After such a long quest…
Could the answer really be this easy??
Surely someone thought of this before.

Here, for your consideration, is a practical (?) solution for hanging two hammocks, side-by-side, on two trees.
All credit for this idea goes to Gumbo. She is amazingly adept at seeing simple solutions to complex problems.

2 trees 2 hammocks.png
(sorry, I could only get a thumbnail pic)

The trick is to “attach” your bridge/spacer/spreader bar (I’m calling it a hanger bar in this application – shown here in red) to the tree, not to the hammocks, and not ‘floating’ on your suspension. Note: The hanger bar would have to be lashed very, very firmly (lashing shown in yellow). That lashing might need to be so tight that it could risk damage to the tree. Using straps instead of rope and taking several wraps around the tree would lessen the amount of potential damage, but even minor damage violates our LNT policy.

The hanger bar is further strengthened and stabilized by lines to each end – shown in green.
The hammocks are then hung with their conventional suspensions and ridge lines – shown in purple.

I’ve shown bridge hammocks because they have less ‘coccoonning,’ so you could better see each other and more easily reach over to the other person. Conventional cinched-end hammocks should work fine too, but having the fixed ridgeline is important.
This would allow each hammock to have its own bugnet and swing freely while still being together under a single (large) tarp.

Basically you’re putting up a continuous ridge line (one of the purples) that continues around to the other side of the trees (the greens) until it joins itself giving you a second CRL (the other purple) and forms a long loop. Then, to accommodate a hammock on each side, you widen the loop with a stationary spreader (the red hanger bar) on each end.

To all our mechanical engineers, experts, friends and like minded individuals… Your input is hereby solicited.
Known: The length of hanger bar needs to exceed the width of the hammock’s bridge enough to allow one hammock to swing without knocking the other and disturbing its occupant’s happy hammock dreams.
Unknown: What are the compressional/tensional forces on the hanger bars? Can they be contained? The dimensions of this bar will be a function of the material. What material and what size would you recommend? Could you employ a pre-existing piece of equipment like a hiking pole? (too weak me thinks)

The applications may be limited but they are significant.
Kids who want to be close to their parents (and vice versa)…
Couples who want to sleep together but not on top of each other…
Really anyone who wants to sleep close to another camper without sleeping on the ground could benefit from this approach.

The next challenge is to do a bugnet that encloses both hammocks.

Thank you in advance HF’ers for your thoughts, critiques, ideas and inputs!