When the wind is blowing, the rain is lashing down so hard it hurts your face or the snow is laying thick and hard and it is a complete white out, you will wish you had a Hilleberg for the night.
I guess the first question you may have is what is a Hilleberg. Put simply it is an awesome brand of tent. Hilleberg were founded in the 70's in Sweden by Bo Hilleberg and his wife and they were the first to build a tent with a separate inner that attached to the outer thus allowing the tent to be erected as one. Over the years they have innovated and improved their products to the point where they are now considered by many the very best tents in the world.
Let me say from the outset, this is not an advert, I am not sponsored by Hilleberg, but I use them and happy to entrust my life to their product when/if the need arises.
I have been trying to think of a simple way to describe their tents and their purpose. The best I can come up with is "probably the toughest lightweight tent on the market". Let me explain. Are they the lightest tents in the world? Of course not, there are many uberlight tents that weigh a fraction of even the lightest Hilleberg tent, but you cannot pitch one of those on a mountain top in severe weather and expect it to last the night. Are there tougher tents in the world? Probably, but in my view and many others they have the balance between toughness and weight just perfect.
A significant part of Hilleberg's success is their proprietary material used for the bathtub floors and fly sheets, called Kerlon. It is a unique silicon coated material with an insane tear strength compared with similar products. It produces a high tear strength but is still a relatively light material. Tear strength is key to safety, if you end up with a puncture in your tent you do not want it to rip open further in harsh wind.
The kerlon is part of the quality, but it continues through all the components, the best zips, the best poles, the best stakes. Each tent is made and inspected by a single person, in fact they are so proud they even put a name label inside the tent.
Let us address the elephant in the room, the cost. Yes, a Hilleberg is probably the most expensive tent for the size on the market, ranging from £600 to £1100 for a typical tent. But why. Obviously, I have no insight into the profit on a Hilleberg tent compared with other brands, but assume they have to be similar. I believe the price is due to the exceptional level of craftsmanship and high cost of materials. Using the best of everything comes at a price.
But is a Hilleberg tent that expensive. A well cared for Hilleberg tent will last many years. There are 20-year-old tents out there still in use. I have spent £200 on a tent that only lasted 10 nights and then a zip fails, or a pole snaps, or the material tears. So is a Hilleberg really that expensive when I expect to get hundreds of nights out of a tent. I don't mind paying a couple of pound per night to have the assurance that I will be safe no matter what the weather throws at me.
I have tents of other brands but almost exclusively use the Hilleberg tents now for backpacking. I feel comfortable and confident no matter where I am and what the weather. Ultimately if you are going to use it often above the treetops or harsh weather, a Hilleberg is well worth it. If you are not a regular user, or a fair weather camper then it is hard to justify the cost.
Always feel free to drop me a line on social media or email if you have any gear questions.