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  1. #1
    New Member Jeff60523's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Suburban Chicago
    HH Explore Deluxe
    HH Asym
    Rap Rings

    Hammockless side-sleeper in Chicago: test hang?

    I'm a noob that has been lurking here a bit. While there is lots of info in these forums, at the end of the day it appears everyone just got out and tried hanging and started tweaking their gear from there. Well, I'm not in a position financially to start buying a bunch of gear nor handy enough to start DIYing (yet) without a sense of where this is heading. I have two questions:

    1) are there any members near Chicago's Western 'burbs that would be interested in either an organized hang or at least a disorganized afternoon gear try-out-a-thon?

    2) Barring that, I'm a side-sleeper (can't sleep any other way) and 6'4", 250lbs: HH Explorer Deluxe sounds like a natural choice, but are their others for a big (but proportional) guy who needs to sleep on his side?


    Oak Brook, IL

  2. #2
    Welcome to HF! Others from your area will chime in. But there are many hammocks out there that will support you, I have the Warbonnet Blackbird 1.7 and I think it's rated to 400lbs. It's great for side sleeping also...

  3. #3
    Member Dice's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Clinton, UT
    HH Explorer
    HH Hex Tarp
    Hey Jeff! Welcome to the forum!

    I am 6'3" 225lbs and have the HH Explorer. I am just like you and can't sleep a wink on my back. Side only. There will definitely be a breaking in time for you. No matter what people say, you never TRULY lay flat in a hammock. There will always be some curve and this can be pretty uncomfortable for side sleepers for the first few nights, until you get used to it. You will find that your top side will get a little sore as your ribs are compressed closer to your hips and your top knee will also get a little sore as the curve of the hammock causes your knee to bend inward which is, obviously, unnatural.

    The asym hammocks definitely help with this, as they lay much flatter than a regular hammock. Be sure to choose a hammock with plenty of room, which the HH Explorer should provide for you. Also, to eleviate the strain on your knees, place something between them (being a side sleeper, I'm sure you are already doing that anyway!). Some bring camping pillows, I just use whatever spare clothing I have scrunched in a ball (hoodie, pants, etc.) This is very important in a hammock. It will allow your top knee to lay flatter. For some people, the knee issue can be really problematic, even to the point that it takes quite a while for the knee to become useable again in the morning.

    As for the ribcage thing, you'll get used to it. Eventually you will become more flexible and that will help. Otherwise... yoga?

    You are smart to ask these questions. I dove right in, bought a HH Expedition, and regretted it. Ended up switching to the Explorer and now I love it! I would let you try mine out... but you will have to come on over to the good old Wasatch Mountains of Utah to do it!

    Good luck man. Sleep well!
    Roll the bones_00

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2010
    ENO DoubleNest
    DIY SilNylon
    Hey Jeff -- I just sent a PM, and would definitely like to get a local hang set up!!

    I'm almost 6' and right around 230lbs -- I use the Eno Double Nest (from REI) which has given me lots of space (since it is made for 2 people) and I don't ever worry about weight while hanging alone. My tarp is a DIY silnylon modeled after the WinterDream (lots of coverage ) and I've been very happy with it!

    Total cost between the tarp, hammock, and bug net was ~$200 or so... it'll be a bit more if you buy the tarp instead of make it yourself.

    I'm seriously itching to get hanging again this spring -- let me know the details of a group hang and I'll be there!


  5. #5
    gunner76's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Beaufort, NC
    Blackbird 1.7 double
    HG Cuben
    Dutch Clips
    I am 6ft2 and 275-290 and use a BB 1.7 double. I sleep on my sides and back and find it very comfortable. I also have a ENO DN that I use for day hikes but I preferr the BB for overnights because of the bug net, built in shelf and the double layer alows the pad to stay in place and keeps the skeeters from biting thru the hammock (we have alot of salt water marsh skeeters here and they are mean, you know when they bite, we call them the down east humming birds)
    3rd Annual Frosty But Hang Feb 2017 ............ 4th Annual 2018 Fat Butt Hang TBA ..................... 4th Annual 2017 Hunger Halloween Hang

    I am 18 with 46 years of experience ! ................ Hike the Neusiok Trail & check out the NTforum !

  6. #6
    Senior Member BillyBob58's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Tupelo, MS
    Just my personal opinion based on trying many different hammocks
    If you must be on your side get a JRB BMBH(bridge). For legs straight to slight/moderate fetal. If you must have more than a slight to moderate fetal get a HH Safari. For me that is just the best guarantee. My best bets for side position. I am about 6'2", 212 lb.

    Now, that is just what has worked best for me. However, I also Think A hh dj and Explorer works great especially for fetal. (explorer not so great with legs straight) I have done ok both st. and fetal with my WBBB. As well as my Claytor No Net, straight or fetal. My Speer 8.5 is fine for fetal but forget straight.

    So, there ya go some opinions fer you!

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