ADVANTAGES OF A FLOORLESS SHELTER
Choosing to utilize a Kifaru floorless shelter can be a hard decision for some users looking to make a change. Most consumers are concerned about one of two things: 1) the elements (rain mostly) flooding under the tipi/shelter, and 2) bugs getting inside. However, after using our shelters a couple of times you’ll quickly find that both of these concerns really are not issues at all.
Regarding water running underneath the shelter in heavy rain: this shouldn’t be a problem if you set your camp up properly. This means on a bench or high area and staying away from low areas where water likes to pool. You can also setup a UL bivy sack and/or a ground cloth if the area you’re camping in is already damp. Most people use Tyvek for a ground cloth (a material used for construction). This is a lightweight and inexpensive option that works as good as anything.
If bugs are the concern, you have a few options to combat the issue. Burning bug coils helps build a force field around one’s shelter. Keep in mind if you are using a dual-walled shelter with a zipped- in bug net, the bugs that do get inside the net won’t have the option to escape; whereas, a Kifaru floorless shelter will let them escape without issue. Another option to utilize with a Kifaru shelter is a hooped or bug net-type bivy sack. This will add a little weight, but if you’re dealing with bugs then the weather is likely hot and muggy and having the wind flowing through your shelter will be a welcomed option.
I too was worried about a few things when I made the switch to the Kifaru floorless shelter, but I quickly discovered that the good things about a floorless shelter far outweigh the bad. It’s always nice to keep your boots on (no floor= no mess) and the weight savings is a huge bonus as well (just to list a couple things). Furthermore, if you consider the option of adding a stove, taking the route of a floorless shelter for a “do-all” home in the backcountry is an easy choice.
When you compare a floorless Kifaru shelter with a 4-season tent with the same square footage, you’ll see that the floorless/stove combo is not only lighter, but will also give you a heated shelter to help dry your clothing and boots, keep you warm, and cook food and boil water (depending on the model of Kifaru stove you choose).
To help you get the exact size shelter you need, Kifaru offers a multitude of different tipis and tarps. If you’re wanting an ultralight heated shelter for year-round use, the Supertarp with an 18” Smith cylinder stove gives you ample room and can be pitched off the ground for summertime/warm weather. Or it can quickly transform into a bomb-proof, 4-season shelter that weighs 3 lbs (stove included) and can be heated to 80+ degree temperatures inside. If you compare that to a standard 4-season shelter, you’ll be looking at a 7+ lbs load and no option to heat the inside of the shelter.
Kifaru offers several larger tipi options as well (24, 16, 12, 8, 6 and 4-man). These tipis are a great option for car camping or backpacking alike. They work great as a lightweight alternative to a wall tent and will save a ton of weight and space when using horses or aircraft/helicopter travel. The parts for an 8-man tipi with stove, when split up between 3 people, amount to roughly 3.5 lbs per person. That’s a really lightweight set up for a shelter you can stand up in and a stove that can provide you with warmth, food and hot water!
Kifaru shelters are 100% made in America with American components. We stand proudly behind that and hope you’ll give us a chance to earn your business.