A tent will impact your comfort not only at camp but also while getting there. Tents can be heavy, after all. Seeking to find the middle ground between space and weight, could the All Inn 2 from Kelty have found it?
The All Inn 2 is rather unique in design. Where most tents have a door positioned off to one or both sides, or perhaps a single door, The All Inn 2 places one door on the left of the tent, and one in the front. The single front door is paired with a small awning that stretches over the top. This door is waterproof, but also has a zippered panel that can be unzipped to expose a mesh window behind it. The side door features a large storage vestibule and double zipper that can act as a vent. The tent is built from 1500mm coated 40D siliconized nylon for the floor and rainfly, with 15D mesh used for the inner body. The frame is built entirely from DAC Pressfit aluminium, with plastic hubs joining the three seconds together. There is also an additional brow pole that lays across the top, pulling the tent walls out vertically. The tent includes 10 aluminum j-stakes, 4 guy lines, and a handy “shark mouth” style stuff sack. It weighs 3 lbs 14 oz packed, and retails for $279.95.
What I liked
Given the tent is essentially named after a hotel, let’s start out with comfort and livability. Internally, the sleeping space within the All Inn is excellent. The floor plan is rather luxurious at 52″ wide at the head and foot foot. Given most sleeping pads are 20″ wide, this provides plenty of shoulder and elbow room, with a little extra space on the side and foot for moving around or stashing gear. The walls are nearly vertical at the head thanks to the large front arch and brow pole, and when paired with the unusually tall 42″ ceiling, it makes for a rather comfortable shelter from the storm. Two adults can easily sit up side by side, with ample room for maneuvering, getting dressed, playing games, or just packing up camp. There is enough room at the foot to shove sleeping bags out of the way, and numerous pockets are scattered around for small pieces of gear, handily clearing up the floor. Being inside the tent is genuinely enjoyable, and I never felt the need for more space.
Getting in and out of the tent is also rather pleasant. The inclusion of the large, open front door makes hopping in to avoid a rain shower mostly effortless. It drops all the way to the ground and completely gets out of the way. It does require a little bit of a shuffle to scoot in, but it isn’t a hands and knees kind of affair. Instead, you can basically just sit down and slide on in. The rim of the door is high enough that you don’t really have to worry about ducking down either. The side door is a little more traditional, requiring rotating the legs out of the tent and crawling out, but is completely serviceable and pretty typical to anyone who has used this type of door before. It is nice having a second door, but largely I ignored it and used the front almost exclusively due to the easy of entry and egress. With the right positioning, though, both doors can be opened up at the same time for a sort of panorama view, while still blocking the wind, which I really liked.
Stability is the place that I was most impressed with the All Inn. The large hoop in the front, often a liability in these kinds of designs as wind can catch the large panel of material, is actually rather taut and rigid. The high grade DAD Featherlite Aluminum is flexed into a strong arch and connected under a good bit of tension, creating a consistent, wobble free ring of protection. This makes the entire front strong and highly resistant to wind and gusts. The same concept is applied at the foot of the tent, and both hoops are connected via another stiff bar, bookended by clips that further stiffen up the frame laterally. Because of this, the frame comes out surprisingly strong and resistant to movement. Finish it up with the 4 included guy lines and the All Inn buttons down hard, ready for a storm. It barely moves in moderate wind, and should be able to handle some heavy gusts as well, although I’m still working on testing it at higher elevations. So check back on updates there.
Build quality overall is another high point. The fabrics, silicone coated ripstop nylon, are of relatively high denier, with thicker 40 D fabrics being used on the floor and rain fly. This translates to better durability when it comes to abrasion, tension, and to a lesser extent punctures. The poles are DAC featherlight pressfit aluminum, which is ones of the best materials when it comes to strength to weight ratio. It flexes, but is strong and isn’t prone to breaking or bending. The tent stakes themselves are also excellent, and the guy lines are yet to fray or shown any signs of stretching. Even the plastic hubs and clips all feel sturdy and reliable. I expect this shelter to last a very long time.
Breathability is quite good, thanks to the clever visor design and meshy build. The visor essentially creates a passage for fresh air to flow under the rain fly, and throughout the top of the tent even when the doors are zipped up. The waterproof panel on the front door can be unzipped, revealing a mesh window, or another zipper can drop the entire door, mesh and all, to the ground to create a true breezeway. Even when buttoned all the way up, the mesh walls, visor vent and the relatively high position of the vestibules allow for full 360 degree circulation. Condensation isn’t a problem here.
Setup is simple enough that I don’t really have to say too much about it. It sports color coded poles and clips that basically make it foolproof to pitch. I’ve found it goes up perfectly taut in almost every condition in about 4 or 5 minutes.
The front door design allows for viewing in a rain storm, assuming the wind isn’t blowing directly into the face of the tent wall. It is a smaller detail that actually has a large impact on morale throughout prolonged storms or just generally nasty weather.
The “shark mouth” stuff sack is a real design win, with a large opening that makes packing the tent up so much easier. It just slips in and cinches down.
What I didn’t like
I loved having the front door, but only having a single vestibule is less than ideal. This moves all the gear to one side, which is fine when using it as a solo tent (which is a lovely experience). But, this is less than ideal when stacking two gear for two, with dual backpacks, two sets of boots and cookware all going onto one side. This basically delegates one camper to the “gear master” status, putting them at the beck and call of the other camper when they need something. The biggest issue being muddy boots, which no one wants to drag through the tent from the side vestibule to the front door when the second camper needs out. It is possible to store all the extra gear outside the tent under a pack cover or something, but this isn’t a flawless scenario either. The All in 3 does have two vestibules, but has a weight penalty of course, putting it at just under 5 lbs.
While the build quality is overall excellent, I did find a few nitpicks. While still completely water tight, I noticed some mild inconsistencies with the seam taping when purposefully looking for them, and a few stitches were less than perfect with some lose strands here or there. Nothing to worry about, but worth pointing point even if they shouldn’t have any impact on performance.
The All Inn 2 is certainly an interesting design. I love the visor design as it allows for excellent ventilation and condensation management, and it provides a convenient way to watch the rain or a storm blow through without being exposed to the elements. It’s even super easy to get in and out of thanks to the large front opening and tall ceiling. I also really love the build quality, as the fabrics and frame are certainly going to last despite a couple minor inconsistencies I found. The best part about the tent, however, is the impressive livability, interior space, and the fact that the tent weighs just under 4 lbs, despite the $279 price tag. The impressive price to weight ratio isn’t by chance, though. This was achieved was by sacrificing a door and vestibule, and by carefully choosing quality yet lightweight materials that may not be cutting edge, but proven and reliable. Considering the value, overall quality, and livability of the tent, this sacrifice really starts to make sense. For those who value price, weight, and actual interior space above the convenience of a second vestibule, the All Inn 2 is a great solution. It’s also a fantastic solo shelter, for those who really want to live in luxury but don’t mind a little extra weight.
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