Just got back from a backpacking trip with our 12 year old scouts. We went to the Grandaddy basin in the Uinta mountains. Lots of hiking, fishing, playing. It was GREAT!
All of the youth had DIY hammocks and the other three leaders were ground dwelling. By the time we finished the 5 mile hike to camp the leaders were dreading their "15lb tent"
Several of the youth had trouble sleeping in the hammocks because they had not tested them in their back yards and worked out how they could get most comfortable. The final night we convinced a few of the leaders to sleep in the hammocks and some of the youth including my son tried the tent.
That night there was a huge thunder storm spectacular lightning and over an inch of rain in 3 hours. needless to say all of the ground dwellers got soaked (the river running through their tent made sure of that) and all of the hammock sleepers wer completely dry and comfortable.
One of the tent dwellers still swears by a tent and chalks it up to inadequate precautions such as trenching the tent. The good news, though, is that the others including my son are absolute converts. They were lighter, dryer and at least as comfortable as on the ground in every case.
As I told the boys, the most critical thing about hammocking seems to be taking the time to learn about hanging, about how to get comfortable, how to be safe, how to enjoy life above ground. It requires work, some experimentation, desire, and someone who thinks highly enough of you to introduce you to this fabulous forum.
Thanks to all of you for making my camping outings a success.