Big Agnes Lights up Tent Market with mtnGLO Collection Launch

March 23, 2015 Gear Reviews,New gear
Latest posts by Alicja (see all)

These new tents are actually what the name suggests – mountain glow – they glow in the dark!

The mntGlo line of tents was introduced by Big Agnes in 2014 and  initially available only at REI.  As of June 2015 it looks like few other merchants carry it.

Big Agnes has wanted to integrate lighting on their tents for some time now; but the issue was always weight.  So finally, when the technology became lightweight and inexpensive enough they were able to design the tent with minimal weight and cost increases.

Big Agnes tents now come with LED lighting.

Select Big Agnes tents are now available with LED lighting.


This is a proprietary illumination system available only from Big Agnes. Big Agnes has partnered with the company Joey Energy, an American brand that invented this portable integrated power supply and is currently used in courier bags and backpacks.

The power source, the Joey T55, is available mtnGLO collection of products.  It is designed with tough electronics and a strong, durable water resistant case. It provides high speed charging through wall plug in and USB.

The LEDs illuminated at night. Image from REI.

The LEDs illuminated at night. Image from REI.

How it works

These tents come equipped with LED lighting on the construction of the tent – they are actually weaved inside the fabric.  The system includes the tent, an accessory lighting kit, and a durable case designed for tablets and other electronic devices, featuring the Joey T55 power supply. The lights turn on and off easily with a switch, so campers and backpackers no longer have to fumble around with headlamps in the dark.

The Big Agnes tent all lit up at night.

The Big Agnes tent all lit up at night.

The LED lighting on the tent body adds a whole new level of functionality, convenience and comfort.

LED lighting embedded in tent fabric.

LED lighting embedded in tent fabric. Image from REI.

The light provided is a cool, moderate glow near the interior of the tent where your head would most likely be. The light is a bit dim to read a book by, but it’s great for winding down at night or getting ready early in the morning if you’re getting up when it’s dark.

The power controller

The power controller

A nice advantage is you don’t have to worry about being blinded by your tent mates headlamp.

The lights flick on with a switch, and are operated by 3 AA batteries.  With fresh batteries you should get about 96 hours of light.

If you want to split your power, for example to charge up your phone if you are using maps on your phone, you can do so via USB.

Type of tents available with lighting

What kinds of tents have this integrated technology?

They are featured on ultralight backpacking tents right through to car camping models. There are 14 different tent models available with this lighting technology.

The power controller is shown to the left. This is where you can switch the lights on and off, and connect your USB device.






Check out the Ultra light Rattlesnake SL2 model

The Rattlesnake SL2 model pitched near the Pacific Ocean. This model is new for 2015.

The Rattlesnake SL2 model pitched near the Pacific Ocean. This model is new for 2015.

Since we’re backcountry campers, we’re concerned about weight. One of the ones we like is the Rattlesnake SL2, a two person, three season tent featuring an easy piece hub pole set up.  Lights are positioned on the ceiling and walls near the tents headspace.

OutdoorPlay was kind enough to give us a coupon code good for $70 discount on the Rattlesnake SL2 mntGlo tent.

This two person tent is a cosy space for two people or plenty of space for one.

Here are the numbers for the Rattlesnake 2:

  • Trail Weight: 3 lbs. 9 oz.
  • Fast Fly Weight: 2 lbs. 14 oz.
  • Packed Size: 6.5″ x 21″
  • Floor Length: 88″
  • Floor Width: 42″–52″
  • Head Height: 40″
  • Foot Height: 28″

The other one available in the Mntnglo line is the Copper Spur.