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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Charlotte, NC
    SLD Trail Lair
    AHE Toxaway
    AHE New River UQ

    At some point you need to take a breath and dive in...

    I've been lurking here for some time - wondering about hammocks and if I'd like using one. My son gave my wife the idea to give me one for Christmas and this weekend is the first backpacking trip I've been on since the holidays due to any number of conflicts.

    So this weekend I setup my Grand Trunk SBP between two trees in the front yard to figure the setup out. I tried a bunch of different sags and think I found a pretty good spot. Got the bug net up (essential in the southeast but I can see why some have modified theirs it is not the strongest point of the hammock). Started working on the tarp and ran out of line... doh. This weekend my sons scout troop is headed to Grayson Highlands/Mt Rogers. The weather looks about perfect - no rain - low winds - highs in the mid 60s lows in the mid to low 40s. Folks whove done the trip before say I might need to look around a bit but plenty of trees in the usual camping areas. I almost chickened out - after all my work getting my ground setup pretty well defined it is, well, safe so to speak. But I'm taking the plunge. Here's what I've got - with some comments for each.

    Grand Trunk Skeeter Beeter Pro - stock shock cord with cord locks for the bug net.

    switched out the stock heavy carabiners with Black Diamond wiregate climbing biners

    ENO Atlas Straps - instead of the stock suspension. I'll probably end up looking at whoopie slings due to the weight but the atlas straps are easily sourced, dead easy to use and for the first hang seem like a good options. Also my son has expressed interest in a hammock so I can pass them on to him since they are pretty simple. If I like hammocking he might get the GT and I might upgrade to a WBBB or the like.

    DD Hammock "M" Tarp - nice full coverage tarp and seems bombproof if a bit heavy. I still need to sort out the ridgeline (will use a continuous I think - and thinking about wrapping around a tree then terminating on the edge guyout points with a camjam to make it easy). I also need to get guy lines - I'll look at the marine line posted in a thread here at Walmart or the planing board line at Bass Pro - 6 x 8' segments should be more than enough. To save money I'm going to just use my Big Agnes SL1 stakes - just take that bag with me - they are basically mini groundhogs.

    AHE New River 30 underquilt - I picked this up here and it arrived yesterday in time for this trip. I am planning on setting everything up again Friday afternoon if I can to test out the UQ and get the tarp setup dialed in. The setup on the New River is supposed to be easy - we'll see!

    Marmot Aspen Ultralight 40 - if I take to hammocking I might do something different but using my current bag(s) is what I can afford. With clothing this and the UQ should be sufficient for the predicted temps I think.

    Cocoon Hyperlight air core pillow. I always use a pillow on the ground, and will take one with the hammock although laying in it this weekend it doesn't feel as critical as on a pad on the ground...

    So - anything I'm missing? I'll have some extra clothes just in case than I'd normally take (try to be as light as possible).

    Otherwise I'm going to dive in and see how it goes. It will be a change - any typical number of nights you need to adjust?

    Thanks for all the great info.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Austin, Tx
    Sounds like you've got everything pretty well covered. IMO the UQ will be the most important variable, be sure to dial it in at home and expect some fiddling out on the trail. Have fun!

  3. #3
    Senior Member Loki's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Western, NC
    WB, JRB, WL
    bigger is better;)
    HG, JRB, UGQ, WL
    If it aint Dutch..
    Have a great time! Took me about 3-5 nights to adjust...
    Now wouldn't consider a tent unless above the treeline
    - Loki my videos
    "Climb the mountains and get their good tidings.
    Nature's peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees.
    The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy,
    while cares will drop away from you like the leaves of Autumn." John Muir

  4. #4
    Senior Member Wraith6761's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Central Virginia
    UGQ Winter Dream
    WB straps
    You'll like the New River UQ...ordered a 4-season version as my first (and currently only) UQ, it really is pretty easy to set up. Only thing about it is that the gates on one of the carabiners is really tough to open (stiff spring I guess) and it proved pretty hard to get open in cold weather. Really does make a difference, especially in the wind and cold.

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