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  1. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by TxAggie View Post
    Good luck on your thru. Are you documenting it?

    I’ve seen a K777 on YouTube.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    That’s me!

  2. #52
    TxAggie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Khs777 View Post
    Thatís me!
    Sweet! I started following you after Early Riser started posting all the they VLOGers.

    Best of luck, Iíll be watching.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  3. #53
    Senior Member dakotaross's Avatar
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    OMG, I just read this review...

    https://sectionhiker.com/rei-flash-a...system-review/

    I think the reviewer handled things nicely, identifying the flaws and allowing for best use. I have to say, though, I'm shocked that REI would come out with this product.
    "I wonder if anyone else has an ear so tuned and sharpened as I have, to detect the music, not of the spheres, but of earth, subtleties of major and minor chord that the wind strikes upon the tree branches. Have you ever heard the earth breathe... ?"
    - Kate Chopin

  4. #54
    Senior Member dakotaross's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mogollon Monster View Post
    This weekend, I'm going to shoot a review of the REI Flash Air Hammock. It is an interesting hammock and from first glance looks very unique. If you have any specific questions about the hammock, let me know and I'll try my best to answer them in the video. I figure this will be a fun interactive way to do a review.
    Anything yet? I think this completely new type of hammock ends up adding nothing to the hammock world. Not really lighter, especially when compared to larger hammocks with larger tarps at comparable weight. And the idea of using any pad is faulty due to width issues at the foot end. Almost unusable with an UQ. But that's just my impression, have not layed in one to know firsthand.
    "I wonder if anyone else has an ear so tuned and sharpened as I have, to detect the music, not of the spheres, but of earth, subtleties of major and minor chord that the wind strikes upon the tree branches. Have you ever heard the earth breathe... ?"
    - Kate Chopin

  5. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by dakotaross View Post
    Anything yet? I think this completely new type of hammock ends up adding nothing to the hammock world. Not really lighter, especially when compared to larger hammocks with larger tarps at comparable weight. And the idea of using any pad is faulty due to width issues at the foot end. Almost unusable with an UQ. But that's just my impression, have not layed in one to know firsthand.
    I watched the review earlier today as I was perusing his channel-- what stuck with me was "floating bivy", haha. Bottom line is that it needs to be longer (at least) to be comfortable for many people. 9' is just a bit too short to really fit a wide range of people.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jEz6H8Nb16c

  6. #56
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    I just completed an eight-day section hike of the AT using the REI Flash Air Hammock, so I thought I'd add my feedback to this thread. I had resisted the idea of hammock camping for a long time because I didn't think it would be comfortable for me due to my history of lower back trouble. However, in previous section hikes on the AT I have searched for a tent campsite for as much as two hours before finding level ground (I'm mostly a stealth camper) and once arriving at a shelter to take the very last tent site; meanwhile, there were hammock campsites literally everywhere. Given all of that, I decided to give hammock camping a try.

    I read many reviews about the Flash Air Hammock and I was concerned about the general comments about it being too much of a compromise, and being best for shorter people or kids. I'm 6'2" and 185 lbs. I found the REI hammock on a Labor Day sale for $130 for the complete system ($180 regular price). With REI's one-year money-back guarantee I confidently took the plunge. I set it up in my backyard a few times and spent a night in it to test it out. Unfortunately, summer in Virginia wasn't ready to give up so the night I tested the hammock it was still pretty hot so I wasn't able to replicate the cold conditions I knew I'd find on the trail in a few weeks. Nevertheless, I slept well in the hammock, although hot, and decided it was good enough to give it a go on the trail. (Not completely confident, however, as I packed my tent in my car and decided to make a short hike on day one, and if I didn't like the hammock I'd backtrack to my car and exchange the hammock for the tent.)

    When I set out on the AT last week temps were in the 40-60 range, perfect hiking and camping weather. I was a little concerned about staying warm at night because REI doesn't sell an under quilt for this hammock. I watched several YouTube videos about using an air mattress in lieu of an UQ and decided that I could get by with my REI Flash Air Pad that I already had. I slept in my 25 yr old Marmot 20 degree mummy sleeping bag, which still has plenty of life in it but is a bit heavier than newer stuff (if Santa is listening, I've been very good this year!).

    I found the Flash Air Hammock easy to set up and supremely comfortable! The first night out, I slept 11 hours, which is something I never do unless I'm sick. Needless to say, I didn't backtrack to my car to fetch my tent. Although I was in the dreaded banana shape, I found it to be very, very comfortable. I wasn't able to turn onto my side unless I got into a fetal position, but I was able to slide my hips from side to side a little and move my legs into a "4" configuration, so I was able to shift around a little. I am a back sleeper 95% of the time, so I didn't have any issue with the dominant position of laying with my legs out straight, end to end in the hammock. My mummy bag restricts me into that position as well. I never felt the need to lay on an angle to reduce the amount of banana curve, and I never experienced any pressure on my knees. Honestly, when I was laying in my hammock I really couldn't tell that I wasn't flat, unless I tried to turn onto my side. Additionally, I found the position of having my feet slightly elevated was really great after a long day of hiking.

    I have a long wide Flash Insulated Air Sleeping Pad (not the all-season one) and that provided all the under protection I needed to stay warm. I had a few nights below 40, but I was cozy and comfortable with my set up. I could definitely tell when my heel or arm would drift off the edge of the pad as the cold would penetrate through my sleeping bag. My pad was too wide to fit the straps inside the hammock, so I just set the pad in the bottom of the hammock. A night or two my pad got a bit twisted and I had to correct it in the middle of the night, but most nights once I got into the hammock, and got myself, my sleeping bag and my pad into position, everything stayed put all night. I did have a concern that with the inflatable pad I had a single point of failure for my whole sleep system. If my pad sprung a leak I was going to be in trouble. I bought an inflatable pad repair kit to mitigate that risk, but due to the waffle design of the pad I'm not confident that I could repair a leak along one of those seams.

    One of the downsides I noticed of this hammock is the tree straps are not very long. They aren't long enough to attach to a tree much wider than about 18" in diameter. That seems like a big tree, but in the beginning I tried to attach my hammock to several trees that were too big before I got a sense of what size to use. On the AT this wasn't a concern, as there was always a variety of trees around, but I've hiked some places out west where it would have been more of an issue.

    One night it poured rain all night but the fly did a good job of keeping the hammock dry. I tied the end of the fly line to the hammock as a drip line, but when I inspected it in the morning, water never made it past the metal C-shaped hooks.

    In all, I had my best nights of sleep I've ever had camping. Admittedly, I don't have any other hammock experiences to compare the REI Flash with, but I am so happy with it that I have no reason to look elsewhere. The compromise of weight, price, and performance hits the sweet spot for me. I woke up every day on the trail and texted my wife about how much I love my hammock. I may never tent camp again!
    Last edited by misterblitz; 10-21-2019 at 11:17.

  7. #57
    Member mad_matze's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by misterblitz View Post
    Although I was in the dreaded banana shape, I found it to be very, very comfortable.
    I experienced the same with my ENO SingleNest. This bath tub thing somehow works for me. It's weird, there seems to be a different way of being comfortable compared to the bigger gathered-ends with the flatter lay, more sag and more space. Somehow both work very well for me, for different reasons I guess.

  8. #58
    Senior Member dakotaross's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by misterblitz View Post
    ...I have a long wide Flash Insulated Air Sleeping Pad (not the all-season one)... ...My pad was too wide to fit the straps inside the hammock, so I just set the pad in the bottom of the hammock. A night or two my pad got a bit twisted and I had to correct it in the middle of the night, but most nights once I got it into position when I got into the hammock, it stayed put all night.

    In all, I had my best nights of sleep I've ever had camping. Admittedly, I don't have any other hammock experiences to compare the REI Flash with, but I am so happy with it that I have no reason to look elsewhere. The compromise of weight, price, and performance hits the sweet spot for me. I woke up every day on the trail and texted my wife about how much I love my hammock!
    Hey, that's great!! I think we all know that first night (or first morning) experience and want it for everyone. I had a long wide pad where I couldn't get on the diagonal one trip and it turned out ok going straight line. That got me using a short pad with foot pillow before going to an UQ.

    The REI site mentions that it can take a pad 20-25" wide, but you're saying the straps that hold the pad would only be good for 20"? Seems like false advertising on their part. Heck, I can put a 36" pad in an ENO by just sticking it in there. Not well, mind you, but could do it. Which makes me ask if you thought your lay might have been better with the smaller pad? For instance, did the head and foot ends rise up with the hammock making it more of a banana shape?

    REI site also says the spreader pole "prevents the banana lay" though is appears to just lift the net up. In your opinion, does it seem to flatten the hammock in any way? I think rather what's going on is that they minimized dimensions so that the sag was so much less that the banana shape lay is more tolerable. This seems to match what you've mentioned in your review.

    I like the thought process of this package, mostly, and I would love to see first hand what they think they've done with the design that makes it ok to lie in a straight line. I never see these setup in the store. Frankly, it seems as if they had a $$ target in mind and set out to design something that would fit with what they determined was a target customer who likely already had a pad. Lot of great reviews for these things out there. I find it hard to fathom that it comes even close to my Eldorado and Simplicity asym tarp for near the same amount of money (retail) and weight. FWIW, I paid close to what you did on sale.
    "I wonder if anyone else has an ear so tuned and sharpened as I have, to detect the music, not of the spheres, but of earth, subtleties of major and minor chord that the wind strikes upon the tree branches. Have you ever heard the earth breathe... ?"
    - Kate Chopin

  9. #59
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    I just measured the pad straps in my hammock, and they are about 20" apart, but that's the outside dimension so there's maybe 18.5" on the inside dimension. The straps have a nifty elastic portion and a clever hook that doesn't protrude into the pad, and there's probably room to reverse the direction of the hook to use the outside dimension of the loop. (Think of making a C-shape with the strap instead of a straight line.) My wide Flas Air Pad measures 29" deflated, and the website lists it at 25" which I suppose is the inflated dimension. I only tried to use the straps one night, but it didn't seem like it was going to fit and honestly, I didn't futz with it very long because my pad hadn't been shifting around to the point where I felt like I needed to anchor them. So my comment of the straps being too short may be a bit preemptive. The hammock certainly could take a much wider pad, it just wouldn't fit the straps.

    For me, the long wide Flash Air Pad is a perfect size. I'm 6'2" with fairly broad shoulders, and the mat fits me from head to toe, and shoulder to shoulder. I never tried putting the mat in on a diagonal because I was so comfortable sleeping inline. When I first hung up the hammock in my backyard and got in it without the pad it did seem to be more of a banana shape, and moving to a diagonal did reduce that feeling. However, the hammock isn't designed for diagonal sleeping so it made me feel cramped at the head when I was on an angle. The next time I set it up was to test sleep in it, so I added the air pad but I didn't feel the need to experiment with laying on an angle because it seemed flat to me while laying inline.

    I don't know if the spreader pole reduces the curve to the hammock or not. I could see how a spreader bar would reduce the sag, but I would find it hard to believe that a 1/4" dia bent aluminum pole could overcome my bodyweight's ability to sag a hammock to it's fullest. Perhaps it does, I really don't know because I didn't try setting it up without the bar. I think you might be right that the shorter nature of this hammock makes the curve less pronounced than longer hammocks. Honestly, I could barely notice any amount of curve once I was in it, even though I knew there was some.

    I think you're right about the target customer, and I'm exactly that customer. I already have all the tent camping gear, so being able to transition to a hammock for a minimum investment was one of my goals. An integrated bug net was mandatory, as the bugs love me (I tell my wife it's because I'm delicious!). So to be able to get a hammock, bug net and fly for 2.8 lbs and $130 triggered my purchase decision. It was less than I paid for my Passage 1 tent and footprint, 1.4 lbs lighter, and infinitely more comfortable!

  10. #60
    County_mountie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cmyoung19 View Post
    The shape looks like itís designed to pretty much force you to lay right down the middle. Can you get diagonal? If not, does this hammock have another way to get flat?

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Exactly my thoughts...looks odd.
    "Always pass on what you have learned" - Yoda

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