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Drop X-Mid 1P Tent Review

The X-Mid 1P is a single-person double-wall trekking pole tent that weighs 27.9 oz. It requires two trekking poles to erect and can be set up in rain without getting the inner tent wet. The inner and outer tents both have two doors and can be rolled up for enhanced ventilation and airflow. The X-Mid 1 setup process is easy, but the tent has a large footprint so considerable space is required to pitch it. The tent comes factory seam-taped and includes ultralight titanium stakes, making it usable out of the box. The X-Mid 1P is available from the Drop (formerly MassDrop) and was developed in cooperation with Dan Durston, an ultralight backpacker. While it has some minor limitations, it’s a great bargain at $200.

X-Mid 1-Person Tent

Comfort
Ease of Setup
Weather Resistance
Durabilty
Weight
Packed Size

Excellent Design and Affordable

The X-Mid 1P is a double-wall trekking pole tent for one person that is simple to set up, well made, and quite affordable. Weighing under 28 oz, it's also quite lightweight and a really great deal for backpackers who want to reduce their gear weight.

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Specs at a Glance

  • Color: Desert Sage
  • People: 1
  • Type: Trekking Pole Tent (2 poles required)
  • Double-wall: Yes
  • Seam-taped: Yes
  • Weight: 27.9 oz (18 0z, fly including guylines), (9.9 oz, inner tent)
  • Material: 20d 420T 100-percent polyester
  • Hydrostatic head: 2000mm sil/PU coating
  • Minimum number of stakes to pitch: 4 (8 recommended)
  • Stakes: 8, Titanium stakes included
  • For complete dimensions and specs, see the Drop X-Mid 1P product listing

The X-Mid 1P is a double-wall trekking pole tent with two offset peaks. The rain fly can be erected before the inner tent, which is attached to connectors in the rainfly corners and in the peaks, or you can keep them attached for faster setup the next time you use them together. Both the inner tent and the rainfly can be used separately in a modular manner , which is an added perk of the design.

The X-Mid 1P has a rectangular footprint which makes it very easy to set up.

The X-Mid 1P has a rectangular footprint with two doors which makes it easy to orient and set up, even if one entryway is blocked by vegetation. Once you’ve staked out the four corners of the rainfly, open the kickstand vents near the peaks and insert your poles though the openings, inserting the tip into the grommet provided in each peak. This makes the X-Mid 1P compatible with all trekking poles, including Pacerpoles which have a unique ergonomic grip. A pole height is 46″ is recommended, although you may want to adjust this for more airflow under the sidewalls or if you have to set up on uneven terrain.

The X-Mid 1P has kickstand vents below each peak. During setup, you’d insert your poles through these vents, inserting the tips into grommets located in the peaks.

While the X-Mid 1P can be pitched with a minimum of four tent stakes in the corners, I’d recommend that you stake out the peaks to make the ridgeline between them taut and increase the tent’s wind resistance. All of these guyout points are outfitted with cord and lineloc tensioners when you receive the tent, so you don’t have to add your own, although I’d recommend lengthening the corner guylines so you have more flexibility in where you plant your stakes. If you camp in windy conditions in open country, I’d also suggest adding guylines to the side panels to reduce flapping.

While the X-Mid 1P rain fly requires 100″ x 67″ inches of room to set up, adding the peak guylines increase the tent footprint to about 120″ x 67″ in size (unless you can guy the peaks to nearby trees). This is definitely on the large end and can present a challenge if you plan on camping on unprepared tent sites in densely vegetated areas or along backpacking trails with smaller campsites…like the Appalachian Trail or most anywhere in the Northeast. This isn’t a showstopper, but it means you’ll have to keep your eyes open for good tent sites or spend a little more time scouting around for one.

I like to store my backpack upright in the little nook on the right when the side door is rolled up

The X-Mid 1P has two doors, one on each side of the tent. Both doors can be rolled up for increased airflow and to make it easier to get in an and out of the tent. The doors make up about 3/4 of the area of each sidewall, while the remaining 1/4 panel acts as a windbreak and nook where I like to store my backpack. I stake this smaller panel to keep it from flapping and because it adds additional strength to the structure.

The inner tent is anchored to the corners of the fly with cord and glove hooks.

The X-Mid 1P’s inner tent is oriented on a diagonal under the rain fly and its corners are attaches to plastic rings in the rainfly corners with tiny mitten hooks. It also has two zippered doors, so you can get in and out of the tent on either side. The diagonal orientation of the inner tent creates large storage areas on either side of the inner tent for gear storage or cooking in inclement weather. It’d also be a good spot for a dog if you bring along insulation for him/her to lie on at night.

The inner tent is sized for one person and has a convenient gear loft sewn in the ceiling for stashing a phone, headlamp, and glasses so they don’t get smashed at night if you roll onto them. The interior is high enough to sit up in (43″) and long (87″) but feels a bit narrow (28″). Still, given the amount of covered storage under the rainfly, it’s easy to store all of your extra gear in your pack while still being able to reach it easily when needed.

The X-Mid 1P requires considerable room to stake out

Packing

One of the strengths of the X-Mid 1P is its packability. Broken down, it’s about the size of a stuffed 20-degree quilt and can be stored into a small stuff sack (12″ x 5″) that will fit horizontally into most backpacks. That’s a big differentiator for me because I prefer to pack my gear horizontally in my backpack and dislike gear that must be oriented vertically in the main compartment.

Comparable Tents

Make / ModelWeightPriceDesigner
Drop X-Mid 1P27.9 oz$200Dan Durston
Sierra Designs High Route FL 137 oz$299Andrew Skurka
Tarptent Stratospire 134.5 oz$325Henry Shires
Yama Mountain Gear Swiftline 1P28 oz$335Gen Shimizu

Of these tents, the X-Mid is by far the easiest to set up and pack, while the Tarptent Stratospire 1 has the most livable and spacious interior and is the most storm-worthy. All of these tents have a fairly big footprint and require extra room to set up despite the fact that they are 1 person tents.

The X-Mid 1P has plenty of easy-to-reach covered gear storage alongside the inner tent

Recommendation

The Drop X-Mid 1P is great one-person, double-wall, trekking pole tent that’s easy to set up and weighs 27.9 oz. It can be set up fly-first to keep the inner tent dry in the rain, comes seam-taped, and is completely outfitted with guylines and linelocs so you can use it as soon as it arrives. If you’ve been wanting to slash your gear weight or try a trekking pole tent, the X-mid is a great option because it packs small and has plenty of room inside to store gear. The inner tent is comfortable, both doors can be opened for enhanced airflow, and there are kick-stand vents (that work) for extra ventilation in stormy conditions. Priced at $200, the X-Mid 1P is also a real bargain because it’s sold by Drop at a group discount. If you’re more interested in a 2 person version of the X-Mid, Drop will have another batch for sale shortly.

Disclosure: The author purchased this tent

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28 comments

  1. Thanks for the review Philip…your experience seems to closely mimic those of others who have posted reviews.

    My Duplex is going on 6 years old, having purchased it in late 2013 when it first came on the market. In that time I have loved every moment spent living in/with it. However, last year I started wondering how much longer it would last and, dreading another $600+ outlay, with what I would replace it when the time came. Dan announced his X-Mid 1P about that time and I was immediately fascinated. I like the design and material choices he has made, but I much prefer 2P shelters (even tho I backpack solo). I was one of the first to join the drop for his X-Mid 2p a month or two ago, and will have a hard time waiting for it to be delivered early next year.

    My intention is to use the Duplex when weight is the single most important criteria…hopefully extending it’s life…and use the X-Mid 2P when I am willing to accept the 10oz penalty or the weather prediction is particularly suspect.

  2. Great write-up! I’ve been hoping you’d review this for a while since you seem to have the most consistently level-headed and thoughtful reviews. I went in on the X-Mid 2p and your positive recommendation of the 1p give me confidence in my decision. I hope you’ll review the 2p when it comes out of course, but until then I’ll keep reading literally everything on this site and soak up the knowledge!

  3. Is there any aid built into the tent that helps in setting the trekking pole length (like on the Mountainsmith Mountain Shelter)?

    • I would think you could measure the optimum length somewhere on the perimeter of the rain fly and make a couple lines with a Sharpie to gauge setting your trekking poles. Stake it down as shown in the photo, then set your pole length from your marks. I don’t have this tent (but I’d sure like one!) so my idea may not be all that practical in real life.

      • You could premeasure your poles, but honestly, you can usually just wing it. For example, after you stake out the corners the length of the poles can only be the correct vertical height and still fit into the grommet. It’s like a right triangle. If the bottom and walls are a fixed length, so is the vertical pole.

    • As Philip said, once you have the corners of the fly staked out, the tent fly will limit the length of the poles to the correct height because the peaks are inside that rectangle. You can just insert the poles and extend until taut, which is advantage over tents where you can’t easily start by staking the base.

      Of course the base of the tent needs to be staked properly (i.e. square and tight). If the base of the tent is not pulled tight then it will allow the poles to extend too tall and you’ll get a wonky pitch.

      There’s a video showing this pitch here:
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U9vOLs12KQE&l

  4. I used my X-mid in southern France this summer for a little over four weeks. Overall I loved it. The one issue I had was the narrow inner. Due to the heatwave I often slept on my sleeping bag instead of inside it and I had to take care not to touch the mesh. Which is quite difficult for me when sleeping. I kept touching the mesh and was bitten by bugs pretty much everywhere. So this tent works if the nights are cold enough to keep yourself covered or when there are no bugs. If it is hot and buggy it doesn’t work so well for me. It might be different if you are not an active sleeper and smaller than my 6’1″.

  5. How does this compare to the Tarptent Notch? I was really tempted to pull the trigger on this but decided to wait because the Notch works quite well for me when solo, however, I haven’t had to spend a day or two in it waiting out any storms.

    • The X-mid and all the others listed above have poles that are offset from one another at an angle. This is done to maximize the amount of head room space. The notch has poles that are directly across from one another and not offset.

  6. Had this and sold it. Went with the High Route, which I found to have more functional living space (within the inner) and more wind resistant. For me, it was also easier to set up.

    • Any other comments that you (or Philip) can provide on x-mid vs high route would be greatly appreciated.

      • I’ve heard there’s a lighter-weight version (a model replacement, not a new tent) of the High Route coming out next spring that will weigh about the same as the X-mid does currently. It will be smaller than the current model and made with lighter weight fabric. But I’m pretty sure the X-mid will remain less expensive and it will still be easier to set up.

  7. I have the 1P and love the quality of design, how fast it can be set up, and how small it packs crossways in my pack, and the large vestibules it has as a result of the offset poles. The quality of the materials used and the construction suggest that this tent is going to be very durable as well.

  8. I just got back from a 1 week section hike on the AT in Ga using my X-Mid 1P. It was a great tent and worked out well for me. I did spray the inner tent with permithrin before I left home and had no issue with bugs. It was a little tight, but as Phil mentioned you can store your pack vertically in the vestibule which keeps it close to the door and dry. I did have one night of sutained rain and noticed some minor misting after 8 or 9 hours of rain, but dont think thats unique to this tent. Overall an unbeatable value for the price.

  9. Which Trekking poles did you use? Dan Durston recommender locus gear poles. CMT and Fizan poles have longer tips that could damage the fly

  10. I too am selling mine. I set it up in my local park and then tried to imagine fitting it into several campsites that I have used in the past. I think it’s a great tent but the footprint is the size of an average two-person tent.

  11. Have the Stratospire and can definitely vouch for Its weather worthiness. The Tarptent is literally
    bomb proof and going on five years old. A hats off to Henry and crew – also have the doible
    Rainbow now , they make incredible products.

  12. Good review. I hope this tent can accommodate hiking pole “handles up” B/C I won’t ever put my handles in the duff or dirt.

  13. Is the inner tent walls well away from you as you sit/lay down? Are the mesh walls vertical and taught or do they slope and sag? Any issue rubbing into them while sitting, laying down, rising up, etc.? Thanks!

    • The inner tent floor (its a double wall) is 28 inches wide and the walls are vertical. I don’t rub up against them but even if I did, I doubt it would be much of an issue. The fly walls are far away from you, so there’s little chance of any internal condensation transfer.

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