It’s impossible to know what the great British weather is going to throw at you when heading to the hills. But this uncertainty means choosing the right tent is a real challenge, because so few are ideal for all conditions. To meet these demands, Fjällräven has developed the Akka View, a tent that’s stable and spacious for foul weather but also allows users to open up the sides for extra ventilation and take in the view of a summer sunset.
The Fjällräven Akka View is a big and spacious shelter for two people, with entrances and porches on both sides. It pitches very easily with just two poles needing to be slipped through sleeves around the outer. These sleeves are sealed at one end, which make the task quicker, while ladder-lock webbing adjusters make it easier to pitch the tent with wet hands in windy weather. You then just need four pegs to create the porch area, but you can use all the pegs and guy lines supplied if needed in wilder weather. I’d like to have seen ladder-lock adjusters on the porch area pegging points, just in case a rock ends up being situated where the peg needs to go – but this is a minor point.
The pitched structure is very stable due to the poles crossing in two places, but it also feels very robust thanks to the use of durable materials that include very large zip pulls, tough pole sleeves and good-quality webbing. The sides don’t quite reach the ground and the inner has a lot of mesh, so in really foul weather this is going to be draughtier than some other designs, but for most general camping conditions it’s ideal.
The Fjällräven Akka View is a great design for two campers thanks to the large door and porch on each side, while the internal living space easily allows two campers to sit up. In fact, you could sit four people inside here if you wanted to, but the inner width will only accommodate two adults sleeping. The porches are also massive with either one being capable of storing two people’s kit, so the second porch can be used for cooking or as a main access.
So in bad weather the Akka View is stable, durable and spacious; but what sets it apart from most other tents is that when the storm clouds clear to balmy blue skies you can fully open up both sides of the tent for extra ventilation and to enjoy the view. The sides roll back to remove the covered porch area of each side so you’re left with a spacious windbreak / canopy that’s ideal for providing the small degree of shelter needed when gathered around a camp stove.
This flexibility of weather protection and ventilation provision makes the Fjällräven Akka View ideal for the sort of mixed conditions that are so common in the UK. Due to its large size, it’s perhaps not surprising to learn that the Akka View has a packed size of 19x48cm and weighs in at 3kg, which is not in the superlight category. But this model is so much bigger than most lighter tents and also far more flexible in its range of use, so this weight is good for what it offers.
Flysheet fabric 30D Triple-Rip polyester, both sides siliconised
Inner fabric ripstop polyamide
Groundsheet fabric 70D polyamide PU-coated
Internal dimensions L=220cm W=135cm H=110cm
Packed size 45x18cm
The Fjällräven Akka View is a very stable and incredibly spacious general backpacking tent that’s particularly useful when the grey skies turn blue, due to the ability to open up both sides for extra ventilation while allowing users to enjoy the view.
Review by Graham Thompson
First published in Trail magazine July 2013