ in China a Korea, but I won't hold my breath!

3) Take care not to exploit EVERYONE, it's sure to come back and bite you. For now it seems like S.D. exploits people outside the country and it's own people(deceptive advertising, high prices, and the tendency to sell things to people you've taken jobs from).

Okay, I'll get off my soapbox. The quality of the tent appears good, but this is moot if it weighs a ton :(

I didn't know how to rate this product. If it was as light as advertised I'd give it a 4 or 5. But since it's a bag of bricks, I decided to give it a 2-star rating.

Customer Service:
None to date.

Similar Products Tried:
It you want a functional light weight and less expensive tent research the Eureka Mountain Pass XT (4 or 2-man).

Why this tents got a lower rating than the Meteor light is beyond me. Looks like marketing hype really influences people. I've had nothing but good luck with the Moutain Pass XT. Looks like I was suckered by the hype too (I bought the Meteor light).

If your religious pray at night that the Sierra Design managment team develop a concious and become better Global citizens, if your not religous pray anyway, it might do them some good.
 

 
  Reviewed by: PHIL, a Backpacker from BECKETT
Date Reviewed: 5/16/2002 4:05:03 PM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
We bought this tent over 12 years ago, it has been incredibly reliable and durable. We have heavily used this tent in all kinds of conditions, and it has take the abuse well. I love the open feeling of it when you're not using the fly. We had to buy a new fly for it, after a while it seemed like it wouldn't hold the seam-seal, and would leak, but that made it seem like a new tent. we have had a few zipper problems, but other than that I would highly recommend this tent. Sometimes I will carry it for solo trips, it is a grand hotel then.

Customer Service:
returned for zipper maintenence, very prompt service
 

 
  Reviewed by: BJ Vogel, a Backpacker from Dupont, IN, USA
Date Reviewed: 3/20/2002 11:25:37 AM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
I went down to Quest in search of a tent that wasn't overly heavy, not too huge, but great for 3 people, and would be durable. I made the perfect choice! A 2000 Meteorlight.
That night the temperature went down to 10 degrees here in little Indiana and I laid comfortably in my tent and bag. Since then I have been in plenty of weather, and this tent blocks it all.
Plus: Awesome looking, all my friends are jealous. The sleeves are easy, and the clips make it simple for one person to set up. The inside is huge, and the weight isnt bad at all. The window adds to the touch also. The fly works like a charm, with to condensation if everything is staked out perfectly.
Minus? A tad heavy, but who cares, its a bombshell and has great mesh on the top to see stars.
Buy THIS TENT! Its perfect for any weather.

Customer Service:
None yet, but thats SD quality for you.

Similar Products Tried:
SD Omega
Coleman (sucks)
 

 
  Reviewed by: Rick Tyler, a Car Camper from Redmond, Washington
Date Reviewed: 3/20/2002 10:31:52 AM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
I've only had this tent for four months, so I cannot comment on its warm-weather abilities (actually, living and camping mostly in western Washington, I may never experience warm-weather camping), but for warmish snow conditions, it rocks. It is not supposed to be a winter tent, but around here winter camping is mostly around 15-30 degrees, and this tent is fine for those temperatures.

It pitches easily, and the large vestibule gives you lots of room to store gear out of the snow and rain. I'm 6'3" and I can easily sit up and lay down. It is comfortable for two and a palace for one. It's a tall tent and I was concerned about its abilities in wind. The jury is still out, but it just went on a week-ender to Mt. Rainier where it easily survived 3" of snow, about an inch of rain, and moderate winds. Not a drop of water inside, although once snow sealed up the bottom of the fly I did get some moisture on the inside of the roof -- a problem almost all tents have. Washington is always damp, it's hard not to get some condensation. Our group had about 10 tents on this trip, and half of them were leaning under the weight of the wet, heavy snow. The Meteor (and a couple of The North Face tents) was standing tall.

As nearly every other reviewer writes, the zippers on the fly require a lot of care to open and close without getting fabric jammed in them. My first morning in the tent (under 4" of new snow) I jammed *both* vestibule zippers when I was *very* anxious to get out the tent to attend to some important business. A few trips out and I can now get them open and closed without jamming nearly every time.

By the way, the blue fabric on the fly looks really cool.

Customer Service:
Haven't needed any service. REI's staff, as usual, was very helpful.

Similar Products Tried:
A bunch of cheap tents. This is my first really nice one.

 

 
  Reviewed by: Patrick, a Backpacker from Washington
Date Reviewed: 3/10/2002 12:57:14 PM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
I've used this tent four times now and have to say it's great. It's my first "real" tent and I've been very happy. I've only camped in rain in this tent and it's held up very well. We're talking situations where it rained all night - when it was all said and done the tent stayed completely dry.

I'm 6.'3" and there is plenty of room in this tent. Additionally, the vrstibule of this tent is great. If you have a dog or a good ammount of gear, this tent will do them justice.

Setup is a breeaze as well. All in all a great tent.
 

 
  Reviewed by: Lawrence, a Backpacker from Austin, TX
Date Reviewed: 2/19/2002 7:01:52 AM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
This is a very spacious 2-person tent. I've used it in poor weather conditions ranging from freezing rain, sleet, 1 foot of very wet snow, thunderstorms, gale force winds, multiple consecutive rainy days. The tent has held up great and the only leak(actually drip) I had was due to condensation dripping on the tent from the underside of the fly. This was on a very calm, humid night camped next to a river. The flaps covering the fly zipper may get caught in the zipper while zipping from within the tent. The tent is heavier than advertised. After 5 years of abuse, the fly is starting to delaminate. This tent will easily hold 2 plus gear.

Customer Service:
Never had to call.

Similar Products Tried:
Marmot Nutshell, Walrus Arch Rival, and many others...
 

 
  Reviewed by: Glenn Fee, a Backpacker from Denver, CO
Date Reviewed: 12/14/2001 1:31:17 PM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
I've used my Meteor Light for six years now. Included during that time is two separate stints sleeping in the tent every night for 50 or so days. Overall, I've slept in the tent more than 250 nights. It's held up like a champ. The only problems that I've experienced are with the zippers, but I attribute that more to normal wear and tear. If you're looking to stay in a tent in weather below 20 degrees or so, then I'd recommend upgrading to a four-season.
 

 
  Reviewed by: Jody Huggins, a Backpacker from New Mexico
Date Reviewed: 11/23/2001 8:06:53 PM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
I have a 6 year old Clear-Light version, which is mostly mesh.
Was a Campmor closeout item. was like $120
Excellent tent for 3 seasons in the Southwest.
Tent looks a little rough now, but is still leakproof and pitches tight.
Zippers are a little finicky so be carefull with them.
 

 
  Reviewed by: Kevin, a Backpacker from Virginia
Date Reviewed: 10/26/2001 5:39:43 AM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
I have the 99 model. Been thru rain and wind with no problems. At one Scout campout we had 50+ mph winds and tents and dining flys were sailing. 4 stakes (and my backack) held the Meteor Lite down.
Pros: Love the 2 doors. Great vestibule. Roomy, comfortable, watertight. Easy to set up and take down.
Cons: Zippers on the fly catch in the fabric unless you zip very slowly and carefully. A second vestibule would be great. Weighs far more than advertised.

Customer Service:
Have not had to use them.

Similar Products Tried:
North Face
Kelty Vortex2 (also a good tent)
 

 
  Reviewed by: Kroto, a Backpacker from No Reading, MA
Date Reviewed: 9/18/2001 8:55:18 AM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
I bought this tent based on 3 factors: 1) weight, 2) vestibule size (dog), 3) volume. It has scored high on all counts, although at 7 lb, 4 oz (weighed with all sacks, poles, etc) a bit heavier than I wanted (dream on...). THIS TENT IS GREAT! If you need a "real" 2 person tent with plenty of room for gear and a dog, this is it. On our first use, we ran into gusts up to 60 mph with sleet up in the White Mtns. The tent held nicely, stayed dry. I highly recommend this tent. Campmor advertised this tent on their website (campmor.com)for $120 (the '99 model) for 3 days (deal of the century).They now have it for $230. Only "complaint"? Be careful with the zippers. Feed them through carefully, and you'll be fine.

Similar Products Tried:
SD Flashlight 3 CD
Eureka (don't remember which)
REI Nitelite
 

 
  Reviewed by: Kroto, a Backpacker from No Reading, MA
Date Reviewed: 9/18/2001 8:46:54 AM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
I bought this tent based on 3 factors: 1) weight, 2) vestibule size (dog), 3) volume. It has scored high on all counts, although at 7 lb, 4 oz (weighed with all sacks, poles, etc) a bit heavier than I wanted (dream on...). THIS TENT IS GREAT! If you need a "real" 2 person tent with plenty of room for gear and a dog, this is it. On our first use, we ran into gusts up to 60 mph with sleet up in the White Mtns. The tent held nicely, stayed dry. I highly recommend this tent. Campmor advertised this tent on their website (campmor.com)for $120 (the '99 model) for 3 days (deal of the century).They now have it for $230. Only "complaint"? Be careful with the zippers. Feed them through carefully, and you'll be fine.

Similar Products Tried:
SD Flashlight 3 CD
Eureka (don't remember which)
REI Nitelite
 

 
  Reviewed by: L.Apacki, a Backpacker from Columbus, Ohio
Date Reviewed: 7/16/2001 1:04:17 PM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
I loved this tent. It was compact and light enough that I could easily carry it on a cross country bike trip. It's a two person setup and a one person take-down tent. Plenty of room inside the tent for myself and 180lb male. The vestibule was large enough to keep gear dry and cook dinner under. We battled condensation on the inside of the tent but I've battled that with every tent. It has been incredibly durable and has survived tornados and heavy downpours.

Customer Service:
Haven't needed them.

Similar Products Tried:
sheet suspended between chairs in a living room.
 

 
  Reviewed by: B. Dean, a Backpacker from Apex, NC
Date Reviewed: 6/24/2001 7:54:02 PM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
I have a pre-cd model that has never let me down through years of backpacking. Quality tent with lots of storage and space for two...plenty of foot room to bring the packs in for the night also. Weatherproofing is top-notch.

Similar Products Tried:
REI geo mountain
Diamond Brand

 

 
  Reviewed by: Dean, a Backpacker from Cincinnati, Ohio
Date Reviewed: 5/8/2001 6:59:37 PM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
Great tent. I've used it everywhere from the mountains to the northwood. It's light, packable, and fast to pitch. Mine was waterproof out of the box and still is 7 years later. Grat value as it is still like new.
 

 
  Reviewed by: David, a Backpacker from Charlotte, NC, USA
Date Reviewed: 5/7/2001 7:05:42 AM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
A very nice 3-season tent with good ventilation. Room inside is ample for two adults. Weight is good, and water proofness is very good. The mesh top is great with good weather, but if its raining, having to pop the tent up up-side down can be a bear - especially in the dark!

Overall a quality tent I would easily recommend.
 

 
  Reviewed by: Thomas Mollenkamp, a Backpacker from Austin TX, USA
Date Reviewed: 4/28/2001 10:35:55 AM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
Great tent just like everyone says. Mine is old school, 1996, but still good as new. Great for tropical weather (good ventilation, good in lots of rain, etc.) I have also used it in cold weather, snow, mountain, and has performed flawlessly. Sometimes I think it can be heavy to carry around, but I have nothing to compare it to. Anyway, definitely recommendable. Also, have had lots of compliments by other fellow campers when they see the tent (especially overseas).

Customer Service:
Never needed it.
 

 
  Reviewed by: Tim Plaster, a Backpacker from Jackson, WY
Date Reviewed: 4/5/2001 8:07:15 PM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
Bought this tent based on reviews seen here and friends' testimonials and am extremely happy. The size is perfect for my 6'3" frame and another to sleep with ample room. I've even had 3 people in there once (2 small ones) and it was fine. The large vestibule is an added bonus.
Weatherproofing has proven to be great in a variety of situations ie. rain, snow, etc. For a 3 season tent, it's not too bad in a light snow provided you have a decent bag.
I guess my only negative comments are that the zipper to the vestibule gets caught in it's own rain flap and "locks" you in which is kind of frustrating/embarassing. Also the 2nd door should have a way to keep the fly off of the tent making it easier to exit.
Overall great tent for the price and medium weight.

Customer Service:
None

Similar Products Tried:
North Face similair "green one". Great with second vestibule, but 1lb+ heavier
 

 
  Reviewed by: JIM, a Backpacker from Palmer,MASS.
Date Reviewed: 4/5/2001 6:11:56 PM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
I love this house...i mean tent!! From it's ease of set-up to it's durability this tent is the best i have used. The vestible is just the right size and the roof mesh is great for star gazing!! I have heard the newer model is a bit heavier, but mine ( bought in 98')is just fine for weekend getaways. Just make sure you have the right footprint for it.
 

 
  Reviewed by: Dick Roberts, a Backpacker from Coeur d'Alene ID USA
Date Reviewed: 3/23/2001 11:35:17 AM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
Having used a heavier tent for years in the Tetons and Mt. Ranier area, we decided a lighter tent with aluminum poles would be an improvement. We were right! The Meteor Light CD (99 model)is great. We have not experienced heavy rain yet, but it slept dry inside and fairly warm while outside temps were 32 or less. Easy to set up, and we recommend the additional footprint to protect the bottom. It fits and stays better than plastic tarp. We looked at almost every good tent made before buying, and would recommend it for its shape and nice features, as well as additional hanging pockets and storage made just for it. Just be sure to add extra guys to the fly to keep it from touching the tent and transferring moisture to it. Quick to set up and take down. Weight is reasonable considering the space with vestibule (nice)and extra door (extra nice). Unless doing severe mountaineering, you could not go wrong with this one.

Customer Service:
no service needed

Similar Products Tried:
Diamond Dome, circa 1983, used continually until 1999.
 

 
  Reviewed by: Amy Lauterbach, a Backpacker from Palo Alto, CA, USA
Date Reviewed: 2/29/2001 10:04:57 PM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
Fabulous tent for car camping. Extremely well thought out design. But too heavy for backpacking. And don't trust Sierra Designs or the retailer, carry your own scale and weigh it. When we bought ours several years ago, the advertised weight was more than one pound lower than the actual weight (even when I only weigh the tent, fly & poles). They may have corrected the data now, but it showed a lack of integrity or attention to detail to have such misleading stats.

Similar Products Tried:
North Face Tadpole, Sierra Designs Clip Flashlight
 

 
  Reviewed by: Steve Lord, a Backpacker from London, Great Britain
Date Reviewed: 2/29/2001 7:06:32 AM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
The first thing about the Meteor Light for '99, the current model, is that it is no longer light. Increasing the vestibule and adding features like the window and the seam-taping has increased the weight- mine weighs almost 9 pounds in the bag. Aside from that, it is a great tent. The seam taping is excellent, and the tent has lots of features and smart improvements over earlier models. We used it for a month in Baja, Mexico and enjoyed two doors and the huge vestibule. We bought the tent for a 6 month bike tour of Europe in the summer, and still think it is the right choice, but watch out- weigh it for yourself in the shop before buying!

Customer Service:
If you deal with Sierra Designs directly, they really are excellent, particularly if you can make it to the factory store in Oakland, CA

Similar Products Tried:
Kelty Domicile, Sierra Designs Stretch Dome
 

 
  Reviewed by: Chad Sheley, a Backpacker from Adel, IA, USA
Date Reviewed: 2/28/2001 12:10:04 PM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
Not really any new information about this tent - just wanted to add my "hoorah"!

Chosen almost exclusively for the (mostly) rectangular footprint that has great square footage and length for my 6'3" frame.

An added benefit is that a full-size inflatable air-matress fills it perfectly when car camping.

The only improvement I'd make would be to expand the back-door part of the rainfly to be a bigger vestibule like suggested elsewhere, or just make it so I can tether it further away to keep it off the tent itself.

I would also add to the kudos about weather proofing. Spent 5 rainy days and nights in the Boundary Waters this past summer camped a few yards from our friends who had a mudhole (literally) in their much cheaper tent. ;-)

My biggest recommendation would be to anyone that is taller and doesn't want their feet to be against the side of the tent and get wet.
 

 
  Reviewed by: Dave , a Mountaineer from Canton, NY, USA
Date Reviewed: 2/25/2001 11:41:53 AM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
I have used the Meteor Light that is 9 years old so this review can be considered out of date but.... I think this is a great tent due to its shape and weight. The vestibule on this one is so small you couldn't even dream of cooking in the vestibule in bad weather, in the new ones it seems to be a lot bigger. The version I used only has one door which is an improvement with the new 2!

Customer Service:
None Needed

Similar Products Tried:
SD Draco, SD Stretch Prelude, SD Clip 2, TNF Mountain, TNF Expedition 25, Walrus Rapeede
 

 
  Reviewed by: Chris Fitzpatrick, a Backpacker from Floyds Knobs, Indiana USA
Date Reviewed: 2/23/2001 2:01:13 PM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
I have the '99 model, which has two doors and is factory seam sealed. Love it. It's great for backpacking, being so light and easy to set up. The Clip Flashlight is lighter, but also a little smaller and is not free-standing. With 40 square feet and 14 feet of vestibule, this is a good all around tent for those who need the light weight. Great use of interior space through computer design. The window is cool too, especially on those clear, starry nights. Equal pole length, so no way to mix them up. Recommended tent.

Similar Products Tried:
Eureka Timberline 4.
 

 
  Reviewed by: John O'Connor, a Backpacker from Indianapolis, IN, USA
Date Reviewed: 2/8/2001 2:11:01 PM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
Great overall performance! I've been using my meteorlight for about 5 years and have nothing but great things to say about this tent. I think it provides a great bang for the buck. My tent has seen all kinds of climates and conditions and performs well in every climate.
No big frills, the fly could be improved perhaps, but that is more fluff than function. I'd buy again.

Customer Service:
I loaned the tent out and did get a tear. I sent the tent in and had it back in no time with nice repair work. No complaints
 

 
  Reviewed by: Eric, a Backpacker from Madison, Wisconsin
Date Reviewed: 2/2/2001 1:09:53 PM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
I've been using this tent for the past 6 years and have had nothing but great experiences with it. Its seen everything from 90+ degree sumer trips to sub-zero winter outings. The combination of roominess and its relativly light weight were the origional selling points, but it has proven extremely durable in the long run. Many newer designs are lighter, but if you value being able to sit up and move about in a tent, this one's a winner

Customer Service:
I had one problem 3 years back where the coating on one section of the rainfly must have wore off. I sent it in to Sierra Designs and back came a brand new fly. No Charge!
 

 
  Reviewed by: eric stobin, a Car Camper from norwalk ct usa
Date Reviewed: 1/26/2001 7:58:46 PM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
This tent is great right out of the box. it is spacious inside, and it is very good in wind and rain. I like the adjustable fly. Has great ventilation and makes for a very easy to use tent with quick set up. good vertical height, too. this tent is light and made with high quality materials

Similar Products Tried:
Eureka Timberlite
 

 
  Reviewed by: Chris Ferguson, a Mountaineer from Taos
Date Reviewed: 1/25/2001 5:09:14 PM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
Wow, this has to be the most reviewed tent on this site!, Easy to understand why... we have one for fair weather camping (OK, 3 season), It must be the most satisfactory tents for pleasant conditions I've ever spent time in. Its ideal for warm summer nights without the fly, it vents like open air camping! It's also light and packs well. a truly sublime product and my other tent (4season) is a Bibler!

Similar Products Tried:
TNF, Walrus, Bibler
 

 
  Reviewed by: Vince, a Backpacker from Houston, B.C.
Date Reviewed: 1/14/2001 5:49:42 PM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
We've had this tent for 4 years now and it has been great. It's taken us to Africa twice now.The only problems we've had with it are the zippers in the vestibule getting stuck. ( This usually happens when it's raining out and you have to go for a wee). The other problem we found was that because the door opens downwards you tend to step on it alot. We wrecked our door screen by accidentaly stepping on it during those quick rainy setups. Other than that we like the weight and the roominess.
 

 
  Reviewed by: Anthony, a Backpacker from Yorba Linda , CA
Date Reviewed: 1/9/2001 12:49:05 PM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
We did a 5 day trip into Kings Canyon and on the third day got caught in a heavy rain. Our camp site flooded with 3 inches of water. I had forgotten to trench around the beautifil Sierra Design tent. I went inside to check for leaks and it was dry. This really boosted my confidence in the tent. It was so comfy I sat in the roomy tent and read and napped, eventhough the floor had 3 inches of water under it. I originally bought this so I could see the stars at night which it does well also .
 

 
  Reviewed by: Gary, a Backpacker from Augusta,Georgia. USA
Date Reviewed: 1/4/2001 4:40:53 AM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
This tent is great. Was caught in a two day downpour in the Smokies this past fall and it did not leak a drop. Was also very stable in high winds. Had problems with zipper on rain fly(getting stuck) but that was only minor problem. I have the '98 model with only one door, the new models have two doors which makes life easier with two people. The weight is a tad heavy , but well worth it for the room and stability. I highly recommend this tent. The quality is tops, it is built to last. Set-up is a breeze.

Customer Service:
Have not had to use them.
 

 
  Reviewed by: Ryan, a Backpacker from Lawrence, KS USA
Date Reviewed: 12/22/2000 6:23:31 AM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
This is a great tent for the camping that most people do. It has plenty of room and a very easy setup. The front vestible is huge and well thought out. I only have 2 suggestions for Sierra Designs--give the back door its own vestible, and put some vents in the fly. Neither hinder the performance, but both would be nice.

Customer Service:
No complaints

Similar Products Tried:
Garuda Arja
 

 
  Reviewed by: Judy Olsen, a Backpacker from Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA
Date Reviewed: 12/21/2000 1:31:57 PM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
We have had this tent a long time and I wouldn't have any other. It's been through big storms with no leakage (we spray the seams and zippers annually)and there's plenty of room for the two of us and our stuff. We especially like seeing the stars at night! It has been set up in the pitch dark with no problems...
 

 
  Reviewed by: Dan, a Backpacker from Chicago, IL, USA
Date Reviewed: 11/22/2000 7:54:17 AM
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
My wife and I used the '94 version on a thru-hike of the A.T. in 1998. We tented nearly every night and weathered numerous intense thunder storms; this is a very solid tent for the weight. All we had to do maintenace wise was spray some silicone on the fly and outide tent bottom twice in 6 months to keep the water beading. Would like to upgrade to the dual zipper rain-fly sometime soon (although we've had no snag problems with the single). As others have mentioned, set-up is a breeze even by one person. Finally, while you'll save a some weight with the Clip, for two people I think the free-standing extra room is worth it. It's a nice luxury to have all your gear (except food) in with you and room to sit-up and move a little.

Customer Service:
Never needed to use.

Similar Products Tried:
SD Clip
 

 
  Reviewed by: Patrick McQuown, a Backpacker from Washington, DC
Date Reviewed: 11/14/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
Great tent! The size is right (and I'm 6'4"") and the weight sin't half bad. It's got room for me to sit up too (something most tents lack). The vestibule is huge as well. The only problem is that the zippers get stuck on the vestibule. I've used this tent twice in all night rain. The tent didn't leak a drop.
 

 
  Reviewed by: Dave, a Backpacker from LaVerkin, UT, USA
Date Reviewed: 10/8/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
My brother and I rented this tent in 1993 on a trip to Glacier N.P. What impressed me most was how easy it was to set up. We were caught in hail one night and had it set up in less than 3-minutes. It is also light-weight, and has plenty of ventilation. I have since purchased a Sierra Designs Stretch Dome, which is a great tent as well, but I do miss the ease of set-up, weight, and ventilation that the Meteor Light offers.

Similar Products Tried:
Stretch Dome
 

 
  Reviewed by: AB, a Backpacker from Laguna Beach, CA
Date Reviewed: 10/7/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
Love this tent. Just got it. Used it for four nights, and it made the whole trek better. Super easy to set up, very stable and lots of ventilation. Dig it.
 

 
  Reviewed by: Eric , a Backpacker from Mpls MN
Date Reviewed: 10/4/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
This tent rocks! Light wieght easy to set up and take down. I have used it everywhere from the desserts of Utah to the rain soaked forrests of The Smokey mountains. No matter what you are using this tent for it holds up. No doubt for the cash a great tent

Similar Products Tried:
REI geodome cheesedog tent
 

 
  Reviewed by: Nate Woolever, a Backpacker from La Crosse, WI, USA
Date Reviewed: 9/30/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
Even though I've described myself as a backpacker...(I'll get to do some this weekend!), most of my camping consists of car camping at mountain bike races. That said, the three equal length poles makes set-up in the dark a piece of cake! Weathers a storm without leaks and even packs up small when the time does come to put it into a pack. One downside, it's a little cramped with two people and a large dog that won't sleep in the vestibule!
 

 
  Reviewed by: Colin, a Backpacker from Baltimore
Date Reviewed: 9/17/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
I like this tent. I can fit me (5' 10"") and my 5' 5"" girlfriend and my 95 and 70 pound dog in this tent. True it is cozy but we can fit. Equal sized poles, roomy vestibule, light (for two), and good quality construction. I have survived several downpours without a drop of rain on the inside. Can be guy lined out to survive very high winds. The 99s are nice because you can use there footprint with just the rainfly to make a light shelter. The 98s and earlier do not do this.
 

 
  Reviewed by: TimeX, a Backpacker from IL
Date Reviewed: 9/17/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
I really like the size/shape of this tent. One large vestibule gives you a large usable space instead of two small useless spaces. My zippers alway get snagged, especially on the fly. They aren't anywhere as good as those on my North Face. The zipper on my Sierra bag gets stuck too... The extra door can be nice to have occasionally, but is it really worth the extra weight/expense?
 

 
  Reviewed by: Dick DeJong, a Backpacker from Nelson, BC, Canada
Date Reviewed: 9/17/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
We purchased our (original design) Meteor Lite 11 years ago, and haven't regretted it yet. This has held up very well in torrential Kootenay downpours, early season snow, and blistering heat. We also do a fair amount of mountain bike camping with this tent as well, and this is where the weight and compactness of the tent really shine. When it comes time to retire this one we will definately be looking at the new CD with its larger vest. and double doors.
 

 
  Reviewed by: Johnny Chen, a Backpacker from Bellevue, WA USA
Date Reviewed: 9/15/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
Starting w/ this year's model, the Meteor Light has two doors. I am extremely pleased with this tent. It is easy to set up, has good ventilation, relatively light, and a good all-around tent. I thought about getting the Marmot Equinox, but the Meteor's been around for a long, long time. This tent is tried and true, no-nonsense.

Customer Service:
This year's model is factory sealed, but I'd recommend seam sealing the tent yourself just to make sure.
 

 
  Reviewed by: Brian, a Car Camper from Pasadena, CA USA
Date Reviewed: 9/15/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
Good overall construction EXCEPT for the zippers. Both the main zippers are ruined after four years of use, otherwise the tent is in perfect condition. Tried to check SD's website for repair info, but they don't have any. Would also be nice to have the big door on both sides, as one person needs to climb over the other to get out.
 

 
  Reviewed by: Alan Campbell, a Backpacker from Stirling, Ontario, Canada
Date Reviewed: 9/13/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
My experience with this tent has been great! Relatively lightweight, sets up in a snap, vey roomy, breathable, and wterproof. I do mostly Canoe tripping and after this tent gets soaked in rapids, it drys fast, and still performs great. I'm thinking of taking this on a little overnight mountain bike trip.

Similar Products Tried:
Eureka timberline, etc.
 

 
  Reviewed by: Doug Taylor, a Car Camper from carrboro, NC USA
Date Reviewed: 9/13/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
I mostly use this tent for car camping, although it has been light enough for the occational mtn. bike camp trip. For the most part it has been great (very dry once I sealed it). BUT, I have had in the past a hell of a time with getting the zippers on the rain fly stuck in the fabric. Opening it slowly and using my fingers to keep the material out of the zipper has helped, but it can be a pain. Maybe this problem has been eliminated in the newer model (mine's a '97. I think).
 

 
  Reviewed by: Dan B, a Backpacker from Rochester, NY
Date Reviewed: 9/9/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
I have used this tent while bike touring. It has started to leak a bit. I am not sure why just yet. I have kept the seams sealed to the best of my ability. I wish the fly was a little bigger too.
 

 
  Reviewed by: Richard LaCerte, a Backpacker from Québec, Canada
Date Reviewed: 9/8/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
Excellent product. This is my third tent ( Quest, Mountain Hardwesr) I'm a 6'2"" backpacker...big problem ...I finally found a light,roomy well ventilated tent and easy to set up. The 2000 have 2 doors and it's was very imp. for me.

Customer Service:
I will test the customer service service soon... for the seem...I will tell you after
 

 
  Reviewed by: Phil Lanier, a Backpacker from Seattle, WA
Date Reviewed: 9/7/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
Last summer I slept in this tent for a month and a half as I rode my bike across the U.S... in gravel pits, torrential downpours, a little snow, heavy hail, and even a tornado watch. My ananysis- Pros: Lots of space! Roomiest of the two person tents, and a very large vestibule; Easy to set up; very waterproof; '99 model comes pre-seamsealed, and has two doors (nice for 2 people); *AWESOME* customer service! Cons: May be a little bulky for the ultralight backpacker; Condensation builds up very easily on inside of tent (esp. with 2 people); It's not as easy to stargaze through mesh ceiling as I thought!; leaked slightly in long, very heavy rains toward the end of my trip (BUT, Sierra designs sent me a brand new tent - they sent my the '99 model and mine was the '98 model!)

Customer Service:
Oh - held up pretty nicely in 50+ MPH winds (I had it guyed out), although it bent the poles just slightly. However, the poles were none the worse for wear when I bent them back into shape.

Similar Products Tried:
Got to see how many other people's tents did on the bikeride as well (from the K-mart models, to the x-treme 4 season tents)... My advice, don't settle for el cheapo. There are better tents than this, but for the price, this is an excellent value!
 

 
  Reviewed by: Jeff, a Backpacker from Malibu, CA, USA
Date Reviewed: 7/20/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
I got tent envy for this tent while on an early season Sierra trip where we got a ton of rain. We had four people siting straight up playing cards for about 4 hours in the Meteor light during a afternoon thunder storm. It rained everyday and it was very nice to have such a roomy tent. When I decided that I needed a good tent I did a lot of shopping around and a lot of reseach. I looked at The North face Cirrus (same basic design) and found it smaller, heavier, and more expensive. I also looked serously at some Mountain Hardwear tent and found that tents in the same price range as the Sierra Designs were not as big and weighed as much or more. The Best 3-season tent for the buck.

Customer Service:
--
 

 
  Reviewed by: Loehr Young, a Backpacker from Athens, GA. USA
Date Reviewed: 7/7/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
Man is this a great tent ! Easy set up, VERY roomy, Large vestibule. It is a little heavy, but the room is worth it. I have a 98' with only one door, but it's no problem. You can get 3 people in there to.

Similar Products Tried:
Camel SST Dome tent (one of the ""poles attached"" easy set up tents.
 

 
  Reviewed by: Daryl, a Backpacker from Odenton, MD
Date Reviewed: 6/21/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
A god sent tent! Used it nearly 5 years. Now that I've got growing pain... a new addition along with my two 70 lbs dogs. Thinking of getting another tent like it or a bigger ones. However, I ain't giving up my Meteor Light CD.

Customer Service:
Could have used a bigger stuff bag along with a ""flap"" to protect the debris from coming in through the opening when stuffed.
 

 
  Reviewed by: Ross, a Backpacker from Chicago, IL
Date Reviewed: 6/9/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
This tent is probably the only 2 person tent that I have been in, that actually comfortablly fits 2 people. I'm never cramped. I've had some problems with leaks in the tent though. The tarp seems to touch the screen. I'm on my second tent of the same model, Serria Designs is sending me a third. Hopefully it will correct the problem.

Customer Service:
Customer service very attentive to my needs. They didn't question my problem with water leaking inside.
 

 
  Reviewed by: dave c, a Backpacker from truckee, CA
Date Reviewed: 5/27/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
Pretty much the perfect 3-season, 2 man tent. Light, simple to set-up, roomy, well ventilated, but sturdy and weather proof. Get a bigger stuff sack and you'll have no complaints.

Similar Products Tried:
Eureka Alpine Meadows, SD crystal dome, various el-cheapo domes.
 

 
  Reviewed by: Mark Anderson, a Backpacker from Washington, D.C.
Date Reviewed: 5/19/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
Sierra Designs makes an excellent product. This is my second tent -- the first being a clip flashlight -- and both are likely to keep me from the elements for years to come. This tent is light, roomy, sturdy, dry and well ventilated. It fits two and a 70 pound dog without crowding anyone in the threesome. On its maiden voyage, this tent kept us dry in an intense rainstorm that featured intense winds that wet some of our comrades.

Similar Products Tried:
Sierra Designs Clip Flashlight
 

 
  Reviewed by: Q-Boy, a Backpacker from Oakland, CA
Date Reviewed: 4/13/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
I finally got a Meteor light after lusting for about 5 years. So far, I've only used it car camping in Yosemite, but I really like it. It's spacious, well ventilated, easy to set up, and the vestibule is a good size. I can look over the climbing routine to get to the door (though I think the current models have 2 doors). I'm sure it'll be fine on backpacking trips as an alternative to the clip flashlight I've been using. Despite new designs, I still like the ML because of the interior area.
 

 
  Reviewed by: Rick Snyder, a Backpacker from Boulder, CO USA
Date Reviewed: 4/10/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
Great Tent. I got this last year at an EMS sale....I couldn't pass it up. I'd never heard of it before but it seemed like a nice tent. Then I used it.....Wow, what a great tent. Easy to set up, well ventilated, and the cover goes almost all the way to the ground.
 

 
  Reviewed by: Colin Philpot, a Car Camper from Baltimore,Maryland,USA
Date Reviewed: 4/9/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
I love this tent. I do mostly car camping but also backpack on occasion. This tent is light and easy to set up. It holds up well n the wind. The vetibule is very spacious and the rainfly has some great options as well. Like the jother person who posted said, getting in and out can be a hassle since you have to climb over the person closest to the door to get out.
 

 
  Reviewed by: Carl Z, a Car Camper from Moab
Date Reviewed: 3/31/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
This is a spacious two person tent with good vevtilation. I've used it in hard rains and hot summers. My only complaint is the design doesn't take strong winds very well. The poles flex enough to have the tent fold over in strong winds.
 

 
  Reviewed by: Eric Brandt, a Backpacker from Gilbert, AZ, USA
Date Reviewed: 3/24/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
This is a great tent, I got stuck in a freak snow storm during a Colorado summer @ 12,000 ft and the tent did well, nice vestibule, plenty of ventilation, we were cold but that was not the tents fault. We both felt comfortable and secure in the tent, with our gear protected from the elements as well. These guys know how to design useable space kudos SD.
 

 
  Reviewed by: Jason, a Backpacker from Hanover, NH
Date Reviewed: 3/22/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
This is a great tent. Having lived in TN before coming to NH, this tent was awesome in the summer heat. Extremely breathable, not stuffy even in TN. Haven't tried in the winter in NH, but despite the product info saying it is a 3-season tent, I bet it would do well in moderate cold as well. Not the lighest tent on the market for backpacking, but well worth it for its price.
 

 
  Reviewed by: Don, a Backpacker from New Jersey
Date Reviewed: 3/18/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
Good tent with excellent ventilation and ample room for two. The vestibule allows for safe stowaway of a good amount of gear. Despite its 3-season rating, it's fared well in more than a few late winter storms. Stability is good in high winds, although additional stakes are necessary to keep the rainfly taut. The tent weighs in just shy of 7lbs, which is on the heavier side for a 2-person, but you gotta love the space if you get stuck indoors for awhile.
 

 
  Reviewed by: Hooligan, a Climber from Champaign, IL USA
Date Reviewed: 2/25/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
The vestibule on this tent is impressive. It is very space efficient. However, since the door is on the side of the tent, the person sleeping opposite the door needs to crawl over the person closer to the door when exiting. This is not much of a problem, but worth mentioning.

Similar Products Tried:
Sierra Designs Tiros, TNF Bullfrog
 

 
  Reviewed by: Clay E. Ewing, a Backpacker from Corpus Christi, Texas, USA
Date Reviewed: 1/19/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
The ML CD is our second ML, the first one being the original design. After a severe wind storm in Big Bend NP, we decided the crossed pole design change of the CD, and the far larger vestibule (14cf vs. 7.5), warranted the purchase. So far, in the past year, from rain in Telluride, to big winds in the Texas Hill Country; backpacking above treeline and bike camping in warm climes; the space effeciency and improved taunt setup have been impressive. One caveat that prevents me from giving it a 5 rating: in the Telluride rain--steady and persistent, and the first rain the tent had seen--water leaked in around a seam where the floor and side met up. After the tent had dried, I sprayed it with Tectron, though haven't been in enough moisture to check it out. I seam sealed the rest of the tent and fly when new, but this higher seam seemed unnecessary until the fly started dripping onto it.
 

 
  Reviewed by: elmo, a Backpacker from tennessee
Date Reviewed: 1/14/2000
 
 

Overall Rating:
ValueRating:

Summary:
Great tent. Have owned one for years. Also own stretch dome. Rarely use the stretch dome. Meteor Lite is awesome summer tent given its ventilation. Has held up for over 5 yrs.

Customer Service:
never needed it


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