It's just one guy's way of going about it, but I always bring along a scaled down Z rest pad. I usually don't have to go to the ground so I use it as a "porch mat" but can use it as it was designed to be used when biting the bullet. Depending on the terrain I may or may not use the hammock as a sheet to sleep on, but I won't risk damage to it. The top quilt is next with as you described the tarp lowered. The tarp I made has beaks on it like Ray Jardine shows on his website and adapts easily. It's not often when I have to go to the ground and although I can adapt, it makes me grumpier than usual.