The Sierra Designs Sweet Suite 3 is a serviceable tent that is good for many situations but tends to get outshined by its peers. The Sierra Designs Sweet Suite 3 is a compact backpacking tent.
The Sierra Designs Sweet Suite 3 features an average livable floor space, but the second-most vestibule area, behind the MSR Hubba Tour – which means the only tent that beats it on vestibule size was originally envisioned for bicycle touring. The peak height is about average, and when evaluated by our 6’6” tester, he was barely able to sit-up straight under the highest peak.
The Sweet Suite falls in the middle of the pack in terms of weight, with a minimum trail weight of 1700 grams. The stuff sacks open on the long axis (and is cinched down with buckles), which means it’s not a good sack for quickly stuffing the tent. Though when rolled tightly instead of stuffed, it does pack down into a pretty small package. At 1700 grams, you get a decent lightweight shelter that will keep you dry when you need it.
At 7 minutes flat, this tent was just below average for setup speed. The Y-style pole features long branches – each of the three lengths are almost equal in length – with a second pole to increase headroom and habitability. The poles connect to the corners of the tent through a cleat. One potential concern was that the buckles connecting the fly, while quick and easy, showed some tendency toward getting brittle in very cold temperatures.
The Sierra Designs Sweet Suite has three guy lines, plus a tie-down at each corner, as well as stakes at the point of each of the two doors. Despite coming in at the median point in terms of interior space, the Sweet Suite lacks a sleek wind profile, meaning it can get battered pretty good in stormy conditions. It truly exists halfway between the ‘weather-ready’ and ‘trail ready’ ends of the weatherproofness spectrum.
The Sierra Designs Sweet Suite is near the median in price for our test group, with a suggested retail price of $460. The Sierra Designs tent features two doors, with vents at the top of each door. These high vents proved effective at providing cross-flowing ventilation.
Scott Morris guides backpacking expeditions and hiking trips for Southern Yosemite Mountain Guides throughout the Sierra Nevada mountains of California. He is a writer, traveler, and runner. Scott tests backpacking equipment.