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  1. #1
    Senior Member Buffalo Skipper's Avatar
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    Hammocking in Florida State Parks

    Can anyone here explain why hammocking is prohibited at state parks in Florida? I am beginning to look into the matter, and am considering some "action" to see if this can be changed. But first, I must figure out what the objections are by the park service.

    Respectfully, I am not looking for speculation but first hand information on the why of this policy.
    “Indian builds small fire and stays warm, white man builds big fire and stays warm collecting firewood”—unknown

    “The cure for anything is salt water - sweat, tears, or the sea”—Karen Blixen

  2. #2
    Senior Member Cannibal's Avatar
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    First hand is going to be an issue unless you can find one of the people responsible for drafting the rule. Somewhere on this site, I posted the actual statute involved in the rules and regs for Florida State Parks. If you can find it, you may be able to do the research to establish why the rule was added. I got a different story from every 'official' I spoke to about the rule when I lived there. All I can say is, good luck!
    Trust nobody!

  3. #3
    Senior Member Buffalo Skipper's Avatar
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    Thanks Cannibal, I found the original post here.

    I will work to follow up on that. Everyone else is welcome to chime in as well...
    “Indian builds small fire and stays warm, white man builds big fire and stays warm collecting firewood”—unknown

    “The cure for anything is salt water - sweat, tears, or the sea”—Karen Blixen

  4. #4
    MAD777's Avatar
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    Thank for checing into this BuffaloSkipper. The rule doesn't seam to be enforced too aggressively although I may hve been lucky in the past. I have hung at Myaaka River S.P. and Jonathan Dickenson S.P. with no hasle. Maybe others can add their experiences here, both good & bad.

    It is definitely something we should get reversed bcause I wouldn't want an entire weekend to be ruined by a "by-the-book" ranger.

    Please let us know what we can do to help: signing petitions, writing letters, etc.

  5. #5
    Member pabu boy's Avatar
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    I think the rule was originally drafted because of all the RV campers tossing up clothes lines and the ole mesh hammocks with no regard for the trees.

    I myself have been asked every time to remove the hammock.

    The rangers have never been mean or aggressive about it.

    I tried to educate them on hammock camping and they liked it and agreed but were like rules are rules, now back to the ground with you monkey boy!

  6. #6
    Senior Member zukiguy's Avatar
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    Along with hammocks and clothes lines you've got to guess there have been several gas lanterns dangled from state park trees. Those along with the giant spikes that some folks have pounded into trees to hold the lanterns make some pretty terrible scars.

    Rather than try and single out the culprits they've taken the "shotgun blast" approach to the rules and banned everything. Just one more reason I try and stay away from the state parks (along with the RVs, barking dogs, screaming kids, generators, etc.).

  7. #7
    Senior Member clb's Avatar
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    [QUOTE= Just one more reason I try and stay away from the state parks (along with the RVs, barking dogs, screaming kids, generators, etc.). [/QUOTE]

    Amen,

    It's a shame though as a lot of kids get their first outdoor experiences at them.
    Leigh
    aka LookinUp

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  8. #8
    Senior Member Doc B's Avatar
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    There are also a LOT of "fringe" protected areas where one may hike or paddle but camping is not mentioned. These are places I love to "stealth camp".

    One idea is perhaps to stage a hammock camping exhibition to educate policy makers. We could all "hang" at an approved area overnight and invite policy makers before and after the hang to try and see if they can find any evidence we had been there. A before and after video would be great to help our case.

    When they see that we are not asking them to change their specific policy, just some of the wording in it. It is likely that it can and will be implemented Statewide. For instance, instead of "NO HANGING of HAMMOCKS FROM TREES" We could by making our case and presenting the evidence get them to change the wording to "NO HANGING OF HAMMOCKS FROM TREES WITHOUT 2' TREE-HUGGING STRAPS TO PROTECT TREE BARK".

    Best,
    Doc

  9. #9
    Senior Member muttly's Avatar
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    Go for it! I come from an Old Florida family and lived many a year in the Funshine State. I would like to be able to visit and hang in a state park with my kids in the future.
    Ken T.

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    ― John Muir
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  10. #10
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    Anyone & Everyone
    We are arranging a meetup Hammock Hang in January, as most on the forum are aware. Buffalo Skipper, if you want to have some kind of presence or talk during the hang, please bring it. I'm sure there will be plenty of open ears to add to and listen to any info we can get to change the policies preventing responsible hammock camping in Florida State Parks.

    January 21-24 Ocala National Forest, Buck Lake.

    I have camped with my hammock at Myakka State Park without any hassle, but camped 4-5 miles out in a primitive site.

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