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  1. #21
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    I had to go to ground once as I brought my 72" webbing and I swear, I couldn't find a tree slim enough to wrap around. I was gutted. Just having hiked about 18 miles I was tired and now, grumpy as all hell.

    I ended up using my Blackbird as a makeshift bivy - worst night's sleep ever.

    I always take my 96" (x 1") webbing everywhere I go. Unless I'm backpacking a trail I've done before.
    Last edited by Hang_time; 12-07-2012 at 08:32.

  2. #22
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    in my opinion its best to get a hammock that in theory can be used as a bivvy. main reason for this is that it gives you a lot of flexibility incase something happens to your gear or no trees are suitable or around.

    Quote Originally Posted by moos View Post
    New to the forums here and hammock camping in general. I've read on the forums a bit, just finished "The Ultimate Hang," and watched Shug's video series.

    This topic may be covered elsewhere (apologies if it is,) but I couldn't find it with the search.

    I've seen mention in several threads of the need to "go to ground." In places you can't hang, above the treeline or due to local policy, why you may need to do this is obvious. However, I've also seen it mentioned due to weather and other conditions, and the "why" is eluding me.

    1 - In what weather or conditions situations might one need to go to ground?
    2 - What does going to ground in these situations offer from a warmth/safety perspective that hanging doesn't?
    3 - Are there back-up-gear considerations that need to be factored for these situations on longer hikes?

    Thanks in advance.

  3. #23
    SilvrSurfr's Avatar
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    I have a friend who shares your "going to ground" fear. This guy has no concept of ultralight hiking, so he carries a military Goretex bivy sack on every trip. He puts it in the hammock and sleeps inside it with his sleeping bag.

    Fears like these always carry a weight penalty. My greatest fear is headlamp failure so I bring a spare headlamp.

  4. #24
    kbajg's Avatar
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    I went to ground once very abruptly I might add.
    My webbing snapped.
    I brushed myself & gear off, retied/rigged what was left of the webbing & gingerly eased myself back in. Slept the rest of the night albiet with a sore ear & jaw. (I was side sleeping)
    Course while all this was happening my buddy was in his hammock snickering no let me change that to laughing his butt off.
    Good Times

  5. #25
    Senior Member scottpash's Avatar
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    Here is an idea I am still working on

    http://www.hammockforums.net/forum/s...ad.php?t=63644


    and the only way I know how to get the ground warm is like this

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FDwTKAWhLfgFIRE BED



    and if you could do this there has to be Trees around so it would be that your just cold I guess
    "HANGING OUT" has taken on a whole NEW MEANING

  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by SilvrSurfr View Post
    I have a friend who shares your "going to ground" fear. This guy has no concept of ultralight hiking, so he carries a military Goretex bivy sack on every trip. He puts it in the hammock and sleeps inside it with his sleeping bag.

    Fears like these always carry a weight penalty. My greatest fear is headlamp failure so I bring a spare headlamp.
    I don't think you were talking to me, but I'm not afraid of it. I asked the question because it seemed like there was some common knowledge nugget that everyone understood, thus it doesn't come up often. Doesn't seem like that's the case, which is doubly good for me as it means I'm not completely missing something and I don't have to add more gear. If hammock camping wasn't an all-the-time solution, I probably wouldn't consider it.

    I have a spreadsheet that calculates my pack weight for various situations: dayhike, overnight hike, day hunt, overnight hunt, etc. I'm not a super gram counter, but I'm always looking to shed weight reasonably... ok, sometimes unreasonably too. I'm switching some of my gear out after reading up the last few days that will get my 4 season hammock/tarp/TQ/UQ/Bug net etc. right at 3 pounds for everything. Will have to see how comfortable I am in it, but I should be fine for my normal roaming in the Southeast.

    I do have something like that on my list though. It's a 16,000mAh battery that can charge my phone for when I'm out longer than I intend to be and need to make a call in an emergency. I justify it to myself a number of ways, including the fact that I'm on call 24/7/365. It's a still a completely irrational 14.75oz that I should leave at home...

  7. #27
    Jcavenagh's Avatar
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    moos - I don't think you missed any common knowledge type dealio here. I have had to go to ground when I camped north of 50* in Ontario. The trees are all black spruce and I could not find strong enough trees a couple times. A member of another site (BWCA.com) warned me about that and I had an extra ccf.

    I can imagine a strong windy thunderstorm causing a hanger to go to ground. Even reasonably thick trees can bend pretty far in strong winds, especially straight-line winds.
    The road to success is always under construction.
    http://hikingillinois.blogspot.com/

  8. #28
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    I have gone to ground many times, some by sheer laziness, some I had no choice, and more. My set-up allows this as I always carry a pad with me. My pack is frameless and requires the use of a pad for support, so my pad serves many uses, pack frame, sit pad, foot pad, extra insulation, or if needed I can go to ground.

    I love the outdoors and have hiked in places where there were no tree's when I decided to stop (or a few miles before/after) and had to sleep on the ground, I may have creaked and cracked a bit when I got up in the AM, but I was still smiling and loved the views which = no regrets.

    Don't get me wrong I love the sleep I get from my hammock, but I will hike in places that I may have to sleep on the ground a night or two as it doesn't bother me as much as it bothers others and thats ok. Everyone's different, I have found that it's best to figure out what works best for you as thats why we do this, our enjoyment not someone elses (well unless your like me and have kids that love sleeping in a hammock).
    Formerly known as "Cranky Bear"....

    "yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, but today is a gift---thats why its called a present" - Master Oogway

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  9. #29
    Needs more Hang time Catavarie's Avatar
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    In the Southeast the only thing I can think that would cause me to go to ground is if I forgot my hammock. There are trees a plenty suitable to hold up a hammock pretty much everywhere in these parts. Bad weather is a reason I want to be in my hammock. I don't have to worry about my gear getting wet as my tarp is keeping the rain off me and my gear and I are above and flowing/rising water. No need to trench the uphill side of my camp site either. Put up the tarp and attach the tree huggers, the rest of the night can be comfortably spent under the hammock and out fo the weather.
    *Heaven best have trees, because I plan to lounge for eternity.

    Good judgement is the result of experience and experience the result of bad judgement. - Mark Twain

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  10. #30
    HangingOut's Avatar
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    Sometimes you need to go to ground because there are no live trees around. As can be the case in the Cascades where there have been large forest fires. You don't ever want to hang from a dead tree.

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