Best Camping Tarp Reviews: 2018 Edition

A total of 5 products, 11 hours and uncountable reassessments later, we can confidently say that Chill Gorilla 10′ Hammock Waterproof Rain Fly Tent Tarp is the ultimate winner when it comes to extraordinary tarps. Being best in terms of quality, durability and a range of other factors is what makes it the ultimate choice when it comes to tarps.

The more affordable option is the Vigor Hammock Rain Fly (Waterproof Tent Tarp) which is known to give an incredible performance for its price range. Today, the camping tarps are the new age tents but only a lot more versatile and ten times lighter.

People now prefer the camping tarps over their bulkier counterparts. And that is why the market is also providing a lot of options in the same category for us to choose from. They can be a lot more customized in nature too for addressing all our camping requirements.

Factors To Consider Before Buying

So your camping tarp was a hit on this camping trip. Everyone loved how roomy and easy to install it was. But then your best friend borrows and returns it with a disapproving shrug. To them, it is now a one-hit wonder.

The real problem lies in the fact that we try to fit the same tarp for all kinds of specifications. Below is a list of all the factors that need to be considered for buying the perfect tarp that fits our purpose.

1. Thickness

Depending upon the purpose of the tarp, its thickness varies. The average range of the tarp material is somewhere in the margin of 0.10 to 0.40 mm. Any tarp that we use indoors is known to be of thinner material. The thickness of the tarp increases when it is manufactured for the outside use.

Indoors we have pretty stable weather and temperature conditions. The harshness of the outside weather cannot be borne by a thinly manufactured tarp. That is why we use a thick tarp to take care of the harshest of weather conditions that we might have to bear outdoors.

The thickness should not come at the cost of portability. Hence, just because a tarp is made of thick material does not mean its bulkiness will increase proportionally. To withstand the exposure of all the outdoor elements, a tarp should be made of thick heavy-duty material.

2. Material Used

The tarps are available in a variety of material which makes it perfect for different kind of purposes. The three main materials available in the market at present are Polyethylene, Mesh, and Canvas. Each one of this material come with their own pron and con list.

The Polyethylene tarps are waterproof, inexpensive tough and very flexible in nature. Made up of a synthetic based plastic polymer, they offer all the benefits that the polymer industry has to offer. Then comes the Canvas tarps that are used majorly to soak up spilled liquids such as paint.

These tarps are made up of closely woven fabric which can be synthetic or natural in its origin. Finally, the mesh tarps are in practice majorly to reduce the wind flow in a specific area. They let the water and wind flow through them easily. Nylon is the primary component in these tarps that is responsible for it various properties.

3. Cut Size and Finish Size

Often the shoppers confuse between the cut size and the finished size of the tarps. To be clear once and for all, the cut size is the size with which the tarp manufacturing process starts. It is the size at the beginning of the process that ultimately leads to the finished product.

After cutting the tarp in the required dimensions known as the cut size officially, it is then folded on the sides and the edges. This will help in keeping the basic structure of the tarp intact for a good amount of years. After all the modifications are made, the size of the tarp can shrink from 7.6 to 15.2 centimeters.

Now, this is the finished size. It is always better to look for the finished size while making the purchase so that the received product fits our size requirements fully without any kind of mess up. Being clear about the cut an finish size will help us in making the right decision.

4. Types

Everyone has there own reasons for the type of tarp that they require But few of these requirements are more generalized than the others. That has encouraged a lot of manufacturers to mass produce them to accommodate the burgeoning supply.

The UV Protected tarp helps the users to protect themselves from the harmful UV rays when they are out enjoying a sunny day. Flame Retardant tarp comes in a variety of shades and is used to resist or slow down the fire.

The blue tarp is water resistant, durable, highly affordable, has reinforced edges and comes in a variety of sizes. We will usually find the Black Mesh tarp lying around on the patio or covering outdoor structures. Also used to protect the gardens and nurseries, they offer good defense against harsh, sun, frost damage and wind.

Best Camping Tarps Reviews

It is only after you do a quick research online that you come to know what you require in terms of a tarp. We have made this task all the simpler for you with the help of a detailed account of our top 5 picks:

1. Equinox Egret Tarps

Main Features

Nylon tarps are the most multi-purpose and durable when it comes to having a reliable camping buddy. That is why the Equinox Egret Tarps are made up of premium quality nylon that can stand the test of time and weather. With the low carbon footprint and various another environment – friendly features, these tarps are a good deal for their price.

Pros

  • The tarps are strong, lightweight and completely made up of nylon that is responsible for all its amazing properties.
  • High quality 1.9 oz. ripstop rugged nylon texture has been used to offer it the tensile and robust structure that it boasts of.
  • Waterproof urethane coating makes it all the more useful even at the peak of the rainy season or in a place with unpredictable weather.
  • Affordable pricing increases it responsible for making it easily accessible to all classes of people.
  • Double-stitched seams and reinforced brass grommets present at every 3 feet strengthens the tarp for every possible challenge.

Cons

  • It tends to soak a lot of water and becomes quite heavy with all that water retention.
  • The real product is a bit smaller in size as compared to the marketed version.

2. Go Outfitters Apex Camping Shelter/Hammock Tarp

Main Features

The camping tarp is made up of the 70d polyester fabric which is optimized further with the polyurethane coating that makes the surface waterproof for a wide range of applications. It can be used as a general purpose camping tarp or a versatile hammock camping tarp. The unparalleled quality and durability make it even more appealing to the target audience.

Pros

  • It is made up of 100 percent polyester that is responsible for its rough and tough texture.
  • An add-on tarp dot kit can also be purchased from Amazon to avail more benefits from it.
  • Comprising of a total of 20 ties out loops, unlimited setup modes can be implemented with this tarp.
  • Every purchase gives whole one year of clean water supply to a person in need.
  • The permanent waterproof tape has been used to seal the ridgeline in a thorough manner.

Cons

  • At present, this product is not available for shipping outside the US.
  • The specified weigh does not match with a bit heavier product that we ultimately received.

3. UST Tarp and Camping Shelter (Tube, Hex, and All Weather)

Main Features

The bewildering versatility of this tarp is what makes use in a variety of situations. We can use it as a sleeping bag, as a carpet on the damp ground, a tarp tube to protect ourselves completely from the ground elements and many other similar modes.

Pros

  • Ultralight and super-strong texture of this tarp are known to make it the first choice of a lot of campers and outdoor enthusiasts.
  • The hidden zipper inside helps in making it an instant tube-shaped sleeping tent that is perfect for a single person.
  • Being extremely compact makes it possible to carry it along with us in our backpack without us being weighed down by it.
  • Comes along with the whole installation kit including the stuff sack, guy lines, and steel stakes that help in putting it up within minutes.
  • Emergency signaling and thermal insulation are also facilitated by it with the help of Aluminized reverse side.

Cons

  • Extra sealing is required in its case for providing added durability.
  • It is a bit smaller in size than what is being advertised by the manufacturers.

4. Chill Gorilla 10′ Hammock Waterproof Rain Fly Tent Tarp

Main Features

The brainchild of an old US Marine, this gear has been created by using the years of wisdom that he gathered over years during his service. His team has tested these gears all over the world. These gears are designed in a way to be useful for people who are always outdoors and also the ones who explore the outdoors only once in a while.

Pros

  • The material used in this tarp is waterproof ripstop nylon that makes it ideal for rain flies considering its characteristics.
  • As the most versatile rain flies in this range, it comes with the 2 centerlines, 9 tie downs, stakes, ropes, and tensioners.
  • With the 170″ long diagonal centerline it is possible to beat even the torrential downpour without much trouble.
  • This tarp is able to withstand all kinds of weather conditions with exceptional water shedding ability.
  • The hassle-free warranty of the Chill Gorilla franchise makes it possible to enjoy all the benefits of the product without any kind of compromise.

Cons

  • Waterproof treatment of the tarp is somewhat defective that causes the water to leak through the seams and the surface.
  • The embedded grommets are quite soft and hence not useful enough to install the tarp sturdily in various geographical locations.

5. Vigor Hammock Rain Fly

Main Features

A lot of ways are there in which we can make good use of the Vigor Hammock Rain Fly. We can either erect it directly and take shelter underneath. Or we can install it under the main tent and get added protection from all kinds of rough weather conditions. Spreading it on the ground will keep us dry and clean since we don’t have to make any contact with the damp and dirty terrain.

Pros

  • With the help of the PU2000mm ripstop parachute nylon fabric, perfect protection is gained against the moisture and water accumulation.
  • It can also be hanged quite easily over any kind of hammock to shield ourselves from harsh sun and rainfall.
  • Easy to be used as a picnic mat to have a clean and dry place to hang out, eat and relax when outdoors.
  • Comes with the no-questions-asked replacement warranty that is valid for three years from the date of purchase.
  • The total weight of this product is just 1.6 lbs which makes it extremely portable to carry around.

Cons

  • This product is not fireproof as was the requirement of a few of the customers.
  • Can be hanged only in the diamond format that required four spot tie downs.

Conclusion

A reliable and durable tarp is the perfect companion one can ask from during the camping trips. That makes it all the more important to pick the right one for you since you don’t want to be stuck with a misfit during an otherwise entertaining camping experience. Chill Gorilla 10′ Hammock Waterproof Rain Fly Tent Tarp has our stamp of approval in the present range. 

On this note, we have reached the end of this information piece. Forward it to all your friends and family members and make them a smart outdoor person just like you!

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