Tarp vs Gazebo- advice appreciated





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  1. #1
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    Default Tarp vs Gazebo- advice appreciated

    Hi there, so I am a woman and I camp alone with my kids. I find I am in need of some kind of shelter over my kitchen area, so considering a gazebo (I would need help to erect it) or alternatively a tarp. Between gazebos- the Camp Master brand is too flimsy for the money imo- (and yes-I have watched Kooskop's experiment in the Stormsriver), the Discovery brand I have seen in action camping with friends, so this is what I am leaning towards. Now- about the tarp- I bought a tarp from Adendorf that I was planning to use under my tent but now I am thinking to rather use it to make a structure over my cooking area- for a few reasons, at Berg River we were snowed under with these little flowers that blew off trees, obviously rain and lastly shade if I need it. What kind of poles do you use for a tarp and how complicated is it to put up?I see overseas you get telescopic tarp poles which looks ideal- where can I buy something similar? I like the idea that it packs up way smaller than a gazebo and i can always squeeze it in, a gazebo might be left behind here and there if space an issue. I dont seem to find much info on people using tarped areas. Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Tarp vs Gazebo- advice appreciated

    The tarp idea is something I have also looked at quite a bit recently, the less stuff I can take with to camp the better for me so it seems like a good idea. THe only drawback I think would be finding suitable tie down points areas ( trees) in the various campsites for some of the corners, whereas a gazebo one can erect wherever.

    One gets telescopic painters poles, that might work. EDIT - forget the suggestion - had a look at them and it doesn't lock properly when extended.

    Attached is a pic from the web with an oil skin tarp set up, looks rather nice. Would love to hear from those who use similar things on a regular basis.
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    Last edited by Riaan van Wyk; 2019/11/26 at 09:43 AM.
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  3. #3
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    Default Re: Tarp vs Gazebo- advice appreciated

    In a storm your tarp will become wither a pool or a kite.
    Gazebo's tend to do the same. I have lost 2.

    I now have a Colman event shelter, it is domed and has steel poles, so far all is good.
    It is not as compact as a Gazebo, but much more sturdy.
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  4. #4
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    Default Re: Tarp vs Gazebo- advice appreciated

    I tried the gazebo route but it was too bulky hence not being used all the time. I got a tarp and I attach it between the car and the tent. It may not look pretty but it works and I can do it on my own.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Tarp vs Gazebo- advice appreciated

    Ok so I drove to OW- they have a two pack telescopic poles specifically for these uses- R370 for two. I bought two 1.8m Oztrail tarp poles from Loot just now and will now get another two of these once I made up my mind completely. I want the one area to be adjustable at a slight angle to hopefully help avoid a dam on top of it rains. I also saw packs of spare tent guide ropes - it looks a bit flimsy but it holds tents and gazebos down. R129 a pack of 4 x 3m length. So all in all itíll cost me R900- which can just as well go towards a gazebo but as I said- space might mean the gazebo gets left behind often.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Tarp vs Gazebo- advice appreciated

    Quote Originally Posted by Marindasn View Post
    Ok so I drove to OW- they have a two pack telescopic poles specifically for these uses- R370 for two. I bought two 1.8m Oztrail tarp poles from Loot just now and will now get another two of these once I made up my mind completely. I want the one area to be adjustable at a slight angle to hopefully help avoid a dam on top of it rains. I also saw packs of spare tent guide ropes - it looks a bit flimsy but it holds tents and gazebos down. R129 a pack of 4 x 3m length. So all in all itíll cost me R900- which can just as well go towards a gazebo but as I said- space might mean the gazebo gets left behind often.
    If you don't mind, post some pics when you have set up the tarp please?
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  7. #7
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    Default Re: Tarp vs Gazebo- advice appreciated

    We also went through the gazebo purcahse a while ago.
    We Looked at the game gazebos ect. but they wont last long.
    As RvW says with a tarp it might get difficult to find anchor points.

    We settled for the Tento SNR gazebo. All poles and joins are color coded so its not difficult to pitch.
    Its made of ripstop canvas so anchored down properly its really sturdy.
    You can also get panels to close down the sides to make yourself a nice corner kitchen.

    https://www.outdoorwarehouse.co.za/p...QaAjkZEALw_wcB
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  8. #8
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    Default Re: Tarp vs Gazebo- advice appreciated

    It is the most compact shelter, used widely for hiking and backpackers.

    For camping and travelling by vehicle, if we have space I always try to fit in a lightweight Tarp ( +-2.8m x 5.5m) with 4 telescopic poles, bought four of them at Outdoor warehouse a few years ago.
    Have a rollup sleeve made for the poles, each fit within there own pocket to prevent rubbing.

    Use it a few times when extra shelter for the sun is needed .
    Not difficult to set up with many configurations , the easiest setting is always between trees.

    I use something like Coghlans orange 550 paracord or bright green to prevent tripping etc.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Tarp vs Gazebo- advice appreciated

    I think rip-stop canvas comes in rolls 1.5m long ... I bought two pieces of 4m*1.5m and had them seamed together and edged with reinforced eyelets so I have a tarp a bit less than 4m*3m which I take everywhere:
    varyingly its a groundsheet / picnic blanket / flysheet for my dome / shade tarp and , at home, cover for my small camping trailer.

    for shade easiest is to have a horizontal rope taught between two trees about 2m high and then hang canvas over and rope ties to ground etc of each corner.
    Last edited by BushNomad; 2019/11/26 at 04:06 PM.
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  10. #10
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    Default Re: Tarp vs Gazebo- advice appreciated

    Useful info thanks Nomad.
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  11. #11
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    Default Re: Tarp vs Gazebo- advice appreciated

    Quote Originally Posted by Riaan van Wyk View Post
    Useful info thanks Nomad.
    +1
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  12. #12
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    Default Re: Tarp vs Gazebo- advice appreciated

    I also use tarps, a 2.5 X 3m and 2,5 X 4m with eyelets and one side that can slide into a slotted caravan type Alu strip that can be secured to my Jeep. The tarps also have valcro (spelling) so an extended tarp can be made.
    Then a 3 X 4m shade "tarp" that can also slide into the Alu strip if required or just use for shade or a wind break. Have used these items under different conditions and different places and with the poles dont take up much space.

    Maybe the pictures helps to explain. Only drawback if the tarps are secured to the Jeep, then you stay put, but easy to take down and erect again. Can position vehicle and traps to suite the present wind/rain situation.
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  13. #13
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    Default Re: Tarp vs Gazebo- advice appreciated

    In years of travelling all over Africa, we've found that an awning attached to the vehicle is the best solution (although it can be a pain if you are wanting to do regular game drives). Our awning is permanently attached to our roof rack (cable ties work fine) and has three upright two-section poles, the middle one higher than the two outside ones for drainage. Guyed down, it has withstood many fearsome storms. The telescopic poles are flimsy, and don't withstand big winds, rather go for two-section poles (ODW sells them).

    This is our original one, that was our living room for two years on the road:

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    And this is our current one - the side panels are 30 years old:

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    Last edited by Tony Weaver; 2019/11/26 at 05:06 PM.
    Tony Weaver

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  14. #14
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    Default Re: Tarp vs Gazebo- advice appreciated

    I like to use a 5m x 5m 80% shade net to pitch over my 3x3m Tentco Dome to keep it cool and to catch bird droppings and tree sap etc. when camping. Especially in Kruger Park, the birds can really mess up your tent.

    I have found the ready made guy ropes from Tentco sold n packets, to be way more expensive than to make your own.

    I just buy a couple of meters of the same olive green nylon rope, the exact same rope that Tentco uses, at Bloemfontein Tent Repair at a low price.

    Then I buy the plastic "skuiwertjies" at Campworld (also cheap) and made up my own guy ropes for much cheaper and taylor made to my preferences.

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Tarp vs Gazebo- advice appreciated

    Wow. Great advice thank you guys. Iím actually going to look into the rip stop canvas, I buy from Kehls regularly and I sew so that sounds like a very good addition to have around anyway. I wonder where in Cape Town to buy rope cheaply- maybe Kehls might know. If I manage to set this up correctly, Iíll be sure to post pics. Iím only going next weekend but Iím hoping to do a practice run at home before hand.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Tarp vs Gazebo- advice appreciated

    bought a coleman gazebo great when up, but its to heavy and a pain in the arse to put up

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Tarp vs Gazebo- advice appreciated

    I realised my tarps are old and too small to use for more than two people, had a quick squiz and saw Game had some. 7mx3m seems ample and R499 it seems fair. So I got one and have something to play with the weekend

    https://www.game.co.za/game-za/en/Al...yABEgIcXfD_BwE
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  18. #18

    Default Re: Tarp vs Gazebo- advice appreciated

    Cristy Sport in Diepriver sell tent poles, canvas, tarps, etc. They make up any size. (Got one of my tent poles replaced there recently.)
    http://www.cristys.co.za

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Tarp vs Gazebo- advice appreciated

    Quote Originally Posted by Marindasn View Post
    I wonder where in Cape Town to buy rope cheaply- maybe Kehls might know. If I manage to set this up correctly, I’ll be sure to post pics. I’m only going next weekend but I’m hoping to do a practice run at home before hand.
    CD Fox at 80 Hout St in the CBD have a great selection of rope at reasonable prices, or Cape Bag and Twine in Woodstock. Cape Bag & Twine also sell Ripstop canvas by the metre.
    Last edited by Tony Weaver; 2019/11/27 at 06:28 PM.
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  20. #20
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    Default Re: Tarp vs Gazebo- advice appreciated

    Last edited by Estee; 2019/11/27 at 06:46 PM.
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