Snugpak Scorpion 3 2011

Snugpak has been making quality sleeping bags in Yorkshire since the 1980s. This year it has added a range of tents that on paper at least look ideal for UK wild camping and backpacking.
The 3-person Scorpion 3 is one of five tents in the range, which also includes the smaller Scorpion 2 for two people. All the tents are olive green, a nod to the brand’s heritage as a supplier to the armed forces. My first encounter with the Scorpion 3 was on a wild camping trip to the Coniston fells to see how well it would hold up against typical British mountain weather. In theory the sleek and stable semi-geodesic design coupled with tape-sealed seams and a 5000mm hydrostatic head-rated flysheet should mean that I would stay dry!
The tent was easy to erect as it pitches flysheet-first, which helps keep the inner dry if it’s raining. The three colour-coded DAC aluminium poles correspond clearly to the sleeves on the outer. The ladder-lock adjustments (see below left) further aid the ease of pitching. Like some other tents the arrowhead design of the top of the pegs means they can be a little painful on the hands. But once erected the tent was very stable and taut, which is the main thing.
Inside the tent you get a black inner, which may not be to everyone’s taste, but I liked it. It should allow those who enjoy a lie-in a little respite from the sunlight on bright summer mornings. The interior is quite spacious too, meaning I could sit up comfortably. The porch is roomy and the door allows you to move in and out of the tent with ease. There’s plenty of room for gear too. There is floor space for three to sleep comfortably; but as with any tent, actually living with two others in a small space is going to be challenging unless they’re lying down!
The top of the door doesn’t open, so you cannot vent the top of the porch without unzipping the whole door from the bottom. This could be inconvenient in poor weather or if you just want extra airflow in the night to control condensation.
I ended my trip thinking that overall the Scorpion 3 is a great tent, with a good weight and price for its features.

Price £270
Sleeps 3
Design three-pole semi-geodesic
Poles DAC Featherlite shock-corded alloy
Materials outer: PU-coated polyester ripstop, 5000mm hydrostatic head; groundsheet nylon, 5000mm hydrostatic head; inner nylon with polyester mesh
Internal dimensions length 203cm; width 198cm; height 122cm
Packed size 47x22cm
Weight 3.4kg
Made in China

Features 5
Design 4
Comfort 4
Performance 5
Value 4
Overall 4

The Scorpion 3 proves that Snugpak is not only a great sleeping bag manufacturer but also a great tent manufacturer. This is an ideal wild camping and backpacking tent for typical British hill weather.

Review by Emma Westhead (Trail reader)
First published in Trail magazine November 2011