View Full Version : Tent Footprint?

03-03-2012, 04:12
What is the best material for a footprint considering strength to weight ratio for the entire A.T. (and of course staying dry!)?

What's your recommendation?

03-03-2012, 06:38
Nothin' lighter than a hole. Leave it at home.

03-03-2012, 08:15
What aspect of "Strength to Weight" ratio is important? Compression, shear, torsion, tension .... ?

Rocket Jones
03-03-2012, 09:49
I've never used a footprint and never had a problem. If you insist on having something, get some very lightweight plastic painter's dropcloth at the hardware section of your local big-box store.

03-04-2012, 00:47
I'm going to take a footprint to protect the bottom of my tent. I just want to know what is best. Even the tent manufacturer doesn't recommend their own footprint for all conditions. So my question is to folks who believe in using them, and have experience with the varieties of terrain of the A.T.

I was planning on getting a Tyvek sheet.

03-04-2012, 01:53
I don't use one. But tyvek works better than plastic.

03-04-2012, 02:01
I would have never thought of this, so I'll put it here: Tyvek washed (standard washing machine) will become softer and it can be washed many times without affecting it's properties.

03-04-2012, 08:52
You dont need a footprint.

03-04-2012, 08:58
The manufacturer of my tent (Henry Shires) does not recommend using a footprint. He says he virtually never gets tents returned for floor repairs. Not carrying a footprint is an easy way to save some weight and it's one less wet and muddy thing to put in your pack. My hiking got better when I stopped carrying one. Part of that was learning where not to pitch a tent.

03-04-2012, 09:19
On the take a footprint side....while it does add weight, there are some advantages. I use a hubba. You can use the fly and footprint only to really save weight.

03-04-2012, 09:20
Ok. I need more coffee. What I meant to say was that by owning the footprint you can have a different setup that weighs less than the tent. I use a footprint all the time. Mostly to keep the bottom of my tent clean from the mud during wet conditions.

03-04-2012, 10:13
I use Tyvek, more so to keep the crud off the tent than protect it and to use as a ground cloth while eating to keep the mud off me and most important, to put my stuff on to keep me from losing small items in the leaves.

rusty bumper
03-04-2012, 10:38
On my AT hike last year I spent about 120 nights in my Tarptent Moment...didn't carry a footprint and never felt the need for one.

03-04-2012, 12:34
I'm going to use a piece of tyvek. I got it from some guys on a constructions site. Didn't cost me a thing, so if I were to decide it's too heavy or unnecessary I can ditch it and not feel guillty.

03-05-2012, 10:18
I don't use one. But tyvek works better than plastic.

To rastraikis why would you think so. I have found the opposite. But why do you prefer tyvek?

I do a lot of camping in the winter and on wet ground. what I found what that tyvek would let water seep though especially over light. There was never a puddle or anything in the morning but the bottom of the tent was damp to fully water logged. I didn't like putting the tent in my pack like that. If you do that every day it never dries, it might rott, it sucks to sit on, its heavier, and in the cold handling wet things sucks.
I prefer this
Its about 5 bucks at home dept. you can use half of it. duck tape patches it. much much much smaller and lighter. cheap. totally water proof. I have never actually got a hole or ripped mine yet. I must have at least 500 miles on mine now.