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Marmot Tungsten vs Fortress

Marmot is most of the backpackers’ favorite brand, it strikes the perfect balance between durability, interior volume, and weight. In this article, I’ll compare two of the finest tents in its line, Marmot Tungsten and Marmot Fortress.

Firstly, both tents have two-person and three-person versions. In this buying guide, I will be comparing two-person versions of the tents, but the idea is the same, even if you’re looking for a three-person tent you can use this guide. The only thing that changes between two-person and three-person versions is the dimensions.

In summary, the main difference is their season type, Marmot Tungsten is a 3-seasons tent which has a high mesh ratio. It offers better breathability, allows you to stargaze during the night, and it’s lighter, therefore, it’s the better option for summer camping. Marmot Fortress, on the other hand, is a more robust tent that has a full fabric canopy to keep you warm in the winter, therefore it’s heavier. Another big difference is, Marmot Tungsten comes with a footprint, but Marmot Fortress doesn’t, you need to buy the footprint separately.

Go straight to the detailed comparison.


Marmot Tungsten Review

Marmot Tungsten is a 3-pole structured, three-season tent that has two-person and three-person versions. It has a great mesh ratio, therefore, it offers excellent breathability.

marmot tungsten

It’s a bit heavier and bulkier compared to its alternatives such as Nemo Hornet and Big Agnes Copper Spur, but it’s much durable. Its canopy and floor are made of 68D polyester (much higher than its alternatives).

Tungsten has two doors and two vestibules for each person, it offers enough floor and vestibule area for two people, and it has pre-bent poles that increase the interior volume.

One thing I like about Marmot Tungsten is the footprint comes with the tent, you don’t need to purchase it separately.

Lastly, it features two decent size pockets for each person to keep their belongings, and it has two light-diffusing pockets to use your headlamp as a lantern at nights.

Check out the latest price of Marmot Tungsten.


Marmot Fortress Review

Marmot Fortress is a 4-season, 3-pole structured tent that has a full fabric canopy to provide protection against cold, it has two-person and three-person versions.

Fortress features pre-bent poles that offer great interior volume. It has two doors that have mesh so you can open them without thinking about bugs coming in. Each door has vestibules so you can keep your gear outside to have more space inside.

The tent has two vents to get a nice breeze rolling through on sunny days. Just like the doors, the lower vent also has a mesh but the upper vent doesn’t.

Note: I don’t recommend this tent if you generally camp in sunny weather, Marmot Tungsten or Marmot Limelight is a better option in that case.

It has two big storage pockets to hold your gear and it features two transparent corner pockets to lighten the tent with your headlamp at nights.

Unlike Marmot Tungsten, Marmot Fortress doesn’t come with a footprint, you need to purchase it separately. Check out the latest prices of Marmot Fortress 2P footprint and 3P footprint.

Check out the latest price of Marmot Fortress.


Marmot Tungsten 2P vs Fortress 2P

 Marmot TungstenMarmot Fortress
Marmot TungstenMarmot Fortress
Minimum Weight4lbs 13oz (2182g)5lbs 9oz (2520g)
Packed Weight5lbs 4oz (2381g)5lbs 15.5oz (2710g)
Pack SizeØ7.5" x 21" / Ø17.8 x 53.3cmØ7.5" x 21" / Ø17.8 x 53.3cm
Floor Dimensions88" x 54" (Head Side) x 46" (Feet Side) / 137/117 x 224cm88" x 54" (Head Side) x 46" (Feet Side) / 137/117 x 224cm
Height42" / 107 cm42" / 107 cm
Floor Area30.6 ft² / 2.8m²30.6 ft² / 2.8m²
Vestibule Area9.8 ft² + 7.8 ft²9.8 ft² + 7.8 ft²
Pole Diameter9/8.5 millimeters9 millimeters
Canopy Fabric
40d 100% Polyester No-See-Um Mesh F/R | 68d 100% Polyester Taffeta F/R40d 100% Polyester No-See-Um Mesh F/R | 68d 100% Polyester Taffeta F/R
Fly Fabric
68d Polyester Taffeta 190T 1500mm F/R68d Polyester Taffeta 190T 1500mm F/R
Floor Fabric68d Polyester Taffeta 190T 2000mm F/R68d Polyester Taffeta 190T 2000mm F/R
FootprintIncludedNot Included
FreestandingFreestandingFreestanding
Check PricesCheck Price on AmazonCheck Price on Amazon

Detailed Comparison of Tungsten vs Fortress

Seasons

The big difference between the two tents is their season types. Marmot Tungsten is a 3-season tent it has a canopy with a mesh top. It provides great breathability, and clear stargazing at summer nights.

Marmot Fortress, on the other hand, is a 4-season tent that has a full fabric canopy that provides weather protection for winter camping.

fortress in winter

Tungsten‘s top and %70 of its sidewall are with mesh to provide breathability, while Fortress only has 2 small vents and mesh doors for ventilation.

Marmot Tungsten
Marmot Tungsten 2P Tent

Interior Volume

Both tents have the same design and dimensions, the floor area of the tents is 30.6 sq ft (slightly over average). The vestibule areas of the tents are 17.6 sq ft (9.8 sq ft at the front door, 7.8 sq ft at the back door) which is also not below as average. Below you can see the dimensions of the tents.

marmot tungsten vs fortress dimensions

And lastly, the peak heights of the tents are 42″ which is above average compare to the alternatives.

marmot tungsten vs fortress height

Below, you can compare Marmot Tungsten & Fortress to their alternatives on the market.

Floor AreaVestibule AreaPeak Height
Marmot Tungsten & Fortress 2P30.6 ft²17.642″
Nemo Hornet 227.5 ft²14.2 ft²39″Read Review
Big Agnes Copper Spur HV UL229 ft²18 ft²40″Read Review
MSR Hubba Hubba Nx 229 ft²17.5 ft²39″Read Review

Durability & Waterproofness

Just like the interior volume, Marmot Tungsten and Fortress are nearly the same when it comes to durability. They’re both made of high denier fabric (68d 100% Polyester Taffeta F/R) and mesh (40d 100% Polyester No-See-Um Mesh) to offer better durability than other alternatives at the market.

A tent’s waterproofness is measured by a test called Hydrostatic Head, and the results are in mm metrics, the higher the hydrostatic head result (mm) the greater the waterproofness.

With that being said, the fly and the floor of the tents respectively made of 1500mm and 2000mm fabrics (which are good enough to keep you dry).

Canopy FabricFloor FabricFly Fabric
Marmot Tungsten & Fortress 2P40d No-See-Um Mesh 68d Polyester Taffeta68d Polyester Taffeta 190T 2000mm68d Polyester Taffeta 190T 1500mm
Nemo Hornet 210D Nylon Ripstop/ No-See-Um Mesh30D ripstop nylon 3000mm20D ripstop nylon 1200mmReview
MSR Freelite 210D polyester micro-mesh15D ripstop nylon 1200mm15D ripstop nylon 1200mmReview
Nemo Dagger 215D Nylon Ripstop/ No-See-Um Mesh30D PeU Nylon Ripstop (3000 mm)15D Sil/PeU Nylon Ripstop (1200 mm)Review
MSR Hubba Hubba Nx 215D nylon micromesh30D ripstop nylon 3000mm20D ripstop nylon 1200mmReview

For the durability comparison of Marmot Tungsten vs Fortress:

Although the specs are the same, I must say that Marmot Fortress is the better option for longevity and durability. Since it has a full fabric canopy it’s more likely not to be ripped in the long term.

Also, Marmot Tungsten comes with a footprint but Marmot Fortress doesn’t, you need to buy it separately. You can always camp without the footprint as well but for your tent’s longevity, I strongly recommend a footprint.

Check out the latest prices of Marmot Fortress 2P footprint and 3P footprint.

Weight & Packed Size

For the higher durability and interior volume compared to alternatives on the market the trade-off here is that they’re a bit heavier and bulkier.

For the weight comparison of Marmot Tungsten vs Fortress, Fortress (5lbs 15.5oz) is even heavier than Tungsten (5 lbs 4oz), their packed dimensions are the same though (Ø7.5″ x 21″ / Ø17.8 x 53.3cm).


Verdict: Tungsten or Fortress

They both are highly durable and roomy tents. But If you’re a fellow who likes to camp during winter, I’d recommend Marmot Tungsten, it is a 3-season tent, it’s lighter and has a higher mesh ratio, therefore, it offers better ventilation. But if you’re into cold weather camping, I’d recommend Marmot Fortress, it is a 4-season tent that has a full fabric canopy to provide better weather protection and durability.

Check the latest prices of Marmot Tungsten and Marmot Fortress.


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