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  1. #1
    New Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2022
    Location
    Lexington, KY
    Posts
    1

    Newb Hammock Setup - affirmation on equipment choices

    Greetings, new member here looking for affirmation and/or suggestions on my equipment choices; prior to purchase?

    Sorry for the long post. I have been reading posts here and watching You Tube videos for a while and have determined that I want to join the cool kids in the hammock camping world.

    About me: I am 6’ tall and weigh 200lbs. I have experience camping in a camper, but no longer have the camper. It has been forever ago since I tent camped. I have a cheap hammock I picked up at Sam’s Club a while back for lounging in, but have not spent an entire night in it. I recently decided I would like to do some backpacking/bikepacking and believe my 53 year-old body would prefer a hammock over a pad and the ground. I hike regularly, 15-20+ miles over a weekend is not a problem. I bike more and 60-70 mile days are doable – planning the C&O/GAP trail from Pittsburgh to DC in the late spring.

    I live in Kentucky and most of my backpacking trips will be in the Red River Gorge. The average lows in the winter are in the 20s*F; although we may see single digits occasionally. I do not plan to do trips when the forecast is calling for extremes; and I plan on sticking to above freezing temps, although I know I need to be prepared for the unexpected.

    I am really just wanting to know if my choices are good ones, or are there better options that I may have missed? I am trying to stay as low cost as possible to start and will upgrade down the road since I need pretty much everything for backpacking and do not have unlimited funds to purchase top of the line equipment all at once.

    The equipment I currently have is:
    15*F sleeping bag
    60L backpack

    My planned equipment: (purchasing in the next few weeks)

    DIY gathered end 11’ hammock – (My aunt is a seamstress and has agreed to do the sewing) I plan on camping with my ~40lb dog in the hammock at times. I contacted Ripstop by the Roll with questions about material and they suggested 1.7 oz MTN XL Hybrid Ripstop Nylon for extra durability with the dog. Sound good? Or would anyone suggest a different material? As for hanging the hammock I am considering straps, whoopie slings for the suspension/ridgeline and hardware from Dutchware.

    Tarp – I considered a DIY tarp to save $$, but after seeing many good reviews on the Onewind 12’ hammock tarp I think I will start with that and possibly attempt a DIY tarp later down the road. I like the ability to close off the tarp.

    Under quilt – I believe this is probably the most important piece of the system and where money is well spent. I am currently considering the HG Economy Incubator 20*F for cold weather camping and pairing it with my 15*F bag. The overfill option - is it worth it? And, if so, how much overfill? For warmer weather (45*F+) I think I will just pick up a cheap Amazon 40*F synthetic under quilt or do an Apex synthetic DIY under quilt? Any suggestions on other under quilts to look at in the <$300 range to handle my cold weather needs? Will the 20*F quilt be enough when combined with my 15*F bag if temps were to drop into the low 20s*F or high teens? I will have sufficient clothing layers to add based on weather predictions.

    Top Quilt – I plan to use my 15*F bag until I decide what to do for warmer weather. I will either purchase a warmer weather bag or top quilt later down the road.

    I plan to test the setup in my backyard or car camping before heading out into woods.

    Thanks in advance, I feel like I have already learned a lot from this forum and a lot of my choices are based on posts I have read on here.

  2. #2
    brohawk's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    Bethlehem, PA
    Hammock
    Warbonnet RR
    Tarp
    Dutchware Bonded
    Insulation
    Enlightened / HG
    Suspension
    HG Daisy Chain
    Posts
    415
    Images
    4
    Looks good so far, definitely on the right track with alot of research already. Good choice and size on the pack.

    The tarp I have heard from multiple people that it can be very frustrating to sew diy but I have never tried. Dutch, UGQ, and many others offer some really reasonable priced tarps that might be a good fit for your budget.

    The underquilt is definitely an important piece of gear and most will say 20 degree is the best all around temperature rating. Overstuff is a mixed view and some don't even offer it anymore but if you want to add more loft it's an option.

    Try your gathered end out but like others I have found with my height and age I have switched to a bridge hammock and found to be more comfortable so keep your mind open. Plenty of help here so good luck!
    Some days I can't tell whether I found a rope or lost a horse...

  3. #3
    Senior Member LowTech's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2020
    Location
    Nomadic, US SW at moment
    Hammock
    one wind 11' wide
    Tarp
    one wind 12'
    Insulation
    SLD, UGQ, LL, JRB
    Suspension
    UCR
    Posts
    628
    I've been using the Onewind 12' tarp for about three years and it's just now starting to leak around one of the pull-outs, so I may need to retape it there. And when I say three years I mean more nights than some will ever do in their life as I live outside. Now I do live in the SW desert most of the time so rain isn't a constant but when it does rain, or during the Arizona monsoon, it can be crazy windy, like 40+ mph. So far my tarp has handled that loads of times, a mega hailstorm, and one hurricane ride in N Florida. Right now I need to replace the shock cord.
    I do hate the little hooks fittings that they have as they wanted to hang up on everything, so removed.

    The temps I live in are about the same and I have a 20° synthetic UQ (it was cheaper and I'm poor) & a 20° down TQ in the winter. If it starts to get below freezing multiple nights I've started stacking my cheaper 40° down summer quilt on that and using the same 20° TQ.

    I don't winter backpack but if I did I'd bump up to a 60/65lt pack and change my 20° UQ to a down one so that it would pack smaller.

    You seem to have researched the options pretty well.

    "Sent w/o me knowing"

  4. #4
    Senior Member mistone's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Location
    Oak Hill nc
    Hammock
    DIY WINTER HAMMOCK
    Tarp
    Diy Winter Tarp
    Insulation
    Down
    Suspension
    Dutch gear
    Posts
    580
    Images
    16
    Sounds like you're going in the right route I would invest in a good extra large winter tarp if you're camping in the winter that extra large winter tarp saved me from the cold and wind don't forget to get a under quilt protector that helps you can find them on dutchgear
    Its a good day to be out in the woods no matter the weather.Mist One..

  5. #5
    SilvrSurfr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Jersey Shore, NJ
    Hammock
    Dutch PolyD
    Tarp
    HG Winter Palace
    Insulation
    HG 0, 20, 40
    Suspension
    Dutch Whoopie Hook
    Posts
    14,679
    Images
    3
    I wouldn't go with the Onewind tarp - it's just the latest cheap Amazon tarp (and there have been many). Considering that the tarp is the most important piece of gear in hammock camping, that's the last place you want to go cheap.
    "A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds." Ralph Waldo Emerson

  6. #6
    Senior Member mistone's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Location
    Oak Hill nc
    Hammock
    DIY WINTER HAMMOCK
    Tarp
    Diy Winter Tarp
    Insulation
    Down
    Suspension
    Dutch gear
    Posts
    580
    Images
    16
    Oh yeah if you're looking for a good wide large tarp go with simply light designs
    Its a good day to be out in the woods no matter the weather.Mist One..

  7. #7
    jakev383's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2020
    Location
    Henderson, TX
    Hammock
    Blackbird XLC
    Tarp
    11' WB Superfly
    Insulation
    SLD Trail Winder
    Suspension
    Beckett and EVOs
    Posts
    100
    I think you're on the right track to start. I personally started with less gear than you, and have built up over the last few years - such as starting with a FreeSoldier Amazon tarp and moving to a Warbonnet Superfly (bought secondhand). Some of the generic items will weigh a little more (the Superfly is less than half the weight of the FreeSoldier tarp), and may not be as durable over time, but the lower bar to entry lets you get out and figure out what works for you and where you wish to invest in upgrades.
    I'll second the tarp with doors, however. I feel that those are better to have than not, and I use mine about half the time when I camp. It is usually to allow me to be less critical with my site selection so that I can block wind, but the extra rain protection is nice to be able to use when you need it too. I know others do not like them, but you won't know if you like them or not until you spend some time with them.
    I did not see you mention a bugnet on your hammock. While you can get by without one, you'll want to at least use bugspray or a Thermocell if you'll be camping in the skeeter months. I treat my hammock with permethrin as well.
    For straps - regular straps are usually where people want to start. If you want to try whoopies and don't want to make them yourself, ping me and I can send you a set if you'll cover shipping. If you decide you do not like them, pay it forward
    I think you should be pretty warm in the quilts you have - my kids started out using a 50° underquilt and a 50° sleeping bag down into the mid/upper 30s. While it will not apply directly to your sleeping bag, there is a chart that shows the effective temperature ratings when stacking quilt. I personally ended up with a modular one from Simply Light Designs, the TrailWinder. Gets me both 50° and 20° in the same package by adding an extra insulating layer. I bought a 20° topquilt and used a cheap down throw blanket ($25 at Costco) until I bought a nicer 50° down topquilt a couple years later.
    If you do a dual layer hammock, you could use a pad in between the layers to supplement your bag too.... I always wanted to experiment with that avenue myself but never got around to buying the pad.

    And yes, testing in the backyard is a wise choice. Especially with colder weather gear.

  8. #8
    Phantom Grappler's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Denton NC
    Hammock
    WildernessLogics 12x6
    Tarp
    HG cuben 13ridge12
    Insulation
    TopQuiltUnderQuilt
    Suspension
    S and D
    Posts
    4,534
    Strike up a conversation with Hammock Forums campers who live near you. And go on an impromptu group hang for a weekend. There you will drink coffee, swap lies and your new friends will enjoy showing you their current hammock and tarp setups.
    Even if only four or five campers are there, you will see five different rigs first hand.

    A hearty shoutout to Cboggs, from deep in Uwharries forest
    Phantom

  9. #9
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2019
    Location
    WNC
    Hammock
    1.2 MTN streamliner + myog net
    Tarp
    HG DCF Std, Lawson
    Insulation
    Wooki, old EE TQ
    Suspension
    1.4 UHMWPE, Becket
    Posts
    109
    20d economy UQ and MYOG gathered end are spot on. 1.6 MTN or 1.6 Hexon either probably good

    Get some mesh and shock cord with your rip stop order and make yourself a bottom entry / “fronkey” bugnet.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  10. #10
    Senior Member LowTech's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2020
    Location
    Nomadic, US SW at moment
    Hammock
    one wind 11' wide
    Tarp
    one wind 12'
    Insulation
    SLD, UGQ, LL, JRB
    Suspension
    UCR
    Posts
    628
    Be aware that Silvrsurfr is a hater of Onewind even though as far as I can tell he's never had a tarp, or anything else of their's. I believe that's probably because they are from another county and use Amazon as their selling platform.
    Is that tarp heavier than the Superfly from Warbonnet, sure about 40+grams in a comparable size, but it's also half the price. That's something important when you are getting a bunch of gear all at the same time as a starter set.
    They also get good reviews for the tarp from almost every one that's used one, even some "names" in the hammocking world.

    So another word, don't let his bashing them sway you too much.

    "Sent w/o me knowing"
    Last edited by LowTech; 12-09-2022 at 23:24.

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