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Exclusive Poncho HoodSlit System ™

WEIGHT: 7 – 12 oz | 198 – 340 gm

An MLD exclusive, the Pro Rain Poncho is the only poncho/tarp available with a catenary ridgeline, generous tapered sizing, and our Poncho HoodSlit System ™.


Exclusive Poncho HoodSlit System ™
WEIGHT: 7 – 12 oz | 198 – 340 gm




An MLD exclusive, the Pro Rain Poncho is the only poncho/tarp available with a catenary ridgeline, generous tapered sizing, and our Poncho HoodSlit System ™.

MLD DCF Poncho was used by Joe “Stringbean” McConaughy on his incredible Appalachian Trail FKT record.

With the Poncho HoodSlit System ™, an MLD Invention (patent pending), the hood is set into the ridgeline, sealing shut quickly in ‘tarp mode’ when the ridgeline is under tension without the need to tie-up and stake out the hood to prevent water pooling like a common ‘circle-in-the-middle’ hood style poncho. Requiring over 60 manufacturing steps to produce, the MLD HoodSlit is the strongest hood design possible.

The catenary cut (curved) ridgeline offers a fast and tight set up in ‘tarp mode.” The ridgeline curve is just enough for a nice A-frame pitch but not so curved that other Lean-To type pitches can’t be achieved. This design offers tight pitching with less fuss, better wind resistance, water shedding, and far less possibility of stakes pulling out or insomnia-inducing wind flap.

The overall shape tapers from front to rear for good coverage in both ‘tarp mode’ and ‘poncho mode.’ At 62 in | 1.6 m wide, the Pro Rain Poncho is the widest front-width poncho tarp made, to allow for full coverage in ‘tarp mode.’ In ‘poncho mode,’ the wide end is in the rear, to wrap around the pack, while in ‘tarp mode’ the wide end is over the chest and head for more rain and wind protection.

Click here for a “Review and Guide to Using a Poncho Tarp.”

See the BACKPACKING LIGHT review of our 2004 prototype Pro Rain Poncho. Our current model offers many small improvements and hardware upgrades that drop the weight and improve performance. Even back then, the review placed the MLD Pro Rain Poncho at the top of the pack, and our minor tweaks and adjustments have only made it better!


• EXCLUSIVE: Hood features a stiffened brim and volume adjustment for a tight fit, drastically reduced mind numbing wind flap when worn
• Hood is off-set forward for full pack coverage, and the wide end is in the rear for wrap around pack coverage in poncho mode
• EXCLUSIVE: Catenary cut (curved) ridgeline for a fast and tight set up in tarp mode.
• EXCLUSIVE: Foot end ridgeline tie-out positioned 20″ | 51 cm from each end for various pitch options in the 20d Pro Silnylon- OD Green, Gray , Citrus OrangeSil version. DCF (Dyneema® Composite Fabric A.K.A. Cuben Fiber) version does not have the tie out because DCF does not stretch and can not be put in the pictured semi closed foot shape.
• Front and rear ridgeline tie-outs includes a CF tarp pole tip grommet
• Front ridgeline tie-out easy to identify: It has the MLD Logo label integrated as a tie out reinforcement
• Overhead hang loop on the inside ridgeline for bivy, watch, glasses and bug bivy hanging


• Waist bungee cord + Cordlock
• SilNylon Stuff Sack
• MLD Pro Guyline

For coverage interpolation the Pro Rain Poncho Tarp is pictured on a rugged 6’1″ model wearing a small pack.


LENGTH: 9 ft |
FRONT WIDTH: 66 in | 26cm
BACK WIDTH: 60 in | 24cm
MATERIAL: 20d Pro Silnylon
WEIGHT: 11 oz | 310 gm
COLOR:  Gray, OD Green, or Orange Citrus

MATERIAL: .5 DCF (Dyneema® Composite Fabric A.K.A. Cuben Fiber)
WEIGHT: 7 oz | 198 gm
COLOR: Green

MATERIAL: .68 CAMO DCF (Dyneema® Composite Fabric A.K.A. Cuben Fiber)
WEIGHT: 7.5 oz | 213 gm

MATERIAL: .75 DCF (Dyneema® Composite Fabric A.K.A. Cuben Fiber)
WEIGHT: 8 oz | 227 gm
COLOR: Green


COST: $50
WEIGHT: 2.6 oz | 74 gm

Optionally, you can order a set of the very best Carbon Fiber tarp poles available! These poles are not just a simple pultruded, or wrapped in one direction tube, like cheaper CF poles – they are 0.355 outside diameter multi-ply, multi-direction carbon fiber construction. Tall enough for a 6+ footer to sit up under a tarp, but short enough to avoid an unstable tall wind profile.

This set includes:

1 x 28 in | 71 cm Carbon Fiber Rear Pole (0.95 oz | 27 gm)
1 x 42 in | 106 cm Carbon Fiber Front Pole (1.65 oz | 47 gm)


• Stiff enough for Duo size tarps – Light enough for Solo
• Grommet locking tips- Easy to girth hitch guyline
• 15.5 in | 39 cm folded lengths for compactness
• Long and Strong aluminum internal ferrules with fast connect rounded end guides and tube spacer bumpers to prevent CF to CF abrasion


COST: $25
WEIGHT: 2.2 oz | 62 gm

Add 8 Titanium Skewer Stakes to your purchase. Stakes are 6.5 in | 16.5 cm tall and each stake weighs 0.27 oz | 8 gm.


COST: $20
WEIGHT: 0.8 oz | 23 gm

Add 8 Superfly Mini Biners to your purchase. Mini Biners are 0.1 oz | 3 gm each.


COST: $6
WEIGHT: 2.9 oz | 82 gm

This product includes 40′ of our regular, non-reflective Pro Guyline in your choice of Yellow or OD Green. You can upgrade this to 50′ of 2.7 MM Reflecto Pro Guyline which has properly spaced reflective markers that are bright enough to see, without making your shelter look like that obnoxious house on your block with the out-of-control Christmas lights.

Each of our SilNylon shelters comes with one tube of McNett Sil-Net Seam Sealer. It is STRONGLY recommended you use this supplied seam sealer to seal and strengthen the seams of your shelter.**DCF (Dyneema® Composite Fabric A.K.A. Cuben Fiber) Shelters do not need seam sealed.**


1. Pitch and inspect your shelter for any issues. Once it is seam sealed, it is non-returnable except for significant defects.
2. Use the supplied SilNet Sealer and ONLY the SilNet Sealer. (If you want to dilute it or use some other silicone sealant it should work OK and is common (research this yourself online) but, you are on your own- results may vary and are not covered by warranty! If you go this route, it is assumed you know 100% what you are doing and have done it before!!!)
3. Pitch the shelter tightly. Temperatures should be above 60 F and humidity below 80%. You may do this indoors. You may also do one seam at a time indoors if the seam is stretched slightly. Pinning one seam from each end on the floor between two heavy objects works OK.
4. We use the SilNet straight from the tube. Do not make a big hole in the sealer tube – start small so that you can control flow. Multiple small application is a lot better than one big smear.
5. Main Seams: Place a small bead on the seam along the stitching. Work on a 3’- 4’ section at a time. Use a finger to press the sealer into the stitching and the small valley at the edge of the seam where it is rolled under.


NOTE: You only need to seal the OUTSIDE of the shelter. You do not need to seal the bottom perimeter roller edge stitching. It is OK to add a small bead on the leading edge of the triangle tie-outs reinforcement stitching, but it is not required.

SPECIAL AREAS: Add a little sealer to any tie-out stitching on the middle of a panel (Mids, Cricket, and SuperTarps). Seal the zipper storm flap stitching and tie-outs on the Mids. Seal the stitching and apex tie-outs areas on the Mids, Crickets, and TrailStars.

IMPORTANT: Do no go back and forth over the wet seam too much – after a minute or three it will get gummy and look bad; it is better to wait for 8 hrs and then add some over any area you missed.

Many pitching options are possible with this tarp. When the weather is bad, pitching the foot end closed offers a lot of protection. Pictured is an A-frame pitch with the rear pitched closed using the rear ridgeline tie-out. A third ridgeline tie-out at the center is used in lean-to mode.

How to Pitch the MLD Pro Poncho With the Rear Closed

1. Tie loops of guyline through the rear corner and the rear edge ridgeline tie-outs to form three inch loops.
2. Cut two lengths of guyline 5 in | 13 cm long for the front corners. Cut two lengths of guy line at 7 in | 18 cm for the front and rear ridgelines. Tie a 2 in | 5 cm loop at each end of each of the guylines you just made. They can now be girth hitched to the tie-outs when needed and removed when the poncho is worn. You can also use the MLD Superfly Biners for a faster transition. These lines can also be attached just before setting up the tarp while wearing the poncho for a faster pitch when it’ss raining.

1. Set one pole to about 32 in | 81 cm tall (for the rear) and the other to about 42 in | 107 in. You may find you prefer slightly different lengths.
2. Stake the two rear corners with the rear edge tight and down to the ground.
3.Tie the rear guy line from the stake out loop located 20 in | 51 cm from the rear edge on the rear ridgeline, wrap or tie the line to the rear pole handle and then stake out the line. The rear pole’s pole point can be used through the 3 in | 8 cm rear edge ridgeline tie-out loop on the ground too. Stake the guy line so that a rear triangle is formed and leans at about a 45-degree angle to the ground. If the angle is too much, the rear triangle and tarp will not pitch as tight. This rear triangle pitch option takes advantage of the stretch on the diagonal of SilNylon. See the product pictures to see what it looks like.
4: Set the front pole and tie-out the front guyline.
5: Stake out the front corners and you are done! You may need to adjust the angles of the rear and/or front corners stake to get the tightest pitch tight. Practice makes perfect, and after 5 – 10 tries you should be able to get a tight pitch in under two minutes.

After a few pitches, you may be able to shorten the front corner and ridgeline tie-outs to fine tune your system. Note the heights of your trek poles for future reference. Fixed length pole users can wrap tape on the shafts at the proper height to create a stop for the line to wrap above and sit on top of. You may also want to carry two additional guy lines for the center side tie-outs. Some folks like to use rubber bands to fold up the guy lines and then secure guyline in a neat fashion either on or off the tarp.

The number one issue a new tarp user have is not practicing enough before an outing or not staking the lines tight enough to get a super tight pitch. A good tarp can take a lot of tension, so pitch it TIGHT.

NOTE: The Cuben Fiber version does not have the external on-the-ridgeline tie outs. Since cuben fiber fabric does not stretch is can not be stretched into as many pitch options as the SilNylon version. The most useful easy to pitch medium A-frame shape is suggested for the Cuben version.


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