Off the Beaten Path
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada.
I carry the 8' x 10' MEC scout tarp in my emergency kit. It is about the size and weight of a grapefruit after compressing it. I have had it for a few years and it looks like new. At my level of use it probably has a ten-year lifetime.
We use it as a cooking shelter when camping, especially kayak-camping. I have never tried sleeping under it - I hate bugs and spindrift in equal measure. I bought it after my last bivy (Wedge, 8000' level, August, snowing) and haven't had to test its emergency properties. It is bound to better than space blankets though.