Just hangin around
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Just Hangin’ Around. An Aerial View of Hammock Backpacking. Why Leave the Ground?. Often more comfortable than tents. LNT-friendly by providing less impact. No compressing soil. No clearing vegetation. Things are left the way you found them. Tarp can be setup independently if needed.

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Just Hangin’ Around

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Just hangin around

Just Hangin’ Around

An Aerial View of

Hammock Backpacking

Why leave the ground

Why Leave the Ground?

  • Often more comfortable than tents.

  • LNT-friendly by providing less impact.

    • No compressing soil.

    • No clearing vegetation.

    • Things are left the way you found them.

  • Tarp can be setup independently if needed.

  • Dual-purpose shelter and camp seat.

It s a camp chair

It’s a Camp Chair!

Why leave the ground1

Why Leave the Ground?

  • Typically easier to setup and cleaner to take down.

  • Great for uneven and rough terrain.

  • Highly customizable to suit your needs or the needs of the environment.

Why leave the ground2

Why Leave the Ground?

Problems leaving the ground

Problems Leaving the Ground

  • Not really geared towards multiple users.

  • Can require more tweaking to achieve the “perfect” setup.

  • Can get cold quickly if you’re not prepared.

Why would i stay on the ground

Why Would I Stay on the Ground?

  • Camping above tree line or in the desert.

  • Sharing your shelter with someone else.

  • Warmer without additional precautions.

  • Desire a fully enclosed shelter.

Problems with staying on the ground

Problems With Staying on the Ground

  • Not LNT-friendly.

  • Can be dirty to pack away.

  • Typically more bulky.

  • Need to find the “perfect” site to avoid rocks and sticks damaging tent floor, water runoff, etc.

  • Can be hot and muggy.

Not your grandpa s hammock

Not Your Grandpa’s Hammock

  • Modern backpacking hammocks are small and lightweight.

  • More advanced materials and design than “recreational” hammocks.

Won t i fall out

Won’t I Fall Out?

  • Only if you’re really talented. ;-)

Inside the backpacking hammock

Inside the Backpacking Hammock

  • Typically made from light or ultralight silnylon.

  • May have permanent or removable netting.

  • Typically have storage areas or loops.

  • May have a structural or non-structural ridgeline.

  • May be single or double layer.

Inside the backpacking hammock1

Inside the Backpacking Hammock

  • Gathered end

    • Hennessy

  • Sewn channel

    • Switchback

  • Bridge

    • JRB Bear Bridge

Inside the backpacking hammock2

Inside the Backpacking Hammock

Inside the backpacking hammock3

Inside the Backpacking Hammock

Site selection

Site Selection

  • Pick trees 12-15’ apart that are 6-8” in diameter minimum.

  • Don’t pick the tallest trees.

  • Look up for widowmakers.

  • Try to pick a location that will naturally protect you from wind/rain.

  • Optional

    • Pick site based on view

    • Pick site based on stealth

Suspension methods

Suspension Methods

  • Notes About Using Rope/Line

    • Can cut into tree if attached directly.

    • Knots degrade rope strength (up to 50%) and can be difficult to untie.

Suspension methods1

Suspension Methods

  • Webbing straps

    • Safer for the tree by distributing load.

    • Eliminate/reduce the need for knots.

  • Strap Options

    • Eno Slap Straps

    • Python straps

    • DIY

Suspension attachment methods

Suspension Attachment Methods

  • Carabiners

  • Descender rings

  • Toggles

Demo Time!

Get your sag on

Get Your Sag On!

  • Hang the suspension to create about a 30° angle for a proper sag.

  • Too little sag will create too tight of a hammock.

  • Too much sag will turn your hammock into a banana.

  • Neither will be comfortable.

Get your sag on1

Get Your Sag On!

  • Structural ridgeline will set the sag so it’s repeatable every time.

  • An adjustable ridgeline can help while you’re in the learning phase or provide the ability to change the sag down the road.

Tweaking the setup

Tweaking The Setup

  • Use tie-outs to provide a roomier feel.

  • Use ridgeline for clothing, lighting, etc.

  • Try positioning head/feet slightly higher if you struggle getting level.

  • Adjust height above ground based on comfort.

Keepin it warm

Keepin’ It Warm

  • Convection loss is your biggest enemy.

  • Keeping the wind off your back will eliminate CBS and make your time much more enjoyable.

Insulation options

Insulation Options

  • WeatherShield

  • SuperShelter

  • Underquilt/top quilt

    • Three-quarter

    • Full-length

  • Sleeping bag

  • Foam pads (open or closed-cell)

  • Emergency blanket

Insulation options1

Insulation Options

  • Hammock sock

  • Lightweight blankets

  • Natural materials

    • Leaves

    • Pine straw

    • Other vegetation

Demo Time!

Insulation options2

Insulation Options

Don t blame it on the rain

Don’t Blame it on the Rain

  • A quality tarp can greatly increase your comfort level.

  • Multiple tarps to choose from may be helpful depending on your needs.

  • Buy a tarp that provides flexibility beyond simply covering the hammock.

Tarp designs

Tarp Designs

Assymetric tarp

Assymetric Tarp

Hex tarp

Hex Tarp

Winter tarp

Winter Tarp

Setup overview

Setup Overview

Dude where are my trees

Dude! Where Are My Trees?

  • If you find yourself above tree line, in the desert, or w/o suitable trees you can still use your hammock.

  • Hiking poles and other objects can support ends like a tree.

  • Being prepared with a pad can make the journey back to ground more palatable.

Dude where are my trees1

Dude! Where Are My Trees?

Dude where are my trees2

Dude! Where Are My Trees?

My setup

My Setup

Where do i learn more

Where Do I Learn More?

* All illustrations used by permission of Derek Hansen.


http://www.youtube.comSearch for ‘shug hammock’

Read the “The Ultimate Hang”* and visit http://www.theultimatehang.com



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