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Freestanding tent or not?

Hello Peter -

You asked:

>...What about the tent platforms in the Whites?...

We used a trail tarp on both the AT and the PCT.  Most of the time we had
no problem finding a simple way to pitch it.  On very rare occasions (on
the AT) we had to use our hiking staves as end poles and large rocks as
stakes.  Making a "deadman" at the major stress points was always enough to
weather the strongest blows we ran into.

As Art said, tent platforms are actually a lot easier than a rock slab to
set up a freestanding shelter (tent or tarp) on.  The platforms have a
gazillion tie points and often the stakes will wedge nicely between the
floor planks <g>.

I am convinced that (given enough #18 braided nylon string and lots of
imagination) a trail tarp can be set up anywhere...from alpine tundra to
abandoned fire tower to the top of a flooded hostel picnic table!

y'all come,
            Charlie II

charlie2@ro.com    Huntsville,Al