9 Best Tents With Full Rainfly in 2023

Last Updated on 27/08/2023

Best Tent With Full Rainfly

What is the Best Tent With Full Rainfly?

In this guide to the best tent with full rainfly protection, we share our experience with the most waterproof tents with a rainfly all the way to the ground. You will learn how to recognize a full rainfly tent from a single skin or partial rainfly tent as well as all the benefits of the more comprehensive shelter.

A full rainfly tent is fundamentally a double-walled tent where the outer shell covers the entire interior cabin. This type of tent provides the most protection against wind, rain, snow, condensation, and cold weather. This is why almost all 4 season tents feature a full rainfly.

The alternatives to a full rainfly tent are partial rainfly tents and single-layer tents. These can be more lightweight and great in summer but show signs of weakness when the weather makes a turn for the worse.

Sleeping in a tent without a full rainfly in bad weather isn’t much fun. Even if it doesn’t rain but it is cold out, the moisture from your breath can cause condensation on the inside. Discover some of the top tents with a full rainfly below, or learn more about what a full rainfly even is (further down).

9 Best Full Rainfly Tents

MSR Habitude 6 Person Tent

MSR Habitude 6 Six-Person Family & Group Camping Tent

  • CAPACITY: 6 People
  • PACK SIZE: 23 x 10 Inches
  • WEIGHT: 6.35 kg / 14 lbs
  • SEASON RATING: 4 Season

The MSR Habitude is one of the best lightweight family tents with full rainfly for 6 people out there. It has a fully geodesic dome shape which makes it incredibly strong for all types of weather. This is another tent you would be glad to be in if there is a storm outside and the wind picks up along with rain or snow,

The rainfly is full length all the way around and fits the frame extremely well so that there is minimal flapping and noise in high winds. The outer shell only has a low hydrostatic head of 1500 mm, but as we learned here, that is more than enough to prevent water from ever getting inside. The floor, on the other hand, has an impenetrable 10,000 mm HH rating.

This tent is tall enough to stand up in, with 76 inches of center height and an average head height of 72 inches, which makes moving around inside much easier and less cumbersome. The tent is capable of sleeping up to 6 people and even a dog but is much more comfortable with just four people and lots of space for gear and to move around.

VERDICT: The Habitude 6-person full rainfly tent from MSR is ideal for families who want total protection from wind and rain, no matter how bad it gets. The company has been researching and developing tents since the 1970s, and MSR literally stands for mountain safety research as a testament to its mission. If it is full weather protection you are after, then this is one of the best full rainfly tents for six people.

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Fjallraven Abisko Endurance 4 Tent

Fjallraven - Abisko Endurance 4 Tent, Pine Green

  • CAPACITY: 4 People
  • PACK SIZE: 21 x 44 cm
  • WEIGHT: 4.38 kg / 9.65 lbs
  • SEASON RATING: 4 Season

The Fjallraven Abisko Endurance 4 Tent is one of the best tunnel tents with full rainfly for four people. It is by far the most weatherproof tent featuring a full fly and is designed for 4-season use. This tent has been tested in extreme conditions with lots of time and energy put into its development, so it does have a hefty price tag.

The full rainfly covers the entirety of the tent right down to the ground, and then you have your internal sleeping cabin inside that. Waterproofing is superb with 3000 mm HH shell material and 6000 mm HH floor. The ventilation is good, not great, but if you get the sand color option, this does help t deflect heat if camping in the desert.

The quality of materials and construction really stand out on this tent, and even on the full rainfly, all the seams are double-stitched and sealed to a very high standard. Your tent can be battered by wind, covered in snow, or pounded by rain all night long, and while the poles may flex and the outer shell may flap, it will keep you cozy and dry inside.

The internal dimensions of the sleeping pod are 115 cm tall, 210 cm wide, and 225 cm long, which is the perfect amount for four standard sleeping pads or air mattresses to be laid side by side. The large porch vestibule leaves plenty of space for your gear and boots to cook or make a brew if it is raining outside.

VERDICT: There are times when camping in bad weather can be scary, like when lightning strikes nearby, or the wind gets so bad it feels like it is going to rip your tent apart. But the Abisko Endurance 4 tent from Fjallraven feels like one of the safest tents to be in, thanks to its full rainfly and rock-solid construction. If you need a reliable 4-person tent with a full rainfly and can afford to buy the best, then for sure you need to check this out.

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Eureka! Timberline SQ Outfitter Backpacking Tent

Eureka! Timberline SQ Outfitter 4 Person Backpacking Tent

  • CAPACITY: 4 People
  • PACK SIZE: 7 x 25 Inches
  • WEIGHT: 4.48 kg / 9.88 lbs
  • SEASON RATING: 3 Season

The Eureka! Timberline SQ Outfitter Backpacking Tent has a traditional A-frame with a full rainfly that cuts through the wind like a blade and sheds water very efficiently. There are some big improvements to the weight and structure when compared to A-frame tents just 20 years ago. Mainly, the poles are incredibly lightweight, and the design ensures more space inside and a tauter outer shell.

It is only rated as 3 seasons, although after testing one and looking at the design, I would not be afraid to use this in winter if I had a warm sleeping bag. It is perfectly adapted to shed snow so that it doesn’t build on the roof as it does with some flat-top tents. Because the walls are so steep, it sheds rain like a house roof, and any internal condensation quickly runs down instead of dripping inside your tent.

There is a larger 6-person option available that we mentioned in our best stand-up tents guide, but if you don’t need to walk about inside, then this is a nice option for smaller groups. The internal height is 4 feet 9 inches, so you can still move about on your feet if you crouch, but it is more than enough when sitting up.

VERDICT: The Timberline SQ Outfitter Backpacking Tent from Eureka! is one I am very fond of because it is the style I started with as a child. Emotions aside, this tent is solid and highly recommended if you want a full-cover rainfly you know will always keep you dry. The lightweight frame has a middle bar that really improves the space inside and makes this suitable for backpackers and hikers as well as families.

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Vaude Badawi 4 Person Tent

Vaude family tent Badawi sand

  • CAPACITY: 4 People
  • PACK SIZE: 13 x 23 Inches
  • WEIGHT: 12.15 kg / 26.78 lbs
  • SEASON RATING: 4 Season

The Vaude Badawi Tent for 4 People is like a home away from home with two separate bedrooms and a large porch area to hang out in. Vaude makes some of the best mountaineering and expedition tents in the world and is often what you see in places like the Everest base camp. So as you might expect, this tent may be more than what some people need, but it is one of the finest examples of a waterproof 4-person tent.

There are lots of strategically placed internal mesh vents inside to increase air circulation and reduce condensation. Window panels in the porch let light in if you unzip them, and they have bug netting, so you can leave them open on hot nights. A really cool feature is the blind opening zip which has a pulley system to open and close the door.

The full rainfly performs well above average in stormy weather, and the frame can handle all four seasons of the year without worry. We first saw this tent over ten years ago, around 2012, and it has only got better and more lightweight. It still isn’t a tent you want to be carrying up a mountain, but it is one of the most comfortable tents to stay in in the long term.

VERDICT: The Badawi tent made by Vaude is a high-end, high-performance 4-person tent with two separate bedrooms and a full rainfly all the way around. If you know it is going to snow or you will be camping for more than a week, then this is the kind of tent we would recommend. There is lots of space, and the design makes for a cozy place to sleep.

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Nemo Dragonfly 3 Person Tent

Nemo Dragonfly Ultralight Backpacking Tent, 2 Person

  • CAPACITY: 3 People
  • PACK SIZE: 13 x 50 cm / 5 x 19.5 Inches
  • WEIGHT: 1.6 kg / 3.5 lbs
  • SEASON RATING: 3-Season

The Nemo Dragonfly Tent is ultra-lightweight and features a full rainfly shell for total protection. What stands out about this tent is its incredibly low weight and small pack size that allows you to fit this inside your backpack if hiking out to a camping spot. The design makes the tent easy to set up and capable of handling strong wind and rain.

The tapered internal space gives you headroom where you need it and is just big enough for three people if you keep all your gear in the porch vestibules. The bathtub floor is made from 20D Sil/PU ripstop nylon with a 1200 mm hydrostatic head, so we do recommend using a groundsheet on wet ground.

The frame is made from pre-shaped DAC Featherlite poles that all lead into a central hub to lock them in position. Color-coded poles and webbing make putting the tent up fast and hard to get wrong. The structure provides excellent rigidity once it all locks into place and allows you to peg the rainfly out nice and tight.

One real advantage to this tent is that underneath the full rainfly is a lot of mesh lining, which allows plenty of air circulation and means you get very little condensation inside. Another clever feature about this mesh is that the very top panel is colored black so that on a night, you can pull back the full outer rainfly and do some stargazing.

VERDICT: The Dragonfly 3-person tent by Nemo is one of the most lightweight full rainfly tents available. The design is very clever and means you can divide the pack size into two so that one person doesn’t have to carry the whole thing. It is fairly compact but has all the space you need for weekend trips and backpacking. This tent does work best as a spacious 2-person tent but is technically big enough for three.

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Kelty Freestanding Rumpus 6 Person Tent

Kelty 6 Person Freestanding Rumpus Tent for Camping, Car Camping, Festivals and Family with Extra Large Vestibule

  • CAPACITY: 6 People
  • PACK SIZE: 9 x 27 Inches
  • WEIGHT: 8.37 kg / 18 lbs 7 oz
  • SEASON RATING: 3 Season

The Kelty Rumpus 6 Person Tent is a good value waterproof tent made by a reputable brand that features a full-length rainfly and premium protection against all types of weather. There is lots of internal space as well as a large porch area that is big enough to keep a bike, camping bench, or even a small table with chairs. You can walk in and out of the tent without having to bend down, and you will never be short of space to keep your gear.

I would describe the Rumpus as a kind of hybrid dome tent only because of the way the porch is designed, which makes it a blend of dome and tunnel tent. The shape of the porch is designed to give you overhead shelter even with the door open, so you can sit in a chair just underneath. Because the opening is so wide, you can also take in all the views in front of you or just see it up so that you can be social with your neighbors.

Inside there are lots of organizational pockets and an abundance of space so that you don’t all have to cram in like sardines. An exit at the back, as well as the front, makes getting in and out easily if you need to sneak out to pee at night. The whole layout and design work really well, and there is nothing bad to say about this tent other than the fact that the rainfly is just a little short at the back.

VERDICT: The Rumpus 6-Person Tent from Kelty is perfect for setting up a little campsite around as the doors open wide, and there is plenty of space to keep tables, chairs, windbreaks, and BBQs in the porch. You can get a slightly smaller 4-person version, but we really like the height and space you get with the larger version. Overall you can’t go wrong with this tent, and even though the back of the internal tent pokes out a bit, the material is very waterproof.

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Browning Camping Glacier 4-Person Tent

Browning Camping Glacier 4-Person Tent

  • CAPACITY: 4 People
  • PACK SIZE: 11 x 27 inches
  • WEIGHT: 9.66 kg / 21.3 lbs
  • SEASON RATING: 3 Season

The Browning Camping Glacier 4-Person Tent features a full-length rain fly with an awesome feature we think makes this a winner. The rainfly can be rolled up about 1 – 2 feet on the sides so that you can see outside and also get a breeze coming through the internal mesh window. This allows this tent to be super versatile in that it performs well in all types of weather and climate.

The roll-up rainfly is great when it is hot or when you have a nice view outside, but this isn’t a gimmick. When the rainfly is fully down, you don’t get a drop of rain inside, and all the seams are well-sealed for long-term waterproofing. The full rainfly covers the entire tent and can be pegged in contact with the ground.

We like to tuck our boots at either side of the porch vestibule and keep our bags inside with tents like this when the spacious interior allows it. Rolling up the door and securing it with the toggles makes this tent really accessible during the day when you are in and out of the tent. You get a height of 72 inches in the center of the tent which is tall enough to stand up in for most people.

Pitching the tent is easy, simply lay the internal tent out in a square, assemble the poles, clip the internal tent on, and put the outer shell over the top using pegs to secure it. The dome shape has steep walls and a high roof, which maximizes the space inside and is perfect for bad weather. The downside to pitching the inner tent first means you have to be fast to get the outer shell on if pitching in the rain.

VERDICT: The Glacier Camping 4-Person Tent from Browning is a really good tent with a full rainfly that works really well for small groups and families. You don’t have to crawl around inside and can pretty much walk in and out thanks to the tall roof, which adds an extra layer of comfort and practicality to your camping trip. Definitely a full rainfly tent we would recommend.

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ALPS Mountaineering Acropolis Tent

ALPS Mountaineering Acropolis 4-Person Tent - Gray/Navy

  • CAPACITY: 4 Person
  • PACK SIZE: 7 x 25 Inches
  • WEIGHT: 4.36 kg / 9.6 lbs
  • SEASON RATING: 3 Season

The ALPS Mountaineering Acropolis Tent is freestanding and has a complete rainfly covering the internal tent. The dome shape tent has two main poles from all four corners, and then on top, there is a shorter cross pole to maximize headspace and keep the other shell taut. The simple design is tried and tested to keep you dry and warm inside.

The center height inside is 60 inches, and even at the edges, there is plenty of headroom when sat up. The steep walls and boxy shape handle wind surprisingly well, and the door opening helps keep the inside of your tent dry even if you open it in the rain. The little porch area is ideal for storing muddy boots and wet gear or boiling water without getting out of your sleeping bag.

The internal tent has lots of large mesh panels for good airflow; however, the outer shell lacks some small vents when it is hot. Speaking of hot weather, the Acropolis tent does perform well in the hot sun due to its white color, which reflects the most UV rays and helps to keep the tent cool inside.

VERDICT: Overall, the Acropolis Tent from ALPS Mountaineering is a solid tent designed for serious outdoors people. Set up is super easy, although we do prefer tents that set up with the rainfly first. You can use this in hot weather as well as cold and wet weather without worry, and this is a tent we know you can trust.

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Big Agnes Copper Spur HV UL Ultralight Backpacking Tent

Big Agnes Copper Spur HV UL mtnGLO Backpacking Tent, 2 Person

  • CAPACITY: 4 People
  • PACK SIZE: 7 x 22 Inches
  • WEIGHT: 2.5 kg / 5.5 lbs
  • SEASON RATING: 3 Season

The Big Agnes Copper Spur HV UL Ultralight Backpacking Tent is more of a hiking and backpacking-friendly tent than it is for families. It is compact and lightweight so that it will fit inside a bag or can be divided between multiple people to share the weight. The boxy shape gives you lots of space inside and a solid frame you can rely on.

The versatile double-way zip openings mean you can open the doors any way you like. So if it is raining, you can open the side that is most protected and only open it a fraction while you get in. Or you can open both double doors and roll them up to let a breeze right through. Another cool feature is that you can use hiking poles to create an awning out of the door, which creates plenty of shade in the summertime.

Because the tent is compact and lightweight, there isn’t a massive amount of room inside, but there is enough space for four sleeping pads and gear to be left in the porch vestibules. The head height in the center is 50 inches, so you can sit up but not stand. The benefit of having a lower profile is that it is less affected by wind and easier to pack.

VERDICT: All in all, the Copper Spur HV UL Ultralight Backpacking Tent from Big Agnes provides a dependable shelter you can use as a base camp. You don’t get a tonne of space, so it might not be the best choice for families, and there are certainly more comfortable options out there. But if you want a packable tent with a full rainfly, then this is one of the better options for four people.

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full rainfly tents

What is a Tent with a Full Rainfly?

A tent with a full rainfly means that it has an outer shell that covers the entire inner tent all the way to the ground. Think of it as a tarp that covers your tent. If you have ever used a tent without a full rainfly that leaked, then you will understand how the extra protection can make the difference between a good night’s sleep and a wet one.

A full rainfly is often put on once the frame and internal tent are put up so that it can be draped over the top and then pegged into position. You can then use guy lines and adjustable straps to tension the tent outwards, which helps increase how taut the fabric stays.

A partial rainfly is one that will just cover the very top section where your internal vents are, and the walls will be just a single layer. Some tents don’t have any rainfly at all, and these are called single-skin or single-layer tents, which have different advantages to double-layer tents. There are benefits to all three types of tents.

Benefits of a Full Rainfly Tent

There are lots of benefits to having a tent with a full-length rainfly and not many downsides. Here are some of the main advantages of full rainfly tents:


The waterproof protection that a full rainfly adds to your tent can make all the difference in the world when it starts to rain at night. Outer shells are designed to deflect rain and keep all moisture from getting inside the tent. They also help to manage condensation on the inside so that it doesn’t build on your internal tent walls.

The level of waterproofing a rainfly has is measured in millimeters and is known as the hydrostatic head (HH). Anything over 1000 mm will keep you dry, but we have found that slightly thicker material with a HH rating of 3000 mm and up is the most waterproof.  You can and should maintain a tent’s waterproofing using sprays and silicone sealant on the inside.


Having a full-length rainfly that can be secured close to the ground blocks cold wind from chilling you at night. You can raise it an inch or two to let a slight breeze through to improve air circulation on humid nights. Or you can peg it in direct contact with the ground to prevent any wind from finding its way in. Another benefit of a tent rainfly that sits over the frame is that it will add some strength to the structure once it becomes taut.

Helps Keep You Warm

Because an extra-long rainfly covers your entire tent and can be pegged close to the ground, it can block cold wind and keep warm air inside. We wrote an article about whether tents keep you warm and discovered that they do, in fact, have a higher temperature inside. The more layers of fabric you have that can trap warm air, the more insulative your tent becomes, and so it only makes sense that tents with large rainfly sheets are warmer.

Keeps the Inside of Your Tent Clean

When you have an outside shell and an interior tent for your bedroom, it is much easier to keep the inside of your tent clean and dry because you can leave wet and muddy items in the porch. Having a porch area also helps to keep things organized and means you can leave things like cooking equipment and a rubbish bin separate from your sleeping quarters.

Creates Porch Space

Having a rainfly that extends beyond your bedroom or sleeping pod creates a useful space to leave your boots, store equipment, cook, and hang out if it is raining. Some tents only have small porch vestibules, whereas others have much larger spaces, like the Vaude Badawi, which has two bedrooms and a large open area in the middle.

Better Comfort

All the benefits of a full-size rainfly compound to give you a much more comfortable camping experience and a better night’s sleep overall. The more comprehensive waterproofing and wind protection, the condensation management, the ability to keep wet gear in the porch, and the additional space all make this style of the tent a great choice all year round.

tent with full length rainfly outer shell waterproof

Do I Need a Full-Length Rainfly Tent?

If there is a chance of rain when you are camping, then a tent with a full rainfly is always recommended. Full rainfly tents are not always needed in the summer months when ventilation and being lightweight may be more of a priority. In winter months, however, a full rainfly will provide the additional protection you need to sustain bouts of heavy wind, rain, and even snow.

Do I Need a Tarp if I Have a Rainfly?

A rainfly or outer shell of a tent is essentially a rain tarp that is designed to fit over a specific frame shape, so you do not need a tarp if you have one. A tarp is, however, a useful piece of gear when camping as it can be used on the ground, overhead, to collect water, use over a hammock, to keep wood dry, to sit on, and many other things. So you don’t need a tarp if you have a rainfly, but they do come in handy more than you think when camping.

We hope you found all the information you need in this guide to the best tent with full rainfly. Feel free to reach out with any questions.

Gear Assistant
Gear Assistant

This article has been written and/or edited by Andrew N. 20+ years of hiking, mountaineering, and camping experience, with access to all the latest outdoor gear.

Gear Assistant