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  1. #1
    Senior Member Swingblade's Avatar
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    Aug 2010
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    Newbie in Sedona Arizona - Long

    Hello everyone. Great site. I wish I had stumbled onto this site before I bought my HH Expedition Asym. While a good quality comfortable hanger, I have some complaints and after a couple trips ending up in the back of my truck I'm looking for something different. I'm only 5'9'' but come in at a wide 250lbs with major back surgery a few years ago (some restriction in movement/flexibility), no young spring chicken, have to pee 1 or more times a night (depending on fluid consumption ), and am claustrophobic, hate mummy bags or confinement on any part of my body especially my feet.

    I can't stand; the bottom entrance, makes UQ virtually impossible. It also makes setting up interior sleeping arrangement a frustrating exercise in futility.
    I don't like; no zippered netting or side entrance. I like options & the ability to act quickly if you know what I mean.
    I do like; quality, sleeps wide & airy, lightweight & packs small, easy set up & take down especially with snakeskins, once in & settled very comfortable (until later when it cools down, then it's miserable ).

    After more research & combing this forum I am looking at;
    1. Adding the HH insulation system $130. This keeps the bottom entrance & no side zipper issues but I think I can live with that as long as I'm not forced to find alternative accommodations at 2am. I can always have someone sew a zipper system in later which cures the remainder of my complaints on the HH but increases the already high cost.
    2. Buy a Warbonnet "Blackbird" DL 1.7oz $175. Only $45 dollars + cost of UQ (padding is cheap) more than choice 1. & I can sell my HH to cover some of the loss. WB seems to be the most recommended outside of the Clark but it's too pricey. I know the WB has side pulls & a semi Isometric ability to open it up some but how much more confining does it feel than the HH? That could be a deal breaker since I know the HH is airy & roomy enough for me.
    3. Mosquito "Jungle" $150. Best priced dbl layer system, I like the cammo look, has good reviews. It appears to be cocoon-ish/confining though due to no side pullouts??? As stated I hate being confined so this is probably a no go.

    Any comments/suggestions appreciated. I don't have the opportunity to try anything before purchase unless someone on the forum lives in my neck of the woods and is willing to swap for a few days. Kinda flying blind here and am not keen on the prospect of spending even more money with no real improvements.

  2. #2
    Member
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    Feb 2009
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    Sequim WA
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    Whatever one I'm laying in.
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    HH alteration

    I have the same hammock. I bought two ten foot zippers and had a local seamstress install them. Works like a charm.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Just Jeff's Avatar
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    Oct 2006
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    Charlottesville, VA
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    I like my HH...it's pretty comfortable. But personally, I lay much flatter and more comfortable in the Blackbird. I'd recommend at least trying it.

    Otherwise, installing zippers is pretty easy, as DFL says. Or you can send it to 2Q/ZQ for their zipper mod. They'll even sew up the bottom entry if you want.
    “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

    - My site: http://www.tothewoods.net/
    - Designer, Jeff's Gear Hammock / Pack Cover by JRB

    IMPOSSIBLE JUST TAKES LONGER

  4. #4
    Poppabear's Avatar
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    Dec 2009
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    Lexington Park, MD
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    Welcome to the forums. I to find the Blackbird to be an extremely comfortable hammock. Mine has become by primary go to hammock.
    Terry

  5. #5
    dejoha's Avatar
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    I wish I had a Blackbird you could try, but I do have a lot of other hammocks you can try. I live in Flagstaff -- just a hop up the canyon from you. I switched from a Hennessy to an open, end-gathered hammock for some of the same reasons you mentioned. Here in Arizona, bugs aren't much of a problem so I've found not having a bug net is nice.

  6. #6
    Senior Member pisanodc's Avatar
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    May 2009
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    I have a blackbird, 2 traveler's and an eno double. I almost always use my traveler b/c bugs arent a problem. So I have some good news for you, I am a member of the arizona backpacking club and it just so happens that 8 of us are hiking west fork of oak creek this weekend. Some of the group are heading up and camping around the trailhead fri night, including my friend Jason. I think he is bringing his traveler, but I can ask him to bring his blackbird as well to let you try it out. Let me know if you want to meet up with them and I will put you in contact with Jason.

    Angelo

  7. #7
    Senior Member te-wa's Avatar
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    i also have and use blackbirds, and have a grand trunk ultralight for UL trips.
    welcome to the HF forums, and if you want to get involved with a great club that is slowly turning to the Arizona Hammock Backpacking Club, check us out HERE

    cant wait to hang with you! te-wa

  8. #8
    Senior Member Swingblade's Avatar
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    TY for the invites & some updates

    This is great to meet others to hook up with.

    pisanodc, TY for the invite, dejoha had also invited me for a hump & hang in flag this weekend but I will be on Lake Powell this weekend. Although currently my hiking ability is limited I'm working on improving that issue. I am sure in the future I will meet enough local hangers to be able to test a few other hammocks out.

    dejoha, TY for the offer to try other options & in the future I'm sure I will take you up on it. Below are some alterations that are in progress to alleviate my original issues.

    te-wa thx for the link. I will check it out.

    Since my original post & many hrs of research here I have the HHSS on the way and have contacted 2Q&ZQ and will be getting the #2 mod. I have also taken a great interest in treeless hanging methods (for Lake Powell beach & lower desert hanging) & have formulated a few design possibilities that I will be fabricating & testing in the near future. I will be sure to share that endeavor as it progresses.

    I am thrilled with the friendly & helpful people here, I love this site

  9. #9
    beep's Avatar
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    My experience with the WBBB (relative to the wrapping/cocooning concern) is that the zipper side pullout does a very good job of "opening up" that side of the hammock (by your head in a diagonal lay). After trial and error, I note that the further "out" the side pullout goes (more horizontal; more distance away from the hammock for a staking point), the more effective it is at doing its job.

    +1 on your need for a side zipper!
    "The more I carry the happier I am in camp; the less I carry the happier I am getting there" - Sgt. Rock

  10. #10
    Senior Member te-wa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by beep View Post
    ... I note that the further "out" the side pullout goes (more horizontal; more distance away from the hammock for a staking point), the more effective it is at doing its job.
    fwiw, an easy way to get the netting high is use a hiking pole as a stake out "lifter" with a simple clove hitch on the bungee. thanks to wendy for this tip!

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