MSR Holler Tent Review

Update: We no longer sell the MSR Holler. Instead we recommend the Lightwave T30 Trail XT or the Snugpak Bunker 3 backpacking tents for 3 people.

The MSR Holler is a large, 3 person, 3 season, high quality tent designed with backpacking and comfort in mind. With 3.7 square metres of floor space, plus 2 vestibule areas and a mid-point height of just over 1 metre, you won’t be short of space in this tent. In addition to this the MSR Holler weighs in at just under 3kg, making this a really lightweight 3 person tent, ideal for backpacking and wild campers who want a bit of extra space.

msr holler - 3 person tent
MSR Holler – 3 person backpacking tent

Vertical Walls

The first thing you will notice after setting up the MSR Holler is the near vertical walls. These ensure that the Holler is making the most of the space that it can without compromising on deflecting wind. The inner walls are 2/3 sold material to ensure warmth in the cooler months and 1/3 mesh. The mesh goes all around the tent and ensures great ventilation when combined with the 2 vestibule vents.

The roomy interior of the MSR Holler means that you can easily fit 3 people into the tent, making it suitable for longer expeditions. The Holler has enough space for 3 large sleeping mats within its 1.9m width, the vestibules though not overly roomy would be then used as your storage. Alternatively, this would be a very spacious 2 man tent with all of your gear inside the tent. All of the tent seams are reinforced and watertight. The built in “bathtub” ground sheet is 40 dener which ensures this tent is pretty durable, though as always we’d advise using the groundsheet footprint to keep the bottom of your tent in good condition. The fly is aslo made of 40D fabric, which is 1500HH ripstop nylon with DuraShield protection, which ensures better UV protection and water-shedding properties.

Also inside the tent there are 4 wall pockets which are of a nice size and a gear loft, which you can enhance with the MSR universal gear loft – again a great use of space by MSR.

MSR Holler Gear Loft
MSR Holler Gear Loft


The MSR Holler has 2 vestibules, one at each end. The vestibules aren’t massive but they are functional, you could certainly cook inside them and use them for storage. The vestibules as mentioned above have 1 vent each, this is at the top of the door and is in-line with the inner mesh. The vents have a clever velcro patch which means you can prop open the vent, which we feel is a little better than other vents on similar tents. The zip to open the flysheet door runs in a straight line along the central axis of the tent. The doors can be tied up with little handy toggles, and the same with the inner door.

One of the small faults we found with this tent is that due to the length of the vestibule when pegged out it was quite hard to reach the zipper at the bottom of the door (there is only one zipper on each door), so if you are in need of the loo in the night do allow extra time.

Hub and Swivel by MSR

msr hub and swivel technology
Hub (left) and Swivel (right)

The MSR Holler is a “Hub and Swivel” design. In this case there are 2 hubs and 1 swivel, images of these are above. In basic terms the hub can be imagined to be the join of the “legs” of the green length pole which clip into the corners. The swivel is the apex point where the grey cross pole connects to the green pole.

The Holler’s hub and swivel design are what gives it great strength and rigidity. The fly attaches to the inner using simple hook clips and the outer connects to the pegging points with clips. The fly, once on the tent frame, is then tensioned to ensure that the fly does not touch the inner.

We also advise that you use the guylines to further ensure they do not touch and add further strength to the structure. The Holler is very simple to erect, as the MSR video below shows.

Pole Attachment to Tent
Fly and Pole Attachment to Inner Tent

As with many tents the MSR Holler’s poles are colour coded, as are the straps of the clips which attach the inner. We think this as always is a great little feature and as always, worth a mention as it makes the campers life easier.

The hub and swivel design also means that if you have the additional groundsheet you can pitch fly only fairly easily.This is perfect for hot summer days when you need shade, though you may well miss the protection of the inner with the prospect of midges and insects around you.

A True 3 Person Tent

The MSR Holler is a truly fantastic tent, it is lightweight, durable, easy to pitch and very spacious. MSR have managed to design a true 3 person tent with room to spare, something we can’t say for some other tents we’ve reviewed.

In addition to this we also think that the MSR Holler is a great 3 season tent, and would likely stand up well as a 4 season – though don’t quote us on that, we’ve not tested it in winter.

The high quality of this fully featured tent is reflected in the price. With an RRP of £450 (Aug 2012) the MSR Holler is one of our more expensive tents. For serious backpackers, though, the Holler is worth the investment. Overall the MSR Holler is a great tent and gets a prestigious 5 stars from Cheap Tents.


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