gatewood cape set up

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    Joe DeLoss


    Locale: Sunny Central Ohio

    My Gatewood Cape just got delivered yesterday and I'm eager to get it up and seal all the seams. More importantly though, I want to try it out.

    While using the Cape, what's your total shelter set up or combo? Do you include a groundsheet, bivy, bug net, etc? My initial thought was to partner it with a GG polycro and no bivy, is that a recipe for disaster?

    Timothy Roper


    Locale: Alabama

    Congratulations. I love my Gatewood. It's my shoulder season shelter when it's it's not cold enough for my Kifaru Supertarp and not warm enough for my hammock.

    I recently weathered a good storm in mine, and found no need for a bivy. Check out this article for good setup info. I like the higher pitch advocated by the author in almost all situations unless I know a storm is blowing in.

    I've given up on a groundsheet with mine, instead using a very light, rather wide cc pad (similar to Gossamers Thin lite pad) under my Pacific Outdoors air mat.

    As far as bugs go, I'm considering Ron's Serenity bug tent to go with it. On the other hand, down here when the bugs are bad it's usually time to hit the hammock anyway, so we'll see.

    Hope this helps.

    Jed Augustine
    BPL Member


    Locale: Appalachians/Rockies

    Hi y'all-

    While we're on the subject of the gatewood…

    Is there anyone who uses the Gatewood as their primary tarp? In the interest of gear closet simplicity and money savings, this seems an appealing option to me. I could take a rainjacket in more humid climates, and just the gatewood in dry. I would make it my shelter and raingear year round in all places, but being as my main sojourners are in the hot, muggy south, a non-breathable fabric just don't seem too pleasant, ya hear?

    Bob Bankhead
    BPL Member


    Locale: Oregon, USA

    Yes, definitely look at adding the Six Moon Designs Serenity Net Tent to your Gatewood Cape.

    7 oz for 15.5 square feet of floored space; packed size 3 x 6 inches


    Ken Helwig
    BPL Member


    Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA

    Just got my Serenity and it set up in my Gatewood Cape. Looks great and I took pics too. The Serenity offers full bug protection, a bathtub floor, and best of all some room to sit up. The Serenity also snaps into the snaps inside the Cape to raise the mesh some more. Ron drid a hell of a job on this. For 18 ounces you get full protection, a cape for

    BPL Member


    Locale: SE USA


    Based on your experience w/the Serenity, would it fit me??? I'm 6'1" w/ big feet, so w/ a quilt or bag will I brush the end? My Gatewood doesn't leave a lot of extra room as it is, but I REALLY like it.

    Thanks, Todd

    Ken Helwig
    BPL Member


    Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA

    Todd, I am 6'1 too. The Serentity has just enough space to have a pad and bag in it. It is closer in set up to the front than the back of the Cape. The back could work as a small vesituble. It's a nice piece of gear and well worth the money! I will post pics soon

    Bill B
    BPL Member


    Is the Serenity designed to work with the Wild Oasis? The website says that it works with the Gatewood Cape but does not mention the WO.

    BPL Member


    Locale: SE USA

    Thanks Ken! Can't wait to see your pics.

    Johan Alvehus


    As I've understood from R Moak, using the Serenity with the Wild Oasis may require a few tweaks.

    Eric Blumensaadt
    BPL Member


    Locale: Mojave Desert

    If you're adding a Six Moons Serenity Shelter bug net/ground cloth to a Gatewood Cape why not just use a TarpTent Contrail & a GTX PacLite rain suit? That way you can leave yer shelter W/O getting soaked and the weight is similar to carrying chaps and a rain jacket, as mentioned above.

    That's the setup I use.


    Ernie Elkins


    Locale: North Carolina

    The Contrail is a great shelter and has its strengths, but the Gatewood Cape plus Serenity bug tent (18 oz) is still lighter and more versatile than the Contrail (24 oz). You could add the same rainsuit to your pack and still be carrying less.

    Jeff Cadorin
    BPL Member


    Locale: paper beats rock

    not to mention the versatility gained by a cape/bug tent vs. any tent type option.

    Brian James


    Locale: South Coast of BC

    I believe that the Gatewood can be pitched tight with the ground on almost all sides — another difference when comparing to the Contrail.

    There was another thread talking about having to carry a bivy for using the contrail out in the open in blowing rain due to its' openness.

    I don't know why Tarptents don't have a few extra inches of fabric to allow them to be "storm-pitched" — but then again I don't own either a Gatewood or a TT so I could be making this all up.

    John Haley


    Locale: New York/Vermont Border

    I've had the Contrail "nailed" to the ground with the only opening being a small one below the then extended front beak. Never had a problem with blowing rain. Anything less than very strong rain-driven winds and I'll leave all the ventilation possible. I often use a bivy with my small tarp, but would never even consider it with the Contrail.


    The Contrail goes up in a flash. However I have had to add a layer of insulated clothing to stay warm whereas it was unneeded in a conventional tent. Recently discovered that wearing my rain suit over light merino wool works well for extra warmth in my Contrail.

    Tim Marshall
    BPL Member


    Locale: Minnesota

    What are the dimensions of the Gatewood cape? not the covered area, but the actual seam dimensions of the tarp. I am considering making something very similar and would like to know its exact dimensions along every edge.

    Thank you

    Mark Andersen


    Tim — Did you ever find seam dimensions for the Gatewood Cape? I would like to make something similar…

    Tim Marshall
    BPL Member


    Locale: Minnesota



    Franco Darioli


    Locale: Gauche, CU.

    "not to mention the versatility gained by a cape/bug tent vs. any tent type option.'
    as usual that has to do with perception , preferences and location. For example I prefer to have rain clothing separate from my shelter, not only because I don't get wet setting it up but because a cape or poncho is rather useless for some of the walks I do .

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