Bushcraft Tarp Shelter Configurations Using No Cordage
While survival Lilly uses the Tatonka Tarp 2, you can use any inexpensive tarp you can find to make this bushcraft tarp shelter. First you want to locate two trees that are close enough to fit your tarp. Next search for two sturdy forked branches to use as supports. You can cut them to the height you desire. Next find or cut a branch that is as straight as possible and is longer than the length of your tarp. You also want to make it as smooth as possible to avoid ripping holes in the camping tarp. Lean one of the forked branches on the inside of the tree trunk and place the straight branch in the fork. Do the same on the other side and you have your frame ready to go.
Now that your frame is setup, search for some small sticks that you can carve into steaks. Using a rock (or whatever you can find) to hammer the steaks into the camping tarp’s holes. What was really cool about this design was leaving a small portion of the back of the tarp to use for dry storage.
Bushcraft Shelter Tarp Using Minimal Cordage
This version can be achieved very quickly. First lay your tarp out on a flat surface if possible. In the back, place two steaks in the holes next to the corner holes. Then fold the front corner over to the next hole and steak them both together. Do the same for the other front corner. Next place your trekking pole into the front center hole and raise it up. Tie some cordage to the top of the pole and steak it down for support. Steak down all the remaining holes and your shelter is complete.
Fully Enclosed Bushcraft Tarp Shelter Setup
For this setup, having a hiking pole is ideal but not necessary. You can use a sturdy branch and cut it to the height needed. If you don’t have this exact type of camping tarp you can still make it work. You could just grab the center of your tarp and take a handful of the tarp and tie it off to create your central guideline.
First you peg out the back of the tarp. Preferably use longer steaks so that you can drive them further down into the ground. Make sure that the back is nice and taunt. Next take the front two corners and bring them together to form a triangle and steak them down together. If you’re using a branch as the center support, find something to wrap around the top to keep the tarp from ripping. The next step is to get inside the tarp and place the pole in the center of the tarp. The peg in the back can easily be fixed by angling it in the opposite direction.
If you are using a tarp with eyelets you could just bring the corner under the tarp and place a peg into the ground to secure it.
If you’re in a real emergency and don’t happen to have a tarp, you can also make a bushcraft shelter using what mother nature provides.