Last Updated on August 31, 2021
The Best Hammock Tarp For Backpacking
This hammock tarp is one of the best bets considering the price, quality, and ability to keep you dry after a decent rain. If you don’t want to compromise quality and are also not in a position to spend too much for your camping trip, this tarp deserves a try!
There is nothing more thrilling than being in touch with nature and what other better way than outdoor camping? Those who don’t like to waste any minute inside tents like to take a step further. They hang up hammocks so they can enjoy nature even while sleeping or resting.
But there is one thing that can affect your blissful time on a hammock and that is rain. Most people tend to stick to tents for this reason: tents are the only portable outdoor shelters that keep them dry when it is pouring outside. But all that is about to change thanks to tarps!
Tarps are basically covers that go over hammocks to protect you from the rain or the sun and are probably the best solution for any inclement weather conditions.
On our hammock tarp reviews, we are going to review several excellent tarps. You may even find the best hammock tarps for backpacking while reading through the reviews! In addition, to help you with getting the best hammock rain fly, we have prepared a little buying guide!
Let’s get started!
Best Hammock Tarp For Backpacking
1. Bear Butt Double Hammock Tarp (Top Pick)
It covers an 11” hammock entirely to provide protection from the sun or rain. On top of that, securing it into the ground is a pretty simple process with the stakes that come with the purchase.
Considering its usability, weight, and construction quality, it beats those $5 tarps from your local hardware store any day.
With that said, the company should focus on making the stuff sack opening larger than what it is at this moment. Moreover, a folding guide would have been quite helpful to the users. Nonetheless, these are not something that should refrain you from buying this tarp. All you have to do is fold the tarp tightly and pack it down into the bag.
Despite having few minor hiccups, I still believe this particular Bear Butt hammock tarp is one of the best bets considering the price, quality, and ability to keep you dry after a decent rain.
If you don’t want to compromise quality and are also not in a position to spend too much for your camping trip, this tarp deserves a try.
- Compact and lightweight when packed, hence easy to carry around.
- It’s straightforward to set this tarp up in a quick time.
- Well constructed with quality seam.
- This hammock tarp shines in keeping you dry as it’s genuinely a waterproof rain fly.
- The purchase includes necessary quality accessories like aluminum stakes, rope with reflective tracers to secure it without any hassle whatsoever.
- Readily available in different colors.
- Easy on the wallet.
- The opening of the stuff sack is narrow. It takes time to wrap the tarp back into the bag.
- You can use it only in diamond shape layout.
- No instruction manual comes with the tarp. The setup process is not an uphill task, though.
2. AQUA QUEST DEFENDER TARP – SURVIVAL SHELTER
Available in 3 sizes- 10 x 7, 10 x 10, and 13 x 10, you can purchase the perfect size for your needs.
No matter which size you order, your tarp will come well constructed and perfectly stitched all around. This tarp is highly durable thanks to a combination of 70D nylon + TPU coating + strong stitching+ heat taped seams.
Depending on the size, the tarp will have 19 to 24 webbing loops, 1 top center loop, and pole inserts on each corner. This smart set-up style allows you to put up your tarp even at places where there are no trees or poles for support.
You can roll up your tarp and pack it in the sack that comes with the product while transporting or during storage. The sack enables you to keep your tarp packed in the most compact manner possible, which also makes it perfect for travel.
We must mention that the tarps (even the smallest size) can be a little heavy. But that just adds to the rigid and strong construction of the item.
- Easy Setup
- Available In 3 Sizes
- Reinforced Stitching
- Heat Taped Seams
- 100 % waterproof ratings
- Can Be Set Up On Its Own- No Trees Required Nearby
- It’s Pretty Heavy
3. CHILL GORILLA TARP
This 12’ rain fly tarp comes in the most convenient square shape and gives you lots of options to set up with 19 dual tie-outs.
You can use this tarp with your regular/double hammock, tent, or just as a sun-protective cover during any outdoor activity. With strong double-stitched seams and reinforced corners, the tarp can withstand harsh weather and any environment that you set it up against.
Package includes- 6 x 3 Lines, 6 Tensioners,4 Aluminum Tent Stakes(6″), 19 Tie Down Points, 2 storage pockets (big and small). Pretty much everything you need. Given that this tarp is rather inexpensive, it really seems to be the best one for the money to us.
- Easy Setup
- Big Size For Double Hammock Or Tent
- Double Stitched Seam
- The Craftsmanship Is a Bit Bad
4. ENO PROFLY TARP
This Dry Fly Tarp by Eagles Nest Outfitters is designed to tackle rain and all elements and can be configured in various ways for your convenience. It comes with an 8 guy points which allows you to set it up exactly in the style required to block the rain.
Made from polyurethane-treated ripstop nylon, the tarp offers strong protection but at the same time, it is very light and easy to carry around. As it weighs only 22 ounces, it will not be much of a burden when you backpack with it. It is also very easy to set up, taking only a couple of minutes to get the thing up and ready.
Once you have this tarp set up, you will have a lot of room underneath so you can enjoy a comfortable and cozy sleep despite the weather outside.
- Tackles Rain Really Well
- Incorporates an 8 Guy points Design
- It’s A Little Short Tarp
5. AQUA QUEST TARP – CAMPING TARP TENT SHELTER
The Safari Tarp is made from a 70D RipStop nylon fabric material and has a hydrostatic resistance of 20,000mm. The stitches are all reinforced and the seam sealing are all heat-resistant. Weighing at only 2.4lbs, it will not weigh you down, and neither will it take up a large amount of space for storage.
To ensure easy setup, the Safari Tarp comes with 19 reinforced webbing loops so you can create your own unique cover style.
You can hit the forest or any outdoor location with confidence when you know that you have good cover. This product is designed to give you all the assurance you need in terms of reliability and safety.
- Strong and durable material
- Flexible setup
- Not too bulky
- Large size
- No Sign of Wear
6. KELTY NOAH’S TARP
It sports a 4-point shape which can be set up to suit your requirements. This is a very light tarp so it will not protect you from heavy rain or very strong winds. But it is great for protection against a sudden light pour, heavy sunlight, and low wind.
The catenary-cut and coated polyester taffeta ensure that the tarp is firmly held. At the same time, the taped seams prolong the life of the tarp to last you much longer.
You can get this product in sizes 12 and 9.
Be sure to purchase the poles separately so you can set them up anywhere you, please.
The product comes with tent steaks and a carry stuff sack to pack for storage and transportation.
- Includes Tent Steaks and convenient Storage Bag
- Great for Light Protection Against All Elements Outdoors
- Designed To Hang Triangular
7. UST TUBE TARP
Sometimes, we need ground protection just as much as we need a cover over our heads. This is when the tube tarp comes in super handy. You don’t have to worry about getting a tent because this tarp can provide one person with comfort and protection.
The product comes with six steel stakes, two single-adjustable guy lines and one dual adjust guy line. Another amazing feature of this item is that the reverse side is flame-retardant and aluminized.
With a limited lifetime warranty from the manufacturers, you can expect durability and quality performance through multiple seasons. And besides, thanks to the combination of cheapness and convenience, we think that this tarp is the best cheap backpacking hammock tarp out there.
- Aluminized Interior
- Can Be Used As a Traditional Tarp
- It’s Pretty Heavy
8. ROLLING FOX TARP SHELTER
Rolling Fox 11 x 9 tarp is very quick to set up with 16 tie-off loops. This tarp thus is something which you can rely on when needing quick protection against the sun or light rain protection. This tarp is also very lightweight, weighing just about a pound. If you are looking for the best lightweight hammock tarp, then this one may be for you.
It also comes with 4 ground stakes and 4 guy lines to quickly install the tarpon on any surface that can support it. Besides, Rolling Fox ships it with its own storage sack.
- Easy to Setup
- Diamond Shape
- 16 Tie-Off Loops
- Super Light- It Weighs Around a Pound
- Small Tarp
9. YUKON OUTDOORS WALKABOUT RAINFLY
This tarp can be used with your hammock or as a separate overhead cover with your ground cloth. With only 4 anchor points, 2 of which you attach to trees or poles and 2 to the ground, you can have this tarp set up in minutes.
The tarp features high-visibility guy lines, integrated guy line tensioners, and reinforced guy-out points. The guy lines sport reflective tracers so you can spot the tarp even at night. The visibility allows you to track your shelter or area of camp if you decide to take a stroll into the forest or woods in the dark.
- Quick Easy to Setup
- Large Coverage
- Includes Reflective Traces For Visibility
- Good Protection From The Sun and Rain
- Heavy Tarp
10. Grand Trunk All Purpose Rainfly
Being very light, this tarp comes with triple-stitched reinforced seams and corner grommets that prolong the life of the rain tarp. It can be used through multiple seasons so you get good value for your money.
The high-quality PU-coated waterproof ripstop polyester is washable and offers excellent weather protection. With a firm set-up, the tarp also keeps the wind away.
You can use this tarp over your 10 feet hammock or even on its own as a shade.
- Triple Stitched Seams and Reinforced Corners
- Small Size
11. ULTIMATE SURVIVAL BASE HEX TARP
The tarp measures 3 x 3 x 12.5 inches. It can be used as an overhead shelter in the hex shape for ultimate protection from all angles. You can protect yourself, your furry friend, and all your belongings from the rain and other elements outdoors.
You can also use this product as a ground cloth to lie on when you need to get some quick rest. In case of an accident or emergency, the aluminized interior of the rain tarp will have you covered as you wrap it around you.
We recommend using this with the UST Bug Tent for the best all-around protection.
The pack includes guy lines and steel stakes along with the tarp.
- Lightweight Protection
- Offers Multiple stages
- Compatible With the UST Bug Tent
- Designed To Hang Triangular
Hammock Tarp For Backpacking-Buying Guide
Before getting a tarp, you need to spend some time on research before making a purchase. You spent time when looking for a good hammock, right? The same needs to be done with a tarp.
To get the best tarp for hammock camping, make sure to follow our buying guide.
So, let us start with how to choose the best backpacking hammock tarp.
TARP STYLE AND SHAPE
The shape of your tarp must be compatible with the style of your hammock. Different Shapes provide different coverage. It must be such that it provides ample coverage because that is what a tarp is mainly used for.
Rectangular Tarps- A very basic shape, the rectangular tarp probably provides the best coverage. Rectangular tarps are equipped with 4 anchor points, one on each corner, to set over your hammock. A ridgeline seam is set up on top of the hammock. The tarp is draped on the ridgeline lengthwise. They are easy to set up and will provide basic protection from rain, wind, and anything in the air.
Diamond/Square Tarps- Diamond tarps/square tarps also known as symmetrical tarps are usually square pitched on an angle and come with 2 anchor points. Symmetrical hammock tarps are easy to set up due to the small number of anchors but may lack complete coverage because of the shape. They are also very light and portable.
Hexagonal Tarps- Hexagonal tarps are well, have a hexagonal shape! They have more corners than rectangular tarps and offer a lot of ventilation. These could be among the pricey models. But they are definitely worth it with the lightweight feel and convenient design.
Catenary Tarps- Catenary cuts keep tarps firmly in place and also make sure that rainwater slides off of it. If you are going to be camping in windy weather conditions, then this is the best design/shape for you.
The next question to answer is “What is the best size tarp for hammock camping?”
You must choose the right tarp size depending on the amount of coverage you need. The environment/weather conditions of the camping spot matter as well.
The biggest kind of hammock tarps is the winter tarps that are ideal for four-season camping. Besides, they are very useful when you need plenty of protection against weather elements.
For camping in summer, you may need a lighter and smaller tarp to protect you from occasional rain. Smaller tarps are easier to setup. This is perfect because you won’t be needing a tarp over your head at all times in summer.
The material of your tarp will determine how light or heavy the tarp is. When packing for a camping trip, you need to make sure that your vehicle can carry the weight of your stuff. The weight of the tarp would be important as well.
But if you are going to be camping in extreme weather, then you may want to go light on some items. This would allow you to get a more protective & heavier tarp.
A strong, durable & heavy tarp is going to be your best bet during bad weather conditions. On the other hand, a simple lightweight tarp model is going to be enough for backpacking trips.
MATERIAL AND QUALITY
You want your tarp to last you for multiple seasons. More importantly, you want it to protect you through all kinds of weather. Quality really matters.
So how can you tell if your hammock camping tarp is made to last? You look at the common fabric material used in the construction.
We will mention three of the most commonly used advanced materials for tarps and they are nylon, polyethylene, and carbon fiber.
Nylon tarps are the most affordable and also they are very ultralight hammock tarps. They are great to pack in your backpack and head out without weighing down on you. But if you need a more durable tarp, then poly material will be ideal for you
Tarps made from carbon fiber tend to be the most expensive. They are also not as easy to work with as nylon or polyethylene. But they are quite popular among the hammock camper who don’t mind spending much on these items.
USES OF A HAMMOCK TARP
A hammock tarp is traditionally used with hammocks for an overhead shelter and maximum protection against inclement weather conditions. But did you know that there are multiple other ways in which you can use this product?
Here are some popular hammock tarp applications:
Traditional Hammock Cover- this is the most common use of a tarp. It is setup over a hammock.
Thermal Blanket- Some tarps come with a flame-retardant and aluminized interior. Such tarps can be wrapped around for protection during an emergency.
Ground Cloth- You can spread your tarp over the ground and use it to rest on.
Set-up as a Tent- Some tarps are very large and come with all the essential materials to set it up like a tent. This allows you to get maximum protection from every angle.
Use as a shade- Use a tarp on its own to protect yourself and all your camping hammock gears anywhere and at any point during your outdoor trip.
PITCHING A TARP
Pitching a tarp may seem complicated if you have never done it before. But all it requires is a few steps and you are good to go. The following steps will help you setup a traditional rectangular/diamond-shaped tarp
- Find a good spot- The location you choose plays an important role in setting up the tarp. Flatland with something to fit the stakes into would be the best. Large trees and rocks are great for use.
- Tie the corners- Attach your parachute cords- one end to the tarp (there should be a hole in each corner) and the other end wrapped around a tree or pole. Wrap around the tree in such a way that it stays firmly in place and does not slip off or roll down.
- Stake- With one end of the tarp fitted on a tree/pole, stretch out the tarp and stake down the remaining sides firmly into the ground.
All set- Secure all corners and set the height right. Then, you can now enjoy resting under your new set of hammock shelters.
BENEFITS OF USING A HAMMOCK TARP
- Easy to transport- Hammock rain tarps are lightweight and easy to carry around. They can be folded or rolled into compact sizes and stored in a carrying stuff sack. When protection isn’t a priority, a hammock tarp is a much more storage-efficient choice than a tent.
- Washable– Most tarps are washable so you can keep them clean and in great condition. Again, when compared to tents, cleaning hammock tarps is much, much easier.
- Easy to set up- If you can set up a camping hammock, then you can definitely set up a tarp. The tarp configurations are really simple and do not require any special skills to set up. And besides, manufacturers often include all the mounting gear with them.
The easiness of setup also makes hammock tarps great for emergencies. You just need some seconds to create a shelter with a hammock rainfly tarp, which is very important for emergency cases.
- Acts as a shade- Even if the sun is shining bright outside and the heat is unbearable, you can seek shelter from the harsh weather conditions by moving under your tarp.
- Protects against rain and keeps you dry- A rain tarp also keeps the rain at bay and protects you and your belongings from the water.
- Multiple purposes- As we mentioned in this article, a tarp can be used in multiple ways and for multiple applications. A hammock tarp thereby delivers great value for the money.
- Affordable- Despite having so many benefits, you can easily purchase a tarp without burning a hole in your pocket.
The beauty of nature can be so hypnotizing that we may often forget to take precautions while we are outdoors. But safety always comes first so keep the following points in mind when you decide to set up your tarp/hammock/tent anywhere.
- Inspect your gears- Always check if your gears are in good condition. You do not want to face any disappointments after you have already left home.
- Choose a safe location to rest at We know you may be one of those who enjoy the thrill of an unknown place. But do look around at the site you wish to settle. Make sure that it is in fact safe from dangerous animals or other unsafe elements. Although a tarp will be able to give extra protection from the rain, it won’t do much for you in case of lightning strikes.
- Get the right size of gears- If you are going to be traveling alone, then single-size gears are great. But in case you travel with a partner or in a group, then make sure the things you carry are enough to provide for all.
- Never cook under a tarp- Cooking under a tarp will not only leave the area smelling. It might trigger a fire as well. You wouldn’t start a fire in a tent, right.
- Good choice anchors- Always use a strong and secured tree or pole as your anchor. Make sure it can hold your tarp against strong winds.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are Hammock Tarps Really Waterproof?
Hammock tarps are generally used for protection against rain so they should be waterproof. Common materials such as polyethylene and nylon material will provide your tarp with water protection. But you must still read through the product details of individual hammock tarps for more details. Rainfly Tarps are best for rain protection.
Is It Best To Get a Hammock Tarp With a Bug Net Or Without?
Bug nets are good for protection against bugs. If you know that your camping site is full of bugs, then a hammock tarp with a bug net may be the best option for you. But if you don’t need any protection from bugs, then you can avoid a bug net. A tarp without a net is roomier and more convenient.
Do They Make a Hammock Tarp With Hammock Installed?
Hammocks and hammock tarps are different items and need to be purchased separately (unless you get a combo deal). Tarps will not come with any hammocks installed. But you can use a tarp over a hammock for the best all-around protection outdoors.
What size tarp do I need for my hammock?
If you will be using your tarp over your hammock, you need to get a tarp size compatible with your hammock. Also, make sure that the tarp has enough room for you and/or your companions, as well as for all your hammock gear.
Before we close on the topic, we would like to brush up on a few things discussed. Shopping for your hammock tarp can be both fun and exciting if you know where to look and what to look for. All the products we reviewed here today serve as excellent camping gear.
Having one of these tarps in your backpack will allow you to take care of any surprises that nature can suddenly present you with. Be it the hot sun, wind, and rain, or bugs, a hammock tarp is designed to keep you safe and sound as you sleep comfortably outdoors.
But before you rush to buy a backpacking hammock tarp, make sure to do the research. Hammock camping shelters can be cheap, but you shouldn’t waste money on gear that doesn’t really meet your requirements. Thereby, you need to find out what you want exactly before actually buying a hammock tarp.
The budget is also important. You can’t buy what you can’t afford, right? So make sure to know how much money you are ready to spend.
And in the end, if you follow all these steps, you will definitely find the best one!