Marmot Catalyst 3 Person Dome Tent Review

The Catalyst Fly Open

Marmot's Catalyst 3 With the Fly Open
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Catalyst 3 Pictures and Videos

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The Catalyst With the Fly Off

The Marmot Catalyst 3 With the Fly Off
Fly Closed on the Catalyst 3

Fly Closed the Catalyst 3

A video about the Catalyst 3 tent.

Another video about Marmot's tents.


Logo Representing the Features Section


  • Freestanding: Yes
  • Color: Rusted Orange, Cinder
  • Number of Rooms: 1
  • Number of Windows: 0
  • Number of Doors: 2
  • Zippers: Jingle-Free Nylon Zipper Pulls
  • Storage Pockets & Gear Loft: Yes, N/A
  • Mesh Roof & Walls: Half, Half
  • Footprint: Included
Logo Representing the Materials Section

Materials and Extras

  • Inner Walls: 40D 100% Polyester No-See-Um Mesh F/R & 68D 100% Polyester Taffeta F/R
  • Full Fly: 68D Polyester Taffeta 190T F/R
    Fly Waterproof Ratings: 1500 mm
  • Floor Materials: 68D 190T Poly Taffeta
    Floor Waterproof Ratings: 2000 mm
  • Pole Material: HD Velocity 7000 Series Aluminum
  • Number Of Poles: 3
  • Pole Dimensions: 9/8.5 Millimeters
  • Guy Lines & Guy Outs: Yes, Yes
  • Stakes: N/A
Logo Representing the Dimensions Section


  • Floor Area: 40 sq. ft.
  • Center Height: 3 foot. 11 inches.
  • Packed Weight: 6 Lbs 0 Oz
    Trail Weight: 5 Lbs. 9 Oz.
  • Packed Size: 22 x 8 inches.
  • Number of Vestibules: 2
    Total Vestibule Area: 18.30 sq. ft.
    (10.4 + 7.9 sq. ft.)
  • Screened Areas: None
  • Awnings: None

Tent Set Up

It's a very easy tent to set up with color-coded poles for an easy setup

Green Thumbs Up Logo

Summary: Favorable Reviews

Even at an altitude of 5000 feet, the tent held up well under rain and snow. Not to heavy for hiking, easy to set up ample space for two. Zippers were snag-free and held up in 80mph wind gusts.

Teal Thumbs Down Logo

Summary: Unfavorable Reviews

Ventilation was not the best, need to purchase extra pegs to secure all the guy lines. Water tends to build up inside the fly.

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The Catalyst 3 has two doors and a peak center height of 3' 11 which is a little bit less than the average height of the 125 other 3 person tents we have looked at. With 40 square feet of space inside, it is significantly smaller than some other 3-person tents, and it would be quite tight for you and, up to two other campers all through the 3-seasons this tent is approved for. Smaller tents similar to this one make a really good choice for campers that like spending heaps of hours outside the tent exploring.

Many of the great points about dome tents are, that they are for, the most part lightweight, making them simple to carry around. In nearly all instances, tents used for backpacking are of the dome type. They are generally speaking, freestanding and very easy to set up. In good weather, you can do without securing the tent with stakes and ropes, not that this is suggested.

Dome tents are easily the most common of all the different sorts of tents you will find when camping. They tend to fair better in storms than other types, allowing rain to easily slide off the sloped walls, unlike cabin tents that have flat tops, resulting in the water pooling on the top. The most straightforward dome tent should have a square floor, sloped walls a couple of poles which converge in the center of the roof. Because of their construction, it is generally considered that they are ideal for up to a maximum of 6 people.

Down below, you can browse an account of the tent's pros and cons.

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  1. Freestanding. The Catalyst can support its own weight on any terrain. It does not even have to be staked down in most cases. But in case of strong winds, it is always best to secure it to the ground with the included steel stakes and guylines.
  2. Vestibules. Having two vestibules. Gives you somewhere to store shoes and other things that can get dirty, muddy, this is a big plus.
  3. Internal storage. It is good to see Marmot has added a gear loft and pockets in the interior to store some of your stuff.
  4. More than one door. With 2 doors, it is easier to get in and out of the tent, in the middle of the night if needed.
  5. Durable, water-resistant floor. The floor material is 68D 190T poly taffeta, which is a substantially thick and high-strength fabric. Meaning the base is not prone to tears and punctures. Also, the material has a 2000 mm waterproofing rating, which is very good for most circumstances.
  6. Includes FootPrint. It is quite rare to see a footprint included with the tent. It is strongly suggested to always use a footprint, so not having to pay extra for one is a plus.
  7. The rainfly completely covers the tent body. The rainfly covers the whole body of the tent from the top to the bottom and has a waterproof rating of 1500mm. Meaning it will easily protect you against heavy downpours.
  8. Available in other sizes. Marmot has also made this model available in Other Sizes.
  9. Low price. It is a great buy for a 3 person dome tent providing this much space. Not a lot of tents available on the market give this level of quality for only $226.51 info_outline


  1. Not roomy. With a floor area of 40 square feet, the Catalyst 3 is smaller than quite a few of the 125 other 3 person tents we have looked at.
  2. Lacking in Headroom. With 8% less headroom than similar sized tents, one can see how this could be a negative factor for some campers.
  3. Footprint not Included. There is no included footprint, The floor may be made of 68D 190T poly taffeta but it is still best to protect it further with a footprint, especially on rough terrain.
  4. Sloping walls. Even though Dome tents have lots of attributes to be positive about. The sloping walls do tend to make it all the more smaller inside.
  5. Storage Space. Due to the size of the tent, one cannot store a lot of stuff inside..


4 Stars Logo

Our Ratings: 4.0 STARS

Marmot's Catalyst 3 tent is great for backpacking, here are a few other cool things not mentioned above which, we noticed and liked, while researching the model: Interior Pockets for Small Gear Organization, Strategic clip placement enhances interior volume and Color-coded poles for easy setup.

With positive ratings, a few reviews and a center height of 3' and 40 square feet of space for sleeping, this tent is like your own small flat. This will allow you to enjoy some real quality time in the outdoors. We found a decent amount of pros about the tent that you can read through above.

If you came to this page looking for suggestions about this specific tent, our view is, it will make for a great buy. If you just happened to arrive on this page while browsing for a brand new tent having never heard of this manufacture or this tent previously, it is probably a good idea to look at a few more similar tents.

Value for money: When contemplating value for your money, this tent is a lot cheaper than the average cost of all the one hundred and seventy-nine, three-person tents we have taken a look at, this by itself does not make it awesome value for money. We also need to look at other areas in detail, as we do for every tent.

When we tally up the valuation of a single tent, we look at a lot of stuff, searching for areas where the tent could shine against other similar tents and where it is lacking. In this case, with a total rating of 4.0 and the price details above, It is simple to see that with a price of $226.51 info_outline The Catalyst 3 is a very good buy and fabulously cheap when compared with similar tents.

Its overall score shows that the build and space the tent provides were not compromised to finish up with a price unquestionably below the standard price for similar tents. It could make a very good choice for most people looking for a comfy three-season backpacking tent to go camping with, that will serve you well for years to come.

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Other Sizes and Variations of the Marmot Catalyst Model

Model Headroom Sleeping Area Price * Discounted

Marmot Catalyst 2
Catalyst 2

3' 8"33 sq ft $179.00info_outline(6%)

Marmot Catalyst 3
Catalyst 3

3' 11"40 sq ft $226.51info_outline(1%)
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