Big Agnes Copper Spur HV UL2: best backpacking tent for you?

copper spur hv ul2

Table of Contents

Have you ever felt like your two-person feels much more like it is meant for a single person?

That’s not surprising. A lot of two-person tents have more interior space (square footage) than their one-person counterparts. But with the short and slanted ceiling, it does not feel a whole lot roomier.

Your solution may just be the Big Agnes Copper Spur HV UL2.

The unique poles of this tent create steeper side walls, giving a higher ceiling throughout most of the interior, not just at the center apex.

On top of the increased roominess, you get a lot of interior storage space for your gear and it weighs just about 3 pounds!

backpacking pic

Big Agnes Copper Spur HV UL2 review

Quick specs

Weight (minimum trail weight) – 2 lbs. 11 oz.

Weight (total weight) – 3 lbs. 2 oz.

Packed dimensions – 19.5″ x 6″

Set-up dimensions – 88″ x 98″

Interior dimensions – 88″ x 52″ (head end); 88″ x 42″ (foot end)

Material – Nylon, double ripstop (mixed Denier)

Pros

  • Roomy interior

  • Easy to set-up

  • Plenty of interior storage space

Cons

  • So-so durability for weight and price

  • Not as lightweight as similar tents

  • On the pricy side

Big Agnes Copper Spur HV UL2 Ratings

Weight and Packability

85%

Livability

100%

Durability

80%

Value

65%

Overall

80%




Overview

The Big Agnes Copper Spur HV UL2 is a double-well, free-standing tent that offers a lot of interior space, including generous headroom for a backpacking tent. The 40″ of headroom makes it possible to sit up comfortably and makes it easy to maneuver around inside the tent without feeling cramped.

Coming in a little over 3 pounds (for total weight) makes the Copper Spur a little on the heavier side for an ultralight tent. Though, the weight and packed size make it a solid option for lightweight backpacking.

One drawback with the weight is the durability. With a backpacking tent in this weight range, I would expect a bit heavier-duty material, but that is not the case with the Copper Spur. I wouldn’t say that it is flimsy or cheap, but for the price and weight, I expected a bit more.

Overall, I view the Copper Spur HV UL2 as an all-around solid option if you are looking for a versatile tent. It can serve as a true 2-person tent while backpacking, or as a viable 1-person tent as a traditional camping tent.

Copper Spur HV UL2 ratings

Weight and Packability

big agnes copper spur hv ul2 weight rating

The weight of the Copper Spur HV UL2 comes in around 3 pounds. The minimum trail weight is a bit under at 2 lbs. 11oz. and the total weight tips the scales at 3 lbs. 2 oz.

This places it well into the lightweight tent category. There are plenty of ultralight tents that weigh in quite a bit less than this (I.e., Gossamer Gear The Two), so if weight savings is your top priority you may want to look elsewhere. But, for a backpacking tent with plenty of features and space, the weight is right where you want it.

As for packed size, the Copper Spur HV UL2 measures 19.5″ x 6″. This is the measurement of the stuff sack that the tent comes with, when fully packed.

This is well in line with other two-person lightweight tents, and if you do not use the stuff sack, you could spread the tent around a bit more. I like to have the tent body on the outside (or bottom) of my pack. And then have the tent poles and stakes stored in an exterior side pocket of my pack.

All told from a weight and packability perspective, the Copper Spur performs in the average to good range. Neither the weight nor packability will blow you away (unless you are coming from a super heavy, bulky tent), but it falls squarely into the lightweight tent range.

Livability

big agnes copper spur hv ul2 livability rating

The big advantage of the Copper Spur is the unique pole structure creates a lot of interior space. The poles make steep side walls that gradually slope toward the apex. This gives you ample headroom throughout a lot of the tent, not just at the apex.

This increased volume is where the tent gets its name. The “HV” stands for high volume.

Additionally, the increased volume makes the Copper Spur a viable two-person backpacking tent. The tent floor is not any wider than other two-person tents, but the extra headroom allows for two people to sit up inside the tent. This gives you the feeling of a roomier tent without increasing the footprint size.

The Copper Spur HV UL2 also has dual zipper doors on both sides of the tent. The vertical and horizontal zippers are separate, allowing you to reach outside the tent without opening the whole door. The two doors also add better ventilation and easier access into the tent. (especially important if you are using it as a true two-person tent)

big agnes copper spur hv ul2

On the inside of the tent, the Copper Spur offers you plenty of storage space in the form of gear pockets and lofts. The foot end of the tent has an oversized ceiling pocket that is perfect for any gear that you need to keep dry or just want to have access to during the night or in the morning.

Another great, unique feature of the tent is the awning-style vestibules. The vestibules can be staked out like a standard backpacking tent. They can also be propped up using your trekking poles to create an awning outside of your tent doors.

This unique feature allows you to have rain and sun protection while having a view from your front door.

Overall, I think the livability, comfort, and features of the Copper Spur HV UL2 is where it shines within the lightweight backpacking tent market.

Durability

big agnes copper spur hv ul2 durability rating

For me, the durability is the area I was expecting more out of the Copper Spur. It is not that the tent is cheaply made or won’t last a while. Rather, when considered with the weight, it sits in an odd balance between the two.

If I was wanting to save weight, there are many other tents I would reach for before the Copper Spur. Likewise, if rugged durability was my top priority, I wouldn’t pick the Copper Spur first either.

It sits toward the middle of both spectrums, making it a versatile tent without really standing out in either category.

The tent body and floor are made from mixed-D (15D-20D) double ripstop nylon. You can definitely get a few years of solid use out of this tent. Though, I do recommend using a groundsheet underneath the tent on any surface that is not buttery smooth.

The zippers, mesh doors, and stitching/seams all appear of the high-quality you would expect from a brand like Big Agnes.

Lastly, the tent poles should not be the reason you need to replace the tent. They are made from strong yet lightweight aluminum. (DAC Featherlite)

Value

big agnes copper spur hv ul2 value rating

The value of the Copper Spur HV UL2 is the biggest hold-up with the tent. For the price, you can find lighter tents if you prioritize weight savings. Also, you can find more durable tents (that won’t be super heavy) than the Copper Spur.

For example, the Gossamer Gear The Two (one of my favorite tents recently) is about $200 cheaper, is comparable in durability, and weighs over 1 pound less than the Copper Spur.

Because of the cost, it is hard for me to highly recommend this Big Agnes tent, especially for someone new to backpacking.

One scenario I can see the Copper Spur being valuable is if it is being used as a true 2-person shelter. The interior volume and floor area make it viable for two people to use. If you are planning to share a tent with someone, the Copper Spur can work. (and the price tag is more palatable when split between 2 people)

Overall

big agnes copper spur hv ul2 overall rating

The Big Agnes Copper Spur HV UL2 is a versatile backpacking tent. It will not blow you away by being the lightest, most affordable, or most durable tent on the market. But, its roomy interior space and features stand out.

The unique pole structure creates a high volume interior with plenty of headroom for you and your trail partner. The two doors (each with two zippers) will give you ventilation during your midday siesta, and help keep your sleeping bag free from condensation overnight.

With both large and small pockets, you will have plenty of storage space on the inside of your tent.

It may lack a true “wow” factor, but you will enjoy the extra space at night and in the morning. Plus, your back and shoulders will thank you for the lighter load.

Set-up and tear-down

Being a freestanding tent, the Copper Spur is incredibly easy to set up at the end of your day and take down before you hit the trail the following morning.

The tent comes with two poles to set it up. One is hubbed, and is used for the general shape and structure of the tent. While the other just runs width-wise across the top of the tent.

One nice feature of the main pole is that it is color-coded. Since the tent is not perfectly rectangular, there is only one way to properly set it up. Having color-coded poles and grommets make it easy to keep track of which pole end goes where.

set-up and teardown

The Copper Spur comes with 8 stakes, which is enough for a good pitch. If you plan to use every guy line on both doors, you will need to bring along additional stakes.

Overall, the Copper Spur is very easy to set up and tear down. It should not take you more than a couple of minutes for either.

FAQ

The inside of the tent measures 88″ long, 52″ wide in the head end, and tapers to 42″ wide in the foot end. The high point is 40″ tall, and the pole system creates ample headroom throughout most of the tent.

The Copper Spur HV UL2 has average durability, weight, and price value ratings. But it does rank highly in comfort/livability, making it a solid option for a two-person backpacking tent.

Yes, the Copper Spur HV UL2 does enough room for two people to sleep. Though with two sleeping pads, there will not be a lot of extra floor space.

backpacking pic

Conclusion

If you are looking for a workhorse, do-it-all type of tent, the Big Agnes Copper Spur HV UL2 is worth exploring.

You will not be blown away by how light it is, or be shocked at how long it lasts. But it does a lot of things really well, and it does offer many nice features for your temporary home while out on the trail.

Plus, it has more room than other two-person tents because of the tent poles, giving it the true high volume (HV) feel.

The Big Agnes Copper Spur HV UL2 could be an excellent option for your next shelter while out exploring!

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