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  1. #1
    Senior Member T-BACK's Avatar
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    Bag Over Hammock

    Hey Guys and Gals,

    I haven't checked in for a while so I thought I'd say hi and let you know about a winter setup I'm field testing now. I am hanging again in the winter for the same weight penalty of my tent setup . I bought a Feathered Friends Winter Wren (I assume the Rock Wren would work the same way) It has zippers on the sides so that you can get your arms out while in the bag. This gives me access to my pee bottle at night. It also has a drawstring bottom so that you can wear it around camp. It is a center 1/2 zip and with the bottom open slips right around my hammock. I unzip and slide it to the foot end of the hammock, get in, pull the bag up and zip it up to my chin. Since the hood is underneath, I wear my Cocoon hoodie jacket from BPL with just my head in the hood. The loose part of the jacket is then stuffed around my neck and shoulders to seal out drafts. So far it is working out well and has kept me toasty without a closed cell pad below freezing (how far below I do not know). I will probably modify my summer bag in the same fashion and am considering sending this bag back to FF to modify with a drawstring in the back of the hood so that it will completely cover me when zipped up. Has anyone else tried anything along these lines? Just wondering.
    Brian
    ...and there came to be a day, all too soon, that I became aware that I could travel no more on my long journey. Though I did not arrive where I had planned, I believe that here is exactly where I am supposed to be...

  2. #2
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by T-BACK View Post
    Hey Guys and Gals,

    I haven't checked in for a while so I thought I'd say hi and let you know about a winter setup I'm field testing now. I am hanging again in the winter for the same weight penalty of my tent setup . I bought a Feathered Friends Winter Wren (I assume the Rock Wren would work the same way) It has zippers on the sides so that you can get your arms out while in the bag. This gives me access to my pee bottle at night. It also has a drawstring bottom so that you can wear it around camp. It is a center 1/2 zip and with the bottom open slips right around my hammock. I unzip and slide it to the foot end of the hammock, get in, pull the bag up and zip it up to my chin. Since the hood is underneath, I wear my Cocoon hoodie jacket from BPL with just my head in the hood. The loose part of the jacket is then stuffed around my neck and shoulders to seal out drafts. So far it is working out well and has kept me toasty without a closed cell pad below freezing (how far below I do not know). I will probably modify my summer bag in the same fashion and am considering sending this bag back to FF to modify with a drawstring in the back of the hood so that it will completely cover me when zipped up. Has anyone else tried anything along these lines? Just wondering.
    Hey Brian,

    I wondered what you were doing. Last I saw your DAM was leaking and Joe was giving you a ride. Where abouts are you these days?
    Youngblood AT2000

  3. #3

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    T-Back,
    I haven't exactly done what you have but have done something similar. I used a rectangular 20 degree synthetic bag, with hood, in the same fashion. I opened the zipper across the foot , put the bag over the hammock and tied the unzipped foot end up around the hammock effectively sealing the foot end. This left the zipper up the the head of the bag on the top of the hammock. I tied the hood off to the suspension at the head end to keep the bag from sliding down the hammock towards the foot. I could unzip the bag on the top of the hammock to enter and exit but the bag stayed in place. This was good to the mid 20s and, with a light top quilt and hot water bottle, it was good to 11 degrees. Each time, I have found that some type of baffle above my head (like your hooded jacket) helped a lot.

    The biggest drawbacks are the weight and size of the bag - it is a car camping bag that weighs 4+ lbs and doesn't compress. So far I've only used it in the backyard so no problem yet but I wouldn't want to carry it backpacking. I'm thinking of making an underquilt - I used a Jardine quilt fairly successfully but it's not really made for hammocking - or a peapod type enclosure. Or else use an underquilt and make a sock.

    Let us know if you get the summer bag modified and how it works out.
    Jay

  4. #4
    slowhike's Avatar
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    hey T-back... good to hear from you!
    i think turk & maybe another one or two have experience w/ those bags. i think they look great & hope maybe i'll get one some day.
    i'll be interested to hear more.
    don`t leave the CREATOR out of the creation!

  5. #5
    Senior Member hangnout's Avatar
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    Has anyone else tried anything along these lines? Just wondering.
    I used my sleeping bags around the hammock for a couple years with some success. I changed this year to a 1/2 UQ and pad for the legs. The main problem areas with using a sleeping bag over the hammock is the dead air space usually created by the sides of the hammock holding the bag an inch or two away from your body. This requires extra clothing or quilt to stay warm thus eliminating some of the weight savings. If you make your hammock with floppy sides to eliminate this problem you have to deal with dead air spaces on the bottom. I worked with a DIY hammock to fit length and girth but would always end up with some dead air on top if the bottom was correct. The foot area usually had lots of dead air to deal with resulting in cold feet or having to carry more items to keep feet warm. The more you lay inline the easier it is to make a bag work.

    I don't know if this will make sense but I found that this type setup would go from warm to cold with just a couple degree change in outside temps. If I tried this again I would use a double layer hammock that would take a larger pad than I normally carry.

  6. #6
    Senior Member CajunHiker's Avatar
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    T-Back,
    Do you have any pics of your setup? I'm looking purchase my first hammock (probably a HH) and was also looking at the Wren for a bag. Can you do this type of setup with a HH? I posted a link to Turk's message regarding his custom Wren in another thread.

  7. #7
    Senior Member T-BACK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Youngblood View Post
    Hey Brian,

    Where abouts are you these days?
    Sorry it took so long to reply. I only had web access for a few minutes last time. I am a day and a half (40 miles) from Alabama. I had to hole up in Holt, FL due to a massive weather system that moved through. Fortunately I had a friend staying at a RV park there while section hiking and was able to get out of the worst of it. The winds were so strong that the RV was rocking pretty bad. That would have been a wild ride in a hammock! I took advantage of this weather and the extreme generosity of my good friend who allowed me the use of her car to drive home to see my wife for a day and a half. It took almost 9 hours to get home. I can't believe I've walked that far (and that's only to Tampa). I should cross the state line Saturday. I am going to try and maintain 30 mile days to get me to Springer in early April.

    As far as dead air space, I thought that would be an issue but I've had this setup down to the mid twenty's and stayed very warm. I use a removable undercover which supports my bag from underneath. This allows me to leave it unzipped while insulating my backside in the warmer early evening hours or to only wear my hoodie to sleep in on warmer nights, using the lower part of my bag as a psuedo elephant foot bag. I don't know if the undercover plays any role in keeping me warm or not. I have only slept in shorts and sometimes a SS shirt so I use my fleece pants to block the drawstring hole at my feet. This allows me to sleep on the diag with no problems. The zipper closes all the way up to my chin so the hoodie does a good job of blocking drafts from around my neck. This is the first mummy style bag I have owned that has a generous enough cut for me and I think that is to allow access to the arm zips.

    As far as use in a HH, I can't see how it would work with a fixed ridgeline and the permanent bug net. The pullouts would not be an issue because you could just simply not use them. I will try and take some pics today if the weather cooperates.

    I am going to try and whip out some large skins for my hammock/bag since I am leaving them together in my pack. Funny thing, They take up less room when packed togeter than seperately and thats important when trying to fit all that I need for winter including my sz 13 Crocks in my GG Mariposa pack.
    Brian
    ...and there came to be a day, all too soon, that I became aware that I could travel no more on my long journey. Though I did not arrive where I had planned, I believe that here is exactly where I am supposed to be...

  8. #8
    slowhike's Avatar
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    good to hear from you bro!
    if you get to springer by early april, you should be some where in NC by the time of the SEHHA in hot springs (april 25-27).
    maybe you could get a ride & join us???
    don`t leave the CREATOR out of the creation!

  9. #9
    Senior Member T-BACK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by slowhike View Post
    good to hear from you bro!
    if you get to springer by early april, you should be some where in NC by the time of the SEHHA in hot springs (april 25-27).
    maybe you could get a ride & join us???
    That would be great. I would love to see you guys again and meet some of the new members for the first time.
    Brian
    ...and there came to be a day, all too soon, that I became aware that I could travel no more on my long journey. Though I did not arrive where I had planned, I believe that here is exactly where I am supposed to be...

  10. #10
    Senior Member GREEN THERAPY's Avatar
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    Have been working on a system that uses a sleeping bag pulled over the hammock this winter. The system has worked great so far and have slept very toasty with a -5C bag in temps to -7 C wearing poly long johns and socks. I have some pics of my first few attempts at making one and am currently making more. I have been taking pics at various stages and will post them in the next couple of days in my gallery. There are a few of the early pics there now and I found that the key to making the bag over hammock design work well was to make a hammock sock to contain the bag off the ground and have added a zipper entry bug screen on some and a solid DWR top cover with zipper entry on others. I have modified a coulpe of bags and will post pics of that as well. The addiction continues.
    What I lack in knowledge I MORE than make up for with opinions.
    Green Therapy

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