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AT Shelter - Tarp or TarpTent (Rainbow)

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I am gearing up for the AT and would like to know what Tent/Tarp/Shelter is used most successfully on the AT. I am torn between going with a Canopy Tarp with separate bug net setup, or with an integrated system such as the TarpTent Rainbow, ZPack Hexamid, etc..

Any thru hikers have an opinion on ease of setup, tear down, and carry of the myriad of options available?

Has anyone packed the TarpTent or ZPack?

Tarp or Tent?

Thank you,

Tags: tarps, tents Add / Edit Tags


  1. peakseeker's Avatar
    Saw no thru hikers responded so I will try and help as a section hiker. Pack and use the light wt tents as much as u can I have a 4lb 2 person tent and it works great as it is easy and quick to setup. Some nights, shelters are doable and you will even sleep on the ground around the campfires with a sleeping bag.

    Pack light...eat and drink properly. But the most important thing...ENJOY!