|Rating:||8.9 / 10|
|Value for Money||2.2 / 2.5|
|Durability||2.3 / 2.5|
|Versatility||2.1 / 2.5|
|Weight||2.3 / 2.5|
Without a doubt the MSR Groundhog tent stake is one of the world’s best known tent pegs and deservedly so. These stakes come in two versions; the MSR Groundhog, and the MSR Mini Groundhog. So what’s the difference?
The MSR Groundhog Tent Stake is essentially the same stake as its smaller brother but weighting it at around 3 grams more and being 1.5cm longer.
The MSR Groundhogs are sold in a pack of 6 and like the rest of MSR’s tent stakes are red in colour. While this is a good marketing tool, making this brand of pegs instantly recognisable, the colour also means that you are less likely to loose it as it will stand out in almost any environment.
These tent pegs are ‘Y’ shaped meaning that they have three vanes that look like the letter Y when you look along the stake from the bottom. This shape which is now one of the most commonly used within the outdoor industry grips into all but the softest soils such as sand or snow. These pegs are 19 cm in length and the extra 4cm length over the smaller MSR Mini Groundhogs makes a big difference in regard to holding power in wetter softer soils.
The pegs have a small white and red reflective stake pull cord at the top which makes it easier to remove when packing up and also easier to see if you are outside your tent at night time.
One thing that you can’t see on the pegs is the quality of the alloy used in the manufacture. The MSR Groundhogs are made using 7000 aluminium which has a very high strength to weight ratio. You will see cheaper copy versions of these pegs being sold but they are unlikely to have the same quality of alloy in them so won’t be as durable. There is a notch towards the top of the stake that traps the tent guy lines and prevents them from slipping off.
On the negative side these tent pegs aren’t cheap coming in at around $9.66 each. Look past price and look at value for money as you will have these pegs for many years providing you don’t loose them. The other negative of this style of tent peg is the sharp edge on the top of the stake. While I wouldn’t want to kick these pegs in bare feet (a common night time problem) they are a lot better than the cheaper copy versions which can have very sharp edges.
You will find cheaper look alike versions of these pegs in many outdoor stores and in many cases you are paying for what you get. I’ve given upon as they just aren’t value for money.
The choice on whether to go for the MSR Mini Groundhog or the full sized version is really going to depend on the type of hiking that you do. The majority of tent pegs that come as part of many tent packages tend to very small and ultralight but lack the gripping power if you are in soft soil.
For me what it comes down to is that if I am looking at a high quality replacement peg for tent I will will use the Mini Groundhogs. If I know that I will be hiking in areas with wetter softer soils I will use the standard groundhogs for their extra grip. I will always carry a minimum of two MSR Groundhogs ‘just in case’ to provide that extra grip for when the soil is a bit softer or the wind is a bit stronger. In this situation I will use the longer Groundhogs on the windier end of the tent for stability.
So if you are looking at a new set of pegs and you want great grip then you can’t go past the MSR Groundhogs.
You can purchase the MSR Groundhog Tent Stakes in Australia from Wild Earth
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Under $9.66 AUD/peg
MSR produce a wide range of stakes but the ones listed blow are some of the better known ones
MSR Groundhog tent peg
MSR Reflective pull loop. You can also see the note to catch the guy line just below the red and white line
This review was done with product purchased from a retail store by Australian Hiker