The MSR Mutha Hubba NX is a freestanding, three-person, two-door, dual-vestibule, three-season tent weighing in at 4 lbs 13 oz / 2.18 kg. It has a minimum weight (the weight of the tent with no stuff sacks, stakes, or guy lines of 4 lbs 5 oz / 1.95 kg.
I'm a believer that the maximum number of people who can comfortably fit in a tent is the advertised maximum capacity of the tent minus one, making this a comfortable two-person tent (or a cramped three-person tent). Here's everything you need to know about the Mutha Hubba NX before deciding whether it's right for you (spoiler alert: it might be?).
I used the MSR Mutha Hubba NX in summer and fall backpacking trips in Wyoming and the Pacific Northwest in both wet and dry conditions. I've used it mostly with just one other person (so, two people total), but have also used it with two others (three people total).
- Weight: 4 lbs 13 oz / 2.18 kg
- Weight without stuff sacks, stakes, & guy lines: 4 lbs 5 oz / 1.95 kg
- Capacity: 3 people
- Seasons: 3-season
- Doors: 2
- Vestibules: 2
- Freestanding: Yes
- Poles required: 1 (included)
- Pole material: Easton Syclone
- Pole diameter: 9.3 mm
- Canopy material: 20D ripstop nylon & DWR
- Interior door material: 15D nylon micromesh
- Floor material: 30D ripstop nylon 3000mm Xtreme Shield polyurethane & DWR
- Rainfly material: 20D ripstop nylon 1200mm Xtreme Shield polyurethane & silicone
- Packed Size: 21 x 7 in / 53 x 17 cm
- Interior Peak Height: 44 in / 112 cm
- Pole Length: 49 in / 125cm
- Floor Area: 84 x 68 in (39 ft2) / 213 x 172 cm (3.67 m2)
- Tent Volume: 81 ft3 (each) / 2290 liters
- Vestibule Area: 7 ft2 (each) / 0.65 m2 (each)
- Vestibule Volume: 8 ft3 (each) / 226.5 liters (each)
- Number of Pockets: 6
- Tent body color: Red
- Rainfly color: Gray
- MSRP: $549.95
- Minimum weight is 1.95 kg / 4 lb 5 oz
- Xtreme Shield Waterproof Coating
- Two doors with built-in rain gutters
- Symmetrical geometry and non-tapered floor
- D-shaped StayDry door and vestibule
- Side entry zipper orientation
- Rainfly kickstand vent
- Adjustable rainfly (roll-up vestibule & stargazer view)
- Adjustable integrated stake-out loops
- Reflective guy-outs
- Xtreme Shield System (waterproof coating & precision-stitched seams)
- Stakes, guy lines, and compression stuff sack included
THE SPACE | The MSR Mutha Hubba NX is a luxurious palace as far as usable space goes (when using with two people). The 39 ft2 / 3.67 m2 of usable floor space is more than adequate for two people plus gear, and the best part about the tent's construction is that the walls (and doors) are nearly vertical meaning that in addition to plenty of floor space, there is also plenty of usable space inside the tent. Inside, the tent's volume measures 81 ft3 (each) / 2290 liters meaning that it doesn't simply sharply angle toward the ground from its peak height of 44 in / 112 cm.
THE POCKETS | I can't imagine any tent manufacturer making any tent, especially a three-person tent, without pockets (tarps and minimalist shelters are another story). Luckily MSR got the memo with the Mutha Hubba NX and they included six interior mesh pockets. There are two pockets on each of the two doors and an additional pocket above each of the doors (I wouldn't suggest anything heavier than a headlamp in these overhead pockets).
THE SETUP | It's typically safe to assume that when using a three-person tent, you will be with at least one other person. That said, I've set this tent up plenty of times on my own without issue; you definitely do not need a second person to set up this tent (let alone, a third) – but it does help (it also helps when setting up a one or two-person tent). The single pole and the small grommets make assembly easy, and so long as the wind isn't whipping, getting the fly on is fairly simple as well.
THE PACKABILITY | For a three-person tent, the Mutha Hubba NX packs down surprisingly small. I usually store my tents in separate pieces in my pack instead of all together in a single stuff sack. If you store your tent poles vertically in a side pocket or inside of your pack and then roll up the tent body and rainfly separately, you can get the Mutha Hubba NX down fairly small. I've often carried the entirety of the tent in my backpack with little issue.
THE WEIGHT | The MSR Mutha Hubba NX is designed to be lightweight but is certainly not designed to be ultralight. It's fairly middle-of-the-road as far as weight goes for a three-person tent, and if you're planning on using this tent for three people, splitting up the 4 lbs 13 oz / 2.18 kg shouldn't be much of an issue. However, if you're using this as a two-person tent, there are many other (three-person) shelters that can lighten up your pack when compared to the Mutha Hubba NX.
THE VESTIBULES | The vestibules on this tent are okay. They have vents that should (supposedly) help with ventilation, and they are easy enough to pitch and get in and out. However, they are not very large at just 7 ft2 (each) / 0.65 m2 each. If you're two people, you can easily store gear in one and get in/out the other, but with three people, there isn't enough room to store all your gear and get in and out without doing a bit of shuffling.
THE WARRANTY | MSR provides a “3-year Limited Warranty” that covers “your product to be free from defects in materials and workmanship” (so long as you are the “original purchaser” – meaning you may be required to provide a receipt for a warranty claim). The warranty does not cover wear and tear which MSR defines to me “faded colors, abrasions, scuffing/scratches, degradation of materials caused by UV exposure or use, and corrosion, etc.” it's the “degradation of materials caused by UV exposure or use, and corrosion, etc.” that could basically be used to deny any sort of warranty claim. Lastly, know that “[y]ou are responsible for all costs associated with returning your product to [MSR].”
THE CONDENSATION | The MSR Mutha Hubba NX struggles a bit with condensation when using the rainfly (especially when sleeping three people). The mesh breathes fine on its own, but if you're expecting weather and need to use the fly, you can expect some condensation inside come morning.
THE FOOTPRINT | I don't think a footprint is necessary for the Mutha Hubba NX, but if you want to use this tent in the 3 lbs 11 oz / 1.66 kg “Fast & Light” configuration (just the rainfly and poles, without the tent's interior), then you will need the footprint. The footprint costs an additional $40 and weighs 11 oz 312 g. Seriously, MSR? A $550 tent and you can't include a footprint? It's literally just a piece of polyurethane-coated polyester taffeta. It's not even custom for the Mutha Hubba NX – it's a “universal MSR footprint” for all of the MSR 3-person tents. But like I said, you probably don't need it.
Who is it for?
BEGINNER BACKPACKERS | If you're planning on doing all your backpacking with another person, and you want to share a tent with this other person, then the MSR Mutha Hubba NX is worth looking into. That said, if the price is high for you to invest in right away, it might also be worth checking out something like the REI Half Dome 3 Plus (for half the price).
WEEKEND WARRIORS | This is probably the category of hiker I would most recommend this tent to. If you're doing a lot of shorter-distance backpacking as a couple or a pair and having lightweight but hassle-free gear, then the MSR Mutha Hubba NX is going to be a good fit.
THRU-HIKERS | For thru-hiking, the MSR Mutha Hubba NX is generally going to be considered too heavy (even when split between two people). That said, it's still a nice tent and if you're hiking as a tent-sharing pair, then the Mutha Hubba NX could be worth considering. That said, you could spend just $50 more for something half the weight like the Big Agnes Tiger Wall UL 3 Platinum.
The MSR Mutha Hubba NX is a solid choice for a three-person tent if you're 1) using it as a two-person tent and 2) not overly concerned with getting the lightest option available. If maximizing space, comfort, and storage (again, with two people) are priorities for you, then you'll probably be happy with the Mutha Hubba.
Check out the MSR Mutha Hubba NX here.
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