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Thread: Tent or Tarp?

  1. #41
    Join Date
    May 2021
    Cougar, WA
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    I prefer tent but that may be from spending my teen years where the mosquito was the state bird. My first experience with a tarp was with no knowledge of them beforehand and wrapping myself up as a burrito kept the rain off but the condensation and sweat in. I'll have to try one again one day.

  2. #42
    Join Date
    Jan 2019
    Feedback Score
    1 (100%)
    A real tent will keep out bugs and ground water, and it's going to be easier to set up. Any modern tent is pretty stable on its own with your pack and stuff in it (or rocks), whereas a tarp is always going to rely on trees or stakes. You have to be super selective about where you set up a tarp, and maybe you won't be able to pound in stakes or there won't be a conveniently placed tree to tie off to. Even then you have to use a ground cloth, dig a trench around it in case it rains, etc. Whereas a decent tent you can pretty much pitch it anywhere. Even if the water is sheeting off the ground, you will stay dry unless it gets like six inches high, and even a city rat dimwit can probably avoid that in most cases with a little common sense. BTW, trees typically grow where the water flows, so all the best places to pitch tarps and hang hammocks might turn into a river if it rains.

    Were it me, I would get a 3 season tent and then maybe a bivvy for the winter. 4 season tents are great for holding in warmth, but you will dearly miss the breathability of a 3 season in anything but extreme cold. It will be stifling in even moderately warm weather, and you'll wake up in a puddle of condensation.
    Last edited by okie; 05-22-21 at 02:09.

  3. #43
    Join Date
    Jan 2018
    Feedback Score
    1 (100%)
    Quote Originally Posted by jsbhike View Post
    Kifaru Super Tarp with annex plus para stove.
    Picked up a Mountainsmith Mountain Shelter today:

    No overnight yet, but did set it up and initial observations are:

    - setup was quick and is shown step by step on the stuff sack

    - the shelter comes with aluminum V shaped pegs, but requires 2 trekking poles which are used tips down with handles up in to reinforced pockets. The lengths of the poles are set according to marks printed on the inside wall of the shelter. Cutting tree limbs to length is possible, but would require a couple rags to protect the pockets(not that reinforced.)

    - the material weight/thickness/feel is similar to the old GoLite Shangri La shelters so I assume that(combined with what appears to be decent sewing quality) means it will be able to withstand fairly strong winds and snow loads.

    - semi educated guess, I think this is fairly close to what was the Kifaru Paratipi as far as size goes.

    Basically I had seen these and the closed up and zippered front(versus the Super Tarp tied on/safety pinned on front with multipl velcro pieces to close) got me interested enough to try one.
    Last edited by jsbhike; 02-13-24 at 20:09.

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