How high do you hang?
This weekend I finally was able to bid adieu to my old trusty tent in favor of my new ENO DN and tarp setup.
I really wanted to convince my skeptical girlfriend and hiking partner that the loss of a full enclosure was more than balanced out by greater space so I pitched the tarp high enough that we could stand under it fully erect. Since Irene was surely bringing rain I ended up suspending the hammock pretty close to the tarp to protect us from any possible sideways precipitation but this left the hammock pretty high off the ground. Next time I think I will try a wider and lower approach for both tarp and hammock but I wanted to see how the more experienced folks here do it.
So, fully understanding that this is rather dependent on the situation:
How high do you typically suspend your hammock from the ground?
How high do you typically suspend your tarp from both ground and at what distance from your hammock?
We stayed dry even in the heavy rain and the girlfriend is now fully supportive of the hammock and tarp system.
I also learned I need to make some snakeskins for the tarp. Breaking down, folding and trying to get the wet shelter to fit in its stuff sack was a pain in the rain.
Only hang the hammock as far up as you would feel safe in falling....a lot of folk have said it's not "if" you will have an abrupt connection to the forces of gravity, but "when". Also, unless your arms are 8 feet long, it's hard to make your breakfast coffee and grits when hanging in the hammock!
I use another method to determine how high I hang. I want the hammock to be a comfortable chair height when I sit in it. This makes it easier to get into and out of.
As for the tarp, I only put it up when rain is a possibility, as I no longer hike in the snow. I try to set up with the back porch facing the wind, and it sets up lower to the ground. My front porch is higher, and thus out of my way as I enter and exit. Using a large tarp, in my case, a 10 x 12 OES Mac Cut, aids in such a set up.
I like mine up high, but "chair height" is the general highest I'd recommend
I usually set my hammock up about chair high (18 to20 inches for me). I have set it up lower and pitched the tarp sides clear to the ground to keep out wind driven swirling rain; this worked well, I stayed dry and still had some room, but no standing upright.
I good weather, I set the tarp up pretty high, so I can enjoy the views without tree gunk falling on me. Iffy weather I set it up about 3 inches or so off the hammock ridge line and put it in porch mode, but ready to lower the sides if I need to.
In hurricane Irene weather, I set the tarp up only about 1 or less off the ridgeline and pitch it in close to the hammock and I close the doors on the most windward side (worked well this weekend too).
+1 on the height of the hammock as long as you are measuring it after sitting in it. ;-) Things tend to settle after you tie off.
Originally Posted by olzeke
I always expect rain where I go so I always use a tarp. OTOH it does not need to be low and cozy if the weather is agreeable. If you are going to be there for more than a few minutes it is not a big deal to drop the ridge line before bed. That is why many folks use a separate ridge line for the tarp and hammock.
Pitching a low side and end doors to make a wind break is just good practice when needed. In that case pitch one side high enough to walk under. If you are using snake skins an option is to leave them on until settling in for the night, weather permitting.
Another vote for chair height. Nice to reach over and fix a nice, hot, tasty beverage in the morning too. As long as I'm off the ground I'm good to go!
I am in the "chair height" club.
I have a fused ankle, so I'm not as limber as some. On one campout, I set the hammock up in the dark and did not check it for height. It seemed about right, but it was a couple of inches too high. It was a major pain in the you know what to get out of it in the morning. Kind of hard to use your ridgeline to pull up on when your feet won't touch the ground!
ENO DN, so I had lots of room to be in the deep part of the sling.
Just sat there swinging and hollered for my son to come over to help.
Oh No's rules for hanging.
1- Never hang higher than you care to fall.
2- Never hang over anything you wouldn't want to land on.
That said, I'm in the low chair height group.
I like chair hight to use it for my seat instead of sitting on the ground. :scared:
Originally Posted by nothermark
Depends on the weather how I set up my tarp. If it's fair I set the tarp about eye level and put it in porch mode on the front side with my hiking poles and most recently added the carbon fiber pole mod to easily swing it up and down.:boggle:
If it's inclement weather I bring the tarp down low almost to the hammock ridge line. And stake it down all around.