Choosing the Right Tarp:
The Edge is our smallest tarp. It’s not recommended for the Ridgerunner but is appropriate for the Blackbird, Blackbird XLC and Traveler hammocks. It’s wide enough to provide some wind protection and a little extra protected area outside the hammock. For instance if you want to sit on the ground next to the hammock and cook while still being covered you can. Weight conscious hangers who hang year-round will often have an Edge for 3-seasons and a Superfly for cold weather. There is also a removeable door-kit available for the Edge for added protection at the ends. The Edge would also be a good lightweight option for the Ridgerunner as long as it’s paired with an Undercover/Poncho or Spindrift for added end-coverage.
The Mamajamba (MJ) is a hex-shaped design much like the Edge, except it’s 26” wider. It’s basically a beefier 3-season tarp than the Edge and is popular with those in a colder climate who might need the added wind protection of a wider tarp, or those looking to use it some in winter. The MJ being wider also comes stock with panel pulls included. Panel pulls are pull-tabs in the middle of the tarp’s “panel” (rather than at the corners), they can be used when needed to give support to the sides of the tarp in heavy wind. Even moderate wind can push the sides of a large tarp (like the MJ, CB or SF) inward enough to come in contact with the hammock. If the underside of the tarp is wet with condensation, that’s something you’ll want to avoid. The panel pulls give added stability in windy conditions, and you’ll be glad to have them when a big storm rolls in. There is also a door kit available for the MJ for added end-protection as well. The MJ is designed mainly for the Blackbird, Blackbird XLC and Traveler hammocks and when used with the door kit will provide full 4-season coverage. It will cover the Ridgerunner (somewhat minimally at the ends), and the door-kits will work for adding end-coverage over a Ridgerunner but not quite as well as they do over end-gathered hammocks, they will provide a great deal of extra end-coverage, but you won’t be able to get the doors 100% closed over a Ridgerunner like you can when covering an end-gathered hammock like the Blackbird XLC, however adding the Spindrift sock or the Undercover/Poncho to the Ridgerunner are often a better way to add extra end-protection than doors are, and the MJ/Spindrift or UCP combo makes a solid shelter for a Ridgerunner (Spindrift/MJ for winter and UCP/MJ for 3-season). The MJ plus door-kit over an end-gathered hammock creates a solid 4-season shelter but like the Ridgerunner’s Spindrift, the Travel sock(for end-gathered hammocks like the BB) provides the extra end-coverage that doors would plus adds 15 deg F of warmth at only around 3 oz heavier than a door-kit making the sock a more popular than the door-kit at least in cool to cold weather.
The Superfly (SF) is our largest tarp. As far as size and coverage goes, it’s equivalent to the MJ plus removable door kit. The only difference is that the doors of the SF are not removable, they’re built-in to the shape of the tarp. You can however fold them to the outside or the underside when not needed, this creates a shape almost identical to that of the MJ. The Superfly is a 100% coverage all-season tarp when used over any of our end gathered hammocks (BB, BBXLC, Travelers). The Superfly is a popular choice over the Ridgerunner as well, you will only be able to get the doors closed about 90% of the way due to the long suspension triangle of the Ridgerunner, however most folks feel this is fully adequate for storm protection on it’s own, and the UCP or Spindrift can always be added for more if there is any concern. The versatility, expansive coverage, and convenient built-in doors of the Superfly make it a good choice for any of our hammock models. This is our most popular tarp.
The Cloudburst is our 11’x10′ rectangle designed as a solid 3-season tarp for the Ridgerunner hammock, it’s panel pulls are spaced farther apart to correspond to the spreader bars of the RR. Unlike the Edge, MJ and Superfly, it features straight cut sides (the ridge seam still has the same very slight curve cut). The lack of a curve on the bottom edge and the rectangular shape give this tarp a good bit more coverage over the Ridgerunner than the MJ does, especially at the ends. The Cloudburst can be used with the Blackbird, Blackbird XLC and Traveler hammocks as well, and is door-kit compatible
The MJ, Edge, and Cloudburst have an available removable door-kit that can be added to the tarp to provide lots of extra coverage at the ends of the A-frame. The door kit attaches via hooks and shockcord, and is useful for it’s versatility. You can to take them but leave them packed until needed, take doors for one end only just in case, turn the MJ or CB into a winter tarp, leave them home in the summer to save weight etc. It’s a good addition to your tarp if you want one tarp for all seasons, but still want to save some weight in the warmer months when doors aren’t needed. The built-in doors of the Superfly have some advantages as well. Keep in mind that the coverage of the SF is equivalent to that of the MJ plus added door kit. Since the doors of the SF are built-in, the weight of the SF is a couple oz. less than the weight of the MJ plus door-kit, and the price of the SF is also about 55$ less than the price of the MJ plus added door-kit. Being that the doors are built-in, they’re alot easier to deal with compared to the removable doors of the Edge, MJ, CB that must be attached, adjusted, etc. In general the permanent doors of the SF are a better option for those who will use the doors more often, for instance those in a colder climate or those doing a decent amount of trips in winter, those using it over a Ridgerunner or those that don’t care about the extra 5oz they could save by going with an MJ. The removable doors are more suited for occasional use, being used for the occasional spring/fall storm or for the weight-conscious user that camps almost exclusively in 3 seasons but does the occasional winter trip and can’t justify having a seperate winter tarp. Many dedicated hangers who are also packweight conscious will often have a smaller tarp like the Edge or MJ for 3 seasons as well as a Superfly for winter. Those who are not packweight conscious often go with the Superfly year round. Those that camp mainly in 3 seasons may opt for the MJ, Edge or Cloudburst.
All our tarps incorporate low stretch polyester edge binding on the Ridgeseam, this means the ridge does not need any seam sealer, however if your tarp has panel pulls (SF, MJ, CB, GT) then you will want to seal the 4 panel pulls. You’ll want a suitable silicone (like GE Silicone II from the hardware store). Set up the tarp where you can leave it pitched for about 8 hours or so. Apply the thinnest possible layer of silicone (your finger works well) to the stitches (to the stitches only) on the underside of each panel pull (underside of tarp only), and leave the tarp setup till dry (4-12 hours depending on temperature).