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Poncho Tarps List
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Brett .
(Brett1234) - F

Locale: CA
Poncho Tarps List on 08/21/2007 08:57:47 MDT Print View

George, out in the woods there are so many 6 legged creatures I'm more likely to see Mothra; but it's one of the good guys, right?
Steve, Thanks for the details; amazingly light. Don't you use a bivy sack to keep your bag dry/clean?

Edit; I see, the Gatewood is practically enclosed, like a floorless tent. Clever. Seems much easier to pitch than an A-frame tarp.

Edited by Brett1234 on 08/21/2007 10:55:38 MDT.

Joshua Mitchell
(jdmitch) - F

Locale: Kansas
Re: Re: Re: Re: Poncho Tarps List on 08/21/2007 09:36:34 MDT Print View

" is not really waterproof... treats it to make it waterproof... Have you tried it in rain?"

Not that particular model... I have, however, used tyvek jackets in an absolute downpour though.

I don't think goodling treats it to make it water proof, he dyes is to make it softer.

One thing that people forget / don't realize is that shelters / ponchos don't HAVE to be waterproof... what's important is that they shed rain reliably (aka rain rolls off rather than soaking through). Tyvek is very good in this regard. You may, however, want whatever is protecting you from ground moisture to be waterproof as the hydraulic head that results from the weight of your body could 'squeeze' moisture out of the ground... if it's wet enough.

Adam Rothermich
(aroth87) - F

Locale: Missouri Ozarks
Re: Poncho Tarps List on 08/21/2007 09:59:17 MDT Print View

Steve is using the Gatewood Cape by Six Moon Designs. Its totally enclosed when pitched in shelter mode so there's nor real need for a bivy.


Edited by aroth87 on 08/21/2007 09:59:51 MDT.

Ryan Faulkner
(ryanf) - F

Locale: Mid atlantic, No. Cal
Re: Brett, re Poncho Tarps List on 08/21/2007 10:12:01 MDT Print View

hey, I see your question has been answered already
Yes the golite poncho has ridgeline tieouts

I havent read throught this entire thread, so im not sure this problem has been adressed, but Id just like to mention that not all poncho tarps should be set up in an A-frame style pitch.

the golite, and integral designs ponchos have no problems with this because they are made with silnylon, that is strong and has some stretch to the fabric.
I have used a golite poncho for almost 2 years and have never had any problems with the A-frame pitch, no longterm problems with the seams at thehood, and I know Ryan Jordan used an integral designs poncho for a long time. But realize that spinaker tarps may have problems with the seems in the hood tearing with an A-frame pitch. specifically the Bozeman mountain works tarps.

George Matthews
(gmatthews) - MLife
Re: Re: Poncho Tarps List on 08/21/2007 10:25:34 MDT Print View

Looks like the Gatewood setup at about 19 oz is excellent.

I'd say that the combination of a bivy + poncho (6.5 oz + < 10 oz) would be as good, but you'd additionally have the flexibility to just use the bivy if you wanted to sleep under the stars on a clear night.

Maybe there will be a future Gatewood with netted moon roof option. : )

George Matthews
(gmatthews) - MLife
Re: Poncho tarps on 08/21/2007 10:56:29 MDT Print View

>>> A few more:

Backpacking light
Sea To Summit <<<<

Hi Daniel

BLP Spin 4.9 oz $110 (out of stock)
Sea to Summit poncho 10 oz $80
Could not find Oware poncho tarp


Locale: Pacific Northwet
Oware poncho tarp on 08/21/2007 10:59:41 MDT Print View

Can't find it on the oware website, maybe Mr Olsen is not making it anymore? There is a review of that poncho/tarp at this website (BPL)

Steve .
(pappekak) - F

Locale: Tralfamadore
Re: Poncho Tarps List on 08/21/2007 12:13:52 MDT Print View

Brett the coverage with the SMD Gatewood Cape is good enough that I don't need a bivy. And the ground cloth is wide enough that I don't have problems keeping my bag clean.

I had looked at bivy/tarp combinations because of their flexibility. But the cost was high to go light and really didn't fit my goal to minimize my gear closet for 3 season backpacking.

Minimizing my gear closet translates to this:
1 pack - GG Mariposa Plus
1 shelter - SMD Gatewood Cape
1 sleeping bag - WM UltraLite Super
1 insulated jacket - Micropuff Pullover
1 wind shirt - OR Ion

It also simplifies the following question
Q: What should I take on my 3 season trip?
A: Pack your entire gear closet.

My pack isn't the lightest but my base weight is under 9 lb before I add camera gear.

David Passey
(davidpassey) - F

Locale: New York City
Poncho Tarp System on 08/21/2007 12:21:17 MDT Print View

My wife and I use the following system:

1. GG Spinntwin--11.0 (stakes and lines)
2. BMW Nano Bivy/Homemade Bivy--6.5 (for me)/5.0 (for wife).

Mosquito netting is included in the above weight (bivies). We don't use ground sheets, and find the bivy's sufficient. This is 22.5 combined weight, or 11.25 per person, for the shelter.

The only two person system I have seen that is comparable in weight is the GG Tarptent at 24.4.

On my last trip, I carried an 8.5 oz homemade pocho tarp as backup shelter and raingear. Thus, my share of the shelter, plus raingear was about 20 oz.

(My trekking poles are homemade and very light, but I don't know their exact weight. Since they're multi-use, it doesn't seem right to count them in the shelter weight)

Dondo .

Locale: Colorado Rockies
Re: Tarp System wt.= 1P tent? on 08/21/2007 20:06:37 MDT Print View

>>Any tarp owners out there who can tell me the weight of their System?
Tarp-Poncho +
Bivy sack +
Ground Sheet(optional if you have a bivy sack?) +
Mosquito netting
= ?

Golite Poncho/tarp = 10.6 oz. I also use this as my primary rain gear. An OR Ion (3.5 oz.) also comes along as wind and supplementary rain gear.

No bivy

3'X 7' 2 mil plastic sheet=3.2 oz.

Most of the time I pitch my poncho/tarp as a pyramid.
Not being a a fan of head nets and small bug bivys, I came up with a way to block the open end with an easily-removable netting set up. It uses tulle, 1/8" cord, duct tape and mini-binder clips. The weight is 3.1 oz.

Weight of stakes and guys is 2.7 oz.

If you figure that you are carrying the poncho anyway as rain gear, the weight is 3.2 + 3.1 + 2.7 = 9 oz.

Brian UL

Locale: New England
Re: Re: Tarp System wt.= 1P tent? on 08/21/2007 20:41:14 MDT Print View

can you post a pic with your tarp set up w/ bug netting?
I would like to see how it works/looks. Thanks

Mark Hurd
(markhurd) - M

Locale: South Texas
Gatewood Cape on 08/21/2007 21:05:11 MDT Print View

I would agree with Steve, although I usually use my Contrail, I have had several very rainy nights out with the Gatewood as my rain gear and then my tent. It is an amazingly tight little shelter. The pitch is easy once you get the hang of it and no bivy is needed. Room for me and my gear. I have not used it in bug season due to the lack of netting, however there is a BPL thread on that very subject as well as a DIY project to add mosquito netting and a floor to the Gatewood. I am planning on some mods of my cape this fall.

Brett .
(Brett1234) - F

Locale: CA
Zelt tent 8.4 ounces on 08/22/2007 02:12:40 MDT Print View

Steve, your minimal gear list is appealing. I have much less than I used to, but still too much. Far from being a subject of pride, my packed gear closet houses many worthless purchases.

Currently my UL shelter setup is a Montbell Zelt UL solo tent at 8.48 oz, and a few ounces for stakes and guy lines depending on the type I need for the ground conditions. The zelt (with no-see-um mesh over the vents) provides sun, wind, rain, and bug protection. It folds open to a flat tarp but can not be used as a poncho while moving.

With this zelt I still must carry my 19 oz rain wear set (Montbell RainTrekker 1/4 zip pants and TNF DIAD jacket) for a total of about 30 ounces.

shown is a similar zelt:
I have never actually slept in the zelt because I have not hiked alone in years.

Jonathan Chiappa
(chiappaj) - MLife

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: Re: Poncho Tarps List on 08/22/2007 09:02:49 MDT Print View

I've used Steve's exact sleeping set-up in the Sierra's with Mosquitoes for 5 nights. (not as bad as Japan but there were still bugs.) I can't wear a normal no-see-um head-net for even half and hour but the BPL head net was almost a pleasure to wear all night. (I wore it just on my head without a ball cap.) I really is much better than a normal head net. (but you pay for it ;) )

- Jon

George Matthews
(gmatthews) - MLife
Update poncho tarp list on 08/22/2007 10:05:34 MDT Print View

Avg wt 8.8 oz Min wt 4.0 oz Max wt 13.0 oz
Avg $ 77.46 Min $ 30 Max $ 170

By wt and $
MLD Spectralite, 4.0, $170,
BLP Spin Poncho [2], 4.9,$110,
Campmor Ultra, 7.0, $40,
Oware poncho tarp [3], 8.0, $74,
Campmor Ultra Extended, 8.5, $45,
MLDesigns Sil Pro, 8.6, $155,
Tyvek Poncho [1], 9.0, $30,
Sierra Designs Hurricane Poncho, 10.0, $30,
GoLite Ultralite, 10.0, $50,
ID 5x8 tarp with hood, 10.0, $75,
Sea to Summit Ultra Sil, 10.0, $79,
SMDesign Gatewood, 11.0, $110,
Sea to Summit Nylon poncho, 13.0, $39 ,

Note 1: dyed and treated with waterproof spray
Note 2: out of stock
Note 3: not found - info from BLP review - May 2006

Edited by gmatthews on 08/22/2007 10:06:43 MDT.

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: Update poncho tarp list on 08/22/2007 11:58:36 MDT Print View

Frogg Toggs has a poncho now, but I don't think it is made to be set up as a shelter, not that a person can't change that.

Phil Barton
(flyfast) - MLife

Locale: Oklahoma
Re: Poncho Tarps List on 08/22/2007 21:31:09 MDT Print View

Brett, yes, the MLD Pro is an expensive piece. But I had already tried the GoLite. Big differences that I found:
The quality of the MLD is top notch.
The hood design of the MLD is unique and better than any of the other designs that I'd seen from GoLite or Integral Designs.
The MLD is longer and enables me to use it without a bivy if I choose.
The geometry of the MLD provides a better tarp than the flat, rectangular tarps. The MLD has a catenary cut and is wider at the head end than the foot.
The MLD Pro provides more side tie outs.
The MLD poncho has tie outs that allow the foot end to be pegged to the ground for maximum storm coverage. These ties are centered, about 15 inches from the end of the tarp.

There are some other differences. But I am starting to sound biased. YMMV.

Will Rietveld's review was spot on for me.

(I did look at the current price. It's $30 more than I paid in 2006. Ron's business is really going well.)

Edited by flyfast on 09/06/2007 20:50:58 MDT.

Dondo .

Locale: Colorado Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Tarp System wt.= 1P tent? on 08/23/2007 09:00:11 MDT Print View

can you post a pic with your tarp set up w/ bug netting?
I would like to see how it works/looks. Thanks

Brian, here are some pics of my poncho/tarp set up:

With this end to the storm it's remarkably wind resistant.

Notice the mini-binder clips along the front. A dozen is about right. Total weight is 0.6 oz.

The 2" wide duct tape is actually overkill in this application. Something half as wide would work fine.

A 1/8" parachute cord in the fold of the duct tape serves as a bead over which the edge of the tarp can be folded and held with a clip. It makes a nice mosquito-proof seam.

Edited by Dondo on 08/23/2007 09:01:24 MDT.

Jim Colten
(jcolten) - M

Locale: MN
Dondo's poncho-tarp setup on 08/23/2007 09:30:03 MDT Print View

Very nice. Do you think it'd work as well if the cord was sewn into a hem on the bug screen?

Dondo .

Locale: Colorado Rockies
Re: Dondo's poncho-tarp setup on 08/23/2007 09:42:48 MDT Print View

Possibly, Jim. Tulle is rather fragile stuff and I didn't want to take a chance of tearing it with the binder clips. In addition, the tape adds some stiffness to the cord which means that you don't have to use as many binder clips to get a good seal between the netting and the tarp.

But you're right. There is a lot of weight in the duct tape and it's definitely a candidate for lightening up.