Review of the Robens Voyager 2EX tent — small, light, fully-featured

Review of the Robens Voyager 2EX tent — small, light, fully-featured

No tent can ever be perfect for all occasions, so Katja and I own a couple of them. Whenever we travel by car and don’t care about bulk and weight, we always take our family-size Robens Valley Lodge with us (which we’ll describe in a future article). But every time we hike or backpack, we take our Robens Voyager 2EX with us. We’ve tried many tents, but for us the Voyager 2EX is the tent with the best combination of size, weight and comfort which we’ve ever slept in.

To us the most important aspects of any tent are its size, weight, water resistance, ease of setting up and tearing down, wind resistance, the quality of materials and workmanship, and finally its price. And of those, water resistance is paramount, so let’s start there.

Water Resistance (WR)

Like all products in Robens’ Trail series the Voyager 2EX has taped seams and is built from an outer material with 5 000 mm WR and a bottom material with 10 000 mm WR. These values are much higher than those from competing manufacturers, and we’ve never had any problems with getting moisture, let alone rain, in our Robens tents.

The “porch”

The Robend 2EX has an extra-large entrance area (Robens calls it “porch”), which is great for storing two large backpacks, your day-clothes, hiking boots, etc. especially when it’s raining outside! In this case you enter your tent with your wet backpack, clothes and shoes and close the “door” behind you. The porch is large enough for two people to undress, spread out their things a bit and then enter the “dry bedroom” in their comfortable PJs.

Even with the extra bit of added size and weight (compared to the non-porch Robens Voyager), the 2EX remains highly portable, and we recommend it specifically for hiking trips where you carry your tent in your backpack.

Other Features

The Voyager 2EX features very good ventilation, which reduces condensation from your breath and body heat on the inside and transports any bad smells to the outside. It also has and four inside pockets which are perfect for storing head-lamps, maps, reading material, car keys, a wallet, etc.).

The materials are of very high quality. The mesh of the insect screens is very fine, and keeps even the tiny Scottish midges securely outside of the sleeping area.

The tent is very easy to put up and there is no way to mix up the metal poles because they are color coded (silver poles in the front and back openings, red pole in the red opening in the middle). We’ve used the tent in freezing temperatures, in rain and snow (Iceland), on the beach, on festivals and in the national parks of Norway and Scotland (carrying it in our backpack several days in a row). It performed flawlessly every time, and we won’t hesitate to buy it again or to recommend it to anyone who is looking for a small, lightweight and comfortable tent for two people.

Is It Perfect?

Almost. We can think of only a few shortcomings:

  • Its inner or outer material should be darker — on summer mornings too much sunlight comes through and wakes you up too early. But this problem is easy to solve by putting on a small blindfold when the light gets too bright.
  • Having a tunnel construction the poles of the tent do not cross, so the tent always needs at least 3 pegs in the ground to stay up. But this is a small price to pay, since the alternative is a geodesic design which would make the tent higher and poles much longer. And both of those would lead to extra size and weight.

Similar Robens Products

  • Robens Voyager 2 if you are looking to reduce your weight to a bare minimum and are willing to give up the extra-large entrance area.
  • Robens Voyager 3EX if you want to travel with a child or a third adult.

7 Comments

  1. Marco

    Hi, I’m very interested in the Robens Voyager 2EX, my question is: can the ventilation mesh panels be closed? Can they be zipped closed when it’s cold? Thank you

    Marco

    1. Bojidar

      Hello Marco,

      Yes, you can close the vents, but normally you want to leave them open. If you close them, especially if it’s cold outside, you’ll get a lot of condensation on the inner side of the tent, which will make everything inside feel wet and sticky and the condensed water might even start dripping into the inner tent. I know these effects from other (cheaper) tents.

      We used our Voyager 2 (non EX) on a 14-day trip to Iceland, and we had frost during the last two nights. It was cold in the tent, but not freezing. With the vents open, with sleeping bags made for +5C and with some long underware we felt very cosy inside.

      Cheers and please don’t hesitate to ask again if you have further questions,
      Bojidar

    1. Bojidar

      Hi Val, we haven’t been to Scotland yet, but I’m confident that the mesh is fine enough and closes tightly enough so that no fly or mosquito will have a chance. Provided you zip up the door consistently…

  2. David

    Hello !

    Thank you for your review, it was quite useful as we were searching a tent for our trip in Island next month (and for the years to come 🙂 ). We ordered this tent but we didn’t received it yet. However we’re a little bit worried as the measurements provided by Robens aren’t really complete, they provide the bigger and the smaller width of the inner tent but doesn’t really explain how it goes from the bigger to the smaller (how fast it’s reducing from 130cm to 100). We have two therm-a-rest mattresses, a large and a regular one, the large is 196×63 and the regular is 183×51 and we’re worried that they don’t fit side by side inside this tent. We’ve seen in your review video that you seem to have plenty of space next to your mattresses, what are the dimensions of yours ?

    1. Bojidar

      Hi David, we are using two regular-size Therm-a-rest mats, and there is at least 15 cm space left for a wider mat. The bottom of the tent is a bit “flexible” — it’s difficult to describe, but you’ll see what I mean when you get your tent. I’m sure you will have no problems with it. Enjoy Iceland — it’s an amazing country!

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