You know that, with your baby and work, you're gonna have to night hike to log enough miles to do Batona, right? Don't worry, I'm an expert at night hiking!
silentorpheus - Thank you for posting this. I slept overnight in my new hammock for the very first time just this past Friday at the 2nd Annual Oregon Winter Hang. A few days prior I had hung it in the backyard and laid in it for about 15 minutes but that was it. Now even though I absolutely loved the Winter Hang with all the great people, scenery and everything else an event like this had to offer, I was slightly disappointed in how I slept. The fact that I had no UQ and the overnight lows were in the lower 20's had nothing to do with my lack of a deep, continuous good sleep. My Exped SynMat 9, a reflective windshield sunshade used as a pad and MH Phantom 15 degree bag did a good job of keeping my body at a comfy temperature.
But for some reason I couldn't sleep more than a couple hours before waking, laying there awake for 30 minutes or so and falling back to sleep for a couple more hours. I am hoping that it's just due to this being a new experience and my body and body clock not being use to it all.
Like another poster in this thread, I also sleep in a Tempur-Pedic bed at home. I sleep so deep without interruption and so maybe I was just expecting too much, too soon with the hammock. I will keep at it, of course, and allow my body to get use to it all and also, such as you did, keep messing with my system until I get it dialed in.
Again...thanks for your honesty and perspective. Great post!
My last overnight I was up and down the first part of the night--fiddling with adjustments, going to the bathroom, getting a sip of water--I must have woken up and drifted off at least four times. But about 1:00am I drifted off and didn't stir again until almost 7:30 which is way later than I ever sleep at home. I was surprised at how well I slept. Yes, it's a process, and some nights are going to be better than others, and I may not get to that point where I would want to do the hammock full-time, but it sure does beat the ground. Sleeping in a shelter, even with an inflatable pad, I would wake up 12-15 times a night.
"My goal is to live long enough to become a character."
I have had some great nights sleep in my hammocks for sure, but my best nights in the woods have been in the tent with my lady. I love hammocks, and I can sleep pretty much anywhere, but my body seems to prefer a harder flat surface. I chose to switch to hammocks because of being able to camp in more places, not so much because of the comfort. This summer I plan on doing more peakbagging and long distance days so I'm actually switching back to a tent for it's lighter weight and quicker set up. I will still use a hammock from time to time though...
Great thread. Like the rest of the posters here, my best night's sleep in a hammock does not compare to an average night's sleep in my own bed with the comfy sheets, pillows, a/c or heat, fan, wife, etc. But, my worst night's sleep in a hammock is still better than my best night's sleep on the ground.
I used to be able to sleep on anything. For years, I had nothing but a 1/2" Ridge Rest foam pad and slept just fine. As I got older, I started having a harder time sleeping on the ground, even when I acquired better padding (Thermarest, inflatable air mattresses). It got the point that I dreaded backpacking because I would basically just toss and turn all night and have a miserable sleep. I was doing it basically to enjoy the hiking and wilderness experience but was dreading the sleeping part.
When I discovered hammock camping, it was such a relief. I still haven't found a set-up that comes close to my bed, but at least I get a full night's sleep with only one or two spells of waking up for a few minutes. With hammock camping, I no longer dread the nights in the back country and actually look forward to the sleeping part.
I sleep most of my nights in my hammock, uninterrupted, save for my 4 year old's 4AM crawl-ins to sleep the rest of his morning with me. Last night, I fell asleep on my bed doing emails and homework....Worst night ever!