How To Pitch A Backpacking Tarp



“How do I pitch an ultralight tarp?” is probably one of the most frequent questions I am asked. Hopefully this quick tutorial will help to answer it.

Vargo Tent Stakes:

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  1. Backcountry Banter says:

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  2. galkinator says:

    Pretty cool. I briefly tried using a tarp (Six Moon’s Deschutes), but after one light rain and having rain splash all over me, I called it quits and went back to a traditional two walled tent. I’m kinda jealous of tarp tenters though for the simplicity and extremely light weight.

  3. Brandon Smith says:

    Any chance you’ve played around with other pitch configurations for cat-cut tarps besides an A-frame? I recently attended an ALDHA-West Ruck and heard Joshua “Bobcat” Stacy say he could pitch his Gossamer Gear Twinn Tarp into a mid of sorts.

  4. Kirk Wallace says:

    Thanks again bro! I'm Def get some of those Vargo tent stakes through your amazon link. Seen you use them on your expeditions. in the past like the PCT CDT . I'm sold. Loving the new Vargo titanium alcohol stove getting great results using the dollar tree methanol fuel. White bottle of course. Big fan of Vargo now thanks! Looking forward to your next vidz. Happy trails my friend! Thanks again for doing all you do for all of us interested!

  5. Dirk van Kampen says:

    Fascinating. Such a cool minimal setup and beautifully shot and presented.

  6. Joselle Crandall says:

    Thank you for making this video! What kind of tarp are you using? And what size is it?

  7. dvstefan says:

    Have you had any hard rain were water was flowing underneath the tarp getting the quilt wet? Would you consider adding a bath tub floor?

  8. Jan Vermaak says:

    Great video! What do you do on (rocky) terrain where it is difficult to drive the tent stakes into the ground?

    And what if the wind direction shifts significantly during the night? Block up the entrance somehow?

  9. BackpackingVideos says:

    Joe, do you typically use a tarp in Colorado? I'll be hitting the CT again this year sometime around July 6. Thinking of switching to the ZPacks Hexamid tarp.

  10. Kurt McDonald says:

    Love your videos. Gear info and hiking without all the BS "trying to be an over the top personality" like so many others.

    But anyway, So far I've done all of my hiking/camping in Mississippi & Alabama. A bug bivy is a necessity here. I'm heading out to Colorado in July to do as much of the CT as I can. Is a bug bivy something I'll need to have?

  11. Brant & Garvey says:

    As a lifelong tarp user, it's always interesting to see how other people pitch. Thanks for the video!

  12. Doug Underwood says:

    Set up in strong wind can be a bit tricky. I would like a video tutoial of that.

  13. Josh Felts says:

    Nice tip to put the trecking pole a little offset for some more crawl in/out space. Keep up the good content!

  14. Find Your Wanderlust says:

    This is spectacular work, I hope you get some time to check out some of my latest work.
    Cheers!

  15. Ron Blevins says:

    Do you still use the Sea to Summit bug net with your tarp? If not what do you use?

  16. clax302 says:

    Do you use the skurka method for your guylines? For ridgelines and tie outs or just ridgelines? I’m asking because it’s kinda hard to tell in this video because it’s sped up. I’ve noticed I get quite a bit of abrasion on my guyline when tightening down my ridgelines using the skurka method. I think it might be due to some trash stakes. Gonna probably get some vargos

  17. Ron Blevins says:

    More tarp videos please! I just got the Gossamer Gear tarp, so any tips and tricks would be much appreciated.

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