When I am standing on a branch looking at the 70 foot gap between me and the ground the last thing I want to do is jump around trying to figure out how to set up my tarp, so I usually don't . However, tomorrow will be the first time I bivy in the treetops where I can't just rappel to the ground and hike a half mile to my car so I decided to make a tarp that fits my unique needs when I am setting up my campsite in the tree canopy.
1- Sleek design that will fit anywhere my hammock will.
2- No guy out points required because there are usually no anchor spots.
3- Allows easy hammock entry from any possible angle.
4- Cheap so if it gets destroyed during the climb I can make another.
5- Lightweight (duh!)
6- Does not get in the way of my climbing rope (my safety line!)
Here is what I came up with. It couldn't possibly be easier to set up, just unpack and clip my hammock through it.
My winter insulation (1 xl ridgerest and 1 reg ridgrest for the core)
Here is a closeup for anyone curious as to how I hang my hammock. It is a prusik knot tied to each end of the hammock which allows my too tighten or loosen my hammock by simply sliding the knot back and forth on the ridgeline.
The tarp tapers at the feet and clips to the end so I can bunch it down or pull it up with ease.
Here is the tarp deployed.
Inside the tarp.
I am OK with a little snow getting into my hammock but if the temps rise and it starts raining I can go totally bombproof and zip my rain jacket over the opening (only problem at that point would be condensation).
I will be leaving tomorrow morning for the Superior Hiking Trail so when I get back I will post pictures and a link at the end of this thread. I am hoping to break my hammock height record so I am PSYCHED! Let me know what you think!
EDIT: Total investment into BOTH my hammock and tarp is 31 dollars and 3 hours of work.