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Yama Flat Tarp Review


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Home Forums Campfire Editor’s Roundtable Yama Flat Tarp Review

Viewing 11 posts - 1 through 11 (of 11 total)
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  • #3782649
    Drew Smith
    BPL Member

    @drewsmith

    Locale: Colorado Rockies

    Companion forum thread to: Yama Flat Tarp Review

    Yama Flat Tarp Review: our first looks at this 7′ x 9′ silpoly ultralight shelter for ultralight backpacking.

    #3782663
    John S.
    BPL Member

    @jshann

    I am surprised you would leave out the best value (lightest and lowest cost) 7 x 9 ft silpoly tarp on the market made by Borah Gear.

    #3782751
    Monte Masterson
    BPL Member

    @septimius

    Locale: Southern Indiana

     

    Thanks for the review.

    The Borahgear tarp probably is the best value for the money but it only comes default with 8 perimeter tieouts. I think more can be added upon request with a reasonable upcharge, and that includes panel tieouts as well. However the reinforcements are larger and more substantial (and stronger) on the Yama tarp.

    Tarpology has really lost favor on BPL and I believe much has to do with the availability of sub 20 oz DCF tents nowadays. Yet many who have never used tarps very much might not realize the big advantages they provide. There is a learning curve and more of a fiddle factor to be sure.

    Most people give up on tarping before they master the skills needed to make it easier. As you state Drew, the VERSATILITY is the main draw to flat tarps. For example, when you simply want to erect a quick sunshade in the desert. Try doing that with a tent which is way more involved to set up and gets hotter inside with little ventilation (unless it’s just the fast fly option).

    I like the dog ear pitch Drew. It’s basically a double pole holden with center pull tieout. Half pyramid is tough with a tarp much wider than 5′ though. Panel tieouts help yet it’s far from ideal with the bigger tarp. The plow point and upside-down L pitches work well with a 7′ X 9′.

    Gen at Yama is a hundred times more talented than me but I like my panel tieouts far better. I take two 4″ square pieces of 20D silpoly (same material as tarp) and bond one on each side of tarp to give me 3 layers total. Then on the underneath side I bond a 2″ square of X-Pac. Lastly I sew grosgain on top side with stitching going into the X-Pac underneath. With 3/32″ shockcord loops my panel tieouts can handle brutal winds without tearing out. Gen’s panel tieouts are too small IMO but they are probably fine in most cases. You can see bonded panel tieouts on my tarp below in a simple lean to pitch.

    #3782752
    Ron Bell / MLD
    BPL Member

    @mountainlaureldesigns

    Locale: USA

    Noting that since early 2023, all MLD non-DCF tarps and shelters (except the much tougher 30d SilNylon Supermid)  have been 20d Pro SilPoly fabric.

    #3782772
    Chris K
    BPL Member

    @cmkannen-2-2

    Drew not sure if you were familiar with John Abela, but before he passed away he would do trail work on the Mojave Trail and experimented with an aluminized tarp. There’s also this quirky product by 2GoSystems: https://www.2gosystems.com/collections/tarp-accessories/products/trifecta?variant=5897656453

    #3782829
    Drew Smith
    BPL Member

    @drewsmith

    Locale: Colorado Rockies

    @John S. – missing/forgetting the Borah Tarp was indeed an oversight. Here is an updated version of the comp table

    #3782831
    Drew Smith
    BPL Member

    @drewsmith

    Locale: Colorado Rockies

    @ Chris K – Hadn’t heard of John, but I am thinking along the same lines of modding a tarp for desert use by perhaps adding a removable mylar layer. I’ll report back if I make any progress on this front. Thanks for the 2Go link, I wasn’t familiar with them.

    #3782901
    Monte Masterson
    BPL Member

    @septimius

    Locale: Southern Indiana

    I was wrong, my bad, I stated earlier that the Borahgear 7′ X 9′ has only 8 perimeter tieouts when in fact it has 12. I was thinking of their 5.8′ X 9′.

    If you want a tarp that’s reflective against hot desert solar rays I’d suggest getting simplylightdesigns to make one out of RSBTR white 20D silpoly. You’d have to request panel tieouts and I don’t know how they’re applied. Of course the HMG tarp comes in white.

    Rab Siltarp 2 is made of high quality 30D Cordura but its panel and perimeter reinforcements are not well done. MLD Supertarp is no doubt supreme in terms of material and build. I heard Yama uses RSBTR 20D silpoly for their tarps but I haven’t confirmed it.

    The MLD Monk Tarp (silpoly) is the best solo tarp IMO but just like tents most people nowadays want something wider. It’s 5′ X 9′ and has 12 perimeter tieouts and 2 panel tieouts, all of which are masterfully reinforced. The half pyramid and double pole holden work great with the Monk Tarp’s 5′ width. Any wider and not so much. https://mountainlaureldesigns.com/product/monk-flat-tarp/

     

    #3793394
    Charlie Brenneman
    BPL Member

    @cwbrenneman

    Locale: Primarily Desolation Wilderness, Yosemite, and SEKI

    The link to this post from the newsletter is making me think more of a question I’ve always had on a shelter with so many tie-outs (like a tarp or a mid). How do most of you determine the number of stakes and cord lengths to bring so that these lightweight options don’t tack on too much extra, unnecessary weight?

    If a side panel tie-out that is meant for extra livability can use the same stake that is at the bottom point then something like the MLD mid would only need 8 stakes, but extra guylines all over. Currently I just use 50ft (8ft peak, 4x 4ft corners, 2x 4ft – door and backside, and 3x 6ft sleep area panels – head, side, and foot). Will I ever need more?

    In this Yama tarp the panel tie-outs are in line with a bottom one.

    but not the ones on the NFT so doesn’t look like the same ability to share stakes.


    Also, how often does one actually use more than the one stake on the middle side of a tarp? If just using that one along with corners and peaks then the Yama tarp could use 8 stakes for a stable A-Frame pitch with increased livability, but the NFT would need like 10-12 stakes.

    #3793400
    Drew Smith
    BPL Member

    @drewsmith

    Locale: Colorado Rockies

    @Charlie – I typically bring 4 guylines and 6 stakes because I always end up staking at least two corners to the ground (so they don’t need guylines). If conditions warrant more support I’ll make deadmen from sticks and rocks, and clip a bit of z-line from the 50ft length I typically carry (mostly for lowering/raising packs over dryfalls or small cliffs).

    But there are an infinitude of ways to approach this problem, and I think one of the attractions of tarping is figuring out what works best for you.

    #3793403
    Charlie Brenneman
    BPL Member

    @cwbrenneman

    Locale: Primarily Desolation Wilderness, Yosemite, and SEKI

    Thanks Drew! That helps and I’ll probably add some extra guyline to bring in my repair kit as opposed to having it attached all over the tarp. Less cord tangle every time I use the shelter but have it just in case.

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