Originally Posted by MAD777
I can tell that you will love hammock camping.
Setup can be very simple. We just get carried away here and let our imaginations run wild sometimes, just for the fun of it!
You are concerned about insulation, as you should be. But hammock insulation is simple if you picture a conventional sleeping bag cut in half, lengthwise, such that you end up with a top half and a bottom half. The top half lays on top of you, the top quilt, and the bottom half is suspended tightly up against the bottom of the hammock, the under quilt.
Bingo! Well said and well summarized!
For just a slightly different way of looking at it:
Unless ( or maybe even if ) you are in a snow cave, you probably have some roomy bag with a very thick top layer and very thick bottom layer, though it's possible you just have a real thick top quilt. But lets just say it's a bag, not a quilt. Either way, you probably have a thick heavy pad, right?
Now the thickness of the bags top layer should be thick enough to be warm in the expected temps, and the bottom layer is probably about as thick. Now just picture that bag wrapped around the hammock, in what is known as "Pod style" or Pea Pod. If the top layer can handle the temps, then the bottom layer should also be able to, or pretty close. ( It may be colder under the hammock if the wind is not well blocked).
So now - assuming perfection ( not likely ) and no drafts or gaps
( way more POTENTIAL for that than on the ground in a mummy bag) you should be as warm as you were on the ground with that same bag. You have say 5" of down loft above you, and 5" below you. So the warmth should be approximately the same top and bottom, again assuming equal wind protection top and bottom, and if gaps and drafts are taken care of. And that is without your pad!
Of course, for emergencies and for use as a sit pad, you probably have your pad with you anyway. And you can still use it to add way more bottom warmth. It can be used inside the hammock ( tricky) or in the double layer pad pocket some hammocks have, or down under the hammock but inside the pod. But sense you are not compressing the bags insulation by laying on it, still using your pad should put you way ahead. All with the same equipment.
But remember, everything I said depends on near perfection, so it probably won't be quite as good as I make it sound. But in the ball park, and way comfy.
To see the pod concept in commercial form, look here:
For an even different way to skin this cat, check this old classic out: