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Backpacking's all about solitude, so ditch the office, the crowds, and the hangers-on and head up into the mountains with just you, yourself, and the Big Agnes Copper Spur UL1 1-Person 3-Season Tent. It's an ultralight backpacker's dream, weighing in at 2.5 pounds fully packed, and nearly a pound lighter if you opt to bring just the poles, fly and footprint (available here) for a quick-set up option. The Copper Spur is made primarily of polyester mesh to keep things light, airy, and breathable, and the ripstop nylon fly has a double waterproof coating and fully-taped seams to keep rain and condensation at bay. It has a handy vestibule, too, which has plenty of room to shelter your boots and pack.

To keep things lighter than a mint julep, Big Agnes designed the Spur with a DAC Featherlite hub pole system, which is super-easy to set up and reduces weight by eliminating the need for 3 or 4 poles. They did throw in a single crosspiece, though, to give you plenty of headroom to keep claustrophobia out of the picture. In fact, the Spur has more headroom than most similarly-sized tents, thanks to a steep wall design that lets you sit up without having to jam your head into the roof of your tent, which might not sound that special, but is a big deal when you're spending extended amounts of time on the trail. There's a media pocket with a cord port, too, as well as reflective guylines and webbing that make it easy to navigate your campsite by headlamp—and hey, even if you do trip and munch on a mouthful of dirt, at least there won't be anyone around to see.

  • Ultralight 2-pole hub design
  • Featherlight DAC aluminum poles
  • Single door and vestibule
  • Steep wall design for extra headroom
  • Media pocket with cord port
  • 3 mesh pockets
  • Reflective guylines and corner webbing
  • Gear loft and footprint sold separately
  • Reviews
  • Q & A

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This tent is the bomb

  • Familiarity: I've used it several times

This tent was my splurge of the season. I gotta say, I never thought a tent could make me such a happy camper. Before we start though, full disclosure. I bought the BA Seedhouse UL1 last year and was not a fan at all, so I sold it after one use. In the rocky North Cascades, you need a freestanding tent (This thing literally takes right around a dozen stakes to safely secure it to the ground, people!). The vestuble is tiny and you have to crawl through the end to get in.

BUT, the great reviews on this tent have the interwebs buzzing so I thought I'd give Big Agnes one try to redeem themselves. I took it (along with the footprint sold separately) out to the Snow Lakes trail in Leavenworth last weekend before the permit season starts up, and wow. Just wow. These guys hit it out of the park this time.

Setup: it's a breeze. Stake down the footprint first and start building up from there. It's a single-pole setup. The fantastic thing is that if the weather's bad, you can set up the fly first and then put up the tent from inside of your sturdy and dry tent fly!! Fantastic concept, of which I was skeptical. So of course it's the first thing I tried to do, and I can report it works like a charm!

Construction: This tent is expensive. This tent is insanely light. My expectation was that it would be well-built using a healthy mix of spectacular space-age technology and magic. Again, I was pleasantly surprised. Yes, the material is thin. Despite this it did seem remarkably strong! The bathtub bottom is plenty high to avoid splashback in your tent, I'd say. It wasn't windy during my test run, but the setup did appear to be remarkably sturdy even with only four stakes. I would still recommend the footprint as a sort of extra insurance policy on your investment to protect against sharp objects poking through, and I'll say it again, you can set up your tent under the rainfly!! It's expensive but quit your whining about the price, do yourself a favor and just buy it!

Ergonomics: I learned my lesson with the end-entry style Seedhouse 1. This style probably saves extra weight, but it's miserable climbing over top of all your stuff to get inside the damn thing! In stark contrast, the side entry on the Copper Spur is pure gold. It's plenty big to get yourself and your stuff through it. Its semi-circular shape lies flat on the floor when fully opend, which is unique. There are so many storage pockets and fabric loops in this thing. I could have probably hung up all my laundry to dry inside with me in it. Don't forget the paracord! For being as light as it is, this thing's got some serious square footage. I'm 5'9" which is kind of short, but I had a ton of extra room in there with me. I could comfortably sit up without hitting the roof. This thing is much more spacious than the Seedhouse, and not claustrophobic at all! Ventallation is good. They were smart to place the vent on the side nearest where your head is, unlike some other tents I've seen.

Vestuble: It's decent-sized. It comfortably fit my 60L pack, which is much more than I can say about Seedhouse. There's only one though, which is perfectly acceptable for a 1p tent in my opinion.

Packing up at the end of the trip: one word-sadness. It'll be a few weeks until I can really put this thing through its paces. But this thing was just as easy to take down as it was to set up.

Cons: only a couple. Some of the stiching was a bit wavy in spots on the tent itself, like whoever made it was in their first week on the job. Just a minor inconvenience though, really. The seems were all fully taped and even the wavy stitching looks like it'll hold up. Another comment is that there is no velcro or anything to fasten the underside of the fly to the poles. If you're on slightly uneven ground like I was, don't get all huffy when the final setup doesn't line up perfectly. Still, based on the overall quality and design I'm confident this thing will hold up great in stormy weather. Buy this tent now.

Button down the hatches!!

  • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

What a great tent. I used this tent for the majority of my thru hike on the Pacific Crest Trail. I started with a tarp system, then the big agnes seedhouse and finally the copper spur. Why I settled with this one. The two piece fly and body, side door entry (a must,) great storm protection, lots of interior space and headroom. I am 5'11 and this has plenty of space all around for changing and sleeping. The tent is pretty darn light, but I found that the lighter tents usually had some things that I liked less for only a savings of 3oz or so. Not quite worth the greatness of this tent. This tent has a tone of livability, great interior space and a huge vestibule. Enough for my pack, shoes, wet gear and more. Not really a fan of the orange color but overall a great, durable tent.

Lets get technical. I know the zipper can be the breaking point so be careful. I was and I haven't had issues. Just make sure you help it along, hold the two sides close together to help the zipper.

Splash back. I had a bit of a problem but only in a severe downpour on pure mud so that was more of a poor camp choice.

All in all I was very pleased and comforted about the storm protection this offered in the snow, rain and wind. After being hammered by all of these I trusted it and got some sleep.

And I just saw that someone commented on Big Agnes Customer Service. They were great when I had issues with my seedhouse and when I broke my poles on my Copper Spur (my fault.) A+ for BA

Button down the hatches!!

Great tent great service

    Could not believe how fast this tent pitched out and solid it is. The greatest surprise of all is how roomy it is inside. At 6'1 I had concerns as noted on this site but it is way more an expected. I am nowhere near the ends. Of course it's lightweight and Big Agnes service is second to none. If I had 6 stars I would give this tent 6! My tent only came with 7 stakes which the company immediately took care of although you could probably do fine with only 7. My only confusion in setting it up was figuring out on the head end all three guys go to one stake.

    I love this tent!

    • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

    I love this tent so darned much. After trying other solo tents, I had to come back and say again that the Copper Spur UL1 is king.

    It's light, tough, and easy to set up. I can't say enough good things or recommend it highly enough - this is THE TENT.

    I love this tent!

    Big Agnes Copper Spur UL1 tent

      I bought this tent for my 1 month bicycle ride along the Pacific Coast, from Seattle to San Diego. Just returned 4 days ago. This tent is nice and roomy inside, and keeps you dry in rain and mist with the great rainfly. The key thing I did not like was the doorway. The zipper doorway is a large arc shape, and by the time you open it to get inside, the mosquitos or black flies beat you to it. Also, my zipper had a loose thread, which continually got longer and longer, and the zipper on one side fell off the tent more and more, until by the time the trip was over, there was a 1 foot area of zipper I could not close due to the loose thread stitching which came undone. So more than half of my bike trip included a door way that was partially open. At one camp site on the beach sand, ants walked right in and I was covered by morning with them, as well as the interior of my panniers. For the price of this tent, the quality of the zipper should have been much better. I returned it once home. Also the orange color ran into the tan color when we had to pack up on a wet morning.

      Great 3 season tent

      • Familiarity: I've used it several times

      Absolute perfect balance between features, size/weight and price. The Copper Spur UL1 setups and breaks down super fast. The design fits a medium build individual with room to spare and the door and vestibule allows one to keep a decent amount of gear out of the rain while still having access from the tent.

      Lots of attention to details, like the color coded poles and fly buckles, the fly vent and the placement of equipment pouches, makes the Copper Spur UL1 one of may favorite pieces of equipment.

      Great 3 season tent

      5 STARS

      • Familiarity: I've used it several times

      This is a great 1 person UL backpacking tent. Great weather protection, I like the door as compared to the FlyCreek on the side. The tent is super easy to set up. Takes 3 minutes tops. So when it starts to rain you can set it up in a hurry. The weight and quality of this tent is unmatched. Big Agnes has made another wonderful tent. You will be so happy you got this tent. The 1 person is just that a 1 person. If you want room for your gear get a 2 person and if its for 2 people i'd recommend a 3 person.

      5 STARS

      Solo Adventure!

      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

      This tent is simply amazing. The tent might be a tight squeeze if you are over 6ft tall. I am 5'11 and noticed that I was just the right length. I had just enough room for my feet and just enough room for my head where they were not touching the tent.

      The tent is plenty wide to keep the things that are near and dear to you, near and dear. The tent offers plenty of pockets to store belongings and hooks to hang lights, or the separate gear loft.

      The rain fly on this tent is great. It offers great ventilation and great weather protection. The bathtub floor on this thing is huge! That helps with any splash you may get that comes up under the fly.

      The vestibule is a decent size. It can hold a pair of shoes, a pack, and a few other things. The single pole snaps together easily for a quick pitch. The walls are near vertical and the door is huge! LOVE THIS THING!!!

      Solo Adventure!

      Fantastic, well balanced tent

      • Familiarity: I've used it several times

      We used a Copper Spur UL2, but this one is so similar that the review is also applicable!

      This is a fantastic tent. It's really the best balance between comfort, weight, and price that we've ever used. You can get a tent that's lighter, cheaper, or bigger (more comfortable), but no tent balances all those aspects like the copper spur. It's light enough that you can take it on long backpacking trips. The major difference between the UL2 and UL1 (other than size and weight obviously) is that the UL1 has 1 door and 1 vestibule compared to the UL2's 2 doors and 2 vestibules. This should work fine though as you're only using it for 1 person. You won't fit 2 people in this tent. It won't break the bank either. Another great feature is that it is truly freestanding and doesn't require to be staked out unlike other ultralight tents (Big Agnes Fly Creek, NEMO Hornet, or REI Dash).

      Truly one of the best tents we've ever used!

      For a more in depth review, please check out our website!

      To see how it compares to other backpacking tents out there:

      Awesome little tent.

      • Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

      I have in the past owned a Sierra Designs Clip Flashlight, a Zpacks CF tarp, a Zpacks Hexamid and a BA Fly Creek UL2 and this beats all of them by a mile. It is super easy to pitch. Has side entry door so you don't have to crawl over everything when enteringt and also the rain doesn't dump all over you or the inside of your tent when you get up or go out. I love it.

      As Advertised

        It creates huge room in your pack. It weighs nothing and it provides protection against the weather. This tent is expensive - no doubt - but take it from someone who has bought cheap gear and regretted when the rain hit -- this tent is worth for backpackers looking to reduce weight but not compromise quality against the elements.

        Spacious Vestibule!

        Under that garbage bag is an Osprey Ariel 75 pack and a pair of boots. Plenty of space to cover your gear but still easy to enter & exit the tent.

        Spacious Vestibule!

        Right on! I'm happy the pic helped.

        The UL1 is spacious enough that you could also bring your gear inside on a particularly nasty night.

        My dog, Kimber is a 47lb Springer Spaniel, she and I fit comfortably in the wide head of the tent.

        The symmetrical double-zip door means you could also easily put your head at the foot of the tent and leave your gear in the wider head area.

        Sunset in Murray, ID

        1st night out with the Copper Spur UL1. I pitched it over my LuxuryLite Mesh Cot. Mild weather so I staked 3 of the corners and the vestibule. Worked well, slept comfortably.

        You can see the survival blanket I threw over the cot before the tent sticking out in the lower left of the pic, not sure if it reflected any heat back or not, I'll try it without next time.

        Sunset in Murray, ID

        I'm 6'1" is this tent long enough for me?


        You are 73" long, and the UL1 is 90" long, giving you 17" of space to play with.

        Sometimes tent manufacturers measure from grommet to grommet, meaning that the inside length is actually a bit shorter than listed. To be safe, let's take 3" from each end.

        You're left with 11" of extra space for sure, up to 17" depending on the way BA measures the tent.

        I use a Large Thermarest Prolite, it's 77" long and fits comfortably in the Copper Spur UL1 without touching either the headwall or the footwall.

        What is the difference between Packaged Weight, Trail Weight and Fast Pitch Weight (Fast Fly Weight as Big Agnes calls it).

        Also what does the footprint weigh?

        Best Answer

        Here is how Big Agnes defines the different weights for their tents:

        Packed weight:

        This is the heaviest you can expect your tent to weigh, straight out of the box or from the store. This weight refers to all packaging, hang tags, as well as the stuff sacks, fly, body, stakes, poles, and guy lines.

        Trail weight:

        This is the lightest you can expect your tent to weigh, stripped of everything but the essentials. This number reflects the weight of just the fly (no guy lines), body, and poles.

        Fast-fly weight:

        This is the weight of your fly, footprint and poleset only.

        Copper Spur UL1 info:

        Packed Weight - 2lb 8 oz (40 oz) or 1130grams

        Trail Weight - 2lb 3 oz (35 oz) or 992grams

        Fast Fly Weight - 1lb 10 oz (26oz) or 737grams

        Footprint Weight - 4 oz or 113grams

        Anytime you have a Big Agnes question, shoot me an email and I'll make sure to work with you 1-on-1!

        Jared D.

        Expert Gearhead


        The DAC J-Stakes that come with the Copper Spur series are light, effective, and they nest together neatly.

        I've been really impressed with the stakes and I'd recommend giving them a shot before replacing them.

        Remember, the Y-shape of the Groundhogs means they won't nest together, makes for a bulkier/noisier pack.

        I've been trying to determine the difference...

        I've been trying to determine the difference in last year's vs. this year's models. I see a shaving of a measly few ounces, but have there been any other improvements? I can't find a side-by-side comparison, and I'm trying to rationalize making the plunge for the fancy new one. :)

        Does this new model have the second zip...

        Does this new model have the second zip half-door to allow you to reach boots or a water bottle under the back of the tent the way an earlier version did?

        I am 6'3". Can I fit comfortably in this...

        I am 6'3". Can I fit comfortably in this tent without my head and feet being cramped?

        I have this tent. I'm 6'2''. I'm using a long bag. This tent is 90" long, grommet to grommet (this is how the industry measures tents). The inside dimension depends if you stake it or not. I used a good old tape measure and here are the inside measurements of my tent in "free standing" set up 85" long, 40" head, 28" feet, 38" peak. There is a slant at the feet and the usable length is about 82"

        Cri, do your feet or head touch the tent? I'm 6'2" and don't think I really fit. I haven't actually taken the tent on a trip yet, just laid in it set up in my yard. I'm worried. My free-standing outside dimension is only about 85.5". I thought I'd be okay because I fit in the Lone Stream. But the Copper Spur is clearly smaller. The problem is, what would I buy instead if I returned it?