Brand: Sea to Summit
[best for bugs]
Why we like it Reinforced guyout points deliver above-average durability, and an optional mesh net enhances protection in buggy areas.
Protection Eight stake points make the seam-sealed Escapist more wind-resistant than most tarps; powerful gusts along Idaho’s Salmon River didn’t cause it to flap or collapse.
Livability Three could sleep fully sheltered beneath the tarp alone, and the mesh bug tent (sold separately: $79, 5 oz.) felt roomy for two. Testers reported outstanding ventilation when using the bug shelter (in temps up to 85°F). A foot or more of air space between the tarp and netting ensures ample airflow and prevents condensation.
Fave feature No soggy outings required: All guyouts can be adjusted from under cover because tensioners are on the tarp—not stake—ends of the guyline.
Bummer Even our tarp devotee found setup “fussy” given the eight stakes (and two trekking poles) required to pitch the tarp alone; using the bug tent requires four additional stakes. $199; 12 oz.; seatosummit .com