It has been a big year for me. After a few years of being in narrow hammocks I upgraded to a ENO doublenest and experienced the comfort of the diagonal lay. It was a key moment for me in my development as a hanger.
This past weekend I used an underquilt for the first time. It was an Eno ember. I know not a great quilt but its what I have. I loved crawling into the hammock and not messing with a pad. This great feeling was soon squashed as I realized the quilt was keeping me from laying on my usual diagonal in my Eno double nest. As the temperature dropped so did my comfort level. I should mention the zipper in my sleeping bag was broke and I didn't figure this was a problem as I was planing to use it as a top quilt. It got to cold for that. So I spent an uncomfortable night in my hammock. I almost dropped the underquilt onto the fire in the morning along with the broken zipper sleeping bag but I didn't want to clean up the mess afterward and figured i better set a good example for the kids so I packed them both out.
I've been debating a Hennessy hammock or a Blackbird for a while now. I'm having a hard time seeing how well a underquilt works with either of those. I've also been taking a hard look at packed size/weight/cost of an UQ/TQ and am thinking that a lot less than $500 would buy an amazing sleeping bag. Combine that with a double layer blackbird to shove the pad into and wouldn't I be better off? Smaller/ligher to pack, faster to deploy/stow.
So whats this fascination with quilts? Are they warmer? Are they more comfortable? They aren't lighter, smaller, or cheaper. I don't get it.