What To Pack: Camping in Sequoia National Park With Sierra Designs

Back in July, a Yosemite ranger gave me some wise advice that has carried Shoestring Adventures through the end of summer:

Prepare for the worst. Hope for the best.

Nothing is more important than being properly equipped, starting with the 10 Essentials, because you can count on Mother Nature to throw a curve ball once in a while. With safety as our #1 priority, we rely on quality gear to help us weather the elements.

Sierra Designs is a socially responsible outdoor brand that has been designing gear for more than 50 years. Over Labor Day Weekend, they provided tents and sleeping bags for our Sequoia Getaway, a perfect opportunity for both newbies and seasoned pros to test their latest gear in the field. Over several days of stormy weather, the brand lived up to its namesake, keeping us warm and dry in the High Sierras. Here’s a breakdown of what we tested and why we recommend Sierra Designs for your next adventure.

Photos by Triptographer Ryan Tuttle


Sweet Suite

Sweet Suite provides exceptional interior space at a minimum weight. Ideal for backcountry camping, the 2-person weighs only 3 lbs 3 oz and the 3-person weighs only 3 lbs 12 oz. The rain fly provides gear storage on both sides and rolls back to allow convenient ventilation and stargazing. The two-door design makes climbing over your partner to use the restroom a thing of the past. Serious backpackers will invest a little more to carry a little less.


Meteor comes in 2-person and 3-person capacity and provides vast interior space with nearly vertical walls. Like Sweet Suite, the 2-door design provides easy access and gear storage, while the roll-back rainfly allows for easy stargazing and ventilation. While Meteor is heavier than Sweet Suite, weighing in at 3 lbs 15 oz and 4 lbs 14 oz, it is versatile enough for both backpacking and car camping at a reasonable price.

Summer Moon

Summer Moon maximizes floor space and minimizes weight at an affordable price — just $180 for the 2-person and $230 for the 3-person. While the one-door design makes climbing over your partner necessary, Summer Moon comes with fun features like Night Glow, a translucent pocket that turns your headlamp into a night light! Of all three tents, Summer Moon was also the easiest to pitch with no prior experience.

Sleeping Bags

Sierra Designs let us test their upcoming line of zipper-less sleeping bags, which allow for more mobility than the standard mummy design. Plus, there’s a foot vent for those warm summer nights. Stay tuned for more innovative gear from Sierra Designs in 2018!

This post was created in partnership with Sierra Designs in cooperation with Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park. Thank you for supporting Shoestring Adventures!

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