All white everything – Decathlon's Forclaz Trekking Dome Tent is definitely eye-catching. This hiking-friendly dome tent is part of the brand's Minimal Editions collection, which avoids the use of dye to reduce on each design's CO2 emissions and to avoid unnecessary water pollution. The result here is an unusual-looking but well-designed trekking tent with plenty of room for two people, a weatherproof shape and material and a small pack size. So how does it compare to the rest of the best tents on the market, or the best backpacking tents specifically? Read on for my full Decathlon's Forclaz Trekking Dome Tent review.
Decathlon Forclaz Trekking Dome Tent review: price and release date
The Decathlon Forclaz Trekking Dome 2-Person Tent – Minimal Edition is available for £219.99 and was launched in Spring 2022 as part of Decathlon's Minimal Editions collection of undyed camping kit.
Decathlon Forclaz Trekking Dome Tent review: design
Decathlon Trekking Dome Tent specs
Main material: Polyester
Pitching time: 5-10 minutes
Standing height: no
Pack size: 39 x 12 x 12cm
So first up, why is this tent white? The Forclaz's polyester material is undyed – by leaving it white Decathlon reduces its environmental footprint by reducing its CO2 emissions by 15% and saving on water pollution in the process. This is a eco-conscious trend I'm seeing more of in the outdoor industry, and it's definitely a good step towards reducing the carbon footprint of new gear, alongside with the use of recycled materials.
The downside is that you're stuck with one colour – a very bright white. It's not really a problem in a tent like this – the white polyester doesn't let in significantly more light than other pale-coloured tents I've reviewed. In fact, the only issues it might raise is that it's likely to look grubby faster than a darker colour, and that it's quite eye-catching, which wild campers may want to avoid. (Other tents from Decathlon, such as the Quechua 2 Seconds Easy Fresh & Black popup tent take a more middle-ground approach, with some non-dyed fabric, some fabric dyed using a method that uses less water, and a blackout treatment on the interior.)
Away from the colour, this trekking tent features a mesh-lined inner tent, a waterproof flysheet and one set of poles. The tent bag is small and easy to pack in a backpack or bike pannier, and the whole shebang weighs under 2kg, so it works for minimalist trekking adventures in more ways than one.
Forclaz Trekking Dome Tent review: set-up and use
This tent is pleasingly easy and intuitive to pitch from start to finish – top marks to Decathlon. Like many tents designed for trekking, this is a two-step process – first you pitch the inner tent, using clip-together poles, and then peg this out. You can also use this inner tent alone on hot nights – the mesh is very breathable but is insect-proof, and also lets you do a spot of stargazing from the comfort of your sleeping bag. Or for weather protection, pop the waterproof outer fly on top, and peg out. The whole thing took me ten minutes even the first time I pitched it, and colour-coded poles and straps make the process easy even in low light or windy conditions. This tent also has two roomy porches with floors that can be pegged out, which many similar tents don't have – these spaces are ideal for storing backpacks, boots or cooking kit and for keeping them off wet ground.
Once it's home time, this tent folds down quickly and easily, and can also be split between two people for fastpacking or bike packing adventures.
Decathlon Forclaz Trekking Dome Tent review: at camp
Once you've set this tent up, you've got a snug bedroom that fits two people comfortably side by side, or that's very roomy indeed for one. The double doors with their generous porches make living in this tent much easier, and there's plenty of room to sit up inside. The bright white material does let light in – if you hate being woken by the dawn light in a tent, shop for a design that's lined with ‘blackout' material instead. This tent is also pretty eye-catching – wild campers are likely to feel that they stand out like a sore thumb on the hillside. The upside is that if you're a keen photographer who fancies taking some creatively-lit night shots, this white tent is perfect – stick a headtorch inside and you've got a beautiful night-time camping scene to shoot.
I was impressed with the attention to detail throughout this tent when I tested it out – inside there are four pockets for storing kit, the two porches keep gear dry and off wet ground, and even the bungee door closures are well-placed. I was also lucky (or unlucky?) enough to immediately face heavy rain once I'd pitched this tent – the outer fly proved effectively waterproof against rain, and also dried very quickly once in the sun. The low profile of this dome tent also makes it stand up well to high winds, so you'd be able to take it higher into the hills with you.
Decathlon Forclaz Trekking Dome Tent review: alternatives to consider
If you need a tad more space or don't like the idea of being woken by the morning light, Decathlon's 3-person trekking dome tent (opens in new tab) is roomier and is lined with blackout material (£179.99). In T3's Quechua 2 Seconds Easy Fresh & Black popup tent review, we were very impressed by this easy-pitch alternative, which combines undyed fabric and blackout treatments.
MSR's popular Elixir 2-person trekking tent (opens in new tab) offers a very similar design to Decathlon's Trekking tent, but without the eco credentials (£247.46) – the green version of this tent will be more subtle for wild camping than the blinding white Decathlon tent.
Decathlon Forclaz Trekking Dome Tent review: verdict
The whiter-than-white Forclaz tent really is a pleasure to pitch and to camp in in lots of ways, and its undyed material is a step in the right direction if you're aiming to reduce the carbon footprint of the outdoors kit you buy and own. This all-white design won't suit all trekkers – it's too bright for wild campers and for anyone who loves a lie-in – but it's got lots of other features in its favour, including good quality materials, an intuitive design that's easy to pitch and dismantle, plenty of space for two people and a small and lightweight pack size for easy transportation. At this price point, you get a lot of bang for your buck.