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  1. #21
    Registered User Just Bill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FIREWHATFIRE View Post
    What all would someone need to purchase if they were choosing a hammock over a tent. Since I have neither as of yet, I actually have options.
    You need to buy a hammock.
    And then see if you like it.
    Then worry about tricking it out.

    You're 47... so probably not dying to sleep on the ground... but that said;
    I tell people to try a pad on the ground (or on the floor at your house) first. Pads are much improved.

    For backpackers:
    There is nothing lighter than a pad and top quilt. If it works for you- do it.
    Hammocks are more expensive and complicated- period. Nothing simpler, easier, or more foolproof than slapping a pad on the ground and going to bed.

    If you can't sleep on the ground- don't stay home- try a gathered end hammock.
    Ideally go to hammock forums, find a group hang and visit one to try lots of options all at once... most folks are overwhelmed by the choices/options. Most folks will not like sleeping in a standard store bought hammock.

    If you can't get a gathered end to work- try a bridge. These work well with a pad and sleep more like a floating cot. The combo is nice for trails like the AT where you may wish to 'go to ground'.
    The Warbonnet Ridgerunner is an excellent piece of gear at a decent price... it will work with a pad.

    If nobody else's hammock will work- then talk to me about my bridges.

    Don't stay home- there is a way to sleep well.

  2. #22
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    I've had about 6 different makers hammocks and keep coming back to the Warbonnet Blackbird

  3. #23
    Registered User Speakeasy TN's Avatar
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    I'm a fan of Hennessey Hammocks but it may just be a case of " first love "! They were at Trail Days in '14 I think and I got pulled in to just trying a Deep Jungle. I looked at the wife after 20 seconds and said " well that just cost us money!"

  4. #24
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    I just did the springer mountain to woody gap last weekend with rain and weather in the 20s. I used my Hennessy safari it was on the heavy side but didnít get wet little chilly though

  5. #25

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    Outdoor Adventure on YouTube does a huge series on UL hammocks and great hanging tricks.

  6. #26
    Registered User gunner76's Avatar
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    Find a group hang in your area ( check HammockForums to find them ) and visit. You will find a variety of different hammock setups being used and can talk the users to see why they are using those items. If you ask real nice you will probably be allowed to get in the hammock to see what it is like.

    Over the past 10 years I have collected and or made about 30+ hammocks and Warbonnet Black Birds are my favorite.
    Hammock Hanger by choice

    Warbonnet BlackBird 1.7 dbl


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    Bears love people, they say we taste just like chicken.

  7. #27
    Registered User linus72's Avatar
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    The REI flash air seems like a good intro package, comes with everything you need in one package, 2lb, 130z trail weight. Saw some reviews, looks like a great option for a newbie. $179. Going to pick one up. I've been a tenter my whole life and well, I too am 47 now and its getting harder and harder to sleep on the ground and crawl in and out of tents these days. And I'm out there a lot. So I'm going to give hammocking a try. The only thing that bums me out is I finally got my tent down to 1 1/2 lbs (LHG solo) so put over another pound on my back is a bummer but I suspect I will sleep much better. And I always have the tent if not. I tried my sons Eno Double Nest (just the hammock) for a mid hike swing break and I loved it. They make a Quarter dome one but I am tempted by the Flash one. I have never been let down by their Gear, and easy to return or replace.
    Doin' the trail one section at a time
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  8. #28
    Registered User scope's Avatar
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    The Flash is a hammock that may fit someone just fine, but there's a good chance it won't. Whereas, the Warbonnet and other hammocks are much more likely to be something you're comfortable sleeping in all night. The Flash would make sense if it made the most use of ultralight materials and construction. However, it likely needs to be used with a thicker, heavier pad that can provide a flatter lay since you can't get diagonal. The ability to use a pad is great and does make for a nice all in one package that is relatively inexpensive. That said, the tarp is a little too minimal and the overall weight - including the need for a heavier pad - a little too much not to take a closer look at a more serious selection of hammocks. IMO, its something that will sell when people need to use gift cards and their 20% off, and will quickly end up in the discount bin - much like the quarterdome hammock setup that came first, which was a much better product.
    "I wonder if anyone else has an ear so tuned and sharpened as I have, to detect the music, not of the spheres, but of earth, subtleties of major and minor chord that the wind strikes upon the tree branches. Have you ever heard the earth breathe... ?"
    - Kate Chopin

  9. #29
    Some days, it's not worth chewing through the restraints.
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    Quote Originally Posted by FIREWHATFIRE View Post
    What all would someone need to purchase if they were choosing a hammock over a tent. Since I have neither as of yet, I actually have options.
    For a first-timer, I'd recommend a Hennessy backpacker classic, link below. All you need in a compact, light (under 2#)package. You can use your regular sleeping pad and sleeping bag to start. You will likely get hooked and experiment more after that (or find you don't like hammocks after all), but this is an easy, uncomplicated, reasonably priced, lightweight way to get into hammocks. It was my first hammock, I'll bet it was the first for a lot of folks.

    https://hennessyhammock.com/products...r-asym-classic

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deadeye View Post
    For a first-timer, I'd recommend a Hennessy backpacker classic, link below. All you need in a compact, light (under 2#)package. You can use your regular sleeping pad and sleeping bag to start. You will likely get hooked and experiment more after that (or find you don't like hammocks after all), but this is an easy, uncomplicated, reasonably priced, lightweight way to get into hammocks. It was my first hammock, I'll bet it was the first for a lot of folks.

    https://hennessyhammock.com/products...r-asym-classic
    Hennessy is the gateway drug to hammocks. It can serve you well for years, or make you realize thereís a whole world of hammocks out there just waiting to be sampled.


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  11. #31
    Some days, it's not worth chewing through the restraints.
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    Gateway drug is exactly what it is!

    To the OP, can't go wrong with a Warbonnet Blackbird.

  12. #32

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    My gateway hammock was a Byer Mosquito Traveler. It worked pretty well for a few years of light use, then dumped me on the ground in the middle of the night. Being hooked, I had a Dream Hammocks unit made to my specs. It's wonderful.
    "It's fun to have fun, but you have to know how." ---Dr. Seuss

  13. #33
    Registered User ant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deadeye View Post
    For a first-timer, I'd recommend a Hennessy backpacker classic, link below. All you need in a compact, light (under 2#)package. You can use your regular sleeping pad and sleeping bag to start. You will likely get hooked and experiment more after that (or find you don't like hammocks after all), but this is an easy, uncomplicated, reasonably priced, lightweight way to get into hammocks. It was my first hammock, I'll bet it was the first for a lot of folks.

    https://hennessyhammock.com/products...r-asym-classic
    Short, heavy, extra fiddling, tiny tarp and expensive with low resale value would not be my recommendation. A lot of peopleís first hammock but it need not be now. Times have changed.

  14. #34

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    Quote Originally Posted by ant View Post
    Short, heavy, extra fiddling, tiny tarp and expensive with low resale value would not be my recommendation. A lot of people’s first hammock but it need not be now. Times have changed.
    I agree. Hennessy wouldn’t even crack the top 10 companies I’d recommend before them.

  15. #35
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    Hammocks is a difficult subject. Everyone thinks that they know hammocks, since they have laid in a woven net hammock once or twice. The technology of camping in hammocks has changed significantly. There are more things to look at than you can imagine. I'd suggest to go to hammockforums.net to start out. There's tons of information there. I'll give you my brief rundown.

    Buying a hammock from the store is okay. That's like buying a cheap tent, and hoping that it's great. It'll be adequate, but not amazing. You can make your own hammock cheaply, or purchase it from a "cottage vendor". That's just a name for a smaller company that's often produced with much more quality and care than mass produced hammocks. It's not as simple as buying a hammock and putting it up. You need special straps so that you don't hurt the tree, and you're going to need specialized sleeping gear so that you don't get cold. You can adapt some of your tent sleeping gear for hammocks, but it gets pretty complicated. Again, talking about insulation and sleep systems have tons of choices.

    Yes, it's more difficult ...... but you can get a good night's sleep if you learn correctly. Get the book "The Ultimate Hang" for a starting point, but be prepared to be constantly learning, as hammock gear is constantly evolving. Your back will appreciate the change.

  16. #36

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    Quote Originally Posted by Trambo View Post
    Hammocks is a difficult subject. Everyone thinks that they know hammocks, since they have laid in a woven net hammock once or twice. The technology of camping in hammocks has changed significantly. There are more things to look at than you can imagine. I'd suggest to go to hammockforums.net to start out. There's tons of information there. I'll give you my brief rundown.

    Buying a hammock from the store is okay. That's like buying a cheap tent, and hoping that it's great. It'll be adequate, but not amazing. You can make your own hammock cheaply, or purchase it from a "cottage vendor". That's just a name for a smaller company that's often produced with much more quality and care than mass produced hammocks. It's not as simple as buying a hammock and putting it up. You need special straps so that you don't hurt the tree, and you're going to need specialized sleeping gear so that you don't get cold. You can adapt some of your tent sleeping gear for hammocks, but it gets pretty complicated. Again, talking about insulation and sleep systems have tons of choices.

    Yes, it's more difficult ...... but you can get a good night's sleep if you learn correctly. Get the book "The Ultimate Hang" for a starting point, but be prepared to be constantly learning, as hammock gear is constantly evolving. Your back will appreciate the change.
    A good night's sleep is worth it many times over.
    "It's fun to have fun, but you have to know how." ---Dr. Seuss

  17. #37
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    Oh yes, I injured my back in the military. Hammocks are the only way that I get a decent night's sleep, because I am just too restless when on a pad. Sure, the pads are better than they use to be ...... but, it pales in comparison to sleeping on a cloud (a night in the hammock). Don't let us scare you away from hammocks. We love them, but we just don't want you to think that they're simple. There's lots that can go wrong, and there's lots that you can learn how to perfect. It's all about practicing, and getting comfortable.

    Someone brought up a Hennesey in the thread. Well, I have a Henny, so I can't say that they're horrible ...... they just aren't the top line of hammocks anymore. These are more heavy duty hammocks that would be good for scout summer camp. Still, I wouldn't reach out and purchase a Henny, as there are better options. If you had to buy a commercially available hammock, I would suggest an ENO. I've used an ENO double nest for years. I'm currently looking to drop my ENO and pick up an 11 foot gathered end hammock. Do not let the marketing confuse you. The idea of sleeping two people in a hammock is awfully uncomfortable (at least for me).

    When it comes to listening to people about hammocks, you must be very careful. Some people think that they know things about hammocks, but they have no clue. There are people who understand hammocks as a consumer, but understanding the "bleeding edge" of hammock technology is completely different. You need to understand what fabric your hammock is made of, the fabric's weight limit, and how your hammock is suspended from the tree.

    There was a friend from the same hometown as me, and I had to go rescue him from Asheville, after he left the trail. Well, he was sleeping in a hammock on the trail. His theory is that you strap it between two trees, and make it as tight as possible. He thought that you wanted it as level and straight as possible, and that is how he slept each and every night. This is a very dangerous thing, as you can hurt yourself severely on a hammock. You always need to hang at the correct angle, because improper angles put too much force on your suspension and the hammock.

    Your best bet is HammockForums. Now, I know that I mentioned that site in a previous reply .......... but I think that it's very important. While there's tons of information to read and attempt to understand, the real value are the long time hammock campers there. Try and find a "group hang" that is close to you. Here, you can go out and camp with a bunch of hammock people. They'll love showing you their gear (most of us take great pride in our hammock setups), and you can get some good ideas on how you'd like yours setup. Some people focus on making their own gear, and some people purchase every piece of gear. You need time to experiment, and find the comfortable way for you to hang. Even laying on the hammock is more complex than you'd imagine. You'd think that you lay straight, as we use to do ..... but, that's not the case. Enjoy your journey of hanging. Take some naps, and see if you love it.

  18. #38

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    Quote Originally Posted by capehiker View Post
    I agree. Hennessy wouldn’t even crack the top 10 companies I’d recommend before them.
    Agreed.

    For a nice, solid package consider something like this starter setup from Dutchware. It's not something I'd particularly choose knowing what I know now after more than a year of diligently pursuing hammock knowledge and field practice, but really darn solid.

    Add a topquilt and underquilt from Hammock Gear econ line, and you've got a very decent, reasonably light kit for around $500 (more or less, depending on what temp quilts you get), which is pretty good for all new gear. Problem with HG is that the lead time is currently about 6-7 weeks for quilts, but folks list them (and other cottage vendor quilts) all the time on HammockForums, so often you can pick them up cheaper and faster there.

    And while The Ultimate Hang 2 is the current bible of sorts for hanging, there's plenty of info in the original Ultimate Hang to get started, and it might be preferred since there isn't such a blizzard of ancillary stuff to cloud the basic learning process.
    UL, because nobody ever asks "How can I make my pack heavier?"

  19. #39
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    They Hennessy is nice simply because itís an all I. One package available from multiple retailers. But I agree that for the same price you can get an excellent hammock and tarp from several of the cottage vendors: Warbonnet, Dutchware, Simply Light Designs, Dream Hammock and others.

    And to the OP, donít think that youíre cheating on White Blazes by visiting Hammock Forums. They really are sister groups of a fashion. Youíll see many of us who frequent both forums.


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  20. #40
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    One attractive thing about Henny hammocks, is their sales process. I'm talking about ten years ago, because I haven't followed them currently ...... but, hennessey use to give a free smaller hammock when purchasing a larger hammock. This means that you were able to purchase one for yourself, and you got a full hammock setup for a child. Yeah, I second the idea that hammockforums and whiteblaze are sister sites. You might find that you don't even have to register at HammockForums. I didn't, because there was enough information for me to read and comprehend new things for several years.

    I will disagree on the HammockGear economy line of quilts. An economy top quilt is something like 130 dollars. I really suggest spending the extra money up front, and getting an elightened equipment revelation quilt for 220. Spending the extra money initially for quality would be more beneficial ....... but, I agree with cmoulder that the economy line from hammockgear is a good alternative. Just realize that there's a reason that the revelation quilt is one of the top quilts.

    A great place for some hammock gear is the ultralight section over at massdrop. Here's the link for that revelation quilt, so that you can compare. https://www.massdrop.com/buy/massdro...velation-quilt

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