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  1. #1
    New Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2019
    Location
    Fairfield, CA
    Hammock
    11ft Hexon 1.6 Wide
    Suspension
    Straps and Buckles
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    3

    Question What's a good lightweight option for a tarp?

    Hi all, I was hoping to get some input to help me decide on what tarp I should pull the trigger on. I'm not an Ultralight backpacker per se, more of a lightweight, but I think weight should be a serious consideration when choosing new equipment. I quickly found out that a hammock set up is going to be heavier than my normal tent load out and would like to close that gap as much as possible for when I go on some long trails for comfort's sake. I got a bad knee and things are starting to creak when I get up in the morning Getting to it I've run across a bunch of cottage company options that look enticing and wanted to get some feedback from folks who own or know of them and can maybe introduce me to another contender to look at. Finding cottage companies is a fickle process that's mostly dictated by chance in my experience.

    I mostly camp in the coastal areas of California so I don't need to worry about snow or extremely high winds, but would like to know if a particular tarp wouldn't perform well in stormy conditions since every now and then I'll be up in the mountains or in some rainy weather if I get the itch to go out during the rainy season. I got out to the coast during a big storm a couple years ago and watched lighting roll over the ocean from the beach and I've been chasing that kind of scene again for a while.

    OKAY HERE WE GO! I would prefer silnylon or silpoly to avoid a heavy-ish PU coated tarp. I know about the pros and cons of Silnylon vs. Silpoly and have decided that I can make due with either, I'm not gonna die if I have to fix some sag I'll just take care of it when I go to the bathroom. Anything over a pound (16 oz or 454 grams) I would consider too heavy, but I'm open minded so fire away. Price is important in that I'm not a rich man but frugality runs in my veins haha. Dyneema prices make me want to cry, so I would like to set the ceiling at $150. Also I like the idea of a Hex tarp over an Asym, I welcome you to try and change my mind though. Hopefully this preemptively answers most questions to help with the decision making, thanks for keeping up! Now onto some options I've been looking at in no particular order other than what tabs are open on my computer:

    - Warbonnet Minifly 11ft ($110) 13 oz 368 g in 30D Silnylon
    This might be the one I go for. Has small doors on the ends to help stave off slanting rain and comes in at a very low weight for the coverage you get.

    - Dutchware Xenon Hex Tarp 11ft ($110) 13.4 oz 380 g
    Ticks a lot of boxes and looks really appealing, unless someone has some insight on while this should not be my first (now second) choice.

    - Dutchware Wide Asym Tarp 11.5ft - 12.5ft ($90) 10.58 oz 300 g
    Extra tieouts on the tarp might help out in windy conditions but it doesn't seem like it would stand up to strong gusts if I'm in an open area.

    - Arrowhead Equipment Shangri La 11ft ($125.50) ~10.75 oz ~305 g
    Seems like a solid tarp that could offer a little more than minimal protection.

    - Arrowhead Equipment Toxaway 12ft ($134.50) ~15.25 oz ~432 g
    A lot more tarp for a little more money, but it's creeping more towards my weight limit. Extra space might be more comfortable when it's in porch mode though.

    - UGQ Hanger 11WB 11ft ($89.95) 13.5 oz 382 g
    Very similar to Dutch's, give or take an inch here and there. I'm just including it for anyone else who might be buying from them and can save on shipping costs.

    - Hammock Gear The Quest 11ft ($99.99) 13.32 oz 377 g
    A solid tarp at a good price point, having bought my TQ from them before I gotta say they have excellent customer service and seem like good people overall.

    - Simply Light Designs Trail Haven 11ft* ($131.95) Weight Unknown
    Judging from the pictures this tarp is a good size and has an aggressive cat cut on all sides. This one is on here mainly as an inquiry. Without knowing the weight I don't want to commit to it, so does anyone have one of these bad boys that they could weigh (haha) in on? What width are you rockin' as well?

    - Simply Light Designs Trail Duster 2.0 11ft* ($141.95) Weight Unknown
    This one rocks a more squared off design than the Trail Haven, but edges have the option of being cat cut. Same inquiry as previous tarp.

    *The Simply Light Designs tarps were the only two where I added modifiers that changed the price. They include increasing the ridgeline from the base priced 10ft to 11ft and swapping the guy out points to D-ring connections instead of Lineloc 3's to make use of my existing hardware. That said they do offer an impressive amount of options at a reasonable price and I recommend checking them out if you have specific needs for your tarp and aren't as picky as myself

    All weights are pulled from the manufacturer's sites and I rounded off when exact weights weren't given. Prices all include seam sealing services or cost of DIY seam sealing kits, but no other add ons that I could not provide myself (e.g. Stakes, Guy Lines, Stuff Sacks, etc.) No shipping costs were factored into this list so it wouldn't skew the prices for someone living in another locale wanting to buy from this list.

    Yep, that's about it. I had fun making this list and even if nothing comes of it for me I hope it helps out someone down the line! Thanks in advance for any input!
    Last edited by HamNCheeseShoes; 03-27-2019 at 02:44. Reason: Edited to include WB Minifly

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Dec 2016
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    Portland, OR
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    Any hex tarp will fit the bill here. Don't forget Warbonnet's lineup either.

    For coastal regions, i would be inclined to get something with doors or at least a beak. That will add a smidge of weight.

    I get by with a hex tarp with no doors in rainy Oregon. When it's really stormy, i just put the hammock up higher to avoid splash and put the tarp down as low and tight as possible.

  3. #3
    SilvrSurfr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Jersey Shore, NJ
    Hammock
    Dutch PolyD
    Tarp
    HG Winter Palace
    Insulation
    HG 0, 20, 40
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    Dutch Whoopie Hook
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    14,067
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    Having gone through numerous tarps (including hex tarps), I would personally recommend a 4-season tarp with doors. You'll find many people who say they've been through some nasty weather with a hex tarp - you just need to pitch it lower, or become an expert at site selection and pitch the tarp with some sort of natural wind barrier in the surroundings. And then there are the hex tarp users who go out and buy a UQP (underquilt protector), which makes no sense to me since that's 5 or 6 ounces on top of the weight of the tarp.

    https://www.2qzqhammockhanger.com/pr...lt-protectors/

    Then there are folks who buy a hex tarp, find it inadequate, and opt for Grizz beaks, which also doesn't make much sense to me.

    https://www.2qzqhammockhanger.com/pr...e-grizz-break/

    In the end, I just got a 4-season tarp with doors. I don't have to pitch a hex tarp lower (which, again, doesn't make any sense to me - wind-blown precipitation doesn't decide against blowing through the open ends because the user pitched it lower), and I don't have to practice the black art of site selection.

    And yes, I have an HG Dyneema Winter Palace, which I've owned for six years and only once did I get even a little wet (50 to 60 mph wind gusts with a driving rain will do that). I've owned it for six years and it looks brand new. If I could not or would not afford cuben fiber, I would look at the Warbonnet Superfly or something similar. The six extra ounces are worth it so you never ever have to think about "pitching lower" or "site selection."

    I personally wouldn't buy a tarp with a 12 ft. ridgeline, unless I had a 12 ft. hammock. An 11 ft. tarp is just fine with an 11 ft. hammock, and I don't think an extra six inches of coverage on each end is going to mitigate wind-blown precipitation.
    "A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds." Ralph Waldo Emerson

  4. #4
    TrailSlug's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Location
    Huntsville, AL
    Hammock
    Warbonnet RR / BlackbirdXLC
    Tarp
    SimplyLightDesigns
    Insulation
    Lynx / LocoLibre
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    webbing/buckles
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    7,497
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    1
    You should definitely check out Warbonnets tarp lineup. The Thunderfly, Mountainfly and the Minifly. These offer a bit more coverage but with minimal added weight.

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    MN
    Posts
    1,723
    I've purchased hex tarps both WB and UGQ. Both are top-notch. I'm guessing that most, if not all, of the others you list are also high quality. WB has dropped their hex. The "replacement" Minifly has peaks. A nice feature.

    IMHO, it's nice to own a hex (or similar.) You're going to get many recommendations for a doored tarp. Many hangers have multiple tarps. I'm guessing that most who do have a hex. I'd start with that. Add beaks or eventually spring for a second tarp with doors.
    Last edited by TominMN; 03-27-2019 at 05:57.

  6. #6
    New Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2018
    Location
    Tacoma, WA
    Hammock
    Dutchware Chameleon
    Tarp
    WB MountainFly
    Insulation
    Magma + Incubator
    Suspension
    Beetle
    Posts
    13
    Quote Originally Posted by TrailSlug View Post
    You should definitely check out Warbonnets tarp lineup. The Thunderfly, Mountainfly and the Minifly. These offer a bit more coverage but with minimal added weight.
    plus one on that recommendation.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Vanhalo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2017
    Location
    East TN
    Hammock
    XLC/SLD 11' Tree Runner/BB
    Tarp
    WB MiniFly/SLD WH
    Insulation
    Jacks 'R' Better
    Suspension
    MyersTech/Dyneema
    Posts
    1,368
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    When I started using the MiniFly I stopped using the HG Winter Palace.
    "...in Florida, she felt air conditioning for the first time, and it was cold and unnatural upon her skin."
    https://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/cdo-web
    http://www.atweather.org
    Hammock Insulation Temperature Testing Results Spreadsheet

  8. #8
    New Member
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    Mar 2019
    Location
    Fairfield, CA
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    11ft Hexon 1.6 Wide
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    I knew you guys and gals wouldn't let me down! Warbonnet never even crossed my mind, I guess I am still pretty new at this. The Minifly looks mighty fine

  9. #9
    New Member
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    Mar 2019
    Location
    Fairfield, CA
    Hammock
    11ft Hexon 1.6 Wide
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    I am still curious about the Simply Light Design tarps, so please chime in with any experience you have. I will drop them an email later and hopefully get some more info to share with you all.

  10. #10
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Albany, ny
    Hammock
    Just Bill Happy medium
    Tarp
    11' HG w/ doors
    Insulation
    DIY or HG
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    Webbing/Beckett
    Posts
    259
    I dont have a tarp from sld, but do have multiple hammocks and other odds and ends. They have an amazing turn around time for custom items and are a pleasure to work with. All outstanding work.
    That said, doors, even mini doors, help a ton. I love my thunder fly for windy nights.

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