Marmot Limelight Review

Our Verdict

The Marmot Limelight tent has excellent comfort features but is not as expensive as other tents. It seems roomier on the inside than the outside would suggest, and it has two wide doors that are easy to get in and out of.

Unlike typical backpacking tents, which tend to have one wide storage pocket but lack footprint, this product has both a footprint and two separate storage pockets. That means, the Limelight makes nice car camping and a weekender tent as it is a bulky tent, and a heavy one too.

This tent works well for those who want to set up camp to spend a few days in the great outdoors. There is a lot of space, and it is relatively sturdy. Despite the fact that it is an impressive shelter, it is not meant for traveling long distances.

Marmot offers much of the same comfort and convenience features as other tents in the class but cannot compete with weight, packed size, and overall toughness.

Specs

Marmot Limelight
Packed Weight 5 lbs. 10 oz.
Floor Area 33 square feet
Packed Size 7.5 x 20.5 inches
Dimensions 88 x 54 inches
Peak Height 43 inches
Number of Doors 2
Number of Poles3
Rain Fly Material 68-denier polyester taffeta
Inner Tent Material 40-denier polyester mesh
Price Range$$$
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Review

If you are specifically looking for a tent for car camping, the Limelight 2 is a great buy. However, it is safe to say that the primary competitors are better in almost every aspect.

Comfort

The tent is much more comfortable than it seems. It appears to be around the same in length as many of the others, but the build is bigger, providing more headroom and elbow room as well as a  higher peak height. Two people can comfortably sit in it, which is uncommon for two-person tents.

In a way, its almost completely vertical walls separate its interior from the rest of the competitors, making for a spacious cross-sectional area. The unique structure of the pre-bent poles also creates a sturdy structure.

The Limelight also comes with two large double-layer pockets. These are convenient when you want to store gear and other things that you want immediate access to. However, when stuffed with too many things, the weight of its contents will force them close at the top.

It may also be cumbersome for some users as they are located on opposite sides of the tent. As such, campers are meant to sleep head-to-toe, which others may not prefer.

The large two-door design is particularly appealing. There is a major difference in their design—one of them is a D-shape, while the other tapers into a teardrop shape that tucks neatly into a pocket around the foot of the door.

Ease of Setup

When it comes to setting up, the Limelight is relatively easier. It has two long poles that are connected at a central hub. It also comes with a cross-pole that effectively expands the headroom. A small but noticeable issue is that the pre-installed flexible poles seem to rotate slightly when you slide the segments together. However, it is insignificant because the hub stays put.

The tent-to-fly clips at the corner and tent-to-pole clips get the job done adequately, but they feel a bit plasticky. Similarly, the included hex stakes, six in total, stay anchored quite well. The entire pitching process, from footprint to rainfly, will take an individual about 10 minutes or less.

Weather Resistance

The Limelight provides above-average weather resistance as it effectively keeps the rain out. For added protection, stake the foot and head ends of the fly. This prevents any issues with the mesh canopy touching the rainfly and causing leaks.

The tent comes with a small vent above each vestibule. However, these are not enough to provide adequate ventilation when the fly is closed. Unless you can roll up the fly partially (without any danger of splashbacks), then expect significant condensation, especially if it rains for a couple of hours.

Each vestibule is only secured by a single stake. That means they tend to flap, especially during a particularly windy day. Due to the heavy material, the fabric sags when wet. However, if they are pitched and staked well, there are no significant issues even during heavy downpours.

On the other hand, the included footprint is an advantage. It is fitted to the poles with grommets in the corners to fend off the elements. It also serves as a water shield to protect you from ground moisture.

Durability

The Limelight is made with strong materials designed to last for a long time. The tough 68 Denier poly taffeta is puncture-resistant and will not rip with typical use. However, the material is not as elastic as ripstop nylon, which is a popular tent material.

The included footprint adds further protection, especially if you are setting up on rough grounds. As such, with decent care and maintenance, the tent will last for years.

Note that the polyester will show deterioration if often used under extremely hot weather. So, it is best to pitch under the shade during summer trips.

Additionally, expect the tent clips and poles to break before the tent material wears through. But, they are sturdy and robust.

Weight and Packed Size

The two-person version is a little more than 5 pounds which is on the heavy side of its class. This is due to the heavy tent materials. On top of that, the complicated pole structure makes it cumbersome overall.

However, the included footprint is a nice addition. Its fast-pitch mode, which includes the footprint and the rainfly, is considerably lighter by a couple of pounds. But, it is not an ideal setup if you are anticipating bugs in your campsite.

When packing, expect the tent to take up a considerable amount of space in your bag at 7.5 inches by 20.5 inches. Splitting the tent between you and your companion should lessen the burden of carrying an entire tent pack.

pros
What we liked
  • The Marmot Limelight brings strong essential features considering its affordable price point.
  • The two large side doors make it easy to move about the tent.
  • While the interior dimension is quite average, it feels roomy due to the almost vertical walls.
  • It already comes with a footprint.
  • The tent is made of strong and durable materials.
cons
What we didn't like
  • The tent is a bit heavy and bulky, making it more suitable for camping.
  • Ventilation is not great when the rain fly is up.