This Mountainsmith Genesee 4 Person Tent review is about an award-winning reliable freestanding 3-season tent with a very easy setup, an impressive waterproof rating, and a great price.
Key features & benefits
- Exceptionally good price.
- Very reliable tent.
- Very lightweight.
- Great packed size.
- Many years on the market.
What this is about
The Mountainsmith Genesee 4 tent has been on the market for some 7 years at least. Back in 2011, this tent was awarded as the Camping Life Magazine “Top Picks” tent. So everything is known about this tent, this is a very reliable item from a world-renown brand.
But do not expect anything spectacular here; the beauty of this tent is its simplicity. I guess you cannot have a simpler design – 2 poles creating the typical freestanding X-shape structure, 2 doors, and 2 vestibules. The tent is a double-layer type, with the inner mesh tent and the fly.
Who is this tent for
Space-wise, the tent is officially for 4 people. Now, let’s see what it offers. The floor plan is shown below, and you have 56 ft² (5.2 m²), which means 14 ft² (1.3 m²) per person. So this is very small space for so many people but they have used the backpacking principle to determine the capacity. You can certainly put 4 sleeping pads on the floor.
But there are 2 vestibules that add 21 ft² (2 m²) so the area per person becomes 1.8 m² and this is quite different from the number above. The vestibules are zones that offer protected space for your boots and gear so this counts. But I still think this is a tent for 3 people maximum; ideal for 2.
Seasons-wise, the full coverage fly and the high waterproof rating (more below) are such that you have a complete protection from elements. This is a relatively low and aerodynamic structure for a 3-season use.
Climate-wise, with so much mesh in the inner tent, this is a tool for a warmer area. If you need something for a cooler environment, better check this Snugpak The Cave but it is considerably heavier.
Weight-wise, with 6 lb 15 oz (3.15 kg) this is a really lightweight tent even if it is used (and carried) by 3 people only. Note that it packs nicely to 19.5 x 8 in (49 x 20 cm). You can transport it on a bicycle as well.
Materials & construction
The poles & stakes
There are only two poles, 8.5 mm diameter, anodized Yunan 7000 series aluminum alloy poles. Yunan is a well-known manufacturer from South Korea. The stakes are 7075 aluminum V-type, this is a good all-around type that does not rotate in the ground.
The fly is 185T polyester with a 2000 mm waterproof rating, and you have vents with Velcro stiffeners. The inner tent is the same tenacity breathable polyester plus mesh. The floor is 190T polyester with 5000 mm PU coating, and it is with the bathtub design. All materials are fire-retardant and seams are taped. The doors are with double-layer structure, so you have panels and mesh for ventilation when needed. So these are very good numbers and the tent should keep you dry in any weather conditions.
The carry bag is a nylon 30D. The zippers are also a top brand, all YKK. You have a detachable ceiling loft and several storage pockets in the two opposite corners. A few other features you can see in this short video:
Mountainsmith Genesee 4 footprint
Yes, there is a footprint they designed particularly for this tent, the current price is around $39. This is a wise investment for such an inexpensive yet quality tent, it will protect it from the ground and extend its lifetime.
Good and less good features & rating
Here is my short summary:
- Great price.
- Great packed size.
- Very reliable.
- Quality materials and workmanship.
- Small area for the declared capacity.
The price & rating
As of the moment of writing this text, the price for this tent is only $125. So this is quite extraordinary; there are perhaps even more affordable tents out there, but bear in mind this is the Mountainsmith, a very reliable brand, and this is an awarded tent.
There is a huge number of reports and reviews of this tent, this is no surprise in view of its long presence on the market and the popularity. Only on Amazon you have close to 150 reports and the average rating is 4.4/5. See how I rate it:
My rating breakdown of the Mountainsmith Genesee 4 tent
Floor area - 8.1/10
Area/Weight ratio - 9.4/10
Packed size - 9.2/10
Reliability & protection - 9.5/10
Ease of use & features - 9/10
Price - 9.9/10
User Review( votes)
- Type: freestanding backpacking tent.
- Capacity: 4 people.
- Weight: 6 lb 15 oz (3.15 kg).
- Trail weight: 6 lb 9 oz (3 kg).
- Dimensions: 96 x 84 in (244 x 213 cm).
- Area: 56 ft² (5.2 m²).
- Area per person: 14 ft² (1.3 m²).
- Vestibules area: 21 ft² (2 m²).
- Peak height: 52 in (132 cm).
- Packed size: 19.5 x 8 in (49 x 20 cm).
- 2 doors.
- 2 vestibules.
Mountainsmith Genesee 4 vs Competitors
Here you have the Genesee 4 tent side by side with the two top-notch tents; the Big Agness tent is currently the lightest 4-person tent on the market so you can see how the Genesee stands in this respect. But see the prices as well. The Exio 4 is also a very light tent which I am using now, with some exceptional features and a great price. Please follow the links in the table to see more.
COMPARE PACKAGE FEATURES
Weight, lb (kg)
Floor size, sq ft (sq m)
Peak height, in (cm)
Packed size, in (cm)
Payable Every Month
19.5 x 8 (49 x 20)
Big Agnes Copper
Spur HV UL 4
Payable Every Year
21.5 x 5 (55 x 13)
Payable Every Year
21 x 7 (53 x 18)
In the summary of this Mountainsmith Genesee 4 Person Tent review I would stress again that this tent has been on the market for so many years, so it has stood the test of the time. This is a reliable tool otherwise it would not be around for so long and with such an impressive rating. A tent is supposed to protect you from elements and this is its main purpose, this is what you have here, a very simple but functional tent, easy to use and incredibly affordable.
This brand has been around for almost 40 years already and has received numerous awards for their outdoor products. You will notice this tent is included in my list of the best backpacking tents.
Thank you for reading. If you need a different tent, please check my page with tents in the sizes 1 – 4 people. Check this ultra-lightweight Big Agnes Copper Hotel HV UL3 Tent with huge porch and vestibule. For a car camping, you might want to see this fully freestanding ALPS Mountaineering Meramac 4 ZF Tent and also Browning Camping Hawthorne 4 Person Tent. But check also this The North Face Wawona 4 with its two large vestibules. For larger camping tents please check here. In particular, if you want a bigger tent from the same brand, check the Conifer 5 Plus tent from the same MS brand.
There is a comment box below in the case of questions and comments. Have a nice day.