Backcountry Forum
Backpacking & Hiking Gear

Backcountry Forum
Our long-time Sponsor - the leading source for ultralite/lightweight outdoor gear
 
 
 

Amazon.com
Backpacking Forums
---- Our Gear Store ----
The Lightweight Gear Store
 
 WINTER CAMPING 

Shelters
Bivy Bags
Sleeping Bags
Sleeping Pads
Snow Sports
Winter Kitchen

 SNOWSPORTS 

Snowshoes
Avalanche Gear
Skins
Hats, Gloves, & Gaiters
Accessories

 ULTRA-LIGHT 

Ultralight Backpacks
Ultralight Bivy Sacks
Ultralight Shelters
Ultralight Tarps
Ultralight Tents
Ultralight Raingear
Ultralight Stoves & Cookware
Ultralight Down Sleeping Bags
Ultralight Synthetic Sleep Bags
Ultralight Apparel


the Titanium Page
WM Extremelite Sleeping Bags

 CAMPING & HIKING 

Backpacks
Tents
Sleeping Bags
Hydration
Kitchen
Accessories

 CLIMBING 

Ropes & Cordage
Protection & Hardware
Carabiners & Quickdraws
Climbing Packs & Bags
Big Wall
Rescue & Industrial

 MEN'S APPAREL 

Jackets
Shirts
Baselayer
Headwear
Gloves
Accessories

 WOMEN'S APPAREL 

Jackets
Shirts
Baselayer
Headwear
Gloves
Accessories

 FOOTWEAR 

Men's Footwear
Women's Footwear

 CLEARANCE 

Backpacks
Mens Apparel
Womens Apparel
Climbing
Footwear
Accessories

 BRANDS 

Black Diamond
Granite Gear
La Sportiva
Osprey
Smartwool

 WAYS TO SHOP 

Sale
Clearance
Top Brands
All Brands

 Backpacking Equipment 

Shelters
BackPacks
Sleeping Bags
Water Treatment
Kitchen
Hydration
Climbing


 Backcountry Gear Clearance

Page 1 of 2 1 2 >
Topic Options
Rate This Topic
#183558 - 03/05/14 10:37 PM Tent, Tarp or Tarp Tent or....
Swizzle Offline
member

Registered: 02/24/03
Posts: 101
Loc: Southern Adirondacks of New Yo...
I've got a few hikes and backpacking trips planned for this year and what should pop into my head first when thinking about hiking in the beautiful backwoods...the pain. The straps cutting in, the weight shifting back n forth and not enjoying the hike as much as I'd like to. So in attempt to cut pack weight I've actually been considering ditching the tent since I always have a tarp anyway and this year I'll have a tyvek tarp to work with. Every trip I've ever been on has been with people who really have little more experience then me. So I've always just followed their example. We usually have a tarp over our common area and then another one over our tents in addition to the rain flies on the tents, which in my experience has always been ideal with the crappy tents I've owned. So I've always carried 2 tarps and my tent. Its also been my experience that there is never a nice spot to set a tarp n tent close to the fire that would be suitable for sleeping. So i've always been under the impression that you need a tent and tarp to feel all warm n fuzzy inside.

Well now I want some opinions from more experienced backpackers about your experiences with using just a tarp and maybe the best set ups, how to stay warm under a tarp when your 40ft away from the fire. Which do you prefer, a tent, tarp, or a tarp tent?

Top
#183560 - 03/05/14 11:44 PM Re: Tent, Tarp or Tarp Tent or.... [Re: Swizzle]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada

Honestly it really depends where I am. I've spent days on a rainy west coast trail with nothing but a tarp (an integral designs silwing) and a wide blue pad. There's no bugs, and I'm usually camping on sand around big logs next to the ocean. The sand is comfy, and dry once the tarp is over it, even in the rain. My sleeping bag's warm, I'm good. I've similary spent lots of time just under a tarp in other places when I know there aren't bugs. Rigged over my trekking poles, that silwing weighs about 500 grams and has acres of space under it - so even if the weather isn't great, when it's just me there's plenty of nice dry area under it.


I've also spent lots of time in a hammock, hung under a square silnylon tarp of the same thing as above - heavier, but very comfortable. bug net keeps out the bugs. I've had total howling storms around me and rivers of water underneath me, and been totally comfortable.


I've spent lots of time in light weight one man backpacking tents - six moon designs lunar solo, and my black diamond one shot. These weigh a little more, (the lunar solo about 750 grams, and the black diamond about 1150) - but these are what I use when I'm completely exposed, above the treeline, and with bugs - as they have bugnets and I can escape the mosquitoes.

I normally have a small poncho tarp with me (silnylon) that weighs about 300 grams. I can rig it as a small tarp if I need something to sit under in addition to my shelter. I don't very much.

But what I pick depends very much on where I am going.




_________________________
Any fool can be uncomfortable...
My 3 season gear list
Winter list.
Browse my pictures


Top
#183561 - 03/05/14 11:45 PM Re: Tent, Tarp or Tarp Tent or.... [Re: Swizzle]
jimmyb Offline
member

Registered: 09/16/13
Posts: 276
As far as shelters- warmth in choosing a 3 season tent or shelter really shouldn't be an issue and not even so much in winter. You should be relying on your sleep gear to keep you warm. Yes wind blocking is a part of it but most of the work of your shelter should be in keeping you dry and in our part of the world...bug free. If you are in need of pitching a tarp over your tent its time to replace the tent. A good tent should keep you very dry on its own outside of any internal moisture problems occurring from condensation, which you may or may not overcome due to adverse circumstances.

As far as pitching near the fire, that's not something I would even think of with all the very expensive and flammable gear inside my tent including the stuff Im wearing. Again I don't rely on a fire to keep me warm but my sleeping gear. If you want to learn some good tips on using a fire to keep your shelter warm take a look at some of billstephenson posts. He is making a science out of it. Very cool homemade tent set up and getting really warm internal temps.

The extra weight of two tarps in addition to a tent is what may be causing that painful feeling on your back. My advise would be to figure out what type sheltering and sleeping gear will best suit you. It can be a lightweight tent or a tarp or some hybrid in between. It can be as simple as sleeping under the stars in a bivy set up or under tarp hammock kit. You will need to think of what conditions you will need to overcome such as rain, humidity, biting insects, site conditions including things like ground surface and availability of trees (hammock camping) and such. Once you decide what the best shelter for you is then decide how much weight you are willing to carry for such shelter. Not always but much of the UL gear will cost more for less weight. Therefore sometime budgets can be a big part of gear choices.

I don't want to influence your choice but I will tell you that we use an UL tent of just over 2 lbs. and that is split between the wife and I so it works out to be VERY light for us. Our choice for a tent over a tarp, bivy or hammock were mostly based on mosquitos. Neither of us can tolerate the freekin little buggers. I might look into a tarp or hammock set up but for a pound in my pack I don't think I can do much better for what I'm getting now.

Best of luck with your shelter choice. Let us know how you make out.

jimmby

Top
#183562 - 03/05/14 11:52 PM Re: Tent, Tarp or Tarp Tent or.... [Re: phat]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada
Oh, and normally, if I have a fire I normally don't pitch anything anywhere near it. I'm not averse to having a fire if there is time, and it's appropriate. but most places I go It's either not allowed, or it's a sensitive enough area that I won't do it on LNT principles.

However talking to us as someone who obviously spends a lot of time in camp, you may find our attitude towards smaller lighter shelters a bit strange - but most of the time when I am out I get up with the sun, and I walk pretty much *all day* - but bear in mind I'm hardly "ultralight" - my pack for a weekender in the rockies will weigh about 13-15 pounds starting on the trail with two days food and a litre of water in it. And that's why I like to walk all day. I stop and camp at the *end* of the day, make and eat my dinner, and sleep. I don't spend a lot of time in camp, so I don't like to bring along a lot of camp.

it does become kind of a chicken and egg thing if you're not used to that though. If you spend half your time in camp, you want to take more stuff.. you take more stuff.. your pack is heavy.. your pack is heavy, it hurts, you stop earlier, you spend more time in camp smile Vicious circle. smile

_________________________
Any fool can be uncomfortable...
My 3 season gear list
Winter list.
Browse my pictures


Top
#183563 - 03/05/14 11:54 PM Re: Tent, Tarp or Tarp Tent or.... [Re: Swizzle]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
In inclement weather, I vastly prefer a hammock. Room to sit and enjoy the ride without being hunkered over, the ability to set up and use the stove, a ridge line to lay out wet clothes - I've done it all, in a 14 hour rainstorm, while my friends (I'm not kidding, it was this mixed) were in their bivy, poncho tarp/bivy combo, and tents. Pretty much everyone munched on trail mix while I boiled water and made my meal, and enjoyed it sitting comfortably upright. I didn't have to drag muddy gear in with me, and didn't have any issues with leakage. The next day I packed up dry gear while everyone else put out their bags to hopefully dry out a little of the wet they invited in when trying to get in or out to pee.

In trips where I'm alpine or without the ability to hammock due to other restrictions (some of the parks I've hiked in do not allow hammocks) I take my Lightheart Gear Solo, which works great with my trekking poles.

Sometimes I just take the tarp I use for the hammock, and tarp on the ground.

I wouldn't trust a tyvek tarp if you paid me - I have a tyvek tent, one of the Tarptent Sublites. Fantastic for managing condensation - you won't have any. What you won't have is rain protection if it does more than sprinkle I literally poured gallons out of the bathtub floor after bailing to the car on a trip to the coast. It rained a good 6 inches that night. I sat in the car and waited - the tent filled up with water, and weighed probably 5 lbs after I emptied the floor. Soaked the very fabric of it through.
_________________________
"In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities. In the expert's mind there are few." Shunryu Suzuki

http://hikeandbackpack.com

Top
#183564 - 03/05/14 11:56 PM Re: Tent, Tarp or Tarp Tent or.... [Re: phat]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada

And as far as staying warm goes, There is an unviolable section of my pack with my sleeping bag, dry sleeping socks, dry set of merino long johns, and a toque. These things are never worn outside my shelter. You can take a fire hose to me and I know if I get my shelter up, get my pack into it, get my dry clothing out, get in my sleeping bag, I will be warm.



_________________________
Any fool can be uncomfortable...
My 3 season gear list
Winter list.
Browse my pictures


Top
#183566 - 03/06/14 12:06 AM Re: Tent, Tarp or Tarp Tent or.... [Re: lori]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada
Originally Posted By lori
In inclement weather, I vastly prefer a hammock


I really do love riding out a storm in a hammock. I find the noise of rain on a tight pitch tarp while I sit below it relaxing.

I do think one of my favorite hammock experiences was in Tekarra in jasper, where I got mine up under the tarp just ahead of a monsterous set of tstorms. I had a pot of tea made, and was sitting in the hammock, when three newbies came in soaked to the bone. I invited them to come sit with me till it passed over. The two young ladies did (apparently I'm old enough that I'm "safe") while the young guy was too grumpy and proceeded to stop off, find a horrificly muddy site and flail around half an hour setting up a tent. I had a wonderful time with the young ladies trying very hard not to laugh. I noticed later he was probably grumpy because he was being mr macho carry everything, and was carrying their regular stainless steel kitchen pots and pans and (swear to god) a large size wooden cutting board.. never mind the other stuff...

_________________________
Any fool can be uncomfortable...
My 3 season gear list
Winter list.
Browse my pictures


Top
#183575 - 03/06/14 08:28 AM Re: Tent, Tarp or Tarp Tent or.... [Re: phat]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Ha, yes, they do that don't they? I'll never forget going to Sykes Hot Springs and setting up the hammock near a couple in an REI tent - set up my alcohol stove and boiled two cups of water while he filled a stock pot with veggies and sausage and made this immense stew for the two of them while telling her how wonderful a backpacker he was.... turns out she had just met him for the first time from an online dating site and flew over from Texas(!) just to backpack this very difficult hike with him (5,000 feet cumulative gain, 10 miles one way). She'd seen this animal she thought was a monkey (it was a ringtail) and I reassured her it wasn't dangerous....

You were horning in on his territory, dude. All the impressing was supposed to be his!
_________________________
"In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities. In the expert's mind there are few." Shunryu Suzuki

http://hikeandbackpack.com

Top
#183577 - 03/06/14 08:58 AM Re: Tent, Tarp or Tarp Tent or.... [Re: Swizzle]
ETSU Pride Offline
member

Registered: 10/25/10
Posts: 933
Loc: Knoxville, TN
Best tarp on the market! I have the Tadpole version.

I've carried mine with the tent just have somewhere hang out in event of rain. 10oz tarp isn't big enough fuss for me to be a weight weenie about it. This tarp served as my hammock tarp and general utility tarp when I'm hiking with someone so we can cook under the rain together, and just mellow out before we go to sleep in our own tents. When I'm soloing I'll ditch the tarp altogether and just stick to my tent, unless I'm hammock camping in which case I'll need the tarp. grin

You should look into tents that has a fast fly feature. Where you can ditch the tent body, and use ground cloth and rain fly as shelter. My Big Agnes has this feature. I've never backpacked like this because, well, I detest bugs...

_________________________
It is one of the blessings of wilderness life that it shows us how few things we need in order to be perfectly happy.-- Horace Kephart

Top
#183578 - 03/06/14 09:09 AM Re: Tent, Tarp or Tarp Tent or.... [Re: lori]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada
Originally Posted By lori

You were horning in on his territory, dude. All the impressing was supposed to be his!


Yeah, I know but it's just too funny. I'm a fat forty something with grey in my beard. I don't impress twenty somethings wink
_________________________
Any fool can be uncomfortable...
My 3 season gear list
Winter list.
Browse my pictures


Top
#183579 - 03/06/14 09:11 AM Re: Tent, Tarp or Tarp Tent or.... [Re: phat]
ETSU Pride Offline
member

Registered: 10/25/10
Posts: 933
Loc: Knoxville, TN
Originally Posted By phat
Originally Posted By lori

You were horning in on his territory, dude. All the impressing was supposed to be his!


Yeah, I know but it's just too funny. I'm a fat forty something with grey in my beard. I don't impress twenty somethings wink


I'm 24, if a girl ever ends up backpacking with me she can carry her own freaking weight! smile
_________________________
It is one of the blessings of wilderness life that it shows us how few things we need in order to be perfectly happy.-- Horace Kephart

Top
#183580 - 03/06/14 09:23 AM Re: Tent, Tarp or Tarp Tent or.... [Re: ETSU Pride]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada
Quote:
I'm 24, if a girl ever ends up backpacking with me she can carry her own freaking weight! smile


Please don't let chivalry die completely.. Never say never dude - I've been known to carry the tent and food for the right girl:

http://pics.obtuse.com/Nigel2011/
_________________________
Any fool can be uncomfortable...
My 3 season gear list
Winter list.
Browse my pictures


Top
#183581 - 03/06/14 09:25 AM Re: Tent, Tarp or Tarp Tent or.... [Re: ETSU Pride]
bluefish Offline
member

Registered: 06/05/13
Posts: 680
Originally Posted By ETSU Pride
Best tarp on the market! I have the Tadpole version.

I've carried mine with the tent just have somewhere hang out in event of rain. 10oz tarp isn't big enough fuss for me to be a weight weenie about it. This tarp served as my hammock tarp and general utility tarp when I'm hiking with someone so we can cook under the rain together, and just mellow out before we go to sleep in our own tents. When I'm soloing I'll ditch the tarp altogether and just stick to my tent, unless I'm hammock camping in which case I'll need the tarp. grin

You should look into tents that has a fast fly feature. Where you can ditch the tent body, and use ground cloth and rain fly as shelter. My Big Agnes has this feature. I've never backpacked like this because, well, I detest bugs...



Thanks for the link, as I'm looking for a tarp upgrade.
I think very much like you do. I do fast pitch my BA in cooler weather. It rocks! Bug protection in the Adirondacks is a must in warmer weather. I never set my tent or tarp near fire, popping sap pockets send embers long distances and I don't need drain holes in my fly or tarp. Swizzle, you might consider using some of the numerous ADK shelters. Even if someone is camped inside them, you can still cook in the rain under shelter. Saves a lot of hassle hauling in tarps and such. I've never used a tent heater, with the exception of candle lanterns, and that was sub-zero. I'd seriously re-consider your sleep and shelter system to fit the conditions you wish to hike in and not rely on fire to keep you comfortable. A lot of the campsites I've used in the daks were stripped of firewood by mid-summer, unless you want to practice rape and pillage and burn instead of Leave No Trace.
Many do, I know you don't.
_________________________
Charlie

Top
#183582 - 03/06/14 09:25 AM Re: Tent, Tarp or Tarp Tent or.... [Re: ETSU Pride]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Originally Posted By ETSU Pride
Originally Posted By phat
Originally Posted By lori

You were horning in on his territory, dude. All the impressing was supposed to be his!


Yeah, I know but it's just too funny. I'm a fat forty something with grey in my beard. I don't impress twenty somethings wink


I'm 24, if a girl ever ends up backpacking with me she can carry her own freaking weight! smile


Sometimes, I end up carrying some guy's pack for him. He never comes backpacking with us again. blush Especially if he figures out I'm twice his age.
_________________________
"In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities. In the expert's mind there are few." Shunryu Suzuki

http://hikeandbackpack.com

Top
#183583 - 03/06/14 09:33 AM Re: Tent, Tarp or Tarp Tent or.... [Re: lori]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada
Originally Posted By lori

Sometimes, I end up carrying some guy's pack for him. He never comes backpacking with us again. blush Especially if he figures out I'm twice his age.


I suppose he didn't pay attention to the part about cougars preying on the young and weak eh lori? wink
_________________________
Any fool can be uncomfortable...
My 3 season gear list
Winter list.
Browse my pictures


Top
#183585 - 03/06/14 09:46 AM Re: Tent, Tarp or Tarp Tent or.... [Re: phat]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Originally Posted By phat
Originally Posted By lori

Sometimes, I end up carrying some guy's pack for him. He never comes backpacking with us again. blush Especially if he figures out I'm twice his age.


I suppose he didn't pay attention to the part about cougars preying on the young and weak eh lori? wink


goodjob lol
_________________________
"In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities. In the expert's mind there are few." Shunryu Suzuki

http://hikeandbackpack.com

Top
#183587 - 03/06/14 11:17 AM Re: Tent, Tarp or Tarp Tent or.... [Re: lori]
Swizzle Offline
member

Registered: 02/24/03
Posts: 101
Loc: Southern Adirondacks of New Yo...
Wow, quite the response!! Well I guess first off I should say that I decided to go with an ultra light tent and spent over a $150+ for a 2lb bivy. I think part of the weight savings is the lack of rainfly material. That's why I always double up with the tarp. The tent I use is a major PITA to move around in, Not much room at all and any activities I do are laying down or propped up on my elbow. To go pee in the middle of the night is a chore to say the least. I've been on several cold trips where the gear I can afford is less then adequate for the conditions. I know its also a false sense of security having a tent and after waking up on the last camping trip with a bear in camp and realizing my drunk buds needed a rock to cook with and replaced that rock, on my tarp, with a 10lb roaster chicken! Yeah I may have so issues with sleeping around my friends on these backpacking/survival trips. I am however getting away from that group more and more and want it all without the added weight. I've always carried a wally world 10x12 tarp for the main area, I guess in part because I'm the only one that ever has tarps so I've always beared the extra weight for everyone.

So I think if I beef up my rain gear just a tad I can do away with the main area tarp and let them all run around like confused children for a bit. How do I beef up my rainfly though? I would love to have a little over hang that I can stand under when I first climb out. It doesn't have to be huge just enough to cover the entire tent and a little extra by the door. It also may be a little too late but I order a big ol' chunk of tyvek and it should be in the mail already. Is tyvek really that bad? I've been hearing nothing but good about it outside of the material being noisy and having to wash it with sneakers to cure that. I know its overkill but I ordered a 9'x12' piece. I may end up cutting it in half so I have 2 9x8's instead. We do tend to have a fire every time i'm out and I've gone out and scavenged all down and dead wood within an hour and had enough wood for the weekend only to come back with the last load and to find the weekend warriors doing a sacred beer guzzling dance around the fire pit with 8ft high flames as the last of the wood I've bought over on the previous trip has been tossed on. Yeah trying to get away from certain friends when I'm camping. Decent people, until you let them loose into the forest. Ok so that leaves me with long story short: Beef up rain gear, ditch common area tarp. Ditch rain fly and hopefully find a way to configure a tarp to be a super rainfly! Sounds reasonable. I might not be ditching the tent yet but I do see that I've cut some weight. So my next thread I suppose should be my sleep system. Thanx everyone. smile

Forgot to mention that I have had the joyful experience of spending more then a few nights in an adk lean-to. Only bad thing about that is they are always first come, first serve. I guess I may have kinda fantasized about having a smaller personal lean to closer to a fire. I've seen so many pics depicting this very scene and it just looks so nice. I may try it with a baker tent set up some wintery day just for the sake of experiencing it. smile


Edited by Swizzle (03/06/14 11:22 AM)

Top
#183588 - 03/06/14 11:45 AM Re: Tent, Tarp or Tarp Tent or.... [Re: Swizzle]
billstephenson Offline
Moderator

Registered: 02/07/07
Posts: 3917
Loc: Ozark Mountains in SW Missouri
Quote:
Its also been my experience that there is never a nice spot to set a tarp n tent close to the fire that would be suitable for sleeping. So i've always been under the impression that you need a tent and tarp to feel all warm n fuzzy inside.


I'm going to offer that you might want to think about a "Campfire Tent" like the one I made a couple years ago:





I like this tent a lot. It's not pretty, but it sure is comfortable. You can make one in a couple evenings for about $35 out of SOL emergency blankets, visqueen, and fiber reinforced duct tape. It weighs under 3 pounds with stakes and guy lines and can be pitched in a wide variety of ways.

I've set it up in some vicious storms and it's held up pretty good and stayed dry, and climbing into a warm sleeping bag is a pretty sweet feature.

If you google "Super Shelter" you can learn more about the basic design and there are quite a few videos on youtube showing them in use.
_________________________
--

"You want to go where?"



Top
#183590 - 03/06/14 12:01 PM Re: Tent, Tarp or Tarp Tent or.... [Re: phat]
bluefish Offline
member

Registered: 06/05/13
Posts: 680
I've carried the vast majority of the weight for 25 years, but I ain't complainin'. At least she always sets up the tent, even IN the rain.... grin


Edited by bluefish (03/06/14 12:01 PM)
_________________________
Charlie

Top
#183596 - 03/06/14 02:13 PM Re: Tent, Tarp or Tarp Tent or.... [Re: bluefish]
Swizzle Offline
member

Registered: 02/24/03
Posts: 101
Loc: Southern Adirondacks of New Yo...
I love that set up and with some extra caution on firewood control like not inviting the bonfire committee I'd love to do it. Always loved the looks of lean-to's and bakers tents. With the newer lighter weight materials something like this would be a god sent. I really should look into building one. I'm thinking just a little larger 2 man design so I can have plenty of room for myself or still be able to bring my oldest along have room for the both of us. Really sweet looking set up. I know a lot of people disagree with having a fire and at times there is a ban here on the east coast as well. I look at it this way, if the wood is down, and readily available then why not. If I really want to get away from that situation well then I scroll through some topo maps, get some coordinates and extra batteries and into the forest I go off the beaten path. I've done complete all day hikes without needing or in most cases even wanting a fire when when it comes down to camping over night and my previous experiences with wildlife I just like the little extra added comfort of having a fire.

Top
#183603 - 03/06/14 07:51 PM Re: Tent, Tarp or Tarp Tent or.... [Re: bluefish]
ETSU Pride Offline
member

Registered: 10/25/10
Posts: 933
Loc: Knoxville, TN
Originally Posted By bluefish
Originally Posted By ETSU Pride
Best tarp on the market! I have the Tadpole version.

I've carried mine with the tent just have somewhere hang out in event of rain. 10oz tarp isn't big enough fuss for me to be a weight weenie about it. This tarp served as my hammock tarp and general utility tarp when I'm hiking with someone so we can cook under the rain together, and just mellow out before we go to sleep in our own tents. When I'm soloing I'll ditch the tarp altogether and just stick to my tent, unless I'm hammock camping in which case I'll need the tarp. grin

You should look into tents that has a fast fly feature. Where you can ditch the tent body, and use ground cloth and rain fly as shelter. My Big Agnes has this feature. I've never backpacked like this because, well, I detest bugs...



Thanks for the link, as I'm looking for a tarp upgrade.
I think very much like you do. I do fast pitch my BA in cooler weather. It rocks! Bug protection in the Adirondacks is a must in warmer weather. I never set my tent or tarp near fire, popping sap pockets send embers long distances and I don't need drain holes in my fly or tarp. Swizzle, you might consider using some of the numerous ADK shelters. Even if someone is camped inside them, you can still cook in the rain under shelter. Saves a lot of hassle hauling in tarps and such. I've never used a tent heater, with the exception of candle lanterns, and that was sub-zero. I'd seriously re-consider your sleep and shelter system to fit the conditions you wish to hike in and not rely on fire to keep you comfortable. A lot of the campsites I've used in the daks were stripped of firewood by mid-summer, unless you want to practice rape and pillage and burn instead of Leave No Trace.
Many do, I know you don't.


Can't go wrong with Wilderness Logic. Over at the Hammock Forum, his tarp are wildly popular. I actually bought my tarp for $75 bucks, I noticed it's now $90. It got popular fast!
_________________________
It is one of the blessings of wilderness life that it shows us how few things we need in order to be perfectly happy.-- Horace Kephart

Top
#183607 - 03/06/14 08:50 PM Re: Tent, Tarp or Tarp Tent or.... [Re: Swizzle]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada
Originally Posted By Swizzle
Ok so that leaves me with long story short: Beef up rain gear, ditch common area tarp. Ditch rain fly and hopefully find a way to configure a tarp to be a super rainfly!


If you want something lighter in your system, and don't wanna spend a ton of dough, You could always try a silnylon poncho tarp like This one from campmor - I carry something similar a lot. works as rainger, or a small tarp.

just watch out with nice light silnylon near fires - embers burn holes in it quick smile




_________________________
Any fool can be uncomfortable...
My 3 season gear list
Winter list.
Browse my pictures


Top
#183609 - 03/06/14 09:51 PM Re: Tent, Tarp or Tarp Tent or.... [Re: phat]
Swizzle Offline
member

Registered: 02/24/03
Posts: 101
Loc: Southern Adirondacks of New Yo...
That's a very real possibility. Thank You. smile

Top
#183626 - 03/07/14 10:40 AM Re: Tent, Tarp or Tarp Tent or.... [Re: Swizzle]
finallyME Offline
member

Registered: 09/24/07
Posts: 2710
Loc: Utah
You have some interesting friends....It sounds to me like you need to do more solo/group hiking instead of group/group hiking. I just made those terms up, but what they mean is...
Solo/group is when you are with a group, but all gear is done solo. You bring your own everything and don't share anything, but still hike as a group. An even looser interpretation is that you all meet at certain points in the hike, like lunch or camp and kinda just hang out with each other, but are free to do what you want.
Group/group is when you are always with the group, never split up, and share equipment.
There are benefits and drawbacks to both. The group/group only works with a leader though. Someone has to make final decisions and make sure everyone is pulling their own weight. If there is no leader, then solo/group is a really good alternative.

If your tent didn't come with a fly, then it is a single wall tent and doesn't need one. Have you tested it in the rain? You can set it up in your yard and use the hose too. If it leaks and needs a fly, but doesn't have one...then time to ditch it. A single wall, somewhat waterproof tent, with a tarp over it is probably going to be a condensation monster. Might as well have the same tarp with a net-only tent instead. Like this one.. meteor bivy
or this one... Ray Jardine net tent

As far as fire goes...I like fire, but not enough to do too much work. If there is no fire ban, and others in my group want one, I make them do it all. Sometimes I might contribute a bit of wood, but if they are burning through it...I am not collecting it.
When I am with my scouts, I make them do all the gathering. But, sometimes I go out and show them how easy it is to get dry wood. Then if I have to start the fire...I throw all the wood on it, making them have to go back and get more...I am mean like that. smile Of course, with scouts I am trying to teach them life principles.
Also, for safety, I always plan to not have a fire. If you can't walk into camp soaking wet and cold, and then set up camp and get dry and warm without a fire, you really need to rethink your gear choices. Fire should always be a luxury, not a necessity.
_________________________
I've taken a vow of poverty. To annoy me, send money.

Top
#183634 - 03/07/14 01:43 PM Re: Tent, Tarp or Tarp Tent or.... [Re: finallyME]
Swizzle Offline
member

Registered: 02/24/03
Posts: 101
Loc: Southern Adirondacks of New Yo...
What should I be looking for then for gear that doesn't need a lot of heat or high winds to dry. Call it a lack of experience or knowledge but I've never really thought that it was possible to arrive at camp wet and be able to get dry without a fire. I'm assuming base layers would be the start. How fast can some of these items dry out? I'm assuming a clothes line of sorts is involved? I've been camping in sideways rain with trees falling around me so I know how hard it can be to stay dry.

Top
Page 1 of 2 1 2 >

Shout Box

Highest Quality Lightweight Down Sleeping Bags
 
Western Mountaineering Sleeping Bags
 
Lite Gear Talk - Featured Topics
Stauffer said that he was just trying to improve
by Skyzhay
04:42 AM
Replacing a 2002 Mountain Hardware Tent
by Loquinho
08/21/21 01:35 PM
Boil in a bottle?
by DustinV
07/23/21 06:29 PM
Backcountry Discussion - Featured Topics
Do You Bring Booze on your Backpacking Trips?
by Ian Campbell
08/09/16 05:49 PM
Make Your Own Gear - Featured Topics
That is fine. My main issue is I suck at this gam
by Skyzhay
04:43 AM
Carrying My Dog LOL
by Hey
07/07/21 09:20 PM
Featured Photos
Spiderco Chaparral Pocketknife
David & Goliath
Also Testing
Trip Report with Photos
Seven Devils, Idaho
Oat Hill Mine Trail 2012
Dark Canyon - Utah
Who's Online
0 registered (), 47 Guests and 0 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Newest Members
Keirv87, nmjhyu, Paul Devil, Loquinho, Ted J Forema
13061 Registered Users
Forum Links
Disclaimer
Policies
Site Links
Backpacking.net
Lightweight Gear Store
Backpacking Book Store
Lightweight Zone
Hiking Essentials

Our long-time Sponsor, BackcountryGear.com - The leading source for ultralite/lightweight outdoor gear:

Backcountry Forum
 

Affiliate Disclaimer: This forum is an affiliate of BackcountryGear.com, Amazon.com, R.E.I. and others. The product links herein are linked to their sites. If you follow these links to make a purchase, we may get a small commission. This is our only source of support for these forums. Thanks.!
 
 

Since 1996 - the Original Backcountry Forum
Copyright © The Lightweight Backpacker & BackcountryForum