I pack with a group of ten guys. There are about 14 in our group but every year it seems like only ten go. One guy was light but not UL. This year after much discussion about 7 will go light - but not UL. Below is one of our original exchanges about cutting the tent for the tarp. This year eveyone on trail will be under 30lbs for six days on trail with food (no resupply) and water (1.5 liters carried). Far cry from the previous huge packs we all carried.
Here it is:
We have a new convert to the tarp concept and thus I am compelled to draft this short epistle in hopes that others will "see the light" and convert so that they can find relief from the heavy burdens of packing a tent.
My tarp is about 1lb 1oz w/ titanium stakes and cord, has 10X10 converage and properly pitched low to the ground provides excellent protection against wind and rain. Bogert is the "Peter" disciple of tarping and I am his first convert and thus the scribe of our "lite" life ways. Most two person
traditional tents have a trail weight in excess of four pounds and also
provide a mere 51 inches in width. Which means two men must lie together with just about two feet alotted per person. That life is not for me man.
I can almost take up 40 inches on my own and not even Mike can suffice with
only 11 inches. Ten feet for two guys is much more adequate. Even with three there is still three feet plus per person. Room for people and gear.
The Nay sayers might comment that tarps are not appropriate for sophisticated campers and that a storm might ruin your trip if you have nothing but a tarp - however - last year when the hail came and the winds howled, Mike and I were more than adequately covered in the tarp and had no problems.
Tarps enable you to cut three pounds in your pack.
Tarps enable you to avoid the condensation that builds up in tents.
Tarps enable you to breath better when you bunkmate passes gas.
Tarps enable you to be more at one with nature.
Tarps enable you to awake to the dawn of a new day as God intended.
Tarps enable you to watch the campfire as it glows in the darkness as you drift off to sleep.
Tarps enable you to not worry about getting the tent floor dirty.
Tarps enable you to always have a place for your boots that will not fowl the tent floor or the tent air.
Tarps enable you to pitch shelter quicker and easier.
Tarps enable you to adapt to different scenario's and terrain with ease.
If there are those of you who have seen the light but are afraid - fear no
If there are those of you who want less to carry but still have concerns -
ease your concerns.
If there are those of you who want to ease your burdens but do not know the
way - We can show you the Light Way, the tarp way.
Be free of your heavy burdens, come to the light and leave your tent at home,
come to the tarp, and once you have experienced the lighter ways of the tarp - you will rejoice in your new freedom and steps will be easier on the trail.
Therefore, I urge you to lighten your load and convert to the ways of the tarp.