The Scorpion 3 by Snugpak is a sturdy, two/three person severe weather tent. It’s sturdy materials and design are ideal for pitching in remote areas under all sorts of weather conditions. The Scorpion 3 is a “fly-first” design, meaning that you setup the outer rain fly first, providing a dry interior to work from, and then install the inner tent underneath the fly. This allows you to setup the tent during a rain storm without getting your inner tent wet. The Scorpion 3 is a four season tent, and is among the lightest four season tents you will find on the market today.
Correction: This is a 3-season tent. I originally listed it as a four season tent because it can handle the weight of snow, but it is technically a three season tent.
At $234, the Scorpion 3 lies midway between inexpensive consumer tents and the more high-end expedition tents. As you may know, the folks here at Disaster Ridge are all about practicality and the average joe, so you might be asking yourselves why we are endorsing a tent that might price itself out of the average joe’s price range. The answer to that is really pretty simple; If you are looking for a heavy duty 4-season tent, there is no substitute anywhere near this price range. If you are planning your BOB or INCH bag and are considering a heavier tent, this is the tent for you.
Size and Weight
Sold as a three person tent, here at Disaster Ridge we see this really as more of a ‘2 person + gear’ or ‘1 person, 1 dog, + gear’ tent. It will fit 3 people, but probably not comfortably, and certainly not with their gear. The Scorpion 3 measures 2.25m long and 1.75m wide and has 1.1m of head space, meaning that an average guy can lie down and sit up comfortably. I am 5′, 9″ 180lbs, and I can lie down on my back without my head or toes touching the tent.
At about 7 and a half pounds (3400g), the weight is the only downside to this tent. Personally, I am willing to sacrifice a pound or two in exchange for being able to pack my gear into the tent with me and having a little bit of leg room. Bottom line for me is size, and this tent is plenty big enough for me to sleep comfortably. Speaking of sleeping in a tent… unlike most tents that filter light into the tent, the Snugpak Scorpion series inner tent is made of a thick rubberized black material that blocks light so well that even in broad daylight the inside of the tent is dark enough to sleep in.
The Scorpion 3 is a ‘fly-first’ design. This simply means that you setup the outer rain fly first, and then attach the tent from inside. The rain fly covers the tent completely, touching the ground on all sides and the inner tent attaches easily to the inside by hooking it to several attachment points. In fair weather, the whole setup took me less than 5 minutes my first time, and by now I probably average under 3 minutes. One trick to decrease the pitch time is to leave the inner tent attached, then all you have to do is unfold, run the poles and stake.
Unfold the olive green outer fly, install the three poles and stake down. The poles are color coded. There is one silver pole and two green poles, and you have to match these up to the correct locations on the tent. Fortunately, the sleeves for each pole are color coded to match.
When inserting the poles, insert the colored end of the pole through the colored portion of the sleeve.
Unfold the black inner tent and attach to the inside of the rain fly. When inserting the inner tent, leave the screen mesh towards the opening of the rain fly.
Each corner of the inner tent will have a floor attachment that attaches to the outer fly via a buckle near one of the corner poles. Don’t forget to attach these corner points.
If you have or are expecting to have foul weather, setup the tie downs for the outer flaps and portals.
The Snugpak Scorpion line of tents are durable, well-made and purpose built. The Scorpion 3 is an ideal tent for an extended solo backpacking trip in any weather. We could not be more pleased with this tent!
18 Months Later…
This tent is still going strong. It has become my go-to tent when I have the room in my pack. In the last 18 months, I’ve taken this on a good dozen trips, either backpacking in or boating in. The extra room in the tent has proven to be invaluable for storing my gear in inclement weather. The only issues I’ve had is with the included compression bag which ripped after the first year. I contacted Snugpak, and they not only replaced it for free (even though I was outside of the warranty), they did not charge me shipping and tossed in a few extras as well. I have to say, it’s customer service like that that turns me into a true believer. I also own the one person Ionosphere tent by Snugpak, which I use when I need to go light. Both of these tents are just rock solid.