camping tarp tarpaulin shelter

Tarpaulins offer a fast way to make a shelter from the elements and with the right know-how can be one of the most versatile bits of kit in your bag.

At a glance



Price range

 Mid to high




Packed: 30cm x 20cm

Hung: 300cm x 300cm


4 pegs

4 guy lines

Set up time

 ~60 seconds to ~180 seconds (depending on shelter style)

Attachment Points

16 reinforced side
3 reinforced centre

Fabric & Waterproofing

PU 3,000mm coated polyester with taped seams

OCA Overall Rating


The Product

The DD Tarp 3m x 3m comes in at the higher end of the mid price range. It’s not the cheapest on the market but does offer some good value for money with the 19 attachment points and added benefits of 4 guy lines and pegs. The material used is high quality and all of the sewn seams are taped.

The PU coated polyester fabric is quite rigid but this adds some durability to the tarp to allow it to be used as a ground sheet as well as a shelter if you wanted. The tarp is coated to a 3,000mm standard which doesn’t mean a lot on its own. Read more about coated fabrics here. In a nutshell, the higher the millimetre (mm) number, the better waterproofed the fabric is; although with the better waterproofing comes loss of breathability and flexibility of the fabric.

tarp dimensions camping tarp shelterThe attachment points themselves are good quality webbing, though they do feel a little flimsy in comparison to a backpack strap or a compression strap on a sleeping bag. In fairness though, the webbing does not really need to take any sufficient load, it should only be holding the weight of the tarpaulin and when rigged correctly there will be no issues at all with the attachment points on this tarp.

When rigged as part of a hammock set up, the tarp is easily big enough to cover the hammock and come far enough down the sides of the hammock to provide enough shelter from the wind and rain. The tarp can also be used to rig different shelter styles with the addition of a few sticks or a few more pegs. To get the most out of this, or any tarp, you would probably want to consider adding a few metres of paracord to your kit to open up the possibilities of different shelter setups.

When used as part of a hammock setup the whole kit can get a little bulky; the DD Tarp is pretty big when packed into the provided stuff-sack and will only condense down to 30cm x 20cm. The tarp, although quite bulky, is fairly lightweight which makes it a good choice for your shelter setup.


This tarp is a great all rounder although it is a little on the costly side. One of the huge advantages of the DD Tarp is the number of attachment points allowing it to be used as part of any set up. While the tarp is quite bulky packed away, the 3m x 3m size is plenty big enough to provide a great level of shelter and comfort to your set up.

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