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  1. #1
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    Explorer Ultralight-Sierra Nevada Report

    Well I recently returned from my Yosemite high country trip. I knew going into this that it was going to be cold at night. It usually is near 10K feet. Proper insulation in the HH was a major concern especially since I didn't want to spend the cash for a quilt. Here is what I had.

    Explorer Ultra Light
    Walmart Blue Pad
    Moonstone 20F bag
    LL Bean Down packable jacket
    fleece blanket

    First off as you may know the Sierra has some BIG trees. Really big. In fact there aren't many small trees and one of the biggest challenges was finding trees small enough to set up the HH's. I had a set of 42' Tree huggers but in most cases they were useless. We managed to find some smaller trees at every stop but sometimes it wasn't easy.

    First night it was warm in the low 40's. Never even put on a hat. Besides the bears sniffing around all night I was very comfy.

    Second night the cold air moved in. Got into the low 30's. Put that hat one at some point in the night and my feet got a little chilly. I was using the fleece blanket as a pillow and had the down coat in the HH but it wasn't being used for anything. I was inside the moonstone mummy bag. I was wearing fleece pants and a fleece pullover. My feet were extended a foot or so over the end of the Walmart Blue. No insulation under them and I felt it.

    Third night (9200 feet) was cold. 20F easy. My feet got really cold so in the middle of the night I wrapped the down coat around my feet. My back was fine. There was no wind and I may have been a problem if there was. My feet never really warmed up. I should have started the night with the down under my feet.
    The next morning I went to take a drink out of the Nalgene and as soon as I opened it it started to freeze. It basically turned from a liquid state to solid in 5 or 6 seconds before my very eyes. Crazy.

    4th and 5th night was in the Valley at around 4000 feet. It was in the high 50's at night. Slept with the rainfly off and gazed at the stars while listening to Dark Side of the Moon in the Ipod. The backpackers campground has about 25 sites and only 2 can hold a hammock in the trees. Big trees everywhere.

    6th night slept in a hotel near the ocean and it was the first night on the trip I woke with a sore back.

    Bottom line: The HH is not any worse than a tent in 20F weather. The Blue pad worked fine. Minimal condensation issues. Easy set up most of the time and was a ultra comfy way to backpack. I'd be concerned it there was a wind storm. The rainfly didn't cover that great. Works ok in the SN where they basically get no rain June-Sept. Money well spent. Now I need to figure how to set the HH up in my room! No more tents for me.

  2. #2
    Peter_pan's Avatar
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    Dave,

    Welcome to the hanging gang... Just a lttle fine tuning now to get bottom insulation up to the task and more weather protection... Year round hanging, yehawwww.

    Pan
    Ounces to Grams.

    www.jacksrbetter.com ... Largest supplier of camping quilts and under quilts...Home of the Original Nest Under Quilt, and Bear Mountain Bridge Hammock. 800 595 0413

  3. #3
    Senior Member headchange4u's Avatar
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    Nice report Dave. You get any pics?

    Next time your feet get cold, heat some water up and seal it in your water bottle. You can then put the water bottle in the bottom of your sleeping bag and it will help to keep your feet warm. Either that or some of those Hot Hands hand warmers.

    I have done the freeze beer instantly trick but I have never heard about water doing that. Same premise I guess. Pretty cool unless you are thirsty.
    “Light thinks it travels faster than anything but it is wrong. No matter how fast light travels, it finds the darkness has always got there first, and is waiting for it." -Terry Pratchett



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  4. #4
    Senior Member Just Jeff's Avatar
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    Good report...glad you found a way to be comfortable.

    That's why I sleep with my water...
    “Republics are created by the virtue, public spirit, and intelligence of the citizens. They fall when the wise are banished from the public councils because they dare to be honest, and the profligate are rewarded because they flatter the people, in order to betray them.” ~Judge Joseph Story

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  5. #5
    Senior Member lvleph's Avatar
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    I am assuming you meant 42" tree huggers, because a 42' tree hugger is huge.

  6. #6
    Senior Member NCPatrick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lvleph View Post
    I am assuming you meant 42" tree huggers, because a 42' tree hugger is huge.
    He did say they had some BIG trees...


    "Civilization is the limitless multiplication of unnecessary necessities."
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  7. #7
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    Yeah 42 feet is a big tree hugger.

    Here is a pic of camp one of the nights. This was on a slope and an excellent example of HH camping anywhere. There wasn't a flat spot that I could see for over a mile.



    Here is me on the diving board (Half Dome)



    Here is one of those big trees.


  8. #8
    Senior Member Cannibal's Avatar
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    Thumbs up

    Very nice pics. Thanks!

  9. #9
    Senior Member FanaticFringer's Avatar
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    Cool shot of halfdome. Been around 26 years since I've been out there.......
    man I'm getting on in years.
    "Every day above ground is a good day"

  10. #10
    ah, yosimite. i've got some fond memories from there. glad you had a good trip.

    down booties with foam soles are a great way to keep your feet toasty in the hammock too.

    try your down jacket under your knees, thats where mine goes. i love a little padding/loft under my knees.

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