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A Complete Appalachian Trail Guidebook.
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  1. #21
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    Upstate SC


    Quote Originally Posted by scope View Post
    As for me, my latest "tryouts" are a Cloud71 hammock and a hex tarp with mesh doors & "curtains".
    Any pics of this tarp setup? Do the curtains hang below the sides and with the doors you have a bug-free zone under the tarp? I swear that every biting gnat in the Smokies was hanging out under my tarp avoiding the downpour on a recent trip. When I got up to stretch my legs at 2 am it was like an instant feeding frenzy.

  2. #22
    Registered User scope's Avatar
    Join Date
    Chamblee, GA


    Quote Originally Posted by smkymtns View Post
    Any pics of this tarp setup? Do the curtains hang below the sides and with the doors you have a bug-free zone under the tarp? I swear that every biting gnat in the Smokies was hanging out under my tarp avoiding the downpour on a recent trip. When I got up to stretch my legs at 2 am it was like an instant feeding frenzy.
    Had the doors sewn on, havenít done anything permanent with the curtain, just clipped with small binder clips. For me, itís not for bugs which Iíve never had issue with, just some veiled privacy and minor wind mitigation.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    "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

  3. #23


    Quote Originally Posted by Deadeye View Post
    It's an oldie. I get a kick out of the "kids" I work with that are under 40 - they often don't have a clue what I'm talking about when I use old phrases, or quotes from old TV shows or cartoons that they've never heard of.
    I'm in my mid-50s and I've never heard of it. It might be a 'North of Roanoke' thing instead of an age thing

  4. #24


    A bit late to the comment - but what works for me (6'1", 240lbs) -
    - hammock - Warbonnet Blackbird XLC. I got it in multicam (because I like to hammock all the time, and multicam just works), got the dual-layer (because I'm big and fat - I didn't want to rip through a single layer), and had it custom-reversed for left-handed. Oh and I got the removable top as well. I can have the screen on, or I can have the cover on. With the cover, I can sleep much colder - it works like a teeny tent and retains heat pretty well, to the point that I usually leave a crack in the zipper by my head. ~200
    - tarp - I went with the Superfly (same site - warbonnet) with doors. This runs about ~$200 as well, but it's worth it (to me). I've slept in torrential downpours and never had an issue of getting wet, or the hammock getting wet. You can prop a side open with trek poles. It is a bit heavy (being silnylon). Given an unlimited budget I would strongly consider a Hammock Gear 12' dyneema tarp with doors for around $400. The dyneema will drop a ton of weight from your package (a downside to any hammock setup is the weight).
    - bedding - Hammock Gear underquilt and topquilt (burrow and incubator). I went with long for both and 20 degree standard fill (your mileage may vary). I sleep 'cold' so don't mind a bit more weight to be comfortable. When not hiking, we (wife and I) fight over the burrow because it's that good (we had to name it TimeShare). The underquilt works really well once you get it dialed in on the warbonnet (stretchy strings and clips attach it in seconds) and the topquilt (sewn footbox) pulls up plenty enough to keep me warm (can pull it almost up over my head if desired). IMO you can't beat Hammock Gear quilts
    - pillow - hammock pillowing is a bit different for me. in a bed / ground tent I like a nice big pillow, but in the hammock I use one of those tiny inflatable ones, and only inflate it partway to stick under my neck (basically it fills the 'gap' and relieves the strain). I have back and neck problems (old service injuries) and was a big reason I moved to a hammock. I imagine a rolled up puffy jacket would work the same

    also don't forget
    - stakes (for the tarp). I use the MSR aluminum ones, only need 6 I think (4 for the tarp, 2 for the hammock cover) and they're light. yup you could use twigs, or spend a gazillion on something else - but those work amazing for me. so well, that I made a tiny silnylon bag out of scrap to hold them. can't imagine not having them
    - tie-down ropes etc. i use zing-it (dutchwaregear - excellent source for all the bits) and some small bungee. basically zingit tied to the tarp corner, then tied to (fully stretched)bungee piece about 2" long, and total length about 4ft. This lets the bungee piece keep the tarp tight without having to re-stake all the time. I'm sure I learned it from some video or the hammock book or forums.
    - ridge line, tree straps, d-rings, etc. I basically built my suspension system from dutchwaregear, but he sells complete sets. he sells a continuous ridgeline all set up for like $35 (the little stinger and dutch hooks work amazing). I could spend $500 on his site just in the hardware parts and not have everything I think I want. Who am I kidding, I've probably spent at least $200 as it is.
    - snake skins (for the tarp). these make putting it away a breeze. you unstake your tarp, slide the skins up and they cover the tarp into a nice clean little snake. If your tarp is wet you may not want to do this without stopping to dry it later - but they also allow you to just hang the tarp up (still in the snake skins) and the tarp is ready in case you need it.

    - Warbonnet XLC hammock
    - Hammock Gear quilts
    - DutchWare for all the bits and pieces you need

    The books mentioned above are also excellent reads. I don't get real picky with the angle of my tree straps, and I have color coded strings so I know which end is the 'head' (blue for sky, sky is head; grey for feet, feet on ground) but I only slightly elevate my feet if anything.

    oh one (two) final thing - a piece of that building wrap material (2'x3' is plenty) for a ground cloth, and a large gatorade bottle (that you do NOT drink out of - ever. paint the lid black, put tape on it, something)

    having made the move to a hammock about 4 years ago, I'll never go back. There are cheaper ways to get to the above - but like you, I prefer to buy-once cry-once. I still have the same gear 4 years later; I consider it a solid investment, even if it's hanging in the backyard half the time.

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