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  1. #1
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    Protection Offered by Ridgeline

    Hi Gents & Ladies,

    I've been making some changes to my setup lately and I find myself in need of some advice.

    I generally run a continuos ridgeline, partly for convenience and partly for perceived safety. It's the safety bit I want help with.

    Since I started sleeping under tarps I have been using strong lines for the ridgeline, thinking that if a branch was to drop during the night I would be more protected. It has recently occured to me that this may not be true. Hive mind, please advise me....

    Also, I do check trees to see if they're alive and to check for widowmakers, but I believe there is still as chance of a branch falling. Is this true?

    Thanks,

    Dave

  2. #2
    Senior Member Bomber's Avatar
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    I wouldnt count on any protection from a ridgeline. Surely it will break the fall of a small branch, but anything with significant size(read dangerous size) would either just break the ridgeline or get "tossed" into you(the ridgeline would serve as a fulcrum).

    And yes trees does occasionally drop branches that can't be seen from the ground, best option is to use common sense and look out for widow makers when hanging your hammock.
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  3. #3
    Senior Member bdbart's Avatar
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    it would have to be one hell of a ridgeline....I have used amsteel for a ridgeline, but with a 50lb figure 9, so a branch that fell with >50lb of force would break the figure 9....and that would not be that big of a branch.... so the weakest point of the ridgeline is probably how you tie it off, but I wouldn't trust my knot tying skills to a falling branch.
    My memory's not as sharp as it used to be. Also, my memory's not as sharp as it used to be.

  4. #4
    New Member LUMBER's Avatar
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    I would offer the best protection is your own commen sense. As far as anything protecting you from impact, be it a ridgeline or seatbelt, keep in mind the simple equation Force= Mass x Acceleration. The resultant force is often mind boggling! Have fun.

  5. #5
    TrailH4x's Avatar
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    I always put my favorite stool at least 10 feet away from my hammock. No doubt any falling branch will aim straight for it...
    H4x
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  6. #6
    deerfu's Avatar
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    If I were camping in a tent the perceived danger would still be present >>------> cause I always camp in the woods.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by TrailH4x View Post
    I always put my favorite stool at least 10 feet away from my hammock. No doubt any falling branch will aim straight for it...

  8. #8
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    Thanks for all the advice gents.

    Quote Originally Posted by bdbart View Post
    it would have to be one hell of a ridgeline....I have used amsteel for a ridgeline, but with a 50lb figure 9, so a branch that fell with >50lb of force would break the figure 9....and that would not be that big of a branch.... so the weakest point of the ridgeline is probably how you tie it off, but I wouldn't trust my knot tying skills to a falling branch.
    I use an Evenk Hitch and Truckers Hitch for my ridge line normally, none of those silly figure 9s for me. But I have been having trouble with prussics, so I think I'll be trying a few different options.

    Quote Originally Posted by LUMBER View Post
    I would offer the best protection is your own commen sense. As far as anything protecting you from impact, be it a ridgeline or seatbelt, keep in mind the simple equation Force= Mass x Acceleration. The resultant force is often mind boggling! Have fun.
    I am fully aware of F=MA, I have a number of pieces of paper that say so.

    I plan on using amsteel 3/16 ridgeline it's rated to around 5,000 pounds. If I can't see the widowmaker it probably won't weigh more than 200 pounds, so a factor of safety of 25 seems enough to me, including the loss of strength from knots. By my calculations 33.3 feet will weigh about 5.5 ounces, worth it to me.

    I am aware of the issues knotting amsteel, but I think I can get around them with toggles.

    Thanks again,

    Dave

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