Tag Info

Hot answers tagged

16

I think you pretty much covered it. Advantages of a tent: Keeps more rain/snow out (particularly if you have little skill in tent/tarp setup) Keeps out insects. For me, this is the big one - in spring time when the mosquitoes are fierce, being confined to your sleeping bag with a net over your face is not nearly as pleasant as lounging in your enclosed ...


15

I would say... never. What is a tarp but something that keeps precipitation off of you. In humid summer months, sure, condensation can cause precipitation under the tarp, but in winter, this is not so much a concern, and you can pitch it lower to the ground. You might get frost inside - but just shake it off when you pack up. Tents provide a few degrees ...


9

A poor tarp pitch can lead itself to condensation. Did you use a plastic ground sheet? Water running under the tarp when it's raining can cause a lot of humidity inside the tarp. Were you pitched on long grass? Plant life can increase condensation under a tarp. This can also be alleviated by a plastic ground sheet. How close to the ground was your tarp ...


8

Your most practical solution would seem to be a wing shelter. For the most part, you simply need your tarp, a tree, sticks and rope. The pdf I attached recommends making it 5 feet tall, but you could easily make it 2 or 3 feet tall to accommodate the length you need the shelter to be.


7

Why I use a tent in three easy-to-understand bullets Mosquitoes Ticks Mosquitoes Yes, I could carry netting, but at that point the tarp + netting would be both more hassle and more weight than my tent. (Which is where Ryley is 100% wrong about a tent not protecting me from nature. I've never had mosquitoes in my tent)


6

Hammock Can you lie flat in it? How large/heavy is it? Footbox? Color (stealth camping?) Suspension How easy is it to adjust? Can you adjust your hammock to different sags? Do you always want to have the same amount of sag? What is the furthest distance between trees that your suspension can accommodate? This will depend on How much stretch ...


5

First, you have to figure out the dimensions you're looking for. Too big is uselessly bulky to carry, but too small can prevent it from being useful. This will depend on the size of your tent/hammock or whatever else you're trying to protect. Apart from that, things you can look for are: Waterproof-ness: This should be indicated on the label, but looking ...


5

I sometimes bring a tarp and sometimes a tent. Most of my backpacking is in the summer in the Sierra Nevada, which means most of the time there's no threat of rain and I don't take my tarp or tent out of the backpack. When there are bugs, I typically sleep with a mosquito head net over my face. If it's windy, I kind of like a tent, because it keeps the wind ...


5

As others have already noted, keeping out mosquitos can be a big deal in some locations at some times of the year. However, when I go camping around Arizona in the summer that's not the reason that I use a small tent instead of a tarp. The biggest reason in this case is larger critters that can hurt you, like rattlesnakes, scorpions, and the like. Some of ...


5

I would say it's not a question of too cold, tents don't add that much warmth. Tarps and a shovel can make some very nice shelters in the snow. The real limitation is blowing snow/rain and the wind speed you expect to stand. If the wind is shifting at all, or is much above 20 mph, a tarp is going to be fairly miserable. ( I'm not including floorless tents ...


4

Spectra/Dyneema (UHMWPE) fibers are the strongest fibers available for weaving fabrics, but the puncture resistance of a woven fabric depends heavily on the weave. The major puncture risks for rafts or inflatable sleeping pads are needle-like (thorns, pine needles, wood splinters, etc.). Sharp-edged rocks could not easily puncture a raft or sleeping pad ...


4

I don't get condensation under my tarp, not in general, even after several hours in a heavy downpour. I don't pitch it over vegetation, in general. I did have condensation one time when I had it pitched close to the ground, just enough for me to lie under, and it rained heavy all night, perhaps 1-1/2 inches or more. If the rain's coming straight down, I ...


4

OK, I finally tried the setup inspired by this site, which can be fully closed by pegging the sides closer to the middle, and pegging it directly on the ground on the opposite side of the entrance. It would be quite a tight night and you would need to leave your rucksack out, if it's big. But I was able to put the sleeping bag out of the bag from the ...


3

Short answer: I use both. But then, I don't have particularly light weight gear. For weekend hikes (my home is in Germany with hills and abundant forest) usually the tarp or nothing at all (or maybe a cave). Moskitos drive me into the tent. In fact, I once returned to get the tent because moskitos were so bad. Short tours (weekend, prolonged weekend): ...


3

In my experience, even heavy plastics tear easily with wind. This from trying to use such plastics to cover cargo that I'm hauling with a truck. I think this would be the only thing that would deter me from using such a thing as a tarp.


3

I usually use trekking poles when walking and have been for over 20 years as it helps prevent knee injury so I would use them with a tarp. Since you want to use a dedicated pole for a tarp which is lightweight, you could have a look at this one http://www.backpackinglight.co.uk/shelter-accessories/WA114.html from a UK website dedicated to lightweight gear. ...


3

This happened to me too - once we took a plastic tarp with us instead of a tent. Terrible storm catched us. But we sweated under the plastic tarp so horrible that we preferred to stay out on the rain and kept only our bags under it. Condensation occurs when humidity meets cold - where humidity is so high (or the temperature is so low) that it cannot remain ...


3

The key differentiator between tarps and more modern tent material is the breathability and wicking you get from modern materials. Modern tents are very effective at passing moisture outside, but even then, you still see the recommendation that you don't let anything touch the inside of the tent during the night as moisture will take the easiest route. ...


3

Most tarps have a coating applied to them. DWR should be avoided, it's only water resistant and will eventually drip. Silicone impregnated (aka silnylon or sil-nylon) is lighter than polyurethane-coated, and is supposed to be equally waterproof, but some people say silnylon can mist during heavy rains but it's more likely from condensation than ...


2

The big difference in price / quality is the weight. A builders tarp that would normally be transported on a truck does not need to be as light as one that you would carry on your back. There are also some that have design details, like being able to combine 2 to make a tent.


2

Let's look at the physics behind where all the condensation came from. At night the air gets colder, but the ground has a lot of "thermal mass", so stays much closer to the average day/night temperature. This means at night the moisture from the ground will be entering the air at the ground, but that air will cool as it rises. That increases the water ...


1

You could also have a look at the "Reflect Wedge" setup for the ALPKIT.COM Rig 3.5 Tarp in this PDF document on ALPKIT.COM. Although they show a bike and its wheel being used to support the tarp, you could of course so the same thing with trekking poles or similar. bearbonesbikepacking.blogspot.co.uk also has some examples of how you can setup the Rig 3.5 ...


1

Many ultra light tents which use trekking poles as part of the framing offer the alternative of using carbon fiber poles (1-2oz), carbon fiber and fiberglass (1.8oz), or aluminium (4oz). I used one carbon fiber pole over a long period of time for the awning of my LightHeart Solo tent (they only sell aluminium now). In one of my first outing with the carbon ...


1

This does not answer your direct question in the sense that it does not prevent condensation (so please bear with me), but.. ..a lightweight bivy with a water resistant and very breathable (rather than waterproof) top fabric on top of a groundsheet will protect your sleeping bag from the outside and add a bit of warmth. These weigh from 100-200g upwards, ...


1

There are a few things to think about: Fabric. Selection of fabric will affect weight and durability. Whatever you get, make sure it's UV resistant, and you should probably consider something with rip-stop. For me, the ultrasil nylon is a bit light (I doubt it would handle much of a tree branch falling on it). At the same time, a durable canvas tarp ...



Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible