This Snugpak £279.95 Scorpion 3 tent has very different performance intentions to the previously reviewed Snugpak Scorpion 2. The extra person capacity, allowing space for sleeping 3 individuals, has allowed Snugpak to reassess what and where they believe the usefulness of the design lies. Contrasting the Scorpion 2’s quick pitching, lightweight and surprisingly spacious design, the Scorpion 3 is marketed as a base camp with expedition character. We’ve had it up in some very peculiar British summertime weather to inform all.
On first look the Snugpak Scorpion 3 is aesthetically the same as the Scorpion 2. However, it’s 325cm long, 195cm wide and 110cm tall (at the highest point). So it’s 25cm longer, a mere 5cm taller and a dramatic 65cm wider than the Scorpion 2, and as we reveal later on this reflects well on the interior space. Because of its bigger stance, the scorpion name badge makes a bit more sense here and still manages to look rather fascinatingly unique with its stretched front porch design all in olive green.
All this increased sizing means only one downside and that comes with the weight. We go from 2.65kg with the 2 person Scorpion to 3.4kg with the additional space. Whilst not a considerable on-paper difference, when holding each tent packed away the 3's additional bulk is fairly noticeable. Nevertheless it's definitely not a large enough increase to make us feel that the Scorpion 3 shouldn't tag along on short summer trails and even long upward rugged hikes. This is primarily because the pack size is so damn good in relation to how large the tent actually is when pitched! Everything squeezes away and the overall footprint is less than a backpack.
Due to how familiar we are with the smaller Scorpion tent, this was a breeze to both pitch and take down. Having said this, the instructions are clear for first timers too, and the colour coding of poles and corresponding insertion placement on the tent's flysheet make the whole initial ordeal very simple. In fact, the most complicated it gets is making sure the 90t nylon PU 5000mm groundsheet and 190t nylon inner tent is facing the correct way for the door to align when fastening via toggles and rings to the outer 5000mm hydrostatic head PU coated flysheet. As always with Snugpak products, we’re given really high quality and, importantly, lightweight aluminium poles and pegs/stakes. From all our years of experience with these pegs they have never even corroded, have always stayed put in the ground and are really easy to bend straight if you mistakenly hit a rock. Our time on the clock from unboxing to having a fully pegged tent was just under 15 minutes and taking it down and repacking, whilst not being timed, felt considerably quicker to complete.
A Good Night's Sleep?
The suggested 3 person capacity could well be ignored for genuine roominess to the extent where 2-3 backpacks can easily be placed in between 2 campers within the 225cm(L) x 175cm(W) x 110cm(H). Of course, just like the 2 berth model we can make use of the porch area to keep belongings that may be dirty like shoes and jackets - not a safe haven if it rains though. Reassuringly, if you do choose to sleep 3 the environment hasn't been made so this trio of campers (largish people at that) have their sleeping bags overlapping; and legs can be truly stretched out too. Because of this roominess we felt air quality benefited. This was particularly noticeable on a recent spell of humid summer evenings where the No-See-Um Mesh mosquito net on the main zipped entrance kept the air flow fresh and condensation to a minimal level. In addition the initial porch door can be kept wrapped up and open for a constant flurry of air, and 3 exterior ventilation ports are located on the side and rear of the tent that help too. The waterproofing was ironically tested quite a bit this summer, along with some abrasive winds of 40mph+. As we have come to expect, the Scorpion tent shape is fantastic at shrugging off this type of weather, andheavy rainfall is visually distinctive in the way it repels from the PU coated flysheet.
Ten internal pockets spread throughout the tent assist hugely in keeping food, books, smartphones, tablets and all our other belongings we wanted immediate access to, organised and accessible. In fact, if you logically take ownership of the pockets residing where you sleep, a mere stretch of the arm will retrieve what you’re searching for. Campers who want a little more lighting as the sun goes down will enjoy the hanging loop; which we made use of with our LED lamp. Where we chose to pitch the Snugpak Scorpion 3 tent was underneath trees that shadowed the entire body, and this highlighted fantastically just how well the tent's 2 layers keep out the light for non-distracting early morning sunrises.
Snugpak Scorpion 3 may be the larger brother within the lineup, but the pack size is still respectably small and we wouldn't hesitate to throw it onto our equipment checklist if we were heading into the wild as a group of three. This is due to it providing a comfortable and spacious retreat for a trio that is pitching simplicity for all four seasons.