I've had the Warbonnet Blackbird, my first hammock, for a few weeks and have been itching to try it out. Finally got the chance this weekend.
Headed to Henry Coe State Park in California's Coast Range.
It was a mellow hike in to Frog Lake on Flat Frog Trail, just over 3 miles through fields of wildflowers, oaks, manzanita & whatnot, with some nice vistas.
We made it to the small, one acre lake in no time, scoped the place out and set up a stealth camp just uphill from the lake.
The new Blackbird made itself right at home after a little searching for a suitable spot.
Some say the lake is of spiritual significance to Native Americans. I can see why.
We waited out a group of 30 camera-wielding tourists (a new and unexpected backpacking experience for me) re-hydrated some yummy Baja Chicken & rice-like stuff, and hit the hammocks early. The bugs were out in force, and even soaked in DEET, I didn't want to get bit, and was tired of flicking ticks off myself. Found tick in the hammock, killed it, checked myself as thoroughly as possible, zipped up quickly and was lulled to sleep by woodpeckers, wild turkeys & frogs. Buddy said I was sawing logs within 20 minutes. Nice, actually sleeping, comfortably, in the woods!
It was warm, dipping just under 50F, so I tried 1/8" foam and used the sleeping bag as a blanket. Was pretty warm until the wee hours of the morning when the foam just wasn't quite warm enough...not cold, just not warm enough. Will try 1/4" next time, but an underquilt is inevitable.
Took a shorter, steeper route back, climbing over the 1000 foot hill rather than around it. Nice little climb to get the heart pumping, and another nice vista to round out the trip.
Met a new friend on the trail. Glad I wasn't sleeping on the ground with him & his snake buddies
All in all, just an OK trip, but a great first hang. Lovin' the Blackbird. Not lovin' the tick who hitched a ride