The biggest real problem, potentially, is the extra ventilation. But face it, tents are hardly insulated devices anyway, so it's not as if there will be a huge difference, temperature-wise, between a tent with a bunch of mesh and a tent with not so much. Some, difference, true, but in most cases acceptable. In any event, you can make a three-season tent more winter-friendly by digging it down into the snow, to cut the wind, and to bury the lower edge of the rain fly in snow, so that the fly itself provides a good, wind-proof shell for the tent. Without a shred of empirical evidence to back it up, I've also long felt that laying a "space blanket" on the floor of the tent, reflective (silver) side up, helps keep the tent a little warmer.
Alternatively, you can take the tent as a backup shelter and practice your igloo building or snow cave digging. Either makes a far better winter shelter than any tent aroundwarmer, quieter, and wind-proof. Plus the process of making one helps pass the time while generally proving highly entertaining.
Support Outside Online
Our mission to inspire readers to get outside has never been more critical. In recent years, Outside Online has reported on groundbreaking research linking time in nature to improved mental and physical health, and we’ve kept you informed about the unprecedented threats to America’s public lands. Our rigorous coverage helps spark important debates about wellness and travel and adventure, and it provides readers an accessible gateway to new outdoor passions. Time outside is essential—and we can help you make the most of it. Making a financial contribution to Outside Online only takes a few minutes and will ensure we can continue supplying the trailblazing, informative journalism that readers like you depend on. We hope you’ll support us. Thank you.