A Hanger? It's Cheaper by far
Took a cross-country bicycling trip and ran out of money (due to camping campground fees) - we pay as much as RVs do!
Decided that a few trees away from the trail would be the way to go. Anywhere.
I got sucked in after seeing a few friends photos from a weekend hang they did.
I'm used to tent camping, got my Eagle Scout badge a while ago (Troop 72 represent!). Hammock camping is something I've never tried, but seems like a lot of fun!
I don't remember exactly how I found out about Treklight. I just remember I bought my hammock and then found all of Shug's videos and became addicted. I have been slowly getting all of the parts I need to camp since.
Scott Dempsey got me into hammocking, and now I don't camp with anything else as long as there are trees. I traded a machete I made for a friend's hammock last summer, which has now been to a few places, including Africa.
Got into hanging after a two week long adventure motorcycle trip where unpacking and packing all the camping gear got really old. When I got home I went on YouTube to find a better setup and found SHUG. The rest is the same old story and trial and error until I found what works for me.
Made a trip to Venezuela about 20 years ago and saw all the hammocks being used there. Visited some of the Indigenous villages there and the markets. Bought one and was hooked. Have several from South America and Mexico now.
In the early internet days, when the search engines were still being developed (before Google!!) one of the first searches I made was for "hammocks". Not much around then. At some point, I found a web site on surviving a nuclear explosion that described a bomb shelter and how to make hammocks to sleep in using a bed sheet. I made myself one using heavy (8 ounce) pack canvas. That is my winter hammock now.
Am considering tying up a net hammock. Those are used a lot in the tropics.
My only commercial hammock is a Hennessey. I find it awkward to get into and out of.
Haven't looked on the web for several years for hammock information. I have been amazed at how much there is out there now! Including this forum.
Just bought a couple of the taffeta tablecloths to make up a couple more hammocks. Will see how those do.
One evening about 20 years ago I decided to see how far I could walk the Natchez Trace. I ran to Wal-Mart, grabbed a small pack, a couple of water bottles, food and my $5 nylon net backyard hammock. At the end of the day I walked off the main road into the woods and strung it up. It wasn't ideal but I was relatively comfortable. So now I'm officially getting into backpacking and while slowly putting my stuff together stumbled across references to "real" hammocks. Now the idea has firmly taken root that hanging is the only way to go. Who would have thought I was an innovator...
I got started down the path about 2 years ago, when my winter camping friends switched to hammocks. They have been working on me ever since. The final straw was the recent heat wave and an upcoming Boy Scout Summer Camp 2 weeks ago. I knew there was no way I was going to sleep in a tent with overnight lows in the upper 80's and high humidity. That cinched the deal for me. Then REI put the ENO DN on sale for 20% off. I picked it up for $45.00. Then my wallet kept opening up ever since!
I started because my friend accidentally bought a eno off amazon.com and I asked to borrow it. was the best night sleep I had backpacking so I got my own. Then it escalated quickly to eno single, eno double, HH expedition zip, warbonnet blackbird within a year.
Why I got in...
I passed a guy out on the trail while on my way in for a short overnighter one weekend. He was all set up so I was able to check out his rig (a Clark or Hennessy I think...I didn't know enough to ask at the time) and I was amazed at the concept. As someone who enjoys sailing and rock climbing, I enjoy ropes and learning new knots and things, so the idea really sounded fun. Then I discovered that he had about 1/3 the weight I had in tent gear for his hammock, net, and tarp, and I was sold. I researched and bought a Hennessy explorer deluxe that spring, and brought it with me for summer vacation in Maine, where I set it up and spent 12 nights in it. I have since brought it up the last two years as well, spending 5 nights in it last year and 4 nights this year.
Now that I have recently discovered how much fun using a "thread injector" is to make some stuff sacks for myself...I have the DIY bug to make my own setup. My father in law turned me onto Shug Emery on YouTube, and that's really an entertaining source of some awesome info regarding our chosen method of sleeping in the woods. I always look forward to what he has going up on the youtubes!
I don't think I will ever go back to a tent except to take my son out while he is still young (18 months now...) but once he is old enough to hang with me, the old Sierra designs 4 man tent is going to a local scout troop!
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