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  1. #1
    New Member
    Join Date
    May 2012
    ABQ NM
    Still Deciding
    HG Phoenix 20

    First hang, mixed results.

    Just took the family camping on a combined deer scouting trip and feral hog hunt. Good campsite. Wife and kids had the tent, I had my HH Exped that I got at REI. The Exped is for sub six footers, and I am almost 6'2".

    We got to our site and got set up. My trees were a little close together, but my cover tarp tied off to my tree huggers. The eldest daughter and I took the little dog and went to lay out some hog bait and look for deer sign. Right after finding a 2 foot + diamondback rattlesnake it began to rain so we turned around. We laid our bait and headed back.

    With several hours of rain I prepared dinner in the rain. The Mrs. and the kids ate in the tent, and just before sundown the rain stopped, and th humidity shot up. I got everyone settled and then it was time to rack out. Little Dog was fed and she decided she wasn't interested in kibble so she spilled her food.

    My hammock was dry, and i climbed in and unzilled the bug net to enjoy the moonlight and read my Nook for a few minutes. We dropped down to the upper 50s with 30-40 mph wind. I guess i picked my site well, since I could hear the wind howling (the next morning we found several new blowdowns), but I only caught a breeze under my hammock and while the heat removed didn't chill me, it was noticeable. It was tough sleeping. Firstly, you notice that we broke several bear rules (bringing Little Dog, cooking at the campsite, letting a four and seven year old eat in the tent, dog food spilled near the campsite), and since we were in an area that produced the country's best known anthropomorphized bear and US Forrest Service mascot, I am sure that contributed to my lack of sleep. I was able to lay asym, and sleep on my side. The 1911 stuffed in my waistband in condition 3 didn't help.

    About 0300 something bumped into my hammock and loudly snorted into my ear several times. Rather than try to look outside I made sure I had my gun accessable and then tried to look out. The animal snorted into my ear on the side opposite my zipper, so looking out that side was quite a chore. Whatever it was slinked off quietly. Looking at the campsite the following morning it appeared that a couple of mule deer strolled through. She Who Must be Obeyed said that Little Dog got up about that time and was staring in the direction of my hammock, but the tent window was zipped shut.

    Lessons learned:

    1. I am sure I would have been more comfortable in a hammock correctly sized. Looking at HH offerings for folks my size and their respective prices I see a Dangerbird 72 DL in my future.

    2. My order from 2qZq of a UQP and peak bag will be most welcome. I am sure the UQP would have kept me warm enough, because a compressed, synthetic, el cheapo summer weight bag diid just fine. The peak bag will hold the pistol better than my waistband.

    3. My Thermarest camp pillow lofts up too well... next time a stuff sack with clean clothes will be my solution. I didn't care for the angle of my neck most of the night.

    4. I gotta practice hanging. My ridgeline was like a guitar sting, and my rain fly was a little loose. Next time I won't stick with trees too close together just to get camp set up and get hunting.

    5. She Who Must Be Obeyed woke up with a sore, stiff back. She has not been camping in the last decade, she never goes with me because she doesn't like hunting. She wanted see what the hammock was like, so I showed her, not realizing that this year she crept over the weight limit. She climbed in, dozes off, took a 45 minute nap and woke up with all her back pain gone. She felt good enough to hike 4 miles, a good part of it cross country, to check my hog bait with me.


  2. #2
    Senior Member HappyCamper's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    WB Blackbird 1.1 dbl
    JRB11x10 Z-P cuben
    Yeti JRB WestMtg
    webbing, Dutchclip
    It sounds like the normal first time out. Some good . . . some tweaking still needed. Looks like the wife may be next in line for hammock setup.

    I once woke up swearing that a deer had stuck its head under my tarp and licked my bare foot. Then I realized that was impossible because I was zipped up inside my Blackbird hammock. But gee was that dream real! Sounds like you had the real deal of being bumped.
    Exercise, eat right, die anyway -- Country Roads bumper sticker
    Fall seven times, standup eight. -- Japanese Proverb

  3. #3
    dakotaross's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Chamblee, GA
    DL Streamliner
    Toxaway w/doors
    HG/Apex UQs
    Funny how the "animal sounds" go away the 2nd night out. By the 3rd night, same for the 1911.

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