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  1. #11
    Prefers life at 12 MPH. FLRider's Avatar
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    Jun 2011
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    The answer, as you might've guessed from all of the above responses is, "It depends."

    If you expect heavy dew or frost, a tarp will help to create a microclimate for you that limits those on your hammock. If you expect aerial bombardment of the nasty kind, it'll help prevent that.

    But, if neither of those is a particular concern for you (and most times, it's not for me, and I live in an area where there're always birds and humidity), you can most definitely go topless. I prefer to leave mine set up in the Velcro keeper straps I use for it (serves the same function as snakeskins), with the stakes for it planted at pre-positioned spots, so that--should the skies decide to open up at 3:00 AM--I can have the tarp covering me in less than sixty seconds.

    That being said, make your own assessment of conditions where you're sleeping. Being wet (or worse) is less than fun...
    "Just prepare what you can and enjoy the rest."
    --Floridahanger

  2. #12

    Join Date
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    And to add to the list in a group camp it adds an element of privacy some folks like for various reasons including obscuring moons. ;-)
    YMMV

    HYOH

    Free advice worth what you paid for it. ;-)

  3. #13
    DaddyDaddy's Avatar
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    Jan 2013
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    Quote Originally Posted by old4hats View Post
    The times I have hung without a tarp I woke up with dew on everything, not good. For me the views at night are a non issue, I go to sleep pretty quick.
    Same for me. I'm good for about five minutes and then I'm a log in a bag. I do, however, set up in porch mode to see the sunrise. One of my favorite parts or the experience.
    See my store @ http://msdaddydaddy.wordpress.com/

    No wound? No scar?
    Yet, as the Master shall the servant be,
    And piercd are the feet that follow Me.
    But thine are whole; can he have followed far
    Who hast no wound or scar?

    Excerpt from a poem by Amy Carmichael
    Missionary to orphans in India.
    She suffered much -- and bore much eternal fruit.

    There are Crock Pots and there are Microwaves. The world does microwaves; God does crock pots.

  4. #14
    Whoooo Buddy)))) Shug's Avatar
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    Oct 2007
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheSaxMan View Post
    Hi All,

    In watching a lot of the videos (Shug's videos, mostly), I've noticed that the tarp is always used at night. I was wondering if this is necessary on really clear nights, or does the tarp serve other purposes besides keeping the rain out?

    I have a solid tarp from Hennessy, and it would block my view of the moon. :-)
    I sometimes sleep with mine just in snakeskin's or one side deployed and pulled over. Just depends. Many a night without though.....
    No tarp used on video below. though in the morning my hammock was full of spruce needles.
    Shug

    Whoooo Buddy)))) I Love Onions, Grits, Greens, Livermush, NC Style BBQ, Potted Meat, Anchovies, 'Naner Puddin", Peanut Butter Pie, Red Velvet Cake and Cocoa and Straaaaaawwwwberrrry Milk and Coffee Crisps....
    I Hope Heaven has a Bakery!!!!



    Shug's YouTube Videos

    Hammock How-To Videos ..... Essentials For Noobs

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  5. #15
    Senior Member Cannibal's Avatar
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    Twas a long time ago, but I remember it well. It was a different time back in 2007; winter tarps were still an experiment and those traveling down the new path beaten in place by partial length underquilts were scorned and accused heretics. They were dark days, but they built tough hangers.

    December in the Rockies can be stunning. A mile high and still on the ground allows a humble hanger to see parts of the cosmos previously unknown, even surrounded by the lights of civilization. On this night, the Eve of that fat elf's visit, the stars were shining brightly as I went outside with my shameful new partial length underquilt. As I climbed into my hammock to test its hang, I could not help but be distracted by the beauty above me. No clouds, beautiful moon, and a plethora of stars visible to my weary eyes.

    The tarp lay but a stone throw away. It was there, at the ready, but what need of a tarp on a night such as the one I was enjoying. It was to be cold, but the sky was as clear as Caribbean waters. "Nay", I say to a tarp. Maybe I'll even catch a peek of that chubby dude in the red suit as he makes approach to the roof if I leave the tarp where it lay. I slumbered away that night as comfortable as could be, even when the thermometer registered a blustery eleven degree.

    What did I learn?





    I was new, so a few things were learned.





    But what I learned best, is one of those things that have to be learned the hard way.






    I rediscovered what a sneaky bad-word Mama Nature can be.





    But what did I learn?



    Put up the tarp stupid!
    That's what I learned.
    Trust nobody!

  6. #16
    Old Gorge Rat Hawk-eye's Avatar
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    It's pretty nice without the tarp or with the tarp pulled back ... but unless you have a little breeze there's a good chance of waking up with a soaking from the morning dew in warmer weather. So mostly I'll just put it in a high porch mode. But if you have a cuben tarp ... that see through effect is mighty nice on a moon lit night!

    Just my opinion ... not necessarily the correct one

    WARNING: Will discuss Rhurbarb Strawberry Pie and Livermush at random.


    "A democracy is two wolves and a small lamb voting on what to have for dinner.
    Freedom under a constitutional republic is a well armed lamb contesting the vote." ... B.Franklin


    Home of the Gorge Rats: Linville Gorge
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  7. #17

    Join Date
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    I spent this weekend out, the night sky clear, woke up with my tarp soaked, the dew was present everywhere, inside and out.

  8. #18
    dakotaross's Avatar
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    Yeah, I'm in porch mode most all of the time. There are very few times when I'm hanging from trees that I have a real good view of the sky anyway, but I have done it occasionally where I just left the tarp in the skin. Good practice to set it up and stake it out beforehand, then put it back in the skin, leaving the stakes in a good position to simply slide the lines on them if/when the need arrives in the middle of the night.

    However, its this very thought of being able to lay back in my hammock and enjoy the full night sky that has me considering a Handy Hammock.

    @Cannibal... I haven't hung in CO yet, but from the last time I camped in RMNP, I can vouch for the amazing brightness of the sky there... in fact, I would've probably needed a tarp to shield my eyes from the burning brightness of the full moon!
    "If I weren't so weird, I wouldn't be so normal" -- scope

  9. #19
    Mr. Arrowhead pgibson's Avatar
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    I won't take my tarp out of my pack if I don't really feel like I will need it. I may need it for rain or wind or shade...so it gets hung up more than I like. But if it's calm and clear and I don't need the shade during the day then I really don't care to bother with a tarp. I like the open feel of going tarp less. I like to lay awake and watch the stars and try to spot satellites while comfortably reclined until I drift off. A bright full moon can hinder this some but I usually have a buff or my Black Rock hat to pull down over my eyes.
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  10. #20
    JaxHiker's Avatar
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    Here in Florida dew is an almost constant issue. Besides that most of what we have to hang from is pine so the tarp keeps the sap from ruining the rest of your gear.
    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 @ www.idratherbehiking.com
    Follow me @idratherbhiking

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