Compact Versatile Shelter

Oct 25, 2012
Current Location
Hey everyone, this is my first time on this forum, I'd appreciate any advice.

I've been traveling around Asia on a motorbike for 6 months now. I haven't payed to sleep once yet, just been squatting old buildings, Couch Surfing, roughing it and camping.. until now.

I lost my tent. It fell off my motorcycle.

RIP Eureka :(
2012-06-11-2012-06-11-002-0012-jpg.46568_Compact Versatile Shelter_Portable Shelters_Squat the Planet_4:37 PM

I need a new shelter situation so I'm curious what you suggest. I consider myself a minimalist, I only carry 40 liters including tent and sleeping bag. Until now, my tent was the biggest thing I carried. I'm looking for something compact but versatile.

Sometime's I'm desperate for a place to camp so I'll camp sideways on a mountain, on rocks, in sand, on cement, in giant bushy grass etc... so I'd really need something free-standing or close to it.

Netting is important, sometimes I'd even set the tent up in an abandoned building to fend off the mosquito attack.

I was considering a bivvy sack, but when I'm squatting or roughing it, there's no room for my backpack so it could get stolen.

Weight isn't an issue, packsize is. I'd like to save as much room in my bag as I can.

Also I'm looking for a compact synthetic sleeping bag. Currently I use this REI Travel Sack, it's great but I'm looking for something smaller.
Sep 21, 2012
welcome to the boards. there's a lot of people with good recommendations in the Gear section of the forums.
Jul 26, 2012
Current Location
the back row
check out the Lawson Blue Ridge Camping Hammock kinda hefty @ 4#s but has bug net and rain cover and can be used on the ground or in the trees. It lays flat unlike a lot of hammocks, it lets you sleep on your side or back comfortably
Sep 13, 2006
Current Location
Holly Hill, Florida - FEC milepost 104
YES ^ That is the way in my opinion. But since you wish for free standing shelter the hammock my not be your gig. What i personally use (aside from a hammock) is a 8 x10 sil-nylon tarp. It weighs in at a hefty 13 oz and packs down to the size of a soft ball.

While its nice to have something to tie it to, you dont really need trees or anything to set up a decent shelter. When im on the plains or in the desert i just get a fairly stout tree limb, pipe, or whatever thats about 5-6 feet long and drive it into the ground and attach it like this:
Theres a bajillon different ways to set up a tarp for your needs and they take up less space, cost less, and weigh less than any tent you'll find. Only down fall is that you dont have a floor thats connected to walls so bugs and critters can get at you. Never bothered me tho.

Good luck on yer shelter hunt
Sep 11, 2012
Current Location
way the fuck out there
im a big advocate of getting off the ground in any semi long term camp. its just more comfortable and easier to pack up when it comes to break camp.

if i have the whole nine yards set up (pack strapped to a tree, ridgeline and tarp and hammock tied up) it takes me about 5 seconds to undo my knots and stakes, about a minute to pack my hammock into itself (ENO hammocks have a sewn in stuff sack that doubles as a pocket when you set it up), about 2 minutes to fold up the tarp and another few minutes to pack it all away and start walking.

one could argue that its messy but, if you do some research and are prepared its almost bug free, clean and organized. insulating a hammock can suck but, meh.
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