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  1. #1

    Help with a Tarp

    hey Everyone.

    So I now have my hammock and tarp and soon will have an underquilt. I am trying to get everything finalized before my trip in a week and a half.

    I have a couple of questions about the tarp. I just got the Mac Cat ultra.

    I was wondering what is the best way to tie the guy lines onto the tarp?

    Also how do you guys suspend the tarp between the trees. Just with the guy lines? Would a strap and cinch buckles be easier or better? I really have no experience here so any help would be appreciated. I should be better with knots but really am not that good.

    Also I am assuming just normal tent pegs will do the job?

    Thanks for your help!

  2. #2
    Senior Member JalapeñoBen's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Beaverton, OR
    WBBB 1.0 dbl
    Edge w/ Dutch CRL
    D. Buckle/Whoopies
    There are 2 basic ways to hang a tarp (between trees). A 2 part ridge line and a continuous ridge line (or CRL). My personal preference is a CRL b/c I can have it setup without the tarp until I need it (for star gazing, laziness, etc). You can actually order a complete CRL or 2 part ridge line from a few places, I'll post some links for you. The best thing you can do is watch Shug's videos. He knows a lot more than I do and he's quite entertaining! For the side guy lines, a lot of people like shock cord, you have a lot of options. You can even just use an S-biner and wrap it around a stake if you had to!

    Ridge lines sold complete-


    2 part RL

    Dutch- He's the man, and can make you a CRL if you ask nicely. I also really like his innovations for attaching ridge lines to the tree. Look at the hook and flyz there's a little video.

    Shug's videos- Watch these first! Then do some research and decide! Start with video 4 for tarp stuff, but watch em all!

    These products are just a few suggestions, there's a lot of other stuff out there. I'm sure someone else will chime in as well... maybe even a Shug sighting!

    Happy Hangin'
    Pass the Apple Pie

  3. #3
    Senior Member griesl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    SW VA
    No Sniv & Yeti
    just about everything i know i learned from shug on youtube. pop a beer, hit play and enjoy.

    i use a continuous ridgeline with a siberian hitch (real easy to tie) on one end and a figure 9 on a prusik on the other. that gets the ridgeline nice and tight. then i have two loops with prusik knots on each end with mini s biners attached that i use to hook the tarp to. this way, i can set the ridgeline, attach the tarp and adust it laterally as needed. sounds much more complicated than it really is. check out the videos, and you'll see. also, i have a 12" loop of shock cord on each tie-out (except the ridgeline) and then 10 feet of guy line attached to that with mini linelocks. some folks use heavier and fancier stuff, but mine's never let me down. good luck. btw, that's a real fine tarp you have there.

  4. #4
    Bubba's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Ontario, Canada
    WBBB 1.7 SL
    WB Superfly
    WB and UGQ
    Whoopies or Straps
    You can do one of two thing to suspend your tarp from the trees. The first is use a continuous ridgeline (CRL) that goes from tree to tree. Then you attach you tarp to the ridgeline via prusik loops. These allow you to centre your tarp easily and then when its centred you slide them until the tarp ridgeline is taut. You can either put your tarp over or under your CRL.

    The second method is to tie each end of the tarp to the trees. This method is more difficult to centre over the hammock unless you use some kind of adjustable hitch or something similar on each end which is what I have been doing lately.

    The CRL has the advantage of being able to hang stuff like wet clothes if you rig it under you tarp. Some point out the possibility if water wicking its way down the CRL under the tarp and therefor prefer setting up the CRL over the tarp. Still others don't like the possibility of wear cause by the CRL against the tarp when set up under it. Either way works. Lots of threads discussing it if you want to search.

    For a simple tie outs you can just tie a length of cord to the D rings with a two half hitches or even just a square knot and loop it around the stake and then make a tautline hitch to tighten and adjust the tension.

    There are so many different ways using knots and hardware. I always suggest that its good to know a handfull of knots first so that should you loose your hardware or if it fails, then you will still be able to use the cordage effectively. The site I linked to is great and its really worth while knowing even just a few.
    Don't let life get in the way of living.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Flangler's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Arlington, VA
    WBBB 1.1DL
    CTF3 Cuben
    Phoenix 3S, GoLite


    As usual...friendly, fantastic advice all around.

    +1 on the CRL from After one or two practice tries, it really makes hanging a tarp incredibly simple. It sure did for this no-knot-knowing noob.

    Add fantastic customer service and super fast shipping, and you're in the trees! Best of luck on your trip; looking forward to some pics.
    “Simplicity in all things is the secret of the wilderness and one of its most valuable lessons. I think the matter of simplicity goes further than just food, equipment, and unnecessary gadgets; it goes into the matter of thoughts and objectives as well. When in the wilds, we must not carry our problems with us or the joy is lost.” -Sigurd Olson

  6. #6
    Moderator raiffnuke's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Pittsfield, MA
    HG WP,WB Superfly
    Hammock Gear
    +1 on the CRL. Nice, simple, effective.

  7. #7
    Senior Member JaxHiker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Jacksonville, FL
    Lite Owl; Light Hiker
    Toxaway;MacCat Dlx
    Burrow; Incubator
    I've been using a 2-line system for the ridgeline since I started but I'm switching over to a CRL. I'm not happy with the fiddle factor it seems to be with the 2-line. ymmv but I'm over it.
    JaxHiker aka Kudzu - WFA
    Florida Trail Association: NE FL Trail Coordinator (Gold Head to Stephen Foster)
    Trail Issues? Please let me know.
    Blazing Trails with Kudzu @
    Follow me @idratherbhiking

  8. #8
    As always some great advice from everyone!

    I think I am going to go with the CRL, from the sounds of it will be a lot simpler and all around easier.

    My only problem now is I am pressed for time as I leave at the end of the week for my trip and am not sure if if I were to order the CRL from whoppie slings if they would arrive on time.

    So my question for you now is, is it possible to make your own CRL? If so what would I need. I tried searching for a DIY CRL thread but had no luck.

    But if any of you have some advice to that area that would be greatly appreciated! Thanks again!

  9. #9
    Senior Member gargoyle's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Middlebury, IN
    G-Bird II
    Ogee tarp
    AHE TQ DIY Down UQ
    whoop dutch!
    A rope strung from tree to tree, add two continous loops to form the prussiks. Attachments can be a carabiner or someting tricky like a toggle and marlin spike hitch, or simply tie everything. Knots do work
    Ambulo tua ambulo.

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