Mountains have a dreamy way
Of folding up a noisy day
In quiet covers, cool and gray.
---Leigh Buckner Hanes
Surely, God could have made a better way to sleep.
Surely, God never did.
I am looking for a light weight shelter option for my daughters and myself. them because they are young and can't carry much weight and me because of back problems that have made pack weight and the hard ground an issue.
I don't really know how I discovered the idea of using a hammock, but I know WHY I switched! I do self supported multi day bicycle rides in fairly remote regions every year and had a bad experience a few years back. It was VERY hilly, I had ~45 lbs of gear (including food & water) on a 35 lb bike and had already ridden about 75 miles in the 100+ degree heat. I rode on and on looking for a place to set up my tent, but every place that I found was either too rocky, too hilly, too something... it was getting dark quickly and I was starting to panic. I finally found a spot and set up my tent in complete darkness (couldn't find my flashlight). I didn't sleep well that night. The sound of the weeds under my tent every time I moved, the fear of a rattlesnake in those weeds biting me through the tent floor, and the rock that I managed to lay on (like always), was a horrible experience. I awoke the next morning feeling beat up and sore. I've noticed over the last few years that I wake up with a very sore shoulder when I sleep on the ground, and it seems to get worse every year.
The next time I went on such a trip I realized that I had to do something different... I took the tent, just in case, but I also purchased a Beyer Moskito hammock. I figured the extra 1.5 lbs wouldn't kill me. It turns out that I then found a perfectly ideal spot for a tent (sandy beach), and had a hard time finding trees close enough together, but I managed. I never slept better! Slightly rocking under the stars was amazing... I woke up feeling very refreshed. I got a little bit cold on the bottom and was sliding around due to a bad hang, but it was still FAR BETTER than any night I'd ever experienced in a tent!! I also managed to avoid getting even a single mosquito bite, unlike a friend that was riding along who slept on the ground that night!! I've not slept on the ground since.
Last edited by twowheels; 07-01-2010 at 20:08.
I started hangin' just over a year ago! Never go back to the ground!!! Thankee Shug
"ENJOY THE WILD"
I'd never seen anyone use a hammock where I normally hike, Pisgah Forest. Looking for light weight options I came across Sgt. Rock's page, found HH there. Staying dry in a tarp or a tent under 3lbs is a struggle, it's hit or miss on finding a level spot AND the combination of sleeping on the ground and trying to crawl in and out of that tiny tent opening was a pain. I'm not that flexible anymore. So far, I've only spent 5 nights in mine, but in spite of one night in the low 20's (that was a surprise), I'm a believer and I'm saving my pennies so I can talk to Mac about an IX TQ and UQ.
10+ years ago I went backpacking more frequently than I do now. IIRC around 1999 I came across Clark Jungle Hammocks and thought that made more sense and it looked far more comfortable. I bought one (they only had two models-regular and ultralite) but never was able to use it in the field. Flashforward to 2010 and here I am with an ENO DN, WBBBand WB Traveller. I still have the Clark but I started to take it apart to mod it.