I use the RR for motorcycle or jeep camping and don't hike with it. In fact I'll bet a lot of people don't actually backpack with the Ridge Runner.
So far, I like the RR best with a 2 inch 25x72 thermarest pad plus a 20 deg Lynx, if needed.
I like the Spindrift and in fact have one with the two door option. Really nice. But, if I could, I'd modify that Spindrift as follows:
1. no see 'um mesh for each door that would zip down. This would allow use of the Spindrift in warmer, buggy seasons as with the two doors there is very good air flow/ventilation (and visibiility) and the addition of a screen option would solve the skeeter issues.
2. A horizontal opening in the Spindrift sock at the head end, below the spreader bar, so that the pad could be inserted/removed with the Spindrift already installed. Velcro could be used to seal the opening.
These additions would allow the user to keep the Spindrift installed 100% of the time, if desired. With the RR hung, the pad could be removed from the hammock, the hammock could be flipped over and the UQ removed, and then the hammock could be flipped over again, the spreader bars removed for storage and the RR plus attached Spindrift could be taken down and stored.
The knock against the Spindrift is that it is a pain to install or remove and I'd kinda just like to leave it on.
Gimme screens and a way to shove in the pad and I'd be good! Yep -- I pay more for that. I'm in my late sixtys and still enjoy camping. I like the comfort of the RR but don't like the install/uninstall of the Spindrift (eventhough I have made it somewhat easier by using Dutch biners in place of the Apex buckles).
None of this makes sense for the backpacker (adds weight) and would add to the expense of the Spindtrift sock. But I think thse options would improve and already great system and suspect that many people would cheerfully pay a higher price for a Spindrift with these options.
Brandon -- I'll be your beta tester -- wanna make me one?