Whether you’re camping, backpacking, or preparing a bug-out bag, a good shelter is essential for staying warm and dry. In many cases, this means a tent, but tents have some noteworthy downsides. Many tents are heavy and bulky, and those that aren’t — especially those in the ultralight category — can be expensive and complicated to set up. If you’re looking for a minimalist shelter from the rain, a tarp is a great option. In the following video, British YouTuber MCQ Bushcraft shows how he constructed a quick-deploy tarp system for overnight stays in the woods.

The tarp itself is nothing special, but the way it has been configured intrigued us. It’s packed with a permanently-attached paracord ridgeline with a pre-tied loop at one end and prusiks for tensioning. Short elastic cords have been added to the tie-out points, and these can be connected to the prusiks on the ridgeline with a simple toggle stick, as seen above.

Once it’s time to tear down the shelter, just pull out the sticks and start packing the tarp back into its waterproof stuff sack. Building a setup like this won’t cost much money, won’t occupy much space in a backpack, and won’t take much time to construct when you arrive at your campsite. It’s a great way to get out of inclement weather, even if you don’t have the luxury of a store-bought tent.

Check out the full video from MCQ Bushcraft below:


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