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    • Drybones wrote:

      TrafficJam wrote:

      Drybones wrote:

      TrafficJam wrote:

      About to spend my first night under the tarp. Excited and scared. Have always had 4 walls surrounding me. Here's to new adventures.
      Where you headed...I would like to join my son and d-i-l on their Roan Highlands hike this week end but I did something really, really, really stupid at the gym a few weeks back and my torn meniscus is acting up and I leave for the Tetons next Saturday so I'm trying to let it heal...hope it goes well, which I know it will.
      Oh no. Didnt that happen to you last year also? Thought you had it fixed. Hopefully it doesn't screw up your hike.
      Had a third of the meniscus removed from the right knee, the left has the same issue but seemed to have healed itself...as long as I'm not stupid.... was in a circuit breaker class and one of the stations was doing spinning round house kicks to a dummy, meniscus tears result from the foot being stationary and the knee turning, would have been okay doing the kicks bare footed but the shoes I had on gripped too well and the foot did not turn, I knew better than to do these, knew even better to stop when the first pain started....I just hate to cop out on exercises...and I have a lot of injuries to show for it.

      Was the dummy anyone we know?

      Good fortune on the healing.

      Lest we forget.....



      SSgt Ray Rangel - USAF
      SrA Elizabeth Loncki - USAF
      PFC Adam Harris - USA
      MSgt Eden Pearl - USMC
    • TrafficJam wrote:

      I did some things right and did some things wrong last night.

      What I did right...chose the perfect conditions and the perfect place for the maiden voyage. No one around so didn't worry about being a noob and didn't deal with rain.

      What I did wrong...everything else. :)

      Didn't add mitten hooks to the tarp for the bugnet and had to use those stupid tI shepherds stakes because my daughter took my other ones to a music festival. Had to set up in the dark and didn't realize the ground was sloped.

      It was breezy so I would get a tie-out staked, start on another, and the previous stake would come out of the ground. It took a little bit but finally got it fixed.

      The bugnet...Considered sleeping on top of it until I saw all the granddaddy long legs crawling around. It was rigged to stay off my face with an extra line but didn't work very well. I slept good until 2:30 and woke up with my face against the side of the tarp as I'd rolled a few inches down the slope. The sleeping pad and bug net had traveled also and the the pad was no longer under me but standing on its side and the bug net zipper under my shoulder.


      Overall, I slept better than normal (mainly because of the temp) and learned what to do before the next trip.
      Most of this can be fixed, but one night or two won't cut it as its minimalist.
      You do not have a bathtub floor. I would avoid flat ground, and ponding water areas.
      The net cannot touch your face as the mosquitoes freqently attact my ears and nose, I used a DWO moist towel to get asleep.
      If it is too breezy feel free to move the stakes closer to you to cut wind coming in on the sides. In heavy rain a different pitch on the tarp will be needed. Even in high wind I move my Hammock closer to the ground.

      Everything else appears to be practice? Got kids? let them use it in the backyard, then ask them how cool was it?
      Does the pad fit inside the net & bag?
      [IMG:http://i250.photobucket.com/albums/gg275/MarkSwarbrick/20160720_202015_zpst7hxduj3.jpg]
      Be wise enough to walk away from the nonsense around you! :thumbup:
    • “I did some things right and did some things wrong last night.

      What I did right...chose the perfect conditions and the perfect place for the maiden voyage.”

      TJ: Kudos for trying the technique, so add to your list of right things for the attempt.

      Most of my current camping companions won’t consider anything less than a RV let alone a tarp. I’m the only one still using a tent. However they are generous with allowing me to utilize the facilities. :)

      Lest we forget.....



      SSgt Ray Rangel - USAF
      SrA Elizabeth Loncki - USAF
      PFC Adam Harris - USA
      MSgt Eden Pearl - USMC
    • Wise Old Owl wrote:

      TrafficJam wrote:

      I did some things right and did some things wrong last night.

      What I did right...chose the perfect conditions and the perfect place for the maiden voyage. No one around so didn't worry about being a noob and didn't deal with rain.

      What I did wrong...everything else. :)

      Didn't add mitten hooks to the tarp for the bugnet and had to use those stupid tI shepherds stakes because my daughter took my other ones to a music festival. Had to set up in the dark and didn't realize the ground was sloped.

      It was breezy so I would get a tie-out staked, start on another, and the previous stake would come out of the ground. It took a little bit but finally got it fixed.

      The bugnet...Considered sleeping on top of it until I saw all the granddaddy long legs crawling around. It was rigged to stay off my face with an extra line but didn't work very well. I slept good until 2:30 and woke up with my face against the side of the tarp as I'd rolled a few inches down the slope. The sleeping pad and bug net had traveled also and the the pad was no longer under me but standing on its side and the bug net zipper under my shoulder.


      Overall, I slept better than normal (mainly because of the temp) and learned what to do before the next trip.
      Most of this can be fixed, but one night or two won't cut it as its minimalist.You do not have a bathtub floor. I would avoid flat ground, and ponding water areas.
      The net cannot touch your face as the mosquitoes freqently attact my ears and nose, I used a DWO moist towel to get asleep.
      If it is too breezy feel free to move the stakes closer to you to cut wind coming in on the sides. In heavy rain a different pitch on the tarp will be needed. Even in high wind I move my Hammock closer to the ground.

      Everything else appears to be practice? Got kids? let them use it in the backyard, then ask them how cool was it?
      Does the pad fit inside the net & bag?
      [IMG:http://i250.photobucket.com/albums/gg275/MarkSwarbrick/20160720_202015_zpst7hxduj3.jpg]
      Thank you for the advice. The bugnet has a bathtub floor and my kids are grown. But you're definitely right, I need more practice. Lots more practice.
      In life there are no limitations. Except stupidity. If you're stupid, you're screwed.

      Stephan Pastis
    • I just got a bug net with no floor. You can stake out the corners or tuck the edges under your pad. I'm going to try it with my polycro door film. With the bigger tarp I'm really not concerned with not having a bathtub floor, I can always prop the edge of the ground sheet up with something so water runs under it.
      "Dazed and Confused"
      Recycle, re-use, re-purpose
      Plant a tree
      Take a kid hiking
      Make a difference
    • While I really liked my Trailstar, I decided it was just too big for me. So I did some research and found that MLD used to make a Little Star, so I contacted Ron Bell and got some instructions on how to trim mine down to the Little Star. Out came the seam ripper to remove the tie outs and reinforcements. Then the hot knife. It's now 4" smaller all the way around the bottom and pitches on a lot less real estate. It's 2.5 ounces lighter and still a palace for one and all your gear and could squeeze in two. Now I'm really happy with it and need to field test it.
      "Dazed and Confused"
      Recycle, re-use, re-purpose
      Plant a tree
      Take a kid hiking
      Make a difference
    • LIhikers wrote:

      That looks good.
      Sure wish I could get Kathy to consider using a tarp.
      She insists on full enclosure because she's a bug magnet and wants to keep the bugs out.
      i have a cold weather bivy, a inner net with bathtub floor and a sea to summit insect treated net no floor to use with it.
      "Dazed and Confused"
      Recycle, re-use, re-purpose
      Plant a tree
      Take a kid hiking
      Make a difference
    • I'm in a DIY mood so I finally ordered the mitten hooks and elastic cord for my tarp and bug net bivy. Can't wait to work on it.

      ...also looking at materials to make a down skirt. It will be for extra warmth in camp.
      In life there are no limitations. Except stupidity. If you're stupid, you're screwed.

      Stephan Pastis
    • Wise Old Owl wrote:

      Tin Man wrote:

      I didn't know I was a tarp person until the time I realized I packed a tent footprint instead of a hammock. No biggie.
      Its OK to do both, No trees? pitch the tarp from the hammock. Use rocks to hold down the corners or make pegs from wood branches.
      If there are no trees, how are you going to pitch the hammock?
      "Dazed and Confused"
      Recycle, re-use, re-purpose
      Plant a tree
      Take a kid hiking
      Make a difference
    • jimmyjam wrote:

      Wise Old Owl wrote:

      Tin Man wrote:

      I didn't know I was a tarp person until the time I realized I packed a tent footprint instead of a hammock. No biggie.
      Its OK to do both, No trees? pitch the tarp from the hammock. Use rocks to hold down the corners or make pegs from wood branches.
      If there are no trees, how are you going to pitch the hammock?
      where's your faith? the hanger god said, "let there be trees and there were trees (perfectly spaced throughout the forest)".
      pray on it brother and you will see.
    • jimmyjam wrote:

      Wise Old Owl wrote:

      Tin Man wrote:

      I didn't know I was a tarp person until the time I realized I packed a tent footprint instead of a hammock. No biggie.
      Its OK to do both, No trees? pitch the tarp from the hammock. Use rocks to hold down the corners or make pegs from wood branches.
      If there are no trees, how are you going to pitch the hammock?
      I have used my hammock on the ground. Used the Walking sticks to pitch the tarp over it...
      Be wise enough to walk away from the nonsense around you! :thumbup:
    • chief wrote:

      jimmyjam wrote:

      Wise Old Owl wrote:

      Tin Man wrote:

      I didn't know I was a tarp person until the time I realized I packed a tent footprint instead of a hammock. No biggie.
      Its OK to do both, No trees? pitch the tarp from the hammock. Use rocks to hold down the corners or make pegs from wood branches.
      If there are no trees, how are you going to pitch the hammock?
      where's your faith? the hanger god said, "let there be trees and there were trees (perfectly spaced throughout the forest)".pray on it brother and you will see.
      The hanger god had a little too much alcohol last night while the friends & relatives were smoking a little weed. All is good.....


      Be wise enough to walk away from the nonsense around you! :thumbup:

      The post was edited 1 time, last by Wise Old Owl ().

    • Wise Old Owl wrote:

      chief wrote:

      jimmyjam wrote:

      Wise Old Owl wrote:

      Tin Man wrote:

      I didn't know I was a tarp person until the time I realized I packed a tent footprint instead of a hammock. No biggie.
      Its OK to do both, No trees? pitch the tarp from the hammock. Use rocks to hold down the corners or make pegs from wood branches.
      If there are no trees, how are you going to pitch the hammock?
      where's your faith? the hanger god said, "let there be trees and there were trees (perfectly spaced throughout the forest)".pray on it brother and you will see.
      The hanger god had a little too much alcohol last night while the friends & relatives were smoking a little weed. All is good.....


      technically busted is from the wings up, not the talons, whut cha got there is just a ole dusty stuffed bird. :D
    • Started the mods on my bug bivy and tarp. I attached mitten hooks to the ceiling of the tarp and stretchy cord to the bug bivy so the netting will hang off my face. It was so simple and turned out good.

      Next, I’m going to fashion an enclosure on one end for rain protection.

      I also want to attach a bag to the inside of the tarp for storing small essentials. I need to have my glasses handy at all times so I’ve been in a quandary about attaching it inside the bug bivy (there’s not much room) or outside. Or maybe two bags, one inside, one outside. Or maybe have a bag that lies loose on the ground under the tarp. Or just keep my pack next to me under the tarp with all my crap close by so no extra bag needed. :D
      In life there are no limitations. Except stupidity. If you're stupid, you're screwed.

      Stephan Pastis
    • Bo Peep wrote:

      Started the mods on my bug bivy and tarp. I attached mitten hooks to the ceiling of the tarp and stretchy cord to the bug bivy so the netting will hang off my face. It was so simple and turned out good.

      Next, I’m going to fashion an enclosure on one end for rain protection.

      I also want to attach a bag to the inside of the tarp for storing small essentials. I need to have my glasses handy at all times so I’ve been in a quandary about attaching it inside the bug bivy (there’s not much room) or outside. Or maybe two bags, one inside, one outside. Or maybe have a bag that lies loose on the ground under the tarp. Or just keep my pack next to me under the tarp with all my crap close by so no extra bag needed. :D
      if you have room inside, you could do like i do and keep those items in your hat laying just above your pillow. I put my headlight and earplugs in my ball cap and lay it right above my pillow.
      "Dazed and Confused"
      Recycle, re-use, re-purpose
      Plant a tree
      Take a kid hiking
      Make a difference
    • jimmyjam wrote:

      Bo Peep wrote:

      Started the mods on my bug bivy and tarp. I attached mitten hooks to the ceiling of the tarp and stretchy cord to the bug bivy so the netting will hang off my face. It was so simple and turned out good.

      Next, I’m going to fashion an enclosure on one end for rain protection.

      I also want to attach a bag to the inside of the tarp for storing small essentials. I need to have my glasses handy at all times so I’ve been in a quandary about attaching it inside the bug bivy (there’s not much room) or outside. Or maybe two bags, one inside, one outside. Or maybe have a bag that lies loose on the ground under the tarp. Or just keep my pack next to me under the tarp with all my crap close by so no extra bag needed. :D
      if you have room inside, you could do like i do and keep those items in your hat laying just above your pillow. I put my headlight and earplugs in my ball cap and lay it right above my pillow.
      Wouldn't your earplugs work better if they were in your ears? :D
    • Seriously thinking about using the tarp and bug bivy in a few weeks when i finish the BMT but haven’t figured out what to do in a heavy rain. I’m nervous about trying something new when I'm so comfortable with my tent...settting up, breaking down, etc.

      Today is a day off from work and commitments (except for my fiddle lesson) so plan to set it up in the backyard and sleep in it tonight.

      Just how miserable will I be in a downpour? Rephrase (misery is an attitude)...just how wet will i get in a downpour?

      Is plastic sheeting under the bug bivy recommended? Will the rain run under it or pool on top?

      Or is it something you have to experience and figure out for yourself?
      In life there are no limitations. Except stupidity. If you're stupid, you're screwed.

      Stephan Pastis
    • I think much depends upon where you pitch. If it's hard packed, you're going to have more risk of surface water running under your tarp. If you can pitch on softer forest duff, and have good tarp coverage, much less risk. Does your bug bivy have a bathtub floor of any sort? Seems to me there's a reason people look for bathtub floors in ground shelters, and it's not just for splash.

      Personally, I'd save the experimenting for another trip, and focus on finishing the BMT - you already had to postpone the finish once ... might as well finish with what got you this far.

      If you do go for tarp and bivy, check out Evan's Backpacking Videos on YT. Here's an illustrative one showing his thinking and site selection process, if you've got 10 min to watch it from the 5:36 mark.



      On this trip he didn't even use a ground sheet, just some reflectix for a pad. But on others he does use a groundsheet too (various types).

      tl;dr version:
      • set up next to a blowdown to protect yourself against other blowdowns
      • set up on a good bed of leaves to protect yourself from runoff
      • set up with an eye to the topography and try to envision/predict water runoff paths
      • set up higher than bottom of canyons to avoid worst wind and heat sink of creeks (he goes over this just before the 5:36 mark)
    • Thank you for the great advice. You're right...putting it in perspective, I really want to enjoy this experience and not have any snafus or anxiety over something that can easily be avoided by using my tent.
      In life there are no limitations. Except stupidity. If you're stupid, you're screwed.

      Stephan Pastis
    • Personally I think a hammock provides the best of all worlds. Above the ground I never worry about flooding. On nice nights I hang open air, on rainy nights the tarp gives me good protection. My Warbonnet Blackbird comes with an integrated bug net for when I need that.

      Did you try hammocking and decided it was not for you? Perhaps it was the hammock? I love my Blackbird, some people prefer bridge hammocks. Might be worth borrowing a Blackbird for a night and see how it goes. If someone can help you tune in your first hang that could help a lot with comfort.
      “Of all sad words of tongue or pen,
      the saddest are these, 'It might have been.”


      John Greenleaf Whittier
    • Traffic Jam wrote:

      Any advice on different pitches is appreciated. I don't think it’s the most versatile shape.
      Pitch the tarp with the sides close to or touching the ground if you expect heavy rain. I have the MLD Bug Bivy 2 which has ends and walls above the bathtub floor. I've stayed dry in very heavy down pours. mountainlaureldesigns.com/product/bug-bivy-2/

      Weigh down the ridge line stakes with rocks for extra security.

      Bring an extra garbage bag and put your pack and other remaining stuff in it, close it with a rubber band and put this in front of your bivy at which ever end your likely to get blowing rain- it will act as sort of a door to close off one end of your tarp. I love laying under my tarp in the rain.
      "Dazed and Confused"
      Recycle, re-use, re-purpose
      Plant a tree
      Take a kid hiking
      Make a difference
    • jimmyjam wrote:

      Traffic Jam wrote:

      Any advice on different pitches is appreciated. I don't think it’s the most versatile shape.
      Pitch the tarp with the sides close to or touching the ground if you expect heavy rain. I have the MLD Bug Bivy 2 which has ends and walls above the bathtub floor. I've stayed dry in very heavy down pours. mountainlaureldesigns.com/product/bug-bivy-2/
      Weigh down the ridge line stakes with rocks for extra security.

      Bring an extra garbage bag and put your pack and other remaining stuff in it, close it with a rubber band and put this in front of your bivy at which ever end your likely to get blowing rain- it will act as sort of a door to close off one end of your tarp. I love laying under my tarp in the rain.
      Thanks! I know you’ve told me these things before but it’s hard to remember as my tarp interest is sporadic. I’m going to paste this to my inotes.
      In life there are no limitations. Except stupidity. If you're stupid, you're screwed.

      Stephan Pastis
    • IMScotty wrote:

      Personally I think a hammock provides the best of all worlds. Above the ground I never worry about flooding. On nice nights I hang open air, on rainy nights the tarp gives me good protection. My Warbonnet Blackbird comes with an integrated bug net for when I need that.

      Did you try hammocking and decided it was not for you? Perhaps it was the hammock? I love my Blackbird, some people prefer bridge hammocks. Might be worth borrowing a Blackbird for a night and see how it goes. If someone can help you tune in your first hang that could help a lot with comfort.
      Im not 100% opposed to hammocking but several things prevent me from getting too interested.

      1). I need someone knowledgeable with hammocks to demonstrate. This is one thing I’m not going to figure out on my own...believe me, I’ve tried.

      2). Finances. Hammocking seems very expensive...bottom quilts, top quilts, pad, tarp, straps and hardware. I don’t trust my silly DIY stuff for keeping me warm and estimate $1000 for a good set-up.

      3). Fear.
      In life there are no limitations. Except stupidity. If you're stupid, you're screwed.

      Stephan Pastis
    • Traffic Jam wrote:

      jimmyjam wrote:

      Traffic Jam wrote:

      Any advice on different pitches is appreciated. I don't think it’s the most versatile shape.
      Pitch the tarp with the sides close to or touching the ground if you expect heavy rain. I have the MLD Bug Bivy 2 which has ends and walls above the bathtub floor. I've stayed dry in very heavy down pours. mountainlaureldesigns.com/product/bug-bivy-2/Weigh down the ridge line stakes with rocks for extra security.

      Bring an extra garbage bag and put your pack and other remaining stuff in it, close it with a rubber band and put this in front of your bivy at which ever end your likely to get blowing rain- it will act as sort of a door to close off one end of your tarp. I love laying under my tarp in the rain.
      Thanks! I know you’ve told me these things before but it’s hard to remember as my tarp interest is sporadic. I’m going to paste this to my inotes.
      We're going to have 10 to 15 inches of rain with 50mph winds here, bring that tarp on over here and we'll run it thru the wringer. :) :)
      "Dazed and Confused"
      Recycle, re-use, re-purpose
      Plant a tree
      Take a kid hiking
      Make a difference
    • jimmyjam wrote:

      Traffic Jam wrote:

      jimmyjam wrote:

      Traffic Jam wrote:

      Any advice on different pitches is appreciated. I don't think it’s the most versatile shape.
      Pitch the tarp with the sides close to or touching the ground if you expect heavy rain. I have the MLD Bug Bivy 2 which has ends and walls above the bathtub floor. I've stayed dry in very heavy down pours. mountainlaureldesigns.com/product/bug-bivy-2/Weigh down the ridge line stakes with rocks for extra security.
      Bring an extra garbage bag and put your pack and other remaining stuff in it, close it with a rubber band and put this in front of your bivy at which ever end your likely to get blowing rain- it will act as sort of a door to close off one end of your tarp. I love laying under my tarp in the rain.
      Thanks! I know you’ve told me these things before but it’s hard to remember as my tarp interest is sporadic. I’m going to paste this to my inotes.
      We're going to have 10 to 15 inches of rain with 50mph winds here, bring that tarp on over here and we'll run it thru the wringer. :) :)
      I think you're going to need a bigger boat.
    • odd man out wrote:

      jimmyjam wrote:

      Traffic Jam wrote:

      jimmyjam wrote:

      Traffic Jam wrote:

      Any advice on different pitches is appreciated. I don't think it’s the most versatile shape.
      Pitch the tarp with the sides close to or touching the ground if you expect heavy rain. I have the MLD Bug Bivy 2 which has ends and walls above the bathtub floor. I've stayed dry in very heavy down pours. mountainlaureldesigns.com/product/bug-bivy-2/Weigh down the ridge line stakes with rocks for extra security.Bring an extra garbage bag and put your pack and other remaining stuff in it, close it with a rubber band and put this in front of your bivy at which ever end your likely to get blowing rain- it will act as sort of a door to close off one end of your tarp. I love laying under my tarp in the rain.
      Thanks! I know you’ve told me these things before but it’s hard to remember as my tarp interest is sporadic. I’m going to paste this to my inotes.
      We're going to have 10 to 15 inches of rain with 50mph winds here, bring that tarp on over here and we'll run it thru the wringer. :) :)
      I think you're going to need a bigger boat.
      All I have is an ocean kayak and a canoe. The canoe is my favorite.
      "Dazed and Confused"
      Recycle, re-use, re-purpose
      Plant a tree
      Take a kid hiking
      Make a difference
    • IMScotty wrote:

      Personally I think a hammock provides the best of all worlds. Above the ground I never worry about flooding. On nice nights I hang open air, on rainy nights the tarp gives me good protection. My Warbonnet Blackbird comes with an integrated bug net for when I need that.

      Did you try hammocking and decided it was not for you? Perhaps it was the hammock? I love my Blackbird, some people prefer bridge hammocks. Might be worth borrowing a Blackbird for a night and see how it goes. If someone can help you tune in your first hang that could help a lot with comfort.
      Hammocks have a great advantage in rain, being off the wet and sometimes muddy ground. They also are helpful in finding a camping spot when there isn't a good one on the ground, either because of uneven terrain, rocks, roots, undergrowth, etc. I've hammock camped on and off for a couple years now and have just officially thrown in the towel. I just can't sleep well in them - Pads, UQ, angled, banana, etc. Never got to try a blackbird, but I've tried long and short hammocks. I found the shorter ones were easier (for me) to nap in, but sleeping all night was another matter entirely. I'm glad - and a bit jealous - it works so well for some people, getting their old bones off the hard ground. I wish I could be part of that parade of happy hammockers, but at some point I had to admit that it simply isn't working for me, and I need to stop trying to force it on myself.

      So back to the hard dirty ground I go. I may not quite get forty winks, but I'll get a lot more than zero.