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Does anyone here do Tarp Camping?

I'm looking to connect with folks who Tarp camp. I'm hoping to pick some brains and share ideas with them about anything from tarp pitches to gear you carry. Looking forward to hear some of your ideas.

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8 Replies

@timskrbelieve@AmyB@hikermor@Philreedshikes - You all have mentioned tarps in previous comments here in the community. Do you have any tips, experiences, or questions of your own to add on this topic? 

At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.

A tarp works just fine except in stormy weather, especially events with high winds. Usually I pitch the trap as a leanto, although sometimes as an A frame.  I often pair it with an open bivvy sack, which provides a bit of extra warmth.  Cary a fair amount of light cordage for secure lashing.  Trekking poles or an ice axe work fine for poles if you need them.

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While not 100% water tight, have you tried this setup? I use it quite often and it holds up in high winds and has kept me dry many a night. Plus it only takes about 5 minutes to set up after a couple practice runs.

6 stakes
2 roughly 7 foot long stick's, walking poles aren't long enough.
10' Paracord

Lay tarp out flat, stake at 2nd tie down along back. (2 Stakes)
Pull in the second Tie downs from the front until square with the back, stake down (2 Stakes)
Pull front center tie down to one side to proceed
Locate 2 poles, approximately 18 inches longer than the height
Tie the center to the poles creating a X, Lift poles up until the shelter is tight.
Attache Paracord to the front center tie down and tighten tent, stake down. (1 Stake, 10' Paracord)
Front bottom tie down's can be tied together or staked out to create a door. (1 Stake)




Hikemore, I have several more reasonably tight pitches if your interested! Just let me know. Glad to share!


I tarp camp! I have a tapered tarp that is 9' in length, and is 8' at the front end and tapers to 6' at the foot end. This kind of tarp really only works with an A-frame pitch, but that's all good with me. If you want to have versatility in pitch options, a square/rectangle tarp is a great option.

A pair the tarp with a UL big bivy. This setup works great for me. With tarp camping, where you pitch your tarp makes a big difference. 

NICE!!!! And if you want to close off the ends it's a very simple ridge line adjustment! What kind is it? I've love to look at it.


Mountain Laurel Designs has several neat looking tarps

I've watched many youtube vids on set up and use, looks like a great tent alternative.

REI Member Since 1979

They have some great gear! I use their bug bivy under my tarp.