L.L. Bean Mountain Light XT 2 Tent Review

I don’t know what it is, but I just love tents. That being said, I’m also incredibly picky. I’ve been through many tents in my years, and so far I’ve only managed to hold onto two of them. Can the Mountain Light XT become my third?

About the Tent:

The idea driving the L.L. Bean Mountain Light XT 2 tent one of comfort, and livable space. This isn’t your ultra light tent, this is your hunker down in the storm tent. Wide, tall and spacious, the Mountain Light offers ample room to move around inside, and enjoy those long rainy evenings on the trail.  Large vestibules and a near vertical set of side walls provides the most usable space possible. Packed up, you’re portable fortress weigh chime in at around 5 pounds, proving you with 33.75 square feet or interior room, and 7.5 feet in each of the vestibules. Current list price is $269.

What I liked:

The Mountain Light XT is roomy. This is great for shorter trips, overnighters, or when you know the weather is going to be particularly foul. This tent would also be perfect for those who demand more room. The vestibules are large and spacious as well, easily allowing me to store my pack and boots outside on one side, and cook with the fly open on the other. The Mountain Light is very rigid, and pitches great. It stands with a firm, taut pitch that doesn’t wince in the wind. The poles are well built and rugged. Ventilation is adequate. The meshy body allows for plenty of airflow around the tent. The horizontal strut across the tops widens the tent body out, allowing both parties to sit straight up without rubbing the tent. Several pockets inside allow for a little extra storage. The overall build quality is great, and it looks nice to boot. Despite the large size the tent is pretty light for what it is. The tent deals with condensation well enough. Setup is easy and straight forward. It pitches like a salesman.

What I didn’t like:

Some nit picking is always fun eh? The included tent stakes…yeah they’re pretty pitiful as usual. This isn’t surprising. I recommend swapping these out if you’re doing any serious trips, or deal with bad weather. You’re going to need a minimum of 6 stakes, but I recommend 8 as guying out the ends makes the tent more taut and greatly improved ventilation. You could use as many as 12 if you’re really in some rough weather (guy outs). No upper vents means more condensation. Although condensation isn’t much of an issue here, vents would have helped a lot. Minor quibble, no included gear loft, but there are mounts for them.

Overall:

With it’s long, voluptuous curves, the Mountain Light XT 2 tent is one your can certainly take home to mother. It looks great, pitches easily, and is surprisingly light for it’s size.  Although I do wish it was just a tad bit lighter, I’ll take the build quality over cheapening the structure. It’s roomy, comfortable, and reliable. It really hits all the majors marks. The only real complaint I have against the tent is a lack of air vents in the top, but proper staking out took care of most of my condensation problems in all but the soggiest of conditions. Burn the stakes, or give them to that cousin you hate. Otherwise, a great tent.

Highly Recommended

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6 responses to “L.L. Bean Mountain Light XT 2 Tent Review

  1. Hi
    I know this is an old review, But Bean just came out with a new version of this tent and you got got what you wished for, less weight. Was wondering if you had a chance to look at it? I am looking for a tent and am considering the new version. I really like the extra room this tent has, and now that its even lighter i am leaning that way.

    Thanks

    RCJ

    • Hi there. Thanks for checking out the blog.
      I have had a chance to look at that one. They’ve made improvements on the weight by using a lighter, higher grade aluminum pole and hub system. It seems to work quite well. My only complaint, they still haven’t added any vents to the roof of the tent. If you’re not in super humid conditions like myself (Tennessee), this shouldn’t be an issue.
      Are you looking for low weight, or high living space?

  2. I am more interested in comfort, then low weight. But low weight is always good. I like to hike in and camp, high milage is’ent my goal. I am in the northeast so it does get humid. Been looking at the Big Agnus Copper spur also, and the Hubba hubba, just cant make up my mind. Thanks for your replies.
    Great site!
    RCJ

  3. If you’re in the northeast, you’ll probably want some vents, and great airflow. If you’re considering comfort first, I’ll make a recommendation. While I haven’t posted the review yet, the Sierra Designs Lightning 2 (2014) is quite nice (look for the review within a day or so). Especially if you’re going solo. If you have someone with you, the Copper spur is great if you’re wanting to cut weight, and one of my personal favorite tents. You can also bump up to the copper spur 3 for more room if there will be two of you. The hubba does quite have enough ventilation to fight condensation too well (no vents).

  4. Looking foward to the review. Still have some time to research, looks like snow coming our way again. Thanks for the insite, it really helps.

    RCJ

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