Here is yet another account of my backyard testing as I gear up for cold weather camping here in Minnesota. I've been playing with a combination of Hennessy supershelter and Jacks R Better No Sniveller. My first backyard report at 50 F can be found here and my outdoors trip at 55 F can be found here.
After 85 on Sunday, we finally have October weather and last night it went down to 40. I was dressed in thermal underwear, wool socks, and a fleece balaclava which is a bit bulky but effective.
I put the supershelter on the bottom of my hammock, the Sniveller inside as a top quilt (down shaken to the middle), and the large Hennessy hex tarp set low to the ground to block as much wind as possible.
I started off the evening warm. Too warm. I had to vent the top quilt. After about 30 minutes, however, I started to fill a bit of chill through the bottom of the hammock and I decided to put my 3/4 length REI brand self inflating pad (1.5 inch thick) under the supershelter pad, inside the undercover. I had discovered previously that putting the pad on top of the Hennessy open cell foam pulled it away from the hammock creating cold spots. Things seemed pretty warm and I fell asleep.
I awoke some hours later a bit chilled. The rest of the night was spent managing the cold. I never really achieved comfortable warmth but I was never really cold enough to keep me awake. I would get cold, shift, pull the quilt tighter, and drift back to sleep.
The quilt was great, the problem was the bottom insulation. I just couldn't get it right. I know that the 3/4 pad shifted down as the night went on and slid down, exposing my shoulders. At 5:00 am, I put on my long sleeve shirt, my pants, and my gloves, but they really didn't help much. I did have more clothing that I did not wear. If I had been out on an actual trip I would have put on my polar fleece and rain jacket/pants and/or opened up a chemical heater. I doubt I would have suffered but I wanted to find the limits of my setup and I think I hit it.
I am going to make some DIY quilts to compliment my No Sniveller and I'm interested to see how low I can go with a top/bottom quilt set.