Bear Butts Rain Fly Review – Hammock Tarp for Backpacking

by Tasteofthekitchen
Bear Butts Rain Fly Review

The Bear Butts Rain Fly is designed to accompany the famous Bear Butts hammock although it is the perfect size for almost any other hammock as well. Made from lightweight and durable polyester, you are protected from the wind and rain from three sides with very little effort. With the help of a hammock, you are up and off the ground in a comfortable camping shelter and all for such a low price and light weight. If you still aren’t convinced then you should also consider the fact that you can always you can set it up on the ground with two hiking poles and sleep on a sleeping mat.

Setting Up

Setting up the Bear Butts Rain Fly could not be made any easier if they tried, and they have! If you are using your rain fly with the Bear Butts Double Hammock for example then you should already have 2 anchor points at an appropriate distance. Simply use the cords provided to tie off both central anchor points about a foot above your hammock tree straps and then stake down each side using the pegs provided.

Alternatively, if you are setting up your tarp on the ground without a hammock them you will need to use two hiking poles or sticks to create the structure. Using the reflective cords as guy lines and creating enough tension to support the material, you can create a tent like structure on flat ground and use a sleeping pad to help keep you warm.


Having been writing this Bear Butts Rain Fly review for a little over a month now, I can report that there has been no issue with the waterproofing, and absolutely no concern for the future. Water beads and rolls off nicely which makes shaking off any condensation in a morning nice and easy before packing it away. As with all waterproof fabrics, you would benefit from applying a waterproofing solution every year or two but would still work fine without.

Bear Butts Rain Fly Review

Shape and Size

The shape of the Bear Butts Rain Fly is designed specifically for use with a hammock, with 9 ft 4-inch sides and a center line of 11 ft 10 inches. The size is just right lengthways to protect you from rain and the sides can be easily adjusted to give a steeper angle in strong winds. The longer center line ensures you and your hammock are completely protected from tip to toe, as well as keeping most of your tree straps dry. Without going too large or too small, I feel like Bear Butts got the shape and size just right to give you a perfect balance between lightweight/packable gear and full weather protection.

Weight and Pack Size

Weighing just over 14 ounces, the Bear Butts Rain Fly is lightweight and easy to carry. If you consider the fact that when this hammock tarp is combined with the Bear Butts Double Hammock, the total weight is a mere 850 grams. You can have a complete shelter system for well under $100 and compared to a tent in the similar weight class where you can expect to pay well over $400, this is excellent value for money.

Packing it away is also much easier than with a tent. Simply fold, roll and tuck inside the stiff sack – easy! Measuring just 11 x 4 inches, the packed size will fit inside any backpack no problem as well as being suitable for strapping to the outside. Unlike a tent which relies on tent poles, you can bend and stuff the Bear Butts Rain Fly without fear of breaking anything.


Made from a durable 190T polyester on the top side and a 190D Polyurethane on the back, you get two very waterproof and tough materials working together in a bond. This gives you lots of protection without adding extra bulk and is ideal for camping in any country around the world. I have not tested this hammock rain fly in snowy conditions but have read other reviews which rate it highly – check them out on Amazon!

Having only been using this rain fly for a short period of time, it has been tested in heavy rain and strong winds without showing any signs of weakness. The fabric is very thin to keep the weight down but not so thin that you worry about ripping it if it brushes against some plants. All the attachment loops are well stitched and can be pulled as tight as you need.

Best Use

The best and most obvious use for this rain fly is with a hammock and tree straps which are ideal for keeping in your rucksack on hiking and backpacking trips. As mentioned previously, using this rain fly with a hammock is a fantastic and for many people, preferable, alternative to carrying a tent. Not having a bulky/heavy tent strapped to the outside of your bag makes you more streamlined for things like climbing or traveling through thick bush. You can use your hammock shelter for relaxing in the garden, chilling at the beach, lightweight hiking, backpacking, and adventure.


The Bear Butts Rain Fly is a must have accompaniment to any hammock and does exactly what it says on the tin. It is lightweight, packable, waterproof, and easy to use making it ideal for beginners and professional expeditions. You can pick one up for almost half the price of its competition and the quality is just as good if not arguably better. If you don’t have a hammock yet then I definitely recommend picking up both at the same time as well as some tree straps. If you plan on sleeping outdoors in a hammock then I guarantee you will not regret getting this rain fly.

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