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  1. #1
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    Hanging a tarp in Florida?

    First off, hello. This is my first post. Like my user name implies I mostly have camped and hiked with a 8x10 tarp. While searching info about the legality of stringing up my tarp with some paracord since moving to Florida I have seen lots of older and recent post about rules and regs of a similar nature regarding hammocks and hammocks only. Now after all the reading I seems it is ok to hang a hammock most places now in Florida, and I'm thinking hard on a hammock purchase. However, I am still uncertain how those regulations relate to simply suspending a tarp from a ridgeline. Any input would be appreciated.

    Also, being new to south Florida. Is there any place around to hike in 4 miles set up camp any place that looks good and hike out the next day?? Or do I mostly have to drive north a few hours. I've seen Big Cypress has a big back country but I'm not into wading..not sure how much dry hiking is there or how to find it.

    Thanks for helping the newby.

  2. #2
    olddog's Avatar
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    Welcome aboard from Lakeland. From what I gather there isn't a lot of hangs down that way. MADD777 and O-boy are from West Palm and head up this way for hangs. As far as hanging anywhere in Florida there are still some restrictions. The trial period for hanging in State Parks has ended and from what I gather is on a park by park basis until the state makes a final ruling. Call ahead. Better yet watch the post and join us up here in central Florida for some fantastic hangs. Mid January, the 4th Annual Florida Hang is a do not miss. Around 100 hangers from all over the eastern US that will except you as kin and feed you even better. The 3rd ? Annual Sherpa Hang in Lake Wales Ridge State Forest is in the first weekend after Valentines Day and is a mini version of the Florida Hang. We will probably be getting together for a hike and hang in Green Swamp around the end of March, first of April. At that point our season will end due to the higher temps. Last Feb. half of the Sherpa hang ended up cooling off in the creek so you never know what Mother nature will deal us.
    Most of us end up poorer here but richer for being here. Olddog, Fulltime hammocker, 365 nights a year.

  3. #3
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    Thank you for the welcome. The trial period I read about. Does it apply only to hammocks? I'm assuming the same or greater restrictions apply to only setting up a tarp..since I use simple cord..but then again there is very little weight applied to the tree itself. Outside of the parks..is it generally allowed?

  4. #4
    Senior Member YeahIdIDThat's Avatar
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    Welcome to the forums!

    Big hello from miami!
    For me it always seems to depend on the prick with the big hat or a clip board..
    LoL ive been allowed to hang a hammock and tarp with no issue whats so ever.. But ive also been told that I cant hang anything on the tress! Even if it doesnt damage them? Ive even been told that they would call the cops and fine me? So I normally just ask if its ok if its within a camp ground.. Hope that helps some ?
    .,====,_o00o
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    It's not procrastinating, its proactively delaying the implementation of the energy-intensive phase of the project until the enthusiasm factor is at its maximum effectiveness.

    So Many projects...
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  5. #5
    Senior Member FLScouthanger's Avatar
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    Concur that your best course is to call ahead and ask. I often hang in the state parks in this area. With the exception of one park about 50 miles from here, I've never had an issue. Also, my son is into UL/minimalist and only uses a tarp and he's never had any problems up here.

    Please let us know the outcome once you "test the waters" down there.

  6. #6
    Prefers life at 12 MPH. FLRider's Avatar
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    Call ahead and ask, yes.

    Per this post in this thread, yes, you can hang in FL state parks now. You do need a minimum of 1" wide straps for both your tarp and hammock--that is, the tarp needs to be hung from straps in addition to the hammock. Also, if the call ahead to the state park doesn't work out, try e-mailing the DEP rep, Mr. Patrick Bateman, per this post in that same thread.

    As to other locations, all of the St. John's WMA properties that you can camp at have no problems with hammocks, and I've yet to run into trouble at any of the state forests (though those may require a call ahead; I've heard tell of trouble in a couple of spots). Most private campgrounds I've stayed at haven't had any trouble either, assuming that they were campgrounds rather than RV parks.

    Hope it helps!
    "Just prepare what you can and enjoy the rest."
    --Floridahanger

  7. #7
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    Thank you. That does help somewhat. however, I have never used any 1" straps. That might require some research. I simply use paracord or occasionally a bungee chord or two. All we seem to have around here are mostly WMAs and a couple mosre distant small state forest areas. Ay idea if i would need those 1" straps there? I have yet to find any real isolated camping spots. I have spoken to some people about Big Cypress...but that seems to be mostly water walking. Ayone know of any area this time of year were i can atleast walk in a mile and set up camp on dry land? ..or it that hopng for too much in that area?

    Thanks again.

  8. #8
    Prefers life at 12 MPH. FLRider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TarpCamper View Post
    Thank you. That does help somewhat. however, I have never used any 1" straps. That might require some research. I simply use paracord or occasionally a bungee chord or two. All we seem to have around here are mostly WMAs and a couple mosre distant small state forest areas. Ay idea if i would need those 1" straps there? I have yet to find any real isolated camping spots. I have spoken to some people about Big Cypress...but that seems to be mostly water walking. Ayone know of any area this time of year were i can atleast walk in a mile and set up camp on dry land? ..or it that hopng for too much in that area?

    Thanks again.
    First off, sorry for the delay in getting back to you.

    Onward, though...most places other than state parks, you won't have a problem with a tarp being hung with just cordage--as long as you exercise a bit of common sense. Obviously, hanging it exceptionally tight from a small tree with thin bark is contraindicated. Otherwise, I've yet to hear about any problems with that.

    The reason that the state parks are so...specific...is because of an old law on the books that forbade tying anything to a plant. Not even hanging something, simply tying a knot around a tree was illegal in state parks. Reason being, we get a lot of tourists in the state parks and not all of them are...hrm...the most conscientious stewards of the land, let's say.

    As to the West Palm area, unfortunately, the closest largish camping area I know of to there is Jonathan Dickinson State Park in Hobe Sound. But...when I was living down there, I didn't do an whole heckofalot of camping, to be honest. There are a few folks down your way who might be able to answer that better than I. I think some of the spoil islands north of you might be worth checking out, from some of the things old friends used to say about camping on them back when I was in high school, but, again, no personal experience with them.

    Sorry that I couldn't be of more help there.
    "Just prepare what you can and enjoy the rest."
    --Floridahanger

  9. #9
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    Thanks

    Thanks again.

  10. #10
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    Bluefield Ranch

    Quote Originally Posted by TarpCamper View Post
    Is there any place around to hike in 4 miles set up camp any place that looks good and hike out the next day?? Or do I mostly have to drive north a few hours.
    If you don't mind driving a little over an hour, there is a cool spot in St Lucie County called Bluefield Ranch. It's a four mile hike from the parking to the primitive campsites. We've been there 4 times, and have always had the place to ourselves. CLICK HERE for more info. Try it out, you won't regret it!

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