Normally on a day hike, you don’t really think about carrying shelter. The weather in
can fool you and it usually means someone is going
to get wet. Although temperatures stay fairly warm through most of the year,
there is a big chance of getting caught in a rainstorm. You might also want to
stay out overnight if your sightseeing kept you from completing the entire hike
you had planned. Texas
UST Bug Tent and Tarp make a great lightweight addition to your day pack. It
will work to keep you dry (drier?) until the rain lets up or give you a place
to rest without feeding those blood-sucking mosquitoes all night. These work
great for use as an emergency shelter when day hiking.
The tent poles can be easily folded and strapped to the side of your pack. You can also opt to carry the tarp only. I also carry a small nylon tarp to use as a ground cloth (see pic) to protect a lightweight sleeping bag that I also carry. With a little food and a full water reservoir, my day pack weighs slightly less than 15 pounds on average. Regular backpacking or a colder climate would require something more substantial. My regular backpacking bag runs about twice the weight of my day pack (30 to 32 pounds).
It’s a lightweight combination that can be easily carried in your day pack and be there if you need it. Never hurts to have a backup plan in case nature decides to hand you a different set of circumstances on a sunny day.
Staying above the water line!