A mess tent simply is a tent where climbers gather to eat their meals together. After a long day of hiking, this is where your food will be served to you by your tour operator.
It’s also a place where climbers can relax and chill in the afternoon as often it may be too cold and windy to stay outdoors. These tents provide welcome shelter from the wind and increased warmth. They are stand-up size, big enough to fit a table and chairs, whereby the exact dimensions usually vary depending on group size.
You will always be able to sit comfortably in a mess tent, even though specific characteristics may vary. Higher-end operators will, for example, provide solar lighting and comfortable chairs with arm and backrests.
These tents usually don’t include heating. But upon special request, a mess tent heater can be included in real luxury climbs.