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  1. #31
    alifeoutdoors's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cmoulder View Post

    Thankfully (or unfortunately, lol) there are plenty of options to choose from.
    Sometimes I think my bank is going to send me an email asking "good god man how many tarps do you need?"
    Once you're lost in twilight's blue, you don't find your way, the way finds you.

  2. #32
    Senior Member Wlb007's Avatar
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    Nov 2013
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    Upstate SC
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    Henn Exp lite or WB XLC
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    For those that are always able to stay dry and warm, good job, you are better at this than me and probably most for sure.

    A thru hiker or someone who is able to spend 5 nights a month in the woods is certainly an expert. For those that spend a few nights a year in the woods I believe a larger tarp is appropriate and will make their experiences far more enjoyable.

    There are far more efficient ways to drop pack weight than to cut a few ounces of shelter. I spend about 20 nights a year in the woods and can't pull it off with the smaller tarps. Let's consider that the majority of the people reading this forum are on the less experienced side. I want them to have the best experience possible. The larger tarps are more forgiving and no heavier than a tarp and UQ protector combo, maybe lighter, so why carry two pieces of gear that are less diverse than one larger one.

    It is not just rain that can make you miserable. If you can see the under quilt beneath the tarp the wind can rob heat from it. It seems to me that wind chill is exponential on the UQ because of its large surface area. A 10 mile an hour wind seems to rob 30 degrees or more from your UQ performance.

    In the photo here it was 60 degrees with a 10 mile per hour wind and my back was quite cold because I was too tired to get up and pull the edges in to block the wind coming in from the far side. I was using a HG Phoenix 40 but it was unable to hold my heat. Had I set up the tarp with the edges or at least the upwind edge pulled in closer or gotten up and done so, it would have completely covered the UQ from the wind. With a smaller tarp it becomes extremely difficult to block the wind from the UQ without an UQ protector.

    Anything may be possible with experience, lots of available trees with proper distance between them, good angle to the wind and lots of set up time. My opinion is that most people reading this forum will be far better off in almost all situations with a superfly or palace size tarp. Putting too many hangers under small tarps will put a lot of them back on the ground or in bed and a lot more gear in the for sale thread. Good for people looking for a deal on high end gear but not so much so for people looking for a better nights sleep in the woods.

    IMG_0246.jpg

  3. #33
    Senior Member HoosierT's Avatar
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    Mar 2016
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    Fishers, IN
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    Fortunately, I haven't gotten wet from splashing under my standard-width cuben tarp. However, the issue I have had was that I had to pitch the tarp so low that the sides would touch my hammock/UQ if the wind blew enough and the condenstion on the inside of the tarp would cause my gear to get damp. For me, that's not the end of the world and I'll take that for the weight savings on longer hikes. For a weekend hike, I'll take my 12' Membrane Silpoly tarp with doors every time.

  4. #34
    dakotaross's Avatar
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    Oct 2006
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    Chamblee, GA
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mshanger View Post
    ...That first night my under quilt got soaked and muddy... ...or I could set up over soft ground that wouldn't allow as much splash. But that's rarely the case especially on the AT where it's bare packed ground. What's yalls thoughts and experiences?
    Um, my experience on the AT is vastly different. But I've sort of learned to not camp at shelters or existing cleared tent sites. Besides the foot traffic of the trail, bare packed ground is the result of tents.
    "I wonder if anyone else has an ear so tuned and sharpened as I have, to detect the music, not of the spheres, but of earth, subtleties of major and minor chord that the wind strikes upon the tree branches. Have you ever heard the earth breathe... ?"
    - Kate Chopin

  5. #35
    Chesapeake's Avatar
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    Jul 2016
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    Carpenters Point, Maryland
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    Quote Originally Posted by SilvrSurfr View Post
    I also think that weather and terrain have a huge impact on what tarp people feel is adequate. I just go too many different places where the winds are shifty and strong. I'm pretty sure that someone in Alabama could get by with a tiny asym tarp and feel it was perfectly adequate for 95% of storms. I lived in Alabama for 15 years and don't ever recall blowing precipitation with constantly-shifting 40 mph winds like we experience here in New Jersey.

    And someone in south Jersey would probably do just fine with a small asym tarp. I've been camping in the Pine Barrens for about eight years, and there have only been three occasions where wind-blown precipitation was an issue. The weather is remarkably consistent in the Pine Barrens, so I can see how someone would conclude that they don't need a full-sized tarp with doors like the Superfly or Winter Palace.
    Totally agree with SS here. Weather and terrain are HUGE when it comes to the kind of tarp people feel will work best for them. When I first decided that I want to get totally involved with hammocks and ditch the tent, I still had A LOT to learn and thought the Snugpak 1010 would be fine since its 15' + on the diagonal. That was all good until the first night I got wind and rain blowing in hard off the water, up the hill and right under my 1010 Snugpak tarp that gave me little to no protection from blowing rain since it could only be pitched as a diamond .Even with it in storm mode, the coverage it gave me was inadequate at best so I started saving for a tarp that wasn't a square/diamond, and would give me better protection from blowing rain and at times, very strong winds.

    At first I tried the Henessey Typhoon, which did give me better coverage, but was just too small. So, with winter fast approaching and still having not solved the problem, I decided to get the Wilderness Logics Old Man Winter and use it year round.... the doors deployed as needed in colder/wetter conditions and tied back when not needed. This worked great since I had lots more coverage from blowing rain than the Snugpak and even Typhoon when I had it pitched as tight as possible and the doors deployed since it was a much longer and WIDER tarp than the Henessey.

    The terrain at my house almost 100% dictated what kind of tarp I needed , or would work for that matter. Especially this time of year, I can count on strong winds off of the bay blowing directly at the broadside of my tarp pretty much every evening , and spring T-storms with rain that follows the same general direction..... And this is all due to the location of my property in relation to the bay, the steep angle of the hill that goes from my yard down to my beach and how my trees are positioned in my yard. Factoring all that together along with just knowing from experience how certain weather conditions are different at my house because of the terrain helped me to choose a tarp that would work best for me in my specific situation. The OMW has been great here at home, but wanted something for hiking/camping that was a hex and would take up a little less room in my pack. After looking around I went with the 12' Chill Gorilla Hex and so far it's done great on the trail AND here at home as well.
    " The best pace is a suicide pace, and today looks like a good day to die." ~ Steve Prefontaine

  6. #36
    New Member Mshanger's Avatar
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    Booneville ms
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    Quote Originally Posted by dakotaross View Post
    But I've sort of learned to not camp at shelters or existing cleared tent sites. Besides the foot traffic of the trail, bare packed ground is the result of tents.
    I try to stay at shelters or established camps in keeping with Leave No Trace principles. With all the foot traffic on the At the last thing we need is people tramping down new areas off trail.

    I don't think this whole ordeal has anything to do with experience or misuse of equipment. I have hiked hundreds of miles with other tarps mainly my sil membrane and never had this issue. I spend many nights a month out using tarps and usually do a couple of long distance/section hikes a year using a tarp. I think this is more a case with how much lack of protection you are able to put up with or how much you just "want" to have a Cuben tarp. Believe me I wanted to have a Cuben tarp the weight savings are nominal really compared to a membrane tarp but I still wanted the Cuben. I found it lacking in coverage for me and when I did the math on a equivalent winter palace tarp I found I was going to be dropping $510 (camo version) to save 6ounces compared to a membrane tarp with the same coverage and qualities that would cost half that. I don't think 6ounces is going to make or break anybody even a thruhiker unless your chasing some label like super ultralight or something. I think I'll tote the extra 6ounces have awesome coverage in any storm and spend the other $260 I woulda spent on something else. Others mileage may vary. HYOH
    Last edited by Mshanger; 06-07-2018 at 12:36.

  7. #37
    dakotaross's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mshanger View Post
    I try to stay at shelters or established camps in keeping with Leave No Trace principles. With all the foot traffic on the At the last thing we need is people tramping down new areas off trail.
    Although not untrue, still a bit passe. Here's LNT's input on the matter.

    If group hanging, then it applies to camp in more of a group area to limit impact. If solo, or even a couple of hikers, the overall impact is negligible and it helps overused sites recover (if used less frequently).
    "I wonder if anyone else has an ear so tuned and sharpened as I have, to detect the music, not of the spheres, but of earth, subtleties of major and minor chord that the wind strikes upon the tree branches. Have you ever heard the earth breathe... ?"
    - Kate Chopin

  8. #38

    Join Date
    May 2018
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    Savannah, Ga
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    Quote Originally Posted by dakotaross View Post
    Although not untrue, still a bit passe. Here's LNT's input on the matter.

    If group hanging, then it applies to camp in more of a group area to limit impact. If solo, or even a couple of hikers, the overall impact is negligible and it helps overused sites recover (if used less frequently).
    I agree. The impact of hundreds of people walking along the same trail continuously probably has much more impact. Maybe bloggers
    will come up with some anecdotal evidence in 10 years and camping away from campsites will become the new mantra!.

  9. #39
    cmoulder's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ohoopee View Post
    I agree. The impact of hundreds of people walking along the same trail continuously probably has much more impact. Maybe bloggers
    will come up with some anecdotal evidence in 10 years and camping away from campsites will become the new mantra!.
    Agree. I've 'stealthed' many, many times in places where nobody has camped before and where nobody will again. And that was with a tent or tarp/bivy... it's even easier with a hammock. I've slept on tops of mountains on bare rock with a bivy and pad. Carry a very small pack (so people think you're a day hiker), don't pull out stuff until very late, pack up before dawn, no harm no foul, witness fantastic sunrise.
    UL, because nobody ever asks "How can I make my pack heavier?"

    Simplicity boils down to two steps: Identify the essential. Eliminate the rest. Leo Babauta

  10. #40
    aka 'Extra' MikekiM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mshanger View Post
    I have since posting this sold the HG standard and just put in a order for a UGQ winterdream in the sil membrane. Yes it will knock me out of sub 10lb base weight but I will still be around 11lbs. I doubt I will notice in my ULA OHM. I looked at the winter palace but after having the first Cuben tarp I just wasn't in love with the Cuben. The palace would have saved me 7ounces for $200 more than the winterdream and I know I like the membrane material already so I just went with the UGQ

    I've struggled with the idea of a DCF tarp... I went from a Mamajamba to a Superfly to two DIY silpoly hex's, one with doors one without. I thought about going to the HG Standard for the weight savings (it's significant, no doubt), but I had become accustomed to the added size of the WB tarps. I never got wet under either of them. I changed to silpoly and shaved a measurable amount of weight while keep the side protection and gaining a foot at the ridgeline. Win, Win. I'm still not in DCF weight territory, and I'm pretty sure going to DCF would put me sub ten pound territory (if I use the doorless hex, I'll be a snick over 10lbs), but the lack of side protection on a smaller tarp just hasn't seemed worth it.
    * The difficulty of finding any given trail marker is directly proportional to the importance of the consequences of failing to find it.

    * I can lift all the weight I want at the gym. Walking shouldn't be a workout. ~ Just Bill


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