£395 from Amazon.co.uk
There’s a hundred and one tents out there, and long before setting off on my trip, I looked into as many of them as possible. The Hilleberg Akto has to be the one tent which repeatedly is mentioned, and certainly in my opinion one of the best single person tents available.
The two tents which I ultimately whittled it down to were the Terra Nova Laser Competition, and the Hilleberg Akto. Although the Terra Nova claimed to be lighter , when you consider the realisitc weights involved, there is very little between them. One of the major areas where the Terra Nova saves weight is in the pegs. These are wire thin titanium pegs which will bend in anything but the softest ground. For wild camping (especially in the rest areas of Australia where the ground seemed to want nothing other than stingers), these are next to useless. Once the pegs were replaced, along with the added footprint, there is little saving to be made, and I felt far more reassured with the durability that the Akto’s reputation offered.
I originally bought this tent nearly 4 years ago, and it seems to be working just as well as ever (better perhaps, the more I come to understand how best it works). It has been my home almost every day for the last 10 months, and still provides the same comfort as always.
Interestingly Jack has had the Laser Competition with him as he joined me for the last couple of months across Australia and Japan. Although the Laser was no doubt a good purchase given the price he paid, comparing the two tents we both agree the Hilleberg comes off better.
The ventilation on the Akto is more effective, and the effects of condensation are usually much less. This can be largely avoided in the Laser though by raising the ends of the tent up onto the guy line.
The Akto also appears to be faster and more straightforward to set up, standing firm no matter what the weather condition.
Two words of advice: make sure you open all the vents (you won’t get wet, even in a typhoon), and make sure you sleep with your head at the right end (where the door is) – it makes a difference.
When I bought this it was available for £290 from RayMears.com. Alas, it’s now cheaper elsewhere – £390 from Amazon.co.uk
Lightweight and durable
Surprisingly comfortable and spacious
Incredibly easy to erect
Easy to pack
You really should buy the footprint (additional £20) to ensure durability (and to stop mud getting in the tent)