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  1. #1

    backpacking in the desert...

    I'll be backpacking through the Joshua Tree desert in a couple of weeks, and I'm deciding which gear to put together. The question is, should I bring a hammock? There won't be any trees (this part of the desert doesn't have joshua trees), but there will be a lot of big boulders, rocks, and scrambling canyons. Do you think there will be enough opportunities to find a good hanging spot?

    I haven't tried hammocking in an area without trees before, and I'm a bit nervous to try it. Has anyone had successful experience with this sort of thing? Any advice would also be appreciated.

  2. #2
    Senior Member angrysparrow's Avatar
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    I spent two nights in Joshua Tree year before last, and used my hammock. It was tricky to find boulders and slots between them to hang, but it can be done if you're determined.

    If you take the hammock, either take some really long sections of webbing, or plenty of spare Amsteel. The more suspension you have, the more options there will be.

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  3. #3
    dman's Avatar
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    Get a few rock climbing cams too. It will open up a few options.

  4. #4
    about three weeks ago i hiked from the northern boundry to south. along chuckwalla bill/long canyon trails ( west edge of the park). solo and carrying a hammock. there were very few places that i considerd suitable fro hanging. i would suggest that you take along mule tape to extend straps. i took about40 ft , and was severly challanged..looking back i should of taken 150 as an minum! and stop early for setting up camp- i's going to take more time than what most think of normal. mine was only an overnighter, and the northern boundery had a lot of joshua trees that looked, "do-able" but they were far behind once i started to think about setup...hope this of some help to you
    Last edited by the_gr8t_waldo; 02-19-2012 at 21:57.

  5. #5
    just a bump--what route are you thinking of? fwiw- i just finished a loop in the coventon flats area and found a promising area....it dosen't appear in the std park map.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Cannibal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dman View Post
    Get a few rock climbing cams too. It will open up a few options.
    I've used these to hang near the summit of 14ers out here. Works well, but I don't think I'd take them on a long hike; too heavy! Agree with angrysparrow, bring lots of Amsteel and use a little creativity.
    Trust nobody!

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by the_gr8t_waldo View Post
    just a bump--what route are you thinking of? fwiw- i just finished a loop in the coventon flats area and found a promising area....it dosen't appear in the std park map.
    I'll be hiking through the Eagle Mountains, near these coordinates: 33.739401,-115.661917. The coventon flats area looks interesting. Joshua Tree is full of all sorts of different sights, and the eastern part I'll be going through is a region I haven't seen yet.

    Good idea on the extra amsteel. Fortunately, I had put way too much length on my whoopies and hadn't gotten around to shortening them yet. It sounds like that'll come in handy for this hike. I don't think I know enough about rock climbing to try using cams, but wrapping straps around rocks instead of trees sounds straightforward enough.

  8. #8
    Triggerhpy's Avatar
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    I was there a couple of months ago with my scouts. And while the boys were out playing in the rocks I had a chance to talk to a Ranger and so I ask about camping with hammocks and was told that they are not aloud in the park. "No horizontal camping". Oh well No hammocks.
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  9. #9
    New Member setodd's Avatar
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    I camped out there. You could try hanging from rocks but if it doesn't work out it isn't a big deal; you can just sleep on the ground with a pad and no tarp as it doesn't usually rain. It will be chilly at night though so do a wx check before you go weather.gov/92252 for temperatures and to ensure no rain.

  10. #10
    pgibson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Triggerhpy View Post
    "No horizontal camping".
    Soooooo how does that work? Everyone has to sleep standing up in the park?

    Been a while since I used a tent but if my memory serves I had to lay down inside to sleep similar to my bed at home and I might be wrong here but I believe that all of the ways I have ever gone to sleep have all been in a horizontal position...again I might be totally lost here though



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