If you add a few salt crystals to the alcohol it will produce a yellow, visible flame.
Biggest drawback to this is that it really makes the brass stoves like the Trangia and my Brasslite look corroded.
Wished you cooked for us at my woodbadge! Wow! What a menu! Anyway I used to be ASM, CC, and a commish. May do scouts again one day. Right now focusing on college. A little time for myself right now. Did my fairshare of coverting scouters to hammocking. Son became an Eagle in 08! Scouting is fun. Had a lot fun setting up high adventures and pinewood derby which I still miss watching the cars go down the track!
To get back on track, the boys in my troop discovered the net "backpacking hammocks" back in the mid '70s. Those hammocks, particularly their suspension, were primitive by today's standards, but they worked well for rest stops and occassional night hangs.
What they really excelled at was teaching the kids how to tie a timber hitch correctly. It was virtually impossible to loosen any other knot after hanging, so it became the knot of choice. It was easy to spot the kids who had yet to master that knot -- they were the ones laying on the ground in the midst of a cloud of dust.
Todays hammock systems can teach more than that. Scouts can learn about resourcefullness and inventiveness by finding alternate sources for materials, such as using HF tiedowns rather than buying expensive straps. They can try out alternate ideas for tarps, insulation, etc. If I was still active in Scouting, I would be pushing hammocks.
Back on the hammock topic:
I am not a den leader, but I am very active in my son's Webelos den... We've discussed hammocks and hammocking, but this den doesn't do that much camping (2x/yr). I'm hoping for more when he becomes a boy scout.
RE: Papasmurf's thread: If cost is a factor, suspension can add up to be the major cost in a cheap hammock. I still have some 5/8" mule tape available, pay shipping and I'll send any den as much as they will use...
It will take me 3 weeks or so to get shipments out, though...
Assistant Scoutmaster here.
Been hanging in my troop for about five years. Now, most of the leaders in our troop, and a lot of our older boys hang.
I have mentioned this here before on this subject, but it's worth mentioning again.
Be careful in how you present sleeping in a hammock to your new recruits. To many of these tenderfoots, camping is a new experience, a little frightening and definitely overwhelming. The last thing you want to do with a new, somewhat frightened scout is hang them in a bag in the middle of the woods by themselves with only the noises of the critters and the wind for company. They should not be made to feel that they are taking a juvenile approach to camping by opting to sleep in a tent with a group. We encourage it.
I think it's better with new scouts to have them camp in tents with their friends for company, somebody to fart and giggle with til it's lights out. For many, the tenting experience with friends their age is one of the most memorable aspects of Scouting.
As the scout matures, learns more skills, and becomes less interested in farting and giggling and more interested in getting some good rack time, then be prepared to offer them a hammock as an alternative.
On the other side of that coin, one thing that we have found is that it is easier to keep adult leadership interested in going along on our adventures with hammocks. They are more comfortable than sleeping on the ground, and more likely to return to the field with us.
Asst Scoutmaster and Crew Adviser.
Our crew has 4 hangers and 5 soon to be hangers. We just went camping this past weekend and had 4 hammocks and 1 tent. We had a storm come through and the hammocks stayed nice and dry but the tent got a little wet inside.
I'll be bringing my hammock to summer camp this year so there might be more soon to be hangers after summer camp.
I don't miss sleeping on the ground at all.