Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Gear Review: Equinox Egret Tarp


Equinox has been employing American workers to make a wide range of tarps, raingear and backpacks in its Williamsport, Pennsylvania manufacturing facility for over 20 years. In addition, they've developed a great reputation amongst the ultra-lite backpacking community for their quality gear. In this review, we'll be taking a look at their affordable line of tarps-- the Equinox Egret.

The SPECS:

  • Weight- (8' X 10' model tested for this review)- 24.2 ounces (as weighed on a digital postal scale)
  • Grommets- 5 per side
  • Constructed from 1.9oz ripstop nylon with a waterproof, urethane coating
  • All key seams are double stitched
  • Sizes- 5' X 7', 6' X 8', 8' X 10', 10' X 12', 12' X 16'
  • Country of Origin- Made in Williamsport, Pennsylvania USA

Features

The 8' X 10' Egret Tarp we tested for this review came with a total of 20 reinforced brass grommets. They are large enough to drive self-made wooden tent stakes through, an important feature for bushcrafters.


The material is made out of 1.9 ounce rip-stop nylon on the outside and treated with a waterproof urethane coating on the inside.

(click to enlarge)

The  8' X 10' Egret provides plenty of room to sleep two people, or one person with their gear protected under the tarp. The gear shown inside the tarp is also made in the USA and includes a Grabber Space Tarp, Therm-a-Rest Z-Lite pad, and ProLite Plus self-inflating mattress.

(click to enlarge)

Field Testing the Egret

We chose to review the 8' X 10" Egret because it offers a good balance between light carry weight and adequate protection from the elements. This size is great because it is large enough to build an improvised teepee or use as an open-ended tent. 

Large, improvised teepee Dave and I created on a weekend backpack trip to the mountains, with most of the coverage provided by the Egret tarp:

At 24.2 ounces, it's definitely no ultra-lite tarp. However, it's extra weight gives it an advantage in durability and the ability to resist flapping around on windy nights. It also held strong in the face of an overnight snow storm as shown below:


 Conclusion

Throughout many days of field testing the Egret, we encountered a lot of snow, rain and sleet but never had problems with leakage. We were both impressed with the Egret's durability, because even though Dave and I were rough on it, it still came out looking like new.

The Egret costs the same as most foreign-made tarps, so I can see no reason why you shouldn't give this quality American-made tarp a try over foreign made tarps the next time you're in the market to buy one.

The Egret Tarp is available at Lifeview Outdoors:



About the author
Jason Schwartz is the founder and senior editor of Rocky Mountain Bushcraft. He is a former Red Cross certified Wilderness & Remote First Aid Instructor, and has taught bushcraft and wilderness survival techniques to the Boy Scouts of America, interned with the US Forest Service, and studied wilderness survival, forestry and wildland firefighting at Colorado Mountain College in Leadville, Colorado. Jason has also written for magazines such as The New Pioneer and Backpacker, including writing the "Tinder Finder" portion of Backpacker's "Complete Guide to Fire," which won a 2015 National Magazine Award (NMA). Email him at rockymountainbushcraft @ hotmail.com (without spaces)

2 comments:

  1. Looks nice. I like the teepee pic :)

    -OutdoorEnvy

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    Replies
    1. Yes, teepees are great in the colder months. We're lucky to have access to huge Lodgepole Pine forests to build them!

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