25 May Badger’s Tip of the Week – Tarpaulin: Don’t Get Caught Up The Creek Without One
Badger Paddles’ Tip of the Week includes information on paddling, camping, portaging, boat transport, and maintenance tips, as well as any other information that we may find to be useful around our sett.
|This photo by Mike Ramsay – Missinaibi River Trip, circa 1997.
They (Mike and 3 other guys) used make-shift tarp sails on their
Swift Royalex Dumoines to travel sections of this vast river.
(Mike also slept under a tarp on this trip.)
- Use it as a ground sheet. (either under your tent to protect the floor or as a “picnic blanket” while you eat).
- Can be used as a substitute tent fly (who hasn’t gone on a camping trip where someone forgot their fly?).
- Use it alone as a shelter for sleeping (string some rope between two trees and use rocks and/or logs to keep the sides down)(find 4 trees to substitute as poles and tie the tarp between them, low to the ground and sloping down on one side – to divert water away from you incase it rains).
- Use it as a wind break – create a wall by stringing the tarp between two trees.
- Use it as a rain shelter – create a roof by stretching the tarp between trees – slope the tarp (or find a tall tree-wood pole) so as to not collect rain water and weigh it down in the middle.
- Use it as a sun shelter – tie the tarp off between trees, etc. at an angle away from the sun.
- Make a canoe sail with it (using long tree wood poles usually found on location rigged to your satisfaction) See above photo.
- Use it as a make-shift stretcher to carry a sick/injured person over short distances/portages.
- Use it to collect or catch water for drinking and/or washing.
- Use it in an emergency to help a person retain much needed warmth (by wrapping them in a tarp after putting them in their sleeping bag).
- Can be cut strategically and used as an emergency stand-in rain poncho
- Can be used to make a Bear Burrito* (when hanging your food is not possible).
- Can be used to collect and transport larger amounts of small bits of firewood or to keep firewood dry during a down pour.
- Use it to make an outside area private for the purpose of changing or latrine use (wrap tarp around one or two trees to create a corner stall and secure to other trees on each side).
- Can be used to fashion a quick backpack (put your stuff in the middle of the tarp and wrap it up in a tight roll, add some rope and your imagination and you have yourself a make-shift pack).
- If the tarp is a strong colour visually, it could be used as a way to signal if you become lost or stranded. Find an open area or clearing and spread the tarp out flat on the ground (holding it down with rocks at the corners) so your location can be seen from the air.
- Add some duct tape or tarp clips to your rope bag and who knows where your tarp could take you! See: BLUE TARP KAYAK
*A Bear Burrito is when you take all of the food packs and gear that you would normally hang in a tree (as a precaution against bears) and wrap/roll/fold them into a neat (some what smell-tight) tarp package a few hundred metres away from your camp site.