First Hammock Camping Experience!
Well I just got back from 3 days and two nights backpacking and camping on the Chattooga River in SC near Ellicott Rock. Going in I had only been able to test hang one night in the back yard and the temps on my test were only around 40*, so since I was camping with others my fall back if I got cold was to go to ground and share someone's tent. Good news, even though temps Friday night hit the low 20's and Sat night mid 20's and a snow flurry around 3:30 am I was warm and dry.:D My set-up was as follows: Warbonnet BB, Speers WT (one end closed completely, the other partial for access), 1 GG evazote CCF 1/4" pad 40"w x 61" long, 2 - 10" wide strips of the same CCF to make the "shoulder area insulation a total 1/2" thick, 20" wide regular length Thermarest Prolite 4 on top of the CCF (between the 10" strips). I slept in my thermals and a wool stocking cap and used my 15* down bag as a quilt. As added insurance I used a hot water bottle in a neoprene cozy.
When I first went to bed on Friday night I started to get cold on my back (infamous CBS:eek:) )but I got out after an hour and stuffed in two small 20" x 12" CCF pads (seat cushions) under my back and I was golden! Saturday morning all my ground dweller friends were talking about how cold theye had been that night and I think with my set-up I stayed the warmest even though I was hanging in the air. Saturday night several of the other guys were copying the hot water bottle technique.
Daytime weather was great and I did some day hiking up to see Ellicott Rock. If you live in this area and have never camped or BP'd there the Chattooga River is beautiful. Its a national wild and senic designated river so there is no development and there are a number of trail routes that allow for either a short overnight in the woods or a longer through hike (part of the foothills trail runs through this area).
Thanks to all you folks that helped me with advise either directly or while I was lurking around and reading older posts. It amazes me the different tone to the community here on this forum compared to the adversarial tone I've seen on some other backpacking boards (you know who I mean). Now I definately know that hammocking is for me and feel I have the basic skills to get out there more often. As good as this weekend went I look forward to streamlining my set-up so that I'm not so bulky, as I move towards spring that should be easy enough.