You may feel you know all that is about a hammock tarp. But the moment you enter the market, boom. All your knowledge vanishes, and you are left stranded thinking which one to buy now. It is a necessary addition to serve as the entry-level line of defense against the changing weather.
Quick Gear Recommendation
Below is a list of our favourite backpacking gear that you check quickly if in hurry. Scroll down to read the rest of the article.
- Best Tent Under $100: Winterial Single Person Personal Bivy Tent
- Best Hammock Tarp: Eno, Eagles Nest Outfitters Profly Rain Tarp
- Best Pillow: Trekology Ultralight Inflating Travel/Camping Pillows
- Best Knife Fixed Blade: Spyderco Delica Folding Knife
- Best Chair: Helinox Zero Ultralight Compact Camping Chair
- Best Mess Kit: Light My Fire 8-piece Bpa-free Meal Kit
- Best Cookset: Stanley Base Camp Cook Set
- Best Towel: Rainleaf Microfiber Towel
- Best Flashlight: Peakplus Rechargeable Tactical Flashlight
Hatchet: Gransfors Bruks Wildlife Hatchet
- Best Multitool: Gerber Suspension Multi-plier
- Best Power Bank: Portable Charger Jackery Bolt
- Best Binoculars: Carson High Definition Waterproof Binoculars
Their degree of resistance will depend on the type. Some of them are just suitable for light rain while others can withstand a heavy downpour. Whatever way it is, the tarp is an absolute necessity to have with a hammock.
Are you worried about what to look for in a tarp when buying? Do not worry; we got you covered about that right here.
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There are a variety of forms in which tarps are available. Some of them include hex, diamond, square, and catenary tarps.
- Square/Rectangular Tarps: Square tarps give you the best coverage area. It comes with a lot of configuration options. It offers up to 4 different anchor points and a ridgeline to be set up above the hammock. It offers the best protection from the weather in any scenario. However, the only downside is its limited ventilation capability. The rectangular shape is the bulkiest and heavy.
- Hexagonal Tarps: It resembles a square tarp in shape. The difference is inward angled corners instead of outwards. It offers a right combination of protection with other features. Such as the weight is reduced, and the material required for its construction is also less, which reduces the price. The ventilation is also much better.
- Diamond Tarps: If weight is your concern, you should go for a diamond tarp. It occupies less space and weighs much less. A two-point anchor system means that they are straightforward to set up. They are also called as asymmetrical tarps. The coverage is limited, as you might have guessed by now. The open end should not be on the wind facing side.
- Catenary Tarps: Catenary Tarps make use of a curved area to stop any kind of sag on top of you. It also makes them lightweight. Catenary tarps are most recommended for windy conditions.
The essential purpose of a tarp is to cover the entire hammock. A little bit of extension beyond the hammock would be significant to have to prevent any inconvenience. So, you need to know the exact dimensions of your hammock before deciding on a tarp.
However, the size is also going to be affected by the weight as both of these are interrelated. If you want to choose a more expansive and lengthy tarp, it will increase the weight. But the protection offered by it would be much better as well. You need to find the sweet spot to balance both of the criteria effectively.
The weight of the tarp plays an essential role in its selection. Because all of it would be on your shoulder during a backpacking trip, so you need to choose wisely. The factor affecting the weight is the material used for its construction. Usually, three materials are being commonly used.
- Silicon filled Nylon: Nylon with the addition of silicon becomes a very durable material. It is ideal for someone looking for a lightweight option.
- Dyneema Composite Amalgam: It is one of the lightest materials available. However, beware!! It comes at a high cost of loss of quality and durability. Choose only if carrying weight is of extreme concern.
- Ripstop Nylon: Somewhat heavy, but ripstop nylon offers the best strength features. It comes at a cost, of course, but it pays off well. If you d not mind carrying a little more weight, consider a tarp made up of ripstop nylon.
- Polyethene: Tarps made up of polyethylene are also available. They provide better coverage and protection against the weather, but their weight is high. Also, they usually come at a higher price.
Having a tarp with continuous ridgelines will put you at an advantage. It will distribute the load effectively and will not allow it to fall on the fabric only. The tarp won’t sag, and it will be suitable for the durability as well.
- Your ridgeline should be at least 12 inches or 1 foot long.
- To ensure the waterproofing, make sure that everything on the tarp is seam sealed.
- The guyline cordage should ideally be of lesser weight while offering adequate resistance against the adverse weather conditions.
- Always opt for a tarp with the exceptional build quality. You do not want to be shopping for a tarp at the start of every season. Durability is of the utmost importance here.
- Do not fall for super cheap tarps as the value for money will not be significant. Better save up and invest in a good tarp once and for all.
- As you are backpacking, the packed size plays an important role here. The close size should be compact enough to fit inside the luggage bag. Even a few inches are a deciding factor here.
Some of the best available tarps are chosen for review below. It will help you select the top-quality option available within your budget.
This tarp is an ideal choice for those looking to survive in stormy conditions. It offers excellent weather protection. Made up of 210D ripstop nylon, it is going to last you longer than what you are expecting. At only 22 ounces, this tarp is exceptionally lightweight and a great choice for a backpacking trip.
The downpour will no longer be a problem. It offers a 6 point connection to make sure that nothing stays intact on top of the tarp. Everything will fall down that slope. The shape grants you fantastic protection from water. This tarp can even tolerate layers of ice on top of it.
ENO gives you a stuff sack alongside it for easy carrying around. The style is versatile and good looking when installed. Your gear will be safe and dry under it without any doubts. The protection it offers at this price is astonishing.
- Durable materials
- Lightweight and easy to carry
- Great weather protection ability
- Versatile design
- Covers a vast area under it
- Compact package
- Length is pretty limited
It is a multipurpose tool that can effectively act as a shelter, a camp, or a hammock tarp. A handy zip can be used to convert it from a tent to a tarp in no time. It is a hassle-free task that can be done quickly just by following the given instructions.
It offers you a solution that can be helpful in different weather conditions. For sleeping, it can be converted into a tent. If encountered with rain, it can be used as a tarp to protect you and your gear from soaking. It also comes with a base floor when given the shape of a tent.
You can use it to protect yourself from cold as the materials used for its construction are of high-quality. The outer side is aluminized to offer great thermal insulation. The important thing is that it is highly customizable, and at the same time, it is a compact and lightweight thing to carry around. Weighing at just 1.5 pounds, it will not put much burden on your shoulders and will help you in any kind of scenario.
- Multipurpose use
- Ideal for any kind of terrain and weather
- Compact package
- Easy to set up and customize as needed
- Can provide thermal insulation in a cold climate
- Short in size
- Waterproofing ability is not very good
Hennessy Hammocks are an old player in the game, and it clearly shows by their product quality. It checks all the requirements for an ideal hammock tarp at an affordable price point. Content from Hennessy Hammock is considered to be top tier stuff in the market.
It comes in two different shapes to choose from. Symmetrical and Asymmetrical. Former is more preferred due to better protection and a bigger size. It can be pitched in various ways as you like.
To ensure maximum protection from wind and rain, you can install two guylines on the ground. It will have both the sie covered to give you enough shelter. Hennessy uses 70D Ripstop polyester that means a durable and long-lasting product. With Henssessy Hammock Rain Tarp with you, you no longer would have to worry about changing weather conditions. It offers a complete balance of almost everything you want from a tarp: wide-area, adequate protection, portable, and not too hard on the pocket.
- Great value for money
- Excellent protection from wind and rain
- High-quality materials
- Durable construction from a reliable brand
- Easy to fold and carry
- Cordage is a bit crooked
Yukon Walkabout Tarp has a diamond shape that offers a wide surface area underneath it. It is an excellent shelter that can protect you and your gear from rain or snow. It comes with four anchors to support it. Two of them are on the ground while two of them are on the top side.
It is easy to set up without any complexity. The polyester used for its construction is further coated with polyurethane for a better quality product overall. It is one of the most lightweight tarps in the market. The weight is even less than a pound, making it an absolute necessity to take with you in the bag.
Yukon includes a guy line that has high visibility. It can easily be tracked from far away during day time as well. The size is right as well as it can even cover double-sized hammocks under it. You will be ideally protected for sun and rain under its shelter. Yukon Outdoors Walkabout Tarp is an ideal tarp for your next backpacking trip.
- Weighs less than a pounds
- Ideal for backpacking
- Wide coverage area
- Highly visible guylines
- Top-quality construction
- One year manufacturer’s warranty
- Leaves a gap for wind no matter how you set it
This latest tarp from Snugpak is crafted by the best. There is absolutely no stone left unturned in ensuring the best quality out of the box. It uses high-quality nylon for its construction. IT comes in a 10*10 feet square shape, and a vast amount of area is covered underneath.
The material is completely waterproof. With taped seams, the waterproofing ability enhances more and more. It is another multipurpose piece of equipment. It can be set up as a tarp, rainfly, or any other kind of shelter you might need at the time.
There are four guy lines that can be extended as per your needs. The corners are all reinforced to make sure that it offers great protection. It is one of the most versatile and customizable options available in the market. It is ideal for backpacking because it does not weigh a lot.
Snugpak includes a meshed front carry bag for easy transportation alongside. It is designed to set up in almost any kind of environment without any external support.
- Weighs less than 2 pounds only
- All four corners are reinforced
- Comes with a carry bag
- Constructed using waterproof nylon
- Easily customizable as per the needs
- Offers great weather resistance
- Buttons snaps are not very good
- The stuff sack is not of a good quality
Chill Gorilla is not a new name in the outdoor trip products, and this tarp is no exception. It is one of the direct competitors for the best backpacking hammock tarp because of the outstanding value for money it offers.
It gives a wide 100 sq. Ft area of coverage under it. It is constructed using durable ripstop nylon. Maximum protection is ensured from the water in case of rain. It is great for a backpacking trip as it folds down to a really compact size, more comfortable to fit inside the bag. The best thing about it? It comes with a complete kit of things such as guy lines, stakes, tensioners, and a stuff sack too. No other tarp comes with the necessary items, and it is great to have these with the tarp.
The tarp weighs just a few ounces about 1 pound. It is a versatile piece of equipment that offers great protection from the rain.
Chill Gorilla Hammock Tarp is a good tarp with exceptional build quality made to last longer with you. It is a powerful thing that is very easy to set up. Overall, it is a recommended option for a good backpacking tarp.
- Amazing value for money
- Great protection from the rain
- Unique design
- Comes with a complete kit
- Wide coverage area
- Black colored paracord
- Seam seal quality does not seem too good
ENO Rain Trap is a proper water repellant tarp. It will not even allow a drop of water to come inside. You will be warm and dry underneath it no matter what the outside conditions are.
It is adjustable as per your needs. It features overlapping doors to protect you from wind or rain from the front side.
Made up of ripstop nylon, ENO guarantees a durable product for your money. Its unique design makes it stand out from the rest of the options. It is easy to use and install without any hiccups. Being lightweight makes it an ideal choice for backpacking. ENO Eagles Nest Tarp is an all-round performer and something you should get for your next adventure.
- Portable and easy to carry
- Excellent water resistance
- Good value for money
- Easy to install
- Features two front door setup for wind protection
- A little bit on the heavier side
- Expensive product
It is not much you would want from an ideal backpacking hammock tarp. Lightweight options that protect you well form adverse weather conditions and do not breaks your bank. Out of all the options reviewed, there is one tarp that fulfills the above requirements, and it is Chill Gorilla Hammock Tarp.
It is a strong and reliable product that is going to serve you well for times to come. The area covered by it is also vast, and it comes with a complete kit of items to use it with.
In my opinion, for your money, the best backpacking tarp is Chill Gorilla Tarp.