This Kelty Noah Tarp Review is about the new green series launched by Kelty. The gray version of these tarps has been on the market for a long time, and the essential features in the new version remain the same.
- Very versatile.
- Great price.
- Easy to use.
This popular Kelty’s series comes in four different sizes denoted by numbers 9, 12, 16, and 20. This is the feet size; for more data see in the specifications below. As already mentioned, this is a new version in green color. The material in all tarps is coated polyester with sealed seams. They all come in nicely designed carry cases with a roll-top closure.
The setup is made easy due to numerous tie-outs, both along the edges and on the tarp’s upper surface. As usual with this type of tools, they offer a variety of options, dependent on the environment, size, and on your own imagination.
Common specifications for all sizes
- Fully taped seams.
- Fly Fabric: 68 D Polyester, 800 mm.
- Attached corner guyline with a storage pocket.
- Multiple reinforced guyout points.
- Roll-top cube carry bag.
- Kelty Staff Poles sold separately.
Here is a short video by Kelty about the new Noah Tarps series:
What are tarps and how to use them?
Tarps are probably the most versatile outdoor tools and the number of applications is limited only by a user’s imagination. To mention just a few:
- They provide sunshade when needed.
- They provide rain protection.
- You can use them for wind protection as well.
- You can use trees for setting it up.
- You can set a tarp with just stakes and your trekking poles, e.g., when you are above the tree line.
- You can use a tarp for an extra cover above your tent.
- You can use it as a tent footprint.
- Need a protection above your picnic table? Put a tarp there.
- Need to keep your car in shade in a scorching sun? Use the tarp.
- What better is than a pleasant awning in front of a tent, so the tarp is an ideal tool for it.
- A tarp provides far more space than a tent, and many people can find a shelter and protection from elements underneath it. But you are not safe from bugs and mosquitoes of course.
- A tarp is a great option in combination with a hammock.
- A tarp is not just an outdoor tool, you can use it in your backyard, or to cover things that are in the garden, to cover your motorbike, etc.
Pros & cons
Here is my short summary:
- Simple design.
- Enormously versatile.
- Easy to setup and use.
- Reasonable price.
- Only moderately waterproof.
The waterproof rating for the fabric used in the construction is rather low, slightly above 1 PSI (Pounds per Square Inch; 1 PSI = 704 mm). To put this into perspective, this is still almost twice the value you have in a typical umbrella. In combination with the taped seams, this is good enough for light-to-moderate rain or snow.
Another issue is using it above the tree line, my typical situation in the Alps. Practically all the time I am above 2500 meters of altitude. So in this case, you have to rely only on stakes and your trekking poles.
Kelty Noah Tarp 9 specifications & features
- Size (L x W): 108 x 108 in (274 x 274 cm).
- Floor area: 81 ft² (7.53 m²).
- Minimum weight: 1 lb 11 oz (0.765 kg).
- Packaged weight: 2 lb 1 oz (0.94 kg).
- Packaged size: 10 x 9 x 3 in (25.4 x 22.9 x 7.6 cm).
- Seasons: 3 season.
Obviously, this is a solo tool, good enough as a minimalist overhead shelter in mild conditions.
Kelty Noah Tarp 12 specifications & features
- Size (L x W): 144 x 144 in (366 x 366 cm).
- Floor area: 144 ft² (13.4 m²).
- Minimum weight: 2 lb 3 oz (0.99 kg).
- Packaged weight: 2 lb 10 oz (1.2 kg).
- Packaged size: 12 x 10 x 3 in (30.5 x 25.4 x 7.6 cm).
- Seasons: 3 season.
This tarp is the most popular of all. It is good enough for two people and this holds for various setups. It can be nicely combined with a hammock. I think it is a far better option for solo use as well. The weight difference as compared to Tarp 9 is 28 percents but the floor area is increased by 78%. It offers far more options than the Tarp 9.
See this video with several ways of setting it up:
Kelty Noah Tarp 16 specifications & features
- Size (L x W): 192 x 192 in (488 x 488 cm).
- Floor area: 256 ft² (23.8 m²).
- Minimum weight: 3 lb 10 oz (1.64 kg).
- Packaged weight: 4 lb 1 oz (1.84 kg).
- Packaged size: 14 x 10 x 3.5 in (35.6 x 25.4 x 8.9 cm).
- Seasons: 3 season.
This tarp provides a lot of space for 3 people and more.
Kelty Noah Tarp 20 specifications & features
- Size (L x W): 240 x 240 in (610 x 610 cm).
- Floor area: 400 ft² (37.1 m²).
- Minimum weight: 5 lb 7 oz (2.47 kg).
- Packaged weight: 6 lb (2.72 kg).
- Packaged size: 17 x 12 x 4 in (43.2 x 30.5 x 10.2 cm).
- Seasons: 3 season.
So which size to choose?
It is better to have more covered space than less, but this comes at a price, the weight is increased:
- From the Noah 9 to Noah 12, the weight is increased by 28%, but the floor area is increased by 78%.
- From the Noah 9 to Noah 16, the weight is increased 1.96 times (96%), but the floor area is increased 3.16 times (316%).
- From the Noah 9 to Noah 20, the weight is increased 3 times (300%), but the floor area is increased 5 times (500%).
Kelty Staff Pole
The pole is sold separately. Its specifications and features are as follows:
- Weight: 1 lb (0.5 kg).
- Diameter: 16 mm.
- Length: 78 in (198 cm).
- Folded length: 21.5 in (55 cm).
- Material: aluminum.
- Two-inch grommet tip for securely attaching tarps.
The pole is not compulsory and this is why it is sold separately. But it is useful, and it gives rise to your tarp.
In summary of this Kelty Noah Tarp review, the new green versions of these popular tarps are with features very similar to those in the previous versions. At the moment of writing this text, both versions are available on the market, and with very similar prices. So if you already have the previous gray tarp, no need to invest in the green one.
The Noah Tarps have been very popular and used a lot, the tool has stood the test of the time, and I can fully recommend it.
The Noah series is not the only Kelty’s product of this type. You can see my separate text with their new 2017 model, the Rover Tarp designed to be used as an awning with their new 2-persons Rover Tent. Yet another great tool is this new Kelty Mirada Tarp which offers 124 ft² (11.5 m²) of covered space.
Thank you for reading. I love to hear from you, so please use the comment box below in the case of comments and questions.