Backyard Adventures: Part 3

Backyard Adventures: Part 3

Eric Mills - April 3rd 2020

While we are moving into another week of working, learning and playing from home, adventure can feel like it is hard to find. Here is part three of our backyard adventure series!

Part 3: How to waterproof.

Three great uses for a contractor trash bag on your next backyard adventure:

  1. As a bag liner – A great way to keep the belongings in your pack dry in even the worst rainfall, is to line your pack with a contractor bag. Before you pack anything, just open your bag, place the contractor bag in so that it conforms to the shape of your pack, and pack your gear into the opening of the trash bag. Now your gear will stay super dry, and you can look forward to dry clothes and a dry sleeping bag when you make camp.
  2. As a Poncho
    1. Have you ever been caught in the rain while out on a hike without a rain jacket? Or been with someone that forgot his/her own? A great way to be ready for a rainy situation is to always have a small roll of trash bags with you. They are not big or difficult to carry, and you can have multiple with you in case others forgot a rain jacket too.
    2. All you have to do to create a poncho is cut a hole for your face in the bag near the bottom, and if you want arm holes you can cut those too. It is a fast and easy way to help you and your friends stay dry.
  3. As a backup personal shelter/tarp

    1. Contractor bags can make a great personal shelter if needed. They weigh much less than a tent or tarp and will pack into your bag much smaller too. The things you will need to create this shelter are, something to cut the bag with, a large trash bag, and some cord to tie it down with. You could even use shoelaces if needed.
    2. To turn a trash bag into a tarp:
      1. Cut along the edge of the bag and then along the bottom to create one large piece of plastic material.
      2. Then find 2-4 trees or sturdy objects that you want to use to set up your shelter. You can set your shelter up in a variety of ways. To utilize the most space possible, tying each corner of the tarp to a tree or elevated object would be best.
      3. To tie down the corners, you can either-
        1. Use heavy rocks to weigh them down and keep them nice and tight
        2. Use a small handful of dirt, small rocks, or leaves and roll it up into the corners to create little “ghosties”, then use some cord and tie a clove hitch around them to tie off the corner of your tarp to roots, trees, stakes, etc… Make sure that your tarp is tied low and tight and try to avoid creases and drooping sections.


Do you think you can survive a night in the woods under a trash bag?

  1. Build your contractor bag shelter in your backyard, local park, or even your living room.
  2. Take a your best photo with you and your trash bag shelter and post on your FB, insta, etc. and tag @campmerrimac and/or @camptimberlake and #mmtlbmetrashbagshelter