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Black Diamond Mega Light Shelter: 4-Person

$319.95

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Mega Light Shelter

The Black Diamond Mega Light's SilNylon construction and simple design allow it to shelter four backpackers while adding less than three pounds to group weight. Unlike a crammed tent, the Mega Light provides 81 square feet of covered floor space and a roomy 57 inches of useable height, so you have plenty of room when you need to wait out a storm. Use this Black Diamond shelter on a lightweight summer trip, or pitch it on the snow at base camp and dig out the floor to create a plush kitchen. The only thing that limits the Mega Light's use is your imagination.

  • Rugged 30D SilNylon Cordura offers long-lasting waterproof protection without weight
  • Carbon-fiber center pole included; Pole Link Converter lets you use a ski/trekking pole instead
  • Optional floor and bug netting available (sold separately)
  • Requires seam sealing with McNett Sil-Net Sealer (sold separately)
  • Item #BLD0328

Material
30D SilNylon
Season
3-season
Poles
carbon fiber center pole
Number of Doors
1
Floor Dimensions
86 x 86in
Floor Space
50.7sq ft
Packed Size
5 x 10in
Trail Weight
2lb 5oz
Manufacturer Warranty
1 year

Tech Specs

What do you think about this product?

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>Rating: 5

Alaska Tough!

Familiarity:
I've put it through the wringer

My family and I have had this shelter for two years now. We bought it after a number of recommendations from friends. We have used in all seasons and it works pretty darn good here in AK. By no means is it absolutely perfect but for the weight and the size it gets the job done. Our last use was on a 3 day Kesugi Ridge hike where the first night we had 30-50 mph winds and the last night we had down pouring rain. It held up fine. It was a little noisy in the wind and small amount of rain entered in from beneath. Pros: It is pretty easy to set up even in windy conditions. It has reasonable amount of space for 3 people and a dog. After you seam seal it, the material is water tight. For pest control we use a cheap pyramid shaped mosquito net from REI that fits perfect and works well. Tyvec is used for the ground cloth. Cons: It doesn't have a floor nor bug netting which you can purchase separately from BD but that adds a lot of weight to carry. Would I buy it again and pay full price? Absolutely!

>Rating: 5

So many feelings on this tent

Familiarity:
I've put it through the wringer

Ive slept in this on the top of snowfields, in the forest, and somehow managed to wrangle it a lean-to for a sleepy afternoon after climbing. you need to waterproof this tent yourself, which is pretty easy and can be done over a few beers, some silicone sealant, and some mineral spirits. Its not a summer tent even though youll definitely stay cool. Bugs love getting up and in and it acts like a nat trap. I feel like this tent is a metaphor for a relationship. It can be anything you want it to be, sometimes can take extra work, maybe doesn't work out in certain situations, and your parents laugh and it and call it a circus.

>Rating: 5

Great Shelter

Familiarity:
I've put it through the wringer

This is an amazing shelter! It is light, durable, extremely waterproof, and can be set up almost anywhere due to the center pole design. Have used this tent from the high alpine to the desert and it is the best thing I have found for backpacking. It has very few parts, the deign allows for a lot of adjustability (I tie P-Cord to the webbing on it to use for anchoring) As such, with enough messing around, the tent can always be made taught. This is just a rain fly however, there is not body. Granted if you do not mind sleeping on the ground this make an excellent ultralight, large shelter. The center pole design is a bit different than most, and may be a bit awkward to get used to. It will sleep four people (or in a pinch, 10) but works well for two people as well. Both persons can sleep on one side of the pole, while there is enough shelter to store all your backpacking gear inside with you, keeping it nice and dry. This is a great design that I have come to love, will be using this tent for a long time to come. Picture of one of the many places I have used this tent to enjoy. Absaroka mountains in Wyoming

This
>Rating: 5

This Tent is Amazing!

Familiarity:
I've put it through the wringer

The ideal tent for long backpacking trips. I spent four weeks in one of these (with the MegaBug as well) and it worked perfectly. Very light, easy to pack, dry quickly and easy setup. Would definitely recommend.

>Rating: 5

Perfect Tent for the Boat

Familiarity:
I've put it through the wringer

I inherited one of these (megamid) from my sister right before a Grand Canyon trip and it is the best piece of camping gear for long river trips. Setting up on a boat is the only time a non-freestanding test is easier. Carabiners on the corners all connect to d-rings and full setup takes less than a minute - perfectly pitched every time. This tent was the envy of every other rower on the trip. There is tons of room inside to hole up during a monsoon, and the pole does not have to be in the center for it to have a taught pitch so it fits a queen sheet making it very conducive to intimate nights on the river.

I
>Rating: 5

Specs

Familiarity:
I gave it as a gift but have feedback to share

TECH SPECS Season : 4 Capacity : 4 Doors : 1 Average Packed Weight : 1.27 kg (2 lb 13 oz) Minimum Weight : 1.05 kg (2 lb 5 oz) Dimensions : 218 x 218 x 145 cm (86 x 86 x 57 in) Packed Size : 13 x 25 cm (5 x 10 in) Outside Height : 170 cm (66 in) Usable Height : 145 cm (57 in) Usable Floor Space : 4.7 m² (50.7 sq ft) Total Coverage : 7.2 m² (81 sq ft)

>Rating: 5

Held up well in Patagonia and NZ

Familiarity:
I've put it through the wringer

I absolutely love this thing as a lightweight shelter! The set-up is super easy, tipi style, so very self explanatory! And it really holds up to the elements. I've seen rain, snow, shine, and hail all in one day, and was completely comfortable hanging out under it, and even cooking with the door underneath it. The one thing that throws some people off is that it doesn't come all the way down to the ground, but you have to remember it is a tarp not a tent, so you will be a little more exposed to the elements, but if you are like me, you like to go light and fast, and sometimes sleep under the stars. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out!

>Rating: 5

Still holding strong!

Familiarity:
I've put it through the wringer

Email me directly with all your Black Diamond questions - jelam@backcountry.com

Email
>Rating: 4

Solid Piece of Gear

Familiarity:
I've used it several times

Did some mountaineering/snow camping in the North Cascades in late May. This shelter is awesome. There were four of us, all over 6'2" and this shelter held us and most of our gear. It rained and we stayed dry (We did independently seal the seams long ago as we heard Black Diamond can't get their shit together to do it themselves. Sorry BD, but its true. And it's why you're only getting four stars.). All four of us brought our own versions of a 1 person ground tarp which works great. This shelter is nice and light. I recommend it for North Cascade mountaineering trips.

Did

Thanks for the review Zach! Super helpful to get this feedback out to the community.

>Rating: 5

What doesn't it do?

Familiarity:
I've used it several times

Where can you find a tent so light and so big that has SUCH a variety of uses? Pictured here is a weekend backcountry trip I used it on for backcountry skiing. I've guyed it out on an 18ft raft in the summer, used it on a canoeing trip that required portages and encountered mosquitos, used it for alpine climbing in UT and WY as well as a bike packing trip in the Uinta mountains. Adding the "bathtub" is an added benefit if you want a floor. I personally don't use the floor because of weight and I just make sure I'm intentional about site selection. Get the additional floor if you'll be in wet environments.

Where
>Rating: 4

bugs

Familiarity:
I've put it through the wringer

I have used the original megamid for over 20 years of backpacking. It makes a great kitchen, a great shelter and and a great tent for family or guided backpacking. In 2014 my husband and I used the megamid for a 32 day backpack trip on the Colorado trail and again, it serves a great purpose in functionality and light weight, easy setup for ultralight backpacking. However, I have to add that the lack of a mosquito net almost sent me to a psych ward in the collegiate range for a couple nights of high level mosquitoes!!

Thanks for the great review Kim! In case you don't already know, we do sell a bug shelter that goes along with this tent. If you have any backpacking gear questions in the future, feel free to reach out to me! Expert Gearhead Jelam@backcountry.com

>Rating: 4

Some Assembly Required

Familiarity:
I've used it several times

The Bad: You have to seam seal the seams. You have to buy an additional product and spend some time to get that done. The good: -Superlight for such a large shelter. -Packs up small very small. -Great for ski touring/splitboarding. You can use your ski poles to pitch it. You don't have to pack the center pole. -Sheds snow fairly well. -Very usable space even with the center pole -Quick and easy set up. Just stake out the corners and raise the pole. -Huge door makes for easy entry and great views. -Price vs weight vs size is nearly unbeatable.

The

James, thanks for spending the time writing such a detailed review of the mega light. I've used it for years and can agree with everything you noted. Feel free to reach out to me with tent/backpacking gear related questions at any time. Expert Gearhead Jelam@backcountry.com

>Rating: 5

Basic Floor?

Familiarity:
I've put it through the wringer

BD used to make a basic bathtub floor for the Megamid, I have one for my Betamid, but can't find anything but the whole bug screen for the Mega. I know you can just throw a tyvek down for the floor but the bathtub design, and elastic grommets on the inside were a nice feature for really wet areas. Any ideas where the basic floor went?

>Rating: 5

Words won't do it justice

Familiarity:
I've put it through the wringer

But I'll do my best After three weeks on the John Muir Trail and over 200 miles later, this tent performed wonderfully. I love how I just grabbed nearby rocks instead of using stakes to post out the sides. This thing also rocked in the wind, as long as you guy it out properly. It withstood 50mph wind gusts and some gnarly hail storms and my stuff was completely dry. Don't be intimidated by the floorless design. It saves weight and you really don't need a floor anyway. Take a piece of tyvek and use that as a tarp if need be. If you have an issue with bugs and don't want to lose sleep from a spider crawling across your face in the night, check out the Mega Bug Shelter that fits perfectly with this set up.

But

Awesome picture Jimmy !!! I selected this image to feature on the Community Hub at the bottom of the Backcountry.com homepage! Congrats on being utterly GOATWORTHY !!

+1 on the Tyvek flooring. Congrats on the helpful review and the JMT!

>Rating: 5

Bag of trail mix or shelter????

Familiarity:
I've put it through the wringer

Let me set the scene for you... You approach into the cirque - surrounded by towering granite walls - and the trusty weather forecast you have primed many trips off has let you down. Those seemingly harmless looking puffs of white clouds have now turned malicious and are aiming at destroying your day and soaking you to the bone. Whip this little baby out - pull her tight, stake her down, put rocks over the stakes - put the pole up - and climb on in. Withstood winds of up to 40 mphs - and kept the afternoon thunderstorms out. Slept three of us comfortably and kept us relatively warm on a freakishly cold day/night in June. We also were able to provide some shelter for another climbing team who had ventured up to 10,000 feet with only the luxury of a small sweatshirt - and shorts. Weighs about the same as a large bag or trail mix. So next time you are packing for the day, might as well throw this little gal in there. Can also be combined with BD's specific trekking poles so you can ditch the carbon fiber pole included and use your trekking in it's place. Mega light, mega right. You'll be feeling giddy in your own little circus tent in the mountains.

Let

Awesome picture Quiti !!! I selected this image to feature on the Community Hub at the bottom of the Backcountry.com homepage! Congrats on being utterly GOATWORTHY !!

Seriously though, this shot is SOOOO EPIC! Mad props, and mucho respect!

>Rating: 5

Sleeping on a raft?

Familiarity:
I've put it through the wringer

The Mega Light is quick and easy to set up and makes a great shelter if you sleep on an 18' raft, J-Rig. It fits perfectly on an 18' raft all you have to do is clip the corners to the D-rings and set the pole on top of a rocket box and you have a solid shelter for when those mid summer monsoons hit in the middle of the night. I have never had it leak on me, and have used it for backpacking and rafting in southeast AK, Canada, and boating on the Colorado River.

>Rating: 4

Nice One

Familiarity:
I've put it through the wringer

Great lightweight and roomy option. It's held up to a variety of conditions. Significant winds below the Continental Divide in the Wind River Range, moderate rainfall (even with no ground cloth), and is great for winter camping. Only downfall is that it doesn't come seam sealed. Come on Black Diamond, for that price you can't have it seam sealed?! Silly, borderline ridiculous. Besides that, great option for going deep into the Hills any time of the year

Seam sealing was always on my wish list for BD...Come on Already!!! These area huge PITA sealing them yourself!

>Rating: 5

Wouldn't trade this one

Familiarity:
I've used it several times

Simply amazing. Light. Setup is easy(ish, with practice). Fun. Roomy. Inexpensive. Pair it with a couple smaller tarps and some snow anchors and you get the picture attached. Not bug proof at all unless paired with a mosquito net, if you plan to use it in the non-winter months. Just throwing that out there.

Simply
>Rating: 4

Nice Kitchen

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

Light and sturdy shelter when properly staked--You'll need snow stakes for snow (duh). Makes a great kitchen when snow camping. This thing allowed us to cook and eat in relative comfort while winds raged outside and served as nice place to get out of the sun. Only complaint is that it when set up with the sides taught, it was impossible to completely zip the door shut.

Light

Nat, The MegaLight does make a great snow tent, stoked that you enjoyed it. If you don't mind some helpful feedback, it's a common mistake when putting this shelter up to be unable to zip the door fully. To prevent this, first prop the middle of the tent, and with a FULLY CLOSED door stake out the tent in all corners. Now, the door can be opened and you can shovel out your inner cook tent with a fully functioning door. Hope this helps!

Makes sense, will try that next time. Thanks.

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>Rating:

I've noticed I can pack this down quite a bit smaller with a compression sack - is there any reason to not do this, even just for periods of travel rather than storage?

Hi Patrick! Yes, you can use a compression sack to travel with this tent- Black Diamond confirmed that it shouldn't compromise the material. Just make sure you don't keep it in a compression sack during storage!

>Rating:

I am looking to use this for backpacking trips with my brother. We are both 6'3". I thought I read that the dimensions were 84" by 84". I wasn't sure what the pitch was on the walls and wanted to make sure that I could lie in my mummy bag in the winter without the head or foot of my sleeping bag touching the the walls and getting damp. Anyone have an answer to this. Also, would I be able to sit up comfortably inside it in inclement weather. One last question, has anyone found the lack of snow skirts to be problematic in inclement weather. Thank you

>Rating:

How much seam seal do I need to purchase per tent? Thanks!

>Rating:

Anyone ever put a stove jack on one of these? Kind of like s Seek Outside Tipi..

>Rating:

I lost the 'feet' for the middle pole. I...

I lost the 'feet' for the middle pole. I guess there is one plastic bit for the top and one that goes inside the bottom middle of the tent. Can I buy these pieces separately from purchasing a new tent, and if so, where can I get these parts from? Thanks,

Hey Joephish, We do not have individual parts unfortunately so you might want to contact BD directly to see if they have the parts separate for warranty. Their customer service number is listed below: (800) 775-5552

>Rating:

Do you have a larger model of this item,...

Do you have a larger model of this item, suitable for using as a kitchen shelter?

Wayne, Backcountry.com sells the NEMO Pentalite as another great option with more space. Check it out: http://www.backcountry.com/nemo-equipment-inc.-pentalite-4p-shelter?rr=t. Also, if you're planning on digging into the snow for a kitchen, the MegaLight easily accomodates 8-10 people and can squeeze 12.

>Rating:

Is just the floor still available? I can...

Is just the floor still available? I can fing the Mega Bug Shelter, but there is/was just a floor with out the mesh??

Unfortunately, we do not currently have the floor.

>Rating:

Is there a floor??

Is there a floor??

The floor can be purchased separately. BD also makes a bug net/floor for the Mega. http://www.backcountry.com/black-diamond-mega-bug-shelter

Better, in my opinion, to get or make two "half size" tarp floors. Or one full floor and one half floor, out of some tarp material or plastic sheeting. That way you (save money) have the versatility of bringing a floor for only have the teepee if you are going solo or with someone you "like a lot" to save some weight. Especially if you are planning on sleeping under the stars and only want this for a "just in case" scenario, or if you are using it for snow camping (as you need to leave an island in the middle -- see the pic I posted).

I had a bathtub floor made for my Mega by Bear Paw Wilderness Designs. It ran about 100$ and it's basically perfectly mated utilizing the same stakes. I've the floor/bug net too... options are nice http://www.bearpawwd.com/shelters_floors/bathtub_floor.html

>Rating:

Do you seal the seams on the inside of the...

Do you seal the seams on the inside of the tent, outside, or both?

Hey CW, if you have enough seam sealer and don't mind the shiny look on the outside, I would do both... if you do the inside, the seam has to get wet before getting to the sealer, on the outside, its preventing water before getting to the seam... minor details but the extra water can add some weight if the seams are soaked...

Outside. It is a bit difficult if you are under 6 ft tall, as you must pitch the tent in order to have it taught enough to seal properly. Why must you be about 6 ft tall you ask? Well, when you are reaching for the top from the outside, you are actually standing about 3 ft away from the center pole, thus must reach over and up... It's doable (I'm 5 ft 11 inches and completed the task), but a few extra inches in height would have made it easy...

>Rating:

I have an old Chounard Pyramid got mildew,...

I have an old Chounard Pyramid got mildew, sticky insided; can it be saved?

Maybe not. The mildew is bad enough, but once the urethane coating gets "sticky" it may be more than it's worth to deal with. You certainly can't just apply a new urethane coat over the decaying old urethane coat. It won't stick. But I've been pondering whether one might be able to remove the old urethane entirely through repeated, robust machine washings. Older coatings tended to delaminate when wet anyway (though not so much anymore). But with something the age of a Chouinard Pyramind, you might be able to use this delamination to your advantage. If you could get enough of the old coating off, you might be able to re-coat it yourself with a cane of sealant. I think McNett might sell such stuff. Anyone had any experience with removing old coatings?

>Rating:

When used with the Mega Floor, will this...

When used with the Mega Floor, will this keep the bugs out? Or do you need the Mega Bug Shelter for that?

You will definitely need the bug shelter to "keep" the bugs out. The floor does not "zip" to the shelter - it ties - so there WILL be gaps between tent and floor.It's just like water, if a bug wants to get in any tent, it will find a way.