Tent vs tarp ?

Discussion in 'Natural, Temporary, and Permanent Shelter' started by Tom Williams, Sep 4, 2016.

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  1. Tom Williams

    Tom Williams Moderator Staff Member
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    Tarp light easy set up many ways. Tent foor windows doors easy to heat. Which is best ??? What do you think. And why ?
     
  2. lonewolf

    lonewolf Moderator Staff Member
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    tent for bad weather, tarp for light camp bugging out.
     
  3. Tom Williams

    Tom Williams Moderator Staff Member
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    Why tarp for bug out over tent ?
     
  4. lonewolf

    lonewolf Moderator Staff Member
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    so not enclosed, can see and hear what is going on, anyone moving about, might not hear that in an enclosed tent, or be able to get out fast enough to confront them, therefore a tarp.
     
  5. Tom Williams

    Tom Williams Moderator Staff Member
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    Ok a good tent today has windows that give full veiw screens to keep bugs and such out a bathtub floor watertight so feet and gear dryer in cold windows can be sealed over with clear plastic to hold heat tent much easier to heat
     
  6. lonewolf

    lonewolf Moderator Staff Member
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    i'm not expecting to be using a tent long term, just in the interim period until I can relocate to something more solid-with 4 walls and a roof.
     
  7. Tom Williams

    Tom Williams Moderator Staff Member
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    Only tentin i will do is if on hunt and late. sleep and get back in morning
     
  8. TexDanm

    TexDanm Shadow Dancer
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    The big thing is are you backpacking in or driving in. If I have to carry it on my back for very far the tarp is a lot more friendly and versatile...UNLESS you are in mosquito country in which case you want a tent that is bug proof.
     
  9. Tom Williams

    Tom Williams Moderator Staff Member
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    New backpacking tents light easy to carry pack well i have 2 sansport pup tents i love they have bathtub floor screen vent and doors and storm flap keep warm dry comfy
     
  10. Woodsbum

    Woodsbum Well-Known Member
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    I'm with Tex on this one. Most of the time it's a hammock and tarp. I also carry a bug net that wads up the size of a softball and weighs nothing.
     
  11. TexDanm

    TexDanm Shadow Dancer
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    My biggest problem with a tent in a bugout situation is the blind spots. When you are in most tents you are blocked off from seeing too much of what is around you. I understand that for most people this gives you a sense of security but other than in a heavy canvass tent this is totally an illusion and even canvass is only a minimal protection from small to medium sized animals.

    If you are in a secure location OR if you are part of a group so you can have sentries then a tent is the way to go. If you are alone or just not enough of you to have a guard you need to be more able to respond to an intruder and if possible be as unnoticeable as possible.

    If I were alone and the conditions were dry I would probably try to find a low spot like a little ditch or dig a little fox hole and put my tarp over it such that I could lift my head and see all the way around but only have the tarp a foot or so above the ground with lots of leaves on top of it. If it is wet or raining I will try to do much the same on the very top of a small rise.

    Bugging out is about survival and the best way to survive is to go unnoticed. A tent says possessions worth taking to a thief while a fox hole unnoticed is passed by. A tent leaves a footprint that is notable and requires an open spot to set up. With a tarp you can set up under or in brush rather than in more open areas. The old military shelter halves were good for this sort of thing. If you were secure you put two together and had a tent. If not you had a tarp.
     
  12. Mr Boots

    Mr Boots Expert Member
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    I have used many type of tents over the years from modern nylon/rip stop to canvas medieval tents and they have their good points but I find they have more disadvantages for me mainly they are a set shape and size i like to be more adaptable and tarps are quicker and easier to take down and move
    any time I head out the last few years I only use my french gortex bivvy bag and my tarps
    I have a 7f x 8f or 2.4m x 2m which is always in my kit bag and a 13f x 13f or 4m x 4m i use when there is a group of us or i am out for a week or more

    I have plans for a baker tent for canoe/van camping as I am starting to bring my nephews out but I will always have my bivvy bag and tarps for me
     
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2017
  13. Keith H.

    Keith H. Moderator Staff Member
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    I use a tarp/oil cloth on all my treks & camps, mostly in winter. Easy to set up, very versatile, you can wrap yourself up in it if needs be. It can be used immediately for rain protection on the trail. When set up as a lean-to I have vision to the front & sides & I can hear what is going on in the woods & know where that sound is coming from. I can use my small cook fire for heat & can boil water for hot drinks, cook food & stoke the fire without leaving my bedroll. It is relatively light & there is no need to carry poles/braces. I can collect rainwater from my oilcloth in my kettle. I can use my oilcloth to make a boat to cross water.
    Keith.
    491a02379c930e74b9695f954449d712.jpeg
     
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  14. Old Geezer

    Old Geezer Master Survivalist
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    Thousands of years ago, a friend and I were in the 9th grade. We had been drinking. He sez he knows where some 8th graders had set up a tent. We go into the woods a bit, find'em, collapse the tent on them and beat them up a bit -- I pulled all my punches, didn't mean to hurt them just humiliate them a bit. We dragged them out and let them have some whiskey. Everybody was happy, smoked cigarettes, friend was out of weed.

    Me, I want as sturdy a material around me as possible. A truck feels flimsy to me in that you can shoot right through the side of one.

    Trucker acquaintance of mine was hauling cross-country with a buddy. They'd called it a night. His friends gets out the truck to relieve himself. The guy I knew in the sleeping part of the tractor hears this thump-thump, long pause, then thump-thump, over and over. He gets out Mr. .44 opens the door and sees his mate being chased 'round the truck by some monster with a crowbar. The .44 spoke to the resolution of the situation.
     
  15. Kootenay prepper

    Kootenay prepper Expert Member
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    I've got to test out packing tents or tarps on long mountain hiking trips. They both have there pros and cons but I would take a tarp every time. I've noticed you get a freak snow storm or a strong wind storm a tent will buckle easily. Building a lean to shelter with a tarp secured over it I've found holds up good in most weather.
     
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  16. Woodsbum

    Woodsbum Well-Known Member
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    My current project is making an oil cloth tarp. Mainly for my hunting kit. My mate is a massage therapist so she has sheets galore. My only cost will be time and linseed oil. Beats the price of a store bought.
    As has been stated the set up possibilities with a tarp are endless.
     
  17. TexDanm

    TexDanm Shadow Dancer
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    That is why I will want to build a log cabin ASAP if I have to go bugout. Let's face it, we all have a bit of caveman in us and would like that sort of security. A nice little cave limits the directions that "trouble" can come from. Sodies and dug outs would be nice if I lived someplace dry.

    I like tents a lot and have several of them but in a survival situation they could too easily become traps and offer a feeling of security that just isn't there. When you are under a tarp you KNOW that you are outdoors and something can just walk right up and bite you in the butt. While this isn't a pleasant thought, in a survival situation, it might be better than a false security. You will be more alert and aware of what is going on around you. Other than mosquitos, I can't think of many things that hiding from in a tent is going to work real well.
     
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  18. Old Geezer

    Old Geezer Master Survivalist
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    During the Battle of the Bulge, my uncle and his mates used their explosives to blow the frozen ground. Once shattered, the ground could be dug. The Germans were using tree-top bursts to frag the Americans into hamburger. Too, the ground, even frozen ground, is warmer than a hellish winter with wind.

    The shelter doesn't have to be any deeper than need. You'll likely NOT be standing up in the thing.

    The floor should be made out of some sort of insulating material. Pine needles will burn -- don't use pine branches near your shelter. Space blanket sheets would come in handy.

    Under seriously bad conditions, to include the possibility of interlopers, I'm starting to dig! One can put logs atop, more dirt, then leaves / forest floor material. The logs must be bound together (I keep outrageous amounts of low diameter/high-tensile-strength rope with me). Openings must be made for air exchange, viewing, and shooting ports. Campfire has to be built AWAY from your underground shelter. One should be able to shoot from their shelter to kill interlopers down at the campfire. Sometimes wounding is better, suckers will come back for their screamers.
     
  19. omegaman

    omegaman Expert Member
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    Depends on where you are and what you do. Here, north of the polar circle, a Kåta, a thick tipi-type structure with a fireplace in the middle is what you will want if you expect to get atleast an hour of sleep and not the eternal sleep. Igloos works but it's hard to build in the loose snow. When I was in military training we shoveled up big piles of snow and stuck little sticks in it from the sides and top, and dug our way in until we felt the sticks, that meant you were close enough to the wall/roof.
    It's frostbite or mosquito bites with this world my friend. Pick your poison.
    I grew up under these conditions so I will look at it differently than say someone from Denmark or Mexico.
     
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