Holy crap! After seeing your pix, Jeff, Im glad I bugged out. I've read it and said it. "Test your gear before you go to the woods." then ignored the sage advice, and got embarrassed and weter'n a fish for it. Harsh psychological smackdown from ma nature. Food said "Look, the sun is starting to shine," but I just knew better, and had enough of being wet.
I pulled in late Thurs night, unannounced, and forgot which sites were reserved, so I found a nice looking unreserved site and settled in. After a couple days of 100 deg. heat, the cool night was worth the drive by itself. And the place was so cool and quiet in the morning, versus back home where we get treated to a pre-dawn serenade by seemingly every robin and other bird screeching out a challenge to their avian kin, marking their turf. The campground manager is a really nice guy. He said they hadn't had any problems with bears, "yet." He did warn that there was a major league rain storm on the way. So the morning was spent buttoning down my setup while listening to the police scanner I brought along to "spy" on the forest fire fighters. Regretably, I couldn't pick any of their chatter up, and the only interesting thing was a 2-yr. old in Boulder locked himself in mom's car.
Around noon I wandered down to the reserved sites and found Outandback setting up. Chatted with him a bit and came back to my own site to allow him to finish setting up. The rain strted soon after I got back, so I grabbed the DVD player and settled in to my hammock to watch a movie. (Apaloosa) About the time it was over Outand back showed up to invite me down to the main site to meet the other arrivals. After a while we ventured down to a rustic little cafe to eat. I forget the name of the place, but they have a mountain view to make this flatlander jealous. Really nice place, and a serving too big to finish.
Upon returning to camp it was still rainng, so we retired under Outandback's tarp for a bull session, till the rain seemed to let up and I headed back to my own camp.
I have an NX150 with the stock rope suspension replaced by straps with a cinch buckle about 3inches from the hammock. There is a long shoestring drip line with a washer on the end to prevent blowing around tied tightly between the cinch buckle and the hammock. and about 12 feet of poly strap with a wire gate 'biner to wrap around the tree. Excess strap is looped through the 'biner. Inside the Nx 150 there is a heavy duty loop sewn in at the head end to pull yourself up with. I store a handkerchief in it. In the middle of the night I reached up to pull myself with it, and grabbed a sponge. Being half asleep, it made little impression untill the pillow also turned into a sponge, and my back was soaked. That got my attention. Well, gotta take a whiz anyhow, might as well see whats going on. I have a 3 season incubator under a DIY splash guard made of some camo nylon stuff the clerk at Hastings cloth store said people make tents out of. The spash guard had turned into a bathtub with about 2 inches of water in it. It got removed and tossed out in the rain for the worms to hide under. It was also observed that the head end of the hammock was closer to the tarp than the foot end and the foot end had a considerably more pronounced loop in the excess strap hanging from the biner. When crawling back into what I now regarded as my sponge, I also noticed that all 4 side tie-outs were dripping alarmingly. It has been posted somewhere that tieing your tarp too tight will have a negative impact on the waterproofing. There seems to be some validity to that. When I first unwrapped the new tarp I was under the impression that the side tie outs were laminated somehow. the stitching is very fine. After my agressive tie down the stitches were pulled borderline, and with the tarp dried are now quite noticeable. When I woke up, or dawn finally arrived, I had decided to bug out. I had brought a spare Grand Trunk hamock, and the Clark Vertex tarp, every thing I needed to pull a do-over, but I had completely lost enthusiasm for being out in the wet. I just knew it wasn't done raining and didnt want any more of it. So after breaking camp I went down to the main campsite to leave off the 2 dozen ears of Iowa sweet corn I had brought along to contribute. I thanked Jeff and Food for their offers of help, but I'm just quite stubborn about looking after myself and not having come out there to be a burden on anyone else. HYOH as they say.
Time for some scenery watching on the way home. That trip through the canyon from Nederland to boulder was fantastic. I kept pulling over to let the parade of people this rubbernecking flatlander was leading go past. Almost turned around and did a couple more trips through. Beats it all over Iowa, with the roads laid out like a checkerboard, and the choice of corn or soybean fields every mile. It was necessary to hit a rest stop somewhere in Nebraska and string up the Viet Nam souvenir net hammock and take a short nap, but I made it back to the land of the heat and bugs.
Now its back to the drawing board as they say regards the equipment. As soon as the Silnet dries on the tarp, I intend to rig up a full length ridge line for the tarp, tree to tree, with a foot or so of shock cord to those mini-D-rings to easily center it, keep the abuse down. A thorough soaking with the garden hose to check will then be in order. Then maybe seal the seams around the rope channel on the ends of the hammock. Despite the wet, I did have a good time, nice road trip, met some good people, and would do it again finances permitting. Signed Ice man (aka Frank)