I am a new backpacker at 43 years old. My son and I took our first trip last summer and thoroughly enjoyed it! We used 50% borrowed equipment as a trial run and I felt like I was sleeping in a coffin in my sisters tent. I decided after reading BPL and HF that I would rather try hanging than invest in my own lightweight tent. I recently purchased a GT Skeeter Beeter PRO and I'll plan to start by using my BA pad. Now I will start looking for a tarp. I assume when the weather is nice, you don't even need a tarp. Do most people always tarp as a precaution?
I also still need to purchase a bag/quilt and was thinking of going with a lightweight down bag like a Marmot Arete 40 degree since we'll do mostly warmer weather trips. Y'all are a wealth of knowledge, so any advice is welcomed!