The Kelty Night Owl Tent Review – Ultimate Backcountry Tent For Stargazing

The spacious Kelty Night Owl Tent is one of those tents you can turn to if you want a comfortable large and lightweight stable shelter that you can rely on every time you go camping.

Shopping for a tent is never easy, since making the wrong decision could set you up for a rough time in the wild. And nothing ruins camping fun like a tent that doesn’t stand up to the challenge.

If it can’t keep the elements out, and ensure you can stay safe and comfy inside, then it doesn’t make the cut. However, you just need to spend a little time to find the features and benefits you want in a shelter, one that’s strong, dry, and secure.

Does the Kelty Night Owl have what it takes to satisfy your requirements? Well, why not scroll down and see what I found in my research, it may just have what you need.

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Kelty Night Owl Backpacking and Camping Tent

The Key Features

Aluminum poles

If you want a tent that is lightweight but still strong enough even when the rough outdoor elements are stacked against it, then you need to be keen on the poles. The material matters a whole lot here, but also the design counts too.

That’s exactly what Kelty has done with the poles on this one. Made of aluminum, the poles are lighter than most options out there. But there’s more; its poles come in a set, with two hubbed ones and a ridged pole, a combination that is ideal for easy pitching of your tent.

Stargazing fly system

Nothing quite beats the fun of gazing up at the starry night sky while enjoying the warmth of your tent. However, it takes a well-designed tent to get such pleasure. And what better way to get a glimpse of the spectacle above than with a tent that’s built with this need in mind.

That’s the one thing I love the most about this tent. It has a fly that you can roll up and secure it in place using simple clips. Then you will have a full view of the night sky as well as increased ventilation inside.

No-see-um mesh walls

When talking of ventilation, it’s worth mentioning that there are several places on a tent where you can get air coming in nicely, and the mesh walls are one of them. But it takes a well-built tent wall to give you the ventilation you need.

With the inner wall of this tent made of a no-see-um mesh, ventilation is one of the things you won’t have to worry about when settling down for an afternoon nap or night sleep. Besides, this also helps reduce any condensation build-up inside the tent, which is a great thing too.

Enough interior space

Space also comes across as one of the most important factors you have to consider when selecting the ideal tent for your adventure. And this becomes even more important especially if you are heading out with a friend or two, or your small family.

If space is of the essence to you, then this tent has more than enough room. With 2, 3, and 4 person designs, it’s a roomy tent that allows you to enjoy your time out there without feeling cramped.

You will also have a bit of room to stash your duffel bags inside so you can keep your gear close and dry.

Tough enough for the outdoors

The amount of beating your tent can take also matters, so always keep an eye out for this as well. A tent that can’t withstand a serious downpour could set you up for some serious frustration and sleepless nights if nature throws a drenching storm your way.

Thankfully, this tent is designed to shelter you during the summer winter and spring seasons, it is a robust tent that you can count on for an almost all-year-round adventure.

With the floor made of strong 68-denier fabric with 1800mm water resistance capability, you can bet this tent will keep you bone dry even in bad weather.

Easy set up

Before you can settle for the night in the comfortable protection of your tent, you will need to set it up first. Now, this proves to be a challenge for many for two reasons; either they are new to camping, or the tent isn’t designed to make the setup easy.

Not to worry, Kelty has taken care of that by equipping this tent with pockets at the corners, so once you set up that side, you can secure the poles in place when moving around to set up the other end.

Also, it has guy line pockets that keep the line from blowing in the wind. And best of all, you have pockets that you can use for your flashlight so you can get enough illumination when pitching up your tent at night.

Two doors for privacy

When more than two people are using the same tent, access and exit become even more important, especially if you are camping with kids, where a bit of privacy is essential. And thus a tent with more than one entrance goes a long way to ensure you achieve just that.

Thanks to this tent’s double door design, you not only get extra ventilation, but you can also enjoy a great deal of privacy when getting in and out of your tent. Even better, the doors are large enough to allow you to bring in even some large piece of gear as an air mattress without much hassle.

What Are The Benefits Of This Product

Enough interior storage pockets, which include a ceiling pocket and sidewall pockets offer you more space for keeping and organizing your stuff.

A freestanding design makes pitching this tent not only easy but also allows you to set it up and move it around a bit to find that sweet spot.

Seam taped construction adds to the waterproof design of this tent by helping keep the moisture and rain outside while ensuring you stay bone-dry inside.

The head and shoulder room on this one is also just awesome, which makes it an ideal tent for tall people, and mostly those who don’t like the idea of crawling inside their tent.

With two vestibules offering an extra 10 square feet of storage each, this tent offers even more storage space for your items; you can bring almost everything inside.

A long floor plan at 90 inches by 73 inches is designed to give you more than sufficient room inside, especially if you need to split up your tent for more privacy.

To make transporting your tent super easy and convenient, this tent comes with an included carry bag that is large enough for the tent to fit without any hustle.

The pre-bent poles give you the extra internal space that makes this tent a great choice for when you are camping with others.

The strong and sharp stakes also come across as a big plus, since they are not only easy to hit into the ground, but also do a great job once you have them in place.

And thanks to the Velcro grips, which allow you to attach the tent fly on a tad easier, you can save yourself the hustle and extra time that it would take you without them.

Quick Specs

  1. Comes in a 2, 3, or 4 person design
  2. 3 season tent
  3. Material 68-denier fabric
  4. Aluminum poles
  5. Interior space 45 square feet
  6. Waterproof floor
  7. Seam taped design for extra water resistance
  8. Internal pockets and vestibules for storage
  9. Double doors
  10. Mesh inner wall and roof
  11. Freestanding design


  • Easy to set up thanks to the Kelty Quick Corners design
  • Pre-bent poles give you extra room inside
  • Sufficient height offers enough head and shoulder room
  • Lots of storage space in the pockets and vestibules
  • Double door design for easy entry and exit
  • The robust build makes it ideal for 3 seasons 


  • The rainfly can be a bit tough to position on top of the tent due to the crossbar

Questions And Answers

Question: Does this tent come with a fly?

Answer: Yes, the tent is included in the tent fly, which is a great plus as far as offering that extra protection from the sun, as well as rain. And yes, the tent fly is simple to set up over the tent.

Question: Do I have to get a tent tarp?

Answer: Well, this tent doesn’t come with one. However, if you would like to enhance the protection of your tent from rocks and pebbles or uneven ground, then it’s advisable to get a good ground cover separately.

Kelty has one that is best compatible with this tent, so you can purchase that one separately also.

Below is a comment from a verified purchaser

Here Is A Tip Or Two

  • Although the freestanding design of this tent allows you to move it around a bit after setting it up, it’s still wise to be careful when choosing the location where you want to pitch your tent to avoid any compromise on the tent floor, which could mean leaks and reduced durability.
  • Always make sure to order your tent, and of course, other camping gear early enough so you can give them a test run before the trip.
  • Set up your tent in the backyard to familiarize yourself with the setup process, and if necessary leave it to air out. This way, you’ll also be able to see if it has any faults that might need fixing. 


Shopping for a good tent doesn’t have to be hard, but you should not settle for less while you can get a good tent that will give you the value for your money.

This Kelty Night Owl Backpacking and Camping Tent looks to be a great all-around small tent that will provide a good combination of performance and comfort you will need for an enjoyable camping trip.

It is easy to pitch up, very breathable, built to withstand the rough outdoors, and most of all, strong enough to keep you protected. I think you will love it as we do.

If you have any more questions about the Kelty Night Owl Tent, I’d love to hear them and I’ll be more than happy to answer them in the comments section below.

For more choices and an amazing range of quality small tents with a lot more information for your next adventure read my post on the Best Tents For Camping   

You may also like to read my in-depth review of the very good Bessport 2 Person Tent for a good comparison that will assist you and help with your purchasing decision.

Remember! Leave it cleaner than you found it, only footprints not rubbish.


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