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  1. #1

    Question for Florida hangers

    I just moved to Florida and haven't had the chance to do any overnight hiking or kayaking trips yet. Do you use a sleeping bag or just a light fleece? I'm not sure what the overnight Florida temps are like.

  2. #2
    Prefers life at 12 MPH. FLRider's Avatar
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    Depends on the night.

    For the majority of the year down here, you can get by with a 40-degree quilt or bag (if you're looking for cheap, a poncho liner works just fine but is a little heavy compared to other options and is fairly bulky). There are a few nights in the dead of "winter" where things actually get cold: this year's 2nd Annual FL Hang got down into the mid-twenties (I think it was lower where I was sleeping, but...), and there were a few other nights where a 20-degree system would come in handy.

    The trick is the insulation under you; on the ground, this is accomplished by your sleeping pad. In an hammock, you can do the same (as long as the pad is wide enough; some of them may require some modification) or use an underquilt, since you don't need a pad to protect your back from roots and rocks.

    What kind of budget are you looking at for this sort of thing, what kind of weights would you like to see, and how willing are you to DIY with a sewing machine? If you can answer those, I can help point you in a few directions.
    "Just prepare what you can and enjoy the rest."
    --Floridahanger

  3. #3
    Senior Member zukiguy's Avatar
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    Just check the weather forecast like everywhere else. We have "winter" in full force at the group hang in Feb (mid/high 20s). There I'm pretty much maxed out with a down UQ, down TQ, some foam padding, and thermal top/bottom.

    For summer camping here I use a thin fleece blanket or poncho liner to curl up in if there's a chill (upper 60s or so). I can still sleep and be relatively comfortable with lows in the high 70s or even 80s and no breeze. In a tent I would just sit and stew all night and not get a wink of sleep.

    I'd guess Florida has more hangers than most anywhere else in the states. If you want some advice or even company just throw up a request on here and I'm sure you'll get some takers. Where are you located??

  4. #4
    FLRider I'd like to keep my entire set-up under $250 if possible. As for weight under 4 lbs total? I have a sewing machine, if the sewing is fairly simple I would feel comfortable doing it. I currently have a 30 degree mummy bag and a thermarest sleeping pad. Would that suffice? If my numbers are unfeasible please excuse my ignorance haha

    Zuki I'm located in Estero.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Mr.Tattoo's Avatar
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    Right now for me I would just bring somthing light like a thin fleece would work I also carry an 1/8" Gossamer gear pad. I just made a lightweight down summer quilt weighs 11.3oz with stuff sac and packs pretty small "wont win any quilt shows but it will do the job". Now winter when we actually have one ...it can get cold! oops forgot to mention I have under @ $30 in the down quilt.
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  6. #6
    MAD777's Avatar
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    Don't listen to these guys! I know they are well-meaning and would like to help, but I am a Florida native and therefore an expert on summer camping in the Sunshine State. Here is the secret: STAY HOME!

    I'll see you out there come winter
    Mike
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  7. #7
    Prefers life at 12 MPH. FLRider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by G31TER View Post
    FLRider I'd like to keep my entire set-up under $250 if possible. As for weight under 4 lbs total? I have a sewing machine, if the sewing is fairly simple I would feel comfortable doing it. I currently have a 30 degree mummy bag and a thermarest sleeping pad. Would that suffice? If my numbers are unfeasible please excuse my ignorance haha

    Zuki I'm located in Estero.
    You could definitely get by with a 30-degree bag and a thermarest for FL temperatures. The only thing that you might wind up having to do is widen the thermarest using an SPE (Speer Pad Extender), which isn't all of that hard to DIY for cheap. Pretty much all it is is a nylon sleeve that holds blue CCF "wings" to add to your pad (the problem with pads in an hammock is that the hammock wraps more of your shoulders than a pad will on the ground, compressing your bag's insulation further around your body and making non-compressable insulation more important on those points). Figure it'll cost somewhere in the $20 range (at most) and weigh about 3 oz + the weight of the blue CCF (~another 3 to 6 oz). So, that's your current weight + ~9 oz at most.

    Now, if you want to shed weight, you could definitely get away with a top quilt in the hammock. There are a number of reputable vendors out there: Hammock Gear has offerings in 40 F, 20 F, and 0 F ratings; Arrowhead Equipment offers budget-entry synthetic top quilts in 50 F and 30 F ratings (the 30 is the one I linked); Underground Quilts has offerings in 50, 40, 20, and 0 F ratings; there are several others, but their price ranges are a little higher than what you were looking for.

    If you're willing to DIY a top quilt, Climashield is stupid easy to work with. It isn't as light as down, but it is a lot easier to work with (all you have to do is sew the perimeter to the shell fabric). Outdoor Wilderness Fabrics has Climashield in stock (there's an "Insulations" menu option; click on that). The 4 oz APEX will keep most folks warm at about 35 F; the 6 oz APEX at about 20 F (note that these are fairly conservative ratings; I could probably get another ten degrees out of 'em, but I'm a very warm sleeper). With a 1.1 oz shell fabric (again, OWFINC sells it, in the "Ripstop Breathable" area), you're looking at ~20 oz for the 4 oz APEX and ~25 oz for the 6 oz APEX for 72" by 50" quilts (adjust as needed for a different size body). Figure $90 or so for the 4 oz and $100 or so for the 6 oz, after shipping, shock cord, cordlocks, velcro, etc.

    Down quilts are a little harder to DIY, but you get a lighter quilt overall. There's a nifty spreadsheet in this thread that should help calculate things for you if you want. I have no personal experience working with down, but there are a number of resources available here. The stuffing method recommended to me was Fronkey's (video in that thread). Here's a good thread on Karo-step (it's a baffle style) top quilts. Here's a good one with standard baffles.

    I hope all of this helps!
    "Just prepare what you can and enjoy the rest."
    --Floridahanger

  8. #8
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    If you want to drop some cash look into a new material called Dry Down in sleeping bags and quilts. It's new on the market and will be available Fall 2012. With the Florida rains and humidity it is worth a look.

    It is your basic down with a "nano-level water repellent polymer" applied to the down it's self. It retains 60% more loft, absorbs 30% less moister, and dries 60% faster than untreated down.

    http://www.snewsnet.com/cgi-bin/snews/25976.html
    Last edited by packdaddy; 08-06-2012 at 13:02.

  9. #9
    Senior Member perdidochas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by G31TER View Post
    I just moved to Florida and haven't had the chance to do any overnight hiking or kayaking trips yet. Do you use a sleeping bag or just a light fleece? I'm not sure what the overnight Florida temps are like.
    In summer (if lows above 70), I just use a bedsheet. I have a light fleece bag just in case.
    Time is but the stream I go afishing in. Henry David Thoreau

  10. #10
    Senior Member Mr.Tattoo's Avatar
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    MAD777 I'm a fellow Florida native and you are right it can be down right brutal here in Florida .. but I just cant wait till it gets cool out to go into the woods ..a lil sweat never hurt anyone lol..

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