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  1. #1
    Senior Member zukiguy's Avatar
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    Comfort vs "Restful" sleep??

    Hey Folks,
    I took a group of folks hanging/paddling on the Santa Fe River this weekend. I was the only "experienced" hanger in the crew. Two of my other friends brought their hammocks but each had only used them on one other trip so they were still quite the "noobs". The last member of our little crew borrowed my son's HH Expedition so they were brand new to hanging.

    The temps dropped into the mid 60s at night with little to no wind and luckily no rain. Pretty much perfect hanging weather. I threw on my undercover and wrapped up in a fleece sleeping bag liner. I was very comfortable until just before dawn when I had to pull on a long-sleeved pullover and some pants due to a mild case of CBS.

    So, at the end of the trip I had my two friends convinced that hammocks are indeed the way to go for hot weather camping but neither has much interest in any cool or cold weather hanging. The one that borrowed my expedition probably won't get into a hammock on the trail again without further experimentation at home. She just couldn't get comfortable and spent most of the night tossing and turning trying to find the illustrious "sweet-spot".

    Long story short....When I camp on the ground and put my earplugs in I sleep like the dead. My head hits the pillow I'm out and I get plenty of deep sleep. When I wake however I'm stiff, sore, and really groggy. On the opposite end of the spectrum...when I sleep in the hammock I almost always seem to change positions a lot, get up to urinate, and generally don't sleep deeply at all. The strange part is that I pop up out of bed rested and refreshed in the morning without all the strange aches and pains I get while ground dwelling. Am I alone on this one or is this pretty common?


    Just curious,

  2. #2
    New Member flannery's Avatar
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    I did my first hang Friday in my new WBBB. Wow! How comfortable! But I had the same experience. I slept maybe a few hours. I was never uncomfortable though like I get sleeping in my tent. I only spent 1 night in the hammock and then had to go home but I have found that unlike you, sleeping on the ground sleep usually teases me the first night as well. Its the second night I finally start sleeping well, sometimes not until the third but usually the second. Sleep or not, I got out of my hammock @ 6am feeling rested and refreshed which never happens when sleeping in the tent, whether I actually sleep or not.

  3. #3
    Senior Member TFC Rick's Avatar
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    I sleep in a hammock every night. I rarely make it through the night for the same issues. I still prefer it however.
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  4. #4
    Senior Member jloden's Avatar
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    My experience is a little different than yours, but I do definitely see a difference in the quality of sleep in the hammock and on the ground.

    I didn't really appreciate the hammock fully until I went through the AMC's Mountain Leadership School in the White Mountains and spent 3 days sleeping in a tent (hammock wasn't allowed). I found it very hard to sleep well, woke up a lot and ended up pretty sore and stiff, as well as waking up groggy in the morning. In fairness, we were doing long days with late nights/early mornings compared to my weekend trips. Nonetheless, I would have killed to have my hammock by the second night of the trip - just the psychological and physical comfort of crawling in my little cradle of comfort would have been immensely helpful in feeling more rested.

    Comparatively when I sleep in the hammock I usually wake up pretty early with the daylight even if I stay up late the night before, and I wake up feeling rested and comfortable. There have been some trips where I intended to sleep late and still ended up waking up early, just not feeling sleepy. About the worst I've had in a hammock is a couple cold nights, and once I slept so hard leaning on my side in a WBBB that I woke up with a sore shoulder from not moving all night

  5. #5
    Gumbo's Avatar
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    I have always been a light sleeper that wakes up several times during the night so I can't give you a good answer on this.

    I do feel more rested after sleeping in the hammock over sleeping on the ground. I have wondered if it was the air moving around me that improved my sleep comfort. I also sleep best in the house when a fan is on overhead or a window is open when temps allow.

    For me it's not uncommon to wake up two or three times a night and be aware enough to note the time.

  6. #6
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    Since going fulltime my entire sleep process has changed, wife says it's the drugs I'm taking! But even before the meds my sleep had changed. I have always been a light sleeper. The routine doesn't bother me it's the little unusual noises. Also tossing and turning every 15 to 30 minutes. Since sleeping in the hammock I don't toss and turn as much, as a matter of fact the more I'm in the hammock it seems the less I even go to my side. Used to sleep with 2 pillows just to get comfortable, now I'm down to an inflatable travel pillow. In 38 years of marriage my wife and I have tried every bed type made, air, water, latex, memory, temprapedic, spring with no satisfaction. I have found mine and tonight she sleeps her first night in a hammock. I'm already contemplating Cannibal's setup with the dual South Americans.
    Most of us end up poorer here but richer for being here. Olddog, Fulltime hammocker, 365 nights a year.

  7. #7
    Taozenqi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zukiguy View Post
    Hey Folks,
    Long story short....When I camp on the ground and put my earplugs in I sleep like the dead. My head hits the pillow I'm out and I get plenty of deep sleep. When I wake however I'm stiff, sore, and really groggy. On the opposite end of the spectrum...when I sleep in the hammock I almost always seem to change positions a lot, get up to urinate, and generally don't sleep deeply at all. The strange part is that I pop up out of bed rested and refreshed in the morning without all the strange aches and pains I get while ground dwelling. Am I alone on this one or is this pretty common?
    Just curious,
    No, you are not alone. So far, my experiences have been similar to yours. Sleep deeper in a tent. Only upside of the hammock is that even after a long hike I awake without the aches/pains of sleeping on the ground. I'm hoping that I will eventually adapt to sleeping more deeply in the hammock. On the summer CO. Trail hammock trip, I was envious of all the snoring going on around me.
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  8. #8
    Bubba's Avatar
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    I sleep better in a hammock versus a tent. I sleep about the same in terms of deepness but like others, I don't wake up stiff or sore after a night in a hammock.
    Don't let life get in the way of living.

  9. #9
    Senior Member grich9860's Avatar
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    Long story short....When I camp on the ground and put my earplugs in I sleep like the dead. My head hits the pillow I'm out and I get plenty of deep sleep. When I wake however I'm stiff, sore, and really groggy. On the opposite end of the spectrum...when I sleep in the hammock I almost always seem to change positions a lot, get up to urinate, and generally don't sleep deeply at all. The strange part is that I pop up out of bed rested and refreshed in the morning without all the strange aches and pains I get while ground dwelling. Am I alone on this one or is this pretty common?


    Just curious,[/QUOTE]

    i will have to agree with you on this. when i first started getting into hammocks and hammock camping/hiking there were many nights that i was longing to go back to the ground, but after a few times out this urge became less and less. now i can't imagine going for a hike or camping trip with a tent.
    Hops

  10. #10
    Senior Member Rug's Avatar
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    I think this might be a qualitative vs quantitative assessment.

    At home in bed, I toss & turn, snore, and am harder to wake then the dead. I also 'need' 10-12hrs or I am like an ogre the next day.

    In the hammock I sleep very few hours, (2 to 6) regardless of how tired I am or hard I worked. I wake up at the butt-crack of dawn, and generally feel well rested. Now I am VERY comfortable, so I don't want to get up, and as a result will lay there for a few more hours reading.

    In the hammock I am much more likely to want to nap a few times throughout the day. If it is my first night in the hammock after a long period of being in the bed, I don't sleep as well; but by the second night I am used to it, and eager for it.

    I believe the key here is to listen to your body, and ignore what the clock and your brain tell you. If you wake up feeling good, then your sleep was restful, which is the entire point behind sleeping. In regards to the comment about getting up to pee, I think it does tie into how well we are sleeping; and the night-time urine trips are a more natural state of function for our bodies, then hold-it-till-you-burst-and-must-wake-up coma that beds have trained us to are unnatural and unhealthy.
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