Warbonnet Outdoors has quite a large selection of hammock tarps, enough to suit anyone’s preferences. They recently launched another tarp called the Minifly, a 132″ x 91″ hex-style tarp with “short” doors that weighs 11.75 oz (2000mm, 20D silpoly). It’s basically a stripped down and lighter weight version of their full size 132″ x 120″ Superfly tarp, the tarp I’ve been using with my Warbonnet Blackbird hammock for the past 2 years. Here’s a picture of the Superfly below, for comparison.
As you can see, the Minifly’s end doors are a good bit shorter than on the Superfly’s, which are full length.The Minifly also doesn’t come with any side panel loops, so you can’t tie the doors of the Minifly back in nice weather, although that option is available on the larger and heavier Warbonnet Thunderfly tarp. Instead, Warbonnet includes a pair of mini-biners with the Minifly, so you can connect the doors and stake them out with a single guyline. The mini-biners loop through the plastic triangles that Warbonnet adds to all their tarp guy-out points. The alternative is to stake out each door separately; just keep in mind that these will be extra long guylines because the doors are shorter than the tarp’s side walls.
Why’d I switch to the Minifly from the Superfly? For me, it was primarily about weight savings. My Superfly Tarp is large and heavy when tricked out with cordage, Dutchware stingerz (2), tarp worms (8), and mesh sleeves, weighing just over 21 ounces. I’ve also never really needed the Superfly’s full length doors to block horizontal blowing rain and have found that a winter sock is far more effective for insulating against cold wind than a tarp. The only reason I’ve been using a Superfly is because I bought my hammock system used and this is the tarp it came with. Not a great reason, but I haven’t been that motivated to change it.
Switching to a Minifly was a no-brainer (a 7.25 ounce savings for $110 – which is dirt cheap for weight reduction) because it’s the same length as the Superfly. It has identical metal rings at the ends of the ridgeline and plastic triangles on the guy-out points (the same as the Superfly), so I was able to transfer my entire suspension and accessories to the Minifly without changing anything or my tarp setup routine. Super convenient, that. I still plan to keep the Superfly for the time being, but the Minifly has proven completely sufficient for my three season backpacking needs in New England.
Here are a few more details about Warbonnet Tarps, if you don’t own one yet or want to compare them to other hammocks tarps. The sewing is excellent and neat, and the guy out points are all reinforced with grosgrain webbing to prevent tearing the tarp fabric. The ridgeline does not need to be sealed because it’s sewn with thread that expands when it gets wet and blocks the needle holes from leaking. The side panel pull outs should however be seam sealed if you’re worried about interior drips (although this is irrelevant on the Minifly which doesn’t have any.)
While I do wish I could tie back the Minifly doors for more ventilation, it’s not a make or break requirement for me. Having used the Superfly for the past 2 years, I am quite happy with the weight savings from switching to the Minifly and the fact that I could transfer my entire suspension system over without any changes. So far this has shaped up to be an excellent upgrade.
Disclosure: The author purchased this product with his own funds.
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