Six Moon Designs' Gatewood Cape and Tarp Shelter is a good shelter, which is rare for this type of product, but 6MD have paid a lot of attention to this aspect.
Six Moon Designs says: As a shelter, the Gatewood Cape provides significantly enhanced protection when compared to your typical poncho/tarp. Its design easily sheds rain or snow and wind simply flows around it. Any sudden change in wind direction in the middle of the night won't leave you scrambling to re-orient your shelter or force you deeper into your bivy. Unlike a tarp, the Gatewood Cape is a shaped tarp and eliminates all exposed sides, leaving you safe and secure.
With 35 square feet of coverage under the shelter's canopy, you've got plenty of room for you and your gear. Depending upon conditions, you can even adjust the vestibule to different heights to increase ventilation. A long zipper on the vestibule makes opening and closing the shelter a snap.
For the adventuresome day hiker, the Gatewood Cape makes the perfect addition to your 10 essentials survival kit. It packs down incredibly small and provides peace of mind knowing you've got excellent protection close at hand.
Six Moon Designs' Gatewood Cape & Tarp Shelter seems to us to have been designed as a shelter first and a cape second - which is the right way to do it - since a shelter is more complicated and perhaps needs to be more reliable. So, where some Tarp/Cape combinations appear to be a cape that can be pitched 'a bit like a tarp' the Gatewood provides a real shelter option.
You need a trekking pole to give it support of course - but if you're using these anyway its not a bother.
Capes can offer good rain protection and although the fabric isn't breathable the fact that the lower sections are open to airflow help you maintain comfort inside. They tend to get problematical when its windy and they can be difficult to control!
- Reviewed by Ultralight Outdoor Gear