That said, with a thermarest trail pro and cheap walmart corrugated blue pad, along with a cheap alps mountaineering 15 degree mummy bag, I was plenty warm into the low 30s, except when my shoulders got off the pad. I figure cutting the blue pad in half and using the halves sideways to get more shoulder coverage would do the trick just fine.
Instead, I opted to pick up an exped Synmat 7 DLX, which is wider than a thermarest, and also thicker, so it lifts me up out of the hammock a bit and gets rid of the compression at my shoulders. I've found this setup to be both warm and comfortable, and think I could probably go into the high 20s without much problem.
Madison, If the cold was the main thing driving you away from hammock camping, I would seriously consider not selling your bridge and experimenting with it some more. I was pretty frustrated after my first full night in my hammock (I'm as new to this as you are), but I feel like I've worked out some of the bugs and am now totally converted to this hammock camping thing. I even set it up inside the house to take naps If you found that the hammock otherwise worked for you, I feel like the warmth issue could be easily solved with a little tinkering
My first UQ was just a old rectangular synthetic sleeping bag that I wrapped a marble and tied ropes on the corners - it works great on a bridge because of the rectangular nature of the Bridge - you don't need to cinch the ends as much. I like taking what I have on hand and converting it to my needs. Heck, one of my current UQ's that I like to use in my bridge is a twin down comforter that I bought on sale, and sewed a cover for with drawstring ends and tabs on the corners. It fits the bridge perfectly, but I get too hot when I sleep with it if its over 40*.
A UQ doesn't have to be the $300 model, and it doesn't have to be something sewn. They are nicer and easier to set up, but if you don't have the coin or the skills, you can use anything that fits and insulates as a UQ, including a wool blanket stuffed with your down jacket between the blanket and the hammock.
I can't sleep with pads anymore - I sweat too much if my insulation isn't breathable, and then I get clammy and cold. I've tried different style pads, but if it doesn't breathe, I have problems with sweating.
Oh man, Madison, I just realized you are the one with everything for sale. I hate to see you give up so quick, especially if cold is your only complaint. Honestly, I nearly froze to death first night in a hammock at 22*F, in a HH Super Shelter. I woke up about 2AM shivering violently, suspended in the hammock net! But that first night is the only actual cold night I have ever had. I have had a few "less than toasty" nights as I have been dealing with the learning curve of different hammocks and warmth systems. Though now I have also had perfectly comfortable 10*F nights! It is really no challenge now for me to stay warm, and I'm sure the same would soon apply to you.
If you have other things about hammocks that you don't like, then you might just be better on the ground. Some folks ( a very few) just never do like hammocks, even after a good fair trial. But if cold is the only problem, then don't give up so quick! You can do the 30s with your hands tied behind your back.
You may remember I gave you a guess that the Ridgerest would be OK to the low 40s or maybe a tad lower. So you were cold in the 30s. Easily solved with a thicker pad. You also need to make sure there was no problem with heat loss from the top, in case you were trying to use that Cat's Meow as a quilt.
Apparently, signature that I used from 2006 no longer tolerated so now deleted.
He does acknowledge in his 4 sale post that he is a car camper and day hiker. Given the inflexibility of many campgrounds concerning hanging things from trees I can understand the choice to go back to ground. Still.... nothing like a good hangout with this crew for fellowship, learning and fun. Then again, ground dwellers are not forbidden at gatherings as far as I know.
I may be slow... But I sure am gimpy.
"Bless you child, when you set out to thread a needle don't hold the thread still and fetch the needle up to it; hold the needle still and poke the thread at it; that's the way a woman most always does, but a man always does t'other way."
Mrs. Loftus to Huck Finn
We Don't Sew... We Make Gear! video series
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Bobbin Tension - A Personal Viewpoint
Don't give up yet, look how I started.
I used that setup on a 3 day trip. I got lucky that it didn't rain or I would of been with my buddy in his tent.
Since you car camp, start with a spare sleeping bag tied up under the hammock. Trust me, I stayed warm at 17 deg while my brother got cold because he rolled off his pad in his tent.
Also, see if you can meet some people local to you so you can see different setups.
Everywhere is walking distance if you have the time. ~Steven Wright
It's not the cold that made me quit. I know I can fix that. It just wasn't as much fun to me as day hiking. I think the weight of the pack (19 lbs total) and the fact that I had to conserve energy took the fun out of the hiking part. I like to hike (or bike) hard knowing I can come home and take a hot shower and relax when I'm done.
Plus there's not too many good places to camp where I live (huntsville,al) . There's lot's of great state parks but they don't allow wilderness camping.
“I think that when the lies are all told and forgot the truth will be there yet. It dont move about from place to place and it dont change from time to time. You cant corrupt it any more than you can salt salt.” - Cormac McCarthy
That's funny, I do most of my camping in AL...
Still, sorry to hear the hammock didn't work out for ya. For what it's worth, I plan to use my hammock as much for car camping as for backpacking... I sleep a LOT better in a hammock than I do laying on the ground, and I really hate cots and air mattresses.