I don't have any experience with shelter building, my brain doesn't work like an engineer's and I wasn't a boy scout....so I do have a lot going against me facing the challenge of creating a shelter from a single sheet of silnylon. I do however, learn well from mistakes (most of which I hope to make in the backyard, not in the field).
With all the materials, I needed to find how to set it up. I found a few YouTube videos showing some configurations and I decided it was time to try out a few on my own. I'm a small guy at 5'7", 145lbs, so I favor the "cozy" configurations, giving maximum shelter without really sacrificing space. My favorite is pictured below which involves both of my trekking poles to give a little extra lift to the "roof". This is where the poncho hood comes out of the tarp.
Full disclosure here...I did have to tie a few square knots on the ends connecting to the tarp or poles...I'm fairly comfortable with my abilities with this knot.
With the Tyvek groundsheet and all of the hardware, the entire shelter system comes in at 15.5oz (this doesn't include the yellow sleep pad pictured).
I plan to give the poncho tarp a try later this month out on the AT in either PA or MD. I'm hoping to set up camp somewhere with few bugs, but we'll see how that goes. I've got a bug head net that I can wear if absolutely necessary overnight. My pack base weight is now under 10 pounds, so I'm pretty excited to give it a spin!