Forum Index » General Lightweight Backpacking Discussion » Mosquito barrier choices


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Piper S.
(sbhikes) - F

Locale: Santa Barbara (Name: Diane)
Mosquito barrier choices on 03/18/2009 20:37:01 MDT Print View

I have a piece of mosquito netting. I inserted a length of elastic into one of the lengthwise outer seams. With this elastic I can attach it to the front open side of my poncho when it is set up in a half-pyramid with the sides pitched all the way to the ground.

Has anyone tried this in real mosquito country? Will the mosquitos find a way in? How big of a gap do they need between the bottom edges of the tarp and the ground?

I have an A16 bug bivy and this piece of netting and trying to figure out which is better. But we have no mosquitos where I live.

Tim Heckel
(ThinAir) - M

Locale: 6237' - Manitou Springs
Can't fly on 03/20/2009 07:13:02 MDT Print View

Hi Diane,
Since nobody has replied yet I'll give you my take.
I use a tarptent. (I can't sleep if I know skeeters might be able to get me).
That said, site selection can really help. They don't like wind so locating out of the trees in an area with air movement can make all the difference.
Hope this helps.
Tim

Jim W.
(jimqpublic) - MLife

Locale: So-Cal
Re: Mosquito barrier choices on 03/20/2009 09:19:28 MDT Print View

Diane,

I haven't done that precise thing. It probably wouldn't keep them all out, but would definitely reduce the number by 95% or so.

From experience, once mosquitos are in a tent they spend a fair amount of time resting on the fabric and netting. I suggest treating the underside of your tarp and the netting with permethrin (such as the Sawyer spray designed for clothing treatment). This might not keep them out or kill them outright, but might ruin their appetite.

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: Mosquito barrier choices on 03/20/2009 22:30:40 MDT Print View

My experience is that when there are skeeters around, they will make their way in if there's any gap at all.

David Loome
(DavidLoome) - F

Locale: American Southwest
IMHO on 03/21/2009 12:26:31 MDT Print View

My humble opinion from MANY a mosquito filled night in Northern Minnesota / Isle Royale / Boundary Waters where the mosquito RULES much of the year- Mosquitos will find a way into your shelter if there is any spaces at all- Anything.

Even if you can reduce the number of skeeters by 95%, that's not the point: The remaining 5% of normal is more than enough to keep you awake and swatting. Heck, I've been kept awake by ONE of them buzzing me.

I've found the only truly effective option is a 'real' tent-type shelter with full enclosure. Other, lighter methods can be effective, though not as much and are often a pain to set up.

The best lightweight option I've used is the combination of a half-length home made bug bivy (think something like a giant head-net) with a couple guy-outs and DEET. I've tried dozens of other, less harsh repellents, and DEET is the one that works, plain and simple. I've been able to somewhat reduce my exposure to it by carrying a designated DEET rag which I spray and hang on a little cord above my head as I sleep.

Hope some of this helps you out.

victoria maki
(clt1953) - F

Locale: northern minnesota
re:mosquito barrier choices on 03/21/2009 13:06:26 MDT Print View

Diane. Being that I live in this mosquito infested area, I would not go with a tarp and netting. The little buggers are masters of finding their way into any tiny opening, even on a full tent. Personally I have never seen anyone on Isle Royal, boundry waters, or the SHT using a tart set up, not that there aren't people using them. Between the probable rain(was orginally going to say possible) and mosquitos, a single or light weight double wall tent is the best option. Just my opinion.

Piper S.
(sbhikes) - F

Locale: Santa Barbara (Name: Diane)
Thank you on 03/22/2009 12:13:18 MDT Print View

Thank you for your words of experience. I'll leave the netting home then and bring my bug bivy. Once the mosquitos are really annoying, I will have an option to use a tent. But before then and after, I'd like to keep things minimal if possible.