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  1. #1

    Warmth in Hammock vs. Ground

    Hey Guys,

    I really want to get into hammocking and see what everyone here has been talking about. I have been camping in tents and tarps for years, and I just got a great deal on a used HH Hyperlite.

    It seems like everyone here uses TQ and UQ instead of the traditional sleeping pad and bag I have been using for years. If I were to use the pad and bag I have been using, should it keep me comfortable in the same temperatures as in a tent for 3 season camping?

    Thanks,
    Eric

  2. #2
    Senior Member Doctari's Avatar
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    I can so answer this question!
    Granted, this is from MY experience, but I think it is pretty telling:

    January 2005, Mt Rogers VA. On me: Poly pro shirt, cotton Sweat shirt, nylon & fleece vests, light jacket, shorts & tights, wool socks.
    Under me (bottom to top): fleece blanket hung as an underquilt, Hammock, Reflective "Truckers window shade", full length CCF pad. Over me: a VERY VERY Old 35 degree sleeping bag, used as a top quilt.
    Ambient temp: around 17 degrees with a 35+ mph wind factor.
    I was cool, but not unreasonably so.

    Fast forward to August that year: Carolina Renaissance festival in Charlotte NC; Near same set up insulation wise (even had the fleece under me), but I slept on the ground with my fellow Rennies. I was in a 6 person tent with 3 other people AND a tent (Propane) heater. Ambient temp only got down to 48 that night. I FROZE MY ASSETS OFF!!!
    I had to get up about 5 times just to do jumping jacks to warm up. I will NEVER sleep on the ground again!!!! Yes, I had my hammock with me, but by the time I figured out I would be warmer there, I couldn't find a place to hang in the dark, so I suffered through. Yea, told the friends NEVER again. I'll bring the tent for them, but I'm sleeping in my nice warm hammock!!!
    I honestly did not think I would get that cold: After all, the temp was fully 30 degrees (the predicted low temp that night was 47) warmer than in Jan, I had a heater & friends to heat up the tent. Fortunately my assets were able to be re-attached.

    So, that's my story, hope it helps!
    When you have a backpack on, no matter where you are, you’re home.
    PAIN is INEVITABLE. MISERY is OPTIONAL.

  3. #3
    Senior Member NewtonGT's Avatar
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    im pretty sure most new guys start with pads and sleeping bags. I know i did. and I still use the sleeping bags. but ive upgraded to the supershelter now but you will be fine as long as you stay on the pad which is tough for some people. alot of people get a double layer hammock so the pad can fit between the layers and make it alot easier!
    Dale Gribble: I'm thinking, "new hammock." For me, laying and swaying in a hammock is like a steady morphine drip without the risk of renal failure.

    Randy : yea but just remember yer roots and where ya come from....you got Hennessy in yer blood son......

  4. #4
    kayak karl's Avatar
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    a friend asked me the same thing. will i be as warm and comfortable with a pad in a hammock as on the ground. my answer was yes, you will be warm, but comfortable and ground in the same sentence? this does not compute
    "Tenting is equivalent to a bum crawling into a cardboard box, hammocking is an art" KK

  5. #5
    Senior Member ChrisH's Avatar
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    You should be fine with a CCF pad and sleeping bag for 3 season camping in your area. I would unzip the bag half way and use it as a TQ, though. Welcome to the forum!

  6. #6
    MAD777's Avatar
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    Welcome! You will be fine with your pad & sleeping bag.
    In the future, you will go to a top quilt (much less material to deal with in the hammock and lighter in the pack). For ultimate comfort in a hammock, an under quilt is the way to go - but keep in mind that a hammock with pad is infinitely more comfortable than anything on the ground.
    Mike
    "Life is a Project!"

  7. #7
    topside insulation will not matter, enclosed in a hammock is similar to enclosed in a tent.

    bottom side insulation (the difference is on the ground, the pad is insulating you against the ground temp, in a hammock the pad/underquilt is insulating against air temp)

    not a huge difference, but a 3 season uq will usually be rated to about 20deg wheras a 3 season sleeping bag might be rated to 30.

  8. #8
    Senior Member DemostiX's Avatar
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    Current issue of Cooks Magazine reviews a number of insulated coolers. They've been employing engineers to guide understanding for years. Chris Kimball is not shy to spend, but not given to suggest spending for glitz, either.

    So, to what do they attribute the performance of the single top-rated insulated cooler? Hi-tech materials for insulation?

    No, air space. Another affirmation for down, that creates air space.

  9. #9
    gunner76's Avatar
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    The last time I ended up sleeping in a tent was agony. I was not cold but could not get comfortable as I had been spoiled from sleeping in a hammock. Having to crawl into and out of the tent was also an issue.
    Frosty Butt Hang Jan 2015 .................. Fat Butt Hang April 2015

    neusioktrail.org ..................... Free Hammock Classes

    I am 18 with 43 years of experience !

  10. #10
    Senior Member BillyBob58's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by warbonnetguy View Post
    topside insulation will not matter, enclosed in a hammock is similar to enclosed in a tent.

    bottom side insulation (the difference is on the ground, the pad is insulating you against the ground temp, in a hammock the pad/underquilt is insulating against air temp)

    not a huge difference, but a 3 season uq will usually be rated to about 20deg wheras a 3 season sleeping bag might be rated to 30.
    That pretty well covers it. For "3 season" use, probably no problem at all, same pad and about the same warmth.

    But at some point, the air temp vs ground temp can become a significant factor. IOW, at a given temp, you might be fine on the ground with a pad. But at that same temp, depending on how cold vs the pad thickness, you might be cold. Because the air, especially during a new cold snap, might be considerably colder than either the ground or the snow, rock or even ice I suppose. Of course, snow and ice are beyond the 3 season concept ( unless it is any time of year at 10,000 feet in WY ), but you get the idea. Any time of the year, the air can be colder than the ground.

    An additional possible challenge for the hammock is the wind. Once again, laying on the ground on a pad- especially in a tent- even high winds are not going to be much of a problem for your back warmth. If your tarp does not perfectly block all of the wind, you might have air much colder than the ground PLUS wind chill! I actually think this will be a bigger problem with an UQ than a pad, sense at least the pad is pretty much wind and water proof. Wind solidly hitting a highly breathable UQ can just suck the warmth right out of it. Still, I don't think wind chill is going to help the pad either, compared to the ground. Of course, the solution to all of that is to make sure wind is blocked. A large enough tarp, with doors if needed, some sort of wind proof under cover, a sheltered hanging spot, etc.

    Probably most of the time during the " 3 seasons", most pads that most folks are willing to sleep on the ground with will be more than warm enough to cover that cold air, even if it is colder than the ground would be. But it seems to me that, at some point, the air/wind will be so much colder than the ground that you might need a thicker/warmer pad than you might need if you were on the ground. Still, for the most part you should be plenty warm with your pad.

    A bigger problem is the single layer Hyperlite. A lot of folks complain about a slippery pad inside a hammock. They have a hard time staying on it and getting it positioned correctly to start with. And it needs to be wider than a ground pad. There used to be a wonderful product called Speer SPE that really made pad use in a single layer hammock WAY easier. But, no longer available, though you could make one.
    For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us....that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth together until now.
    Romans 8:18,21-22

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