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"Light" Three-Season Hammock?

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I'm a tent guy, but I'm contemplating a hammock for some upcoming solo trips that are lacking in easily tent-able campsites. When I do the math, however, all these hammocks seem to be heavier than a lightweight three-season tent once you consider the fly, "required" pads, netting, stakes, poles, etc. Does anyone have a good recommendation for a lightweight three-season hammock system? Thanks!
 
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I'm a tent guy, but I'm contemplating a hammock for some upcoming solo trips that are lacking in easily tent-able campsites. When I do the math, however, all these hammocks seem to be heavier than a lightweight three-season tent once you consider the fly, "required" pads, netting, stakes, poles, etc. Does anyone have a good recommendation for a lightweight three-season hammock system? Thanks!

I don't think your math is wrong. I had my hammock setup (Warbird) before I had my tent setup (Lean 1) and, if I remember right, my tent setup is about one pound lighter in total after figuring everything.

I like them both and use either one depending on conditions. I haven't used the hammock on a trip in quite a while because of the places I've been going and because I found sleeping on the ground with a good pad (Neoair) to be quite comfortable. My dog definitely prefers the tent.

Alan
 
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I don't think your math is wrong. I had my hammock setup (Warbird) before I had my tent setup (Lean 1) and, if I remember right, my tent setup is about one pound lighter in total after figuring everything.

I like them both and use either one depending on conditions. I haven't used the hammock on a trip in quite a while because of the places I've been going and because I found sleeping on the ground with a good pad (Neoair) to be quite comfortable. My dog definitely prefers the tent.

Alan

I bet your dog prefers the tent! lol

Some of the places I'm hoping to head next spring may be short on tent pad sites, which has me thinking about a hammock maybe being the way to go.
 
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I've also found that when you have a hammock it's hard to find good places to hang it but there are lots of good tent pads. And when you have a tent it's hard to find good tent pads but there are lots of great hanging trees.

It can be surprisingly hard to hang a hammock in a forest full of trees sometimes.

Alan
 
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I am off the ground and have no intentions of going back to ground.

Comparing tents directly to hammocks is a bit tricky, but I would suggest that similar levels of each product will likely weigh about the same. Just because one hammock setup is heavier than a tent, it doesn't track that hammocks are heavier than tents.

If you are looking for recommendations though, I would recommend you visit the Hammock Forums website, you are going to get better answers ... simply because the site is dedicated to hammocks (IMO) https://www.hammockforums.net/forum/content.php

Having said that, check out HammockGear ( https://hammockgear.com/ ) ... I bought my first topquilt there and they are awesome to deal with. I called them to ask about the options I thought I needed, they talked me out of spending more, because I didn't need it. There are also a lot of other cottage vendors that have great gear and the HF website has a whole list for reference.

Brian
 
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I am off the ground and have no intentions of going back to ground.

Comparing tents directly to hammocks is a bit tricky, but I would suggest that similar levels of each product will likely weigh about the same. Just because one hammock setup is heavier than a tent, it doesn't track that hammocks are heavier than tents.

If you are looking for recommendations though, I would recommend you visit the Hammock Forums website, you are going to get better answers ... simply because the site is dedicated to hammocks (IMO) https://www.hammockforums.net/forum/content.php

Having said that, check out HammockGear ( https://hammockgear.com/ ) ... I bought my first topquilt there and they are awesome to deal with. I called them to ask about the options I thought I needed, they talked me out of spending more, because I didn't need it. There are also a lot of other cottage vendors that have great gear and the HF website has a whole list for reference.

Brian

Thanks, Brian. I'll check it out. While my survey was far from scientific, I did find that in just about all my comparisons, the hammock option was heavier than the comparable tent option, and I was beginning to think that's just the way it goes. That is not a deal-killer for me, but it certainly is a consideration while solo tripping with lots of portages.
 
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Where are you going? Hammocks would work fine in Maine for the most part though I sold mine for one reason. There is always at least one site that won't support a hammock.. Maybe one night hammocked on the ground is ok for you but it wasn't for me.

And I have always preferred air circulation in bug season though its not a deal ender. If you can find two trees suitably spaced in the open its a win win. Remember that unless it is very cold you don't need a pad. For a little butt insulation a length of blue Wal Mart pad will do. I have never brought poles hammocking. I know you can but IMO then why not a tent?
 
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It can be surprisingly hard to hang a hammock in a forest full of trees sometimes.

Or a tarp, especially if taking desired wind orientation into consideration.

I cheat. I have a piece of string with a long push pin on one end, with a knot at my minimum hammock hanging length and another knot at my minimum Tundra Tarp ridgeline length.

In some open piney forest with a gazillion tree possibilities it sure helps to stick that push pin in a tree, walk off the knots and find just the right pair in the right wind orientation, instead off discovering that these two are too close, these two are too far apart.
 
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Where are you going? Hammocks would work fine in Maine for the most part though I sold mine for one reason. There is always at least one site that won't support a hammock.. Maybe one night hammocked on the ground is ok for you but it wasn't for me.

And I have always preferred air circulation in bug season though its not a deal ender. If you can find two trees suitably spaced in the open its a win win. Remember that unless it is very cold you don't need a pad. For a little butt insulation a length of blue Wal Mart pad will do. I have never brought poles hammocking. I know you can but IMO then why not a tent?

This is for very early season (ice-out) solo trips, where I'll be camping in some undeveloped sites. You know how thick those north shores can be! A couple of the hammocks that were suggested to me require a pad apparently. A couple also have an optional pole system that is very light and supposedly adds quite a bit. I'm not at all sold on a hammock, but I'm considering....and doing my research...because it's almost winter....which is when we do our research ;-)
 
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I like superior hammocks system I particularly like the intigrated under quilt. i camp in the adks and always yse an underquilt.
 
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This is for very early season (ice-out) solo trips, where I'll be camping in some undeveloped sites. You know how thick those north shores can be! A couple of the hammocks that were suggested to me require a pad apparently.

I don't know if you specifically meant pads or were referring to bottom insulation in general but, in my opinion, some sort of insulation under you is almost a necessity in all but the warmest weather, especially when a little breeze pics up.

My hammock has a double layer bottom so I can slide a pad in and it helps in stay in place but I never really liked sleeping on a pad and, unless I used an expensive inflatable, they were bulky to pack. A bottom quilt however is very nice. In hot weather, when I'm going to sleep, I let the pad slip off the back side (side without the zipper) so that my backside is cooler. When I wake up chilled in the middle of the night I just unzip, reach my arm under the hammock, and pull the bottom quilt into place.

Alan
 
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I cheat. I have a piece of string with a long push pin on one end, with a knot at my minimum hammock hanging length and another knot at my minimum Tundra Tarp ridgeline length.

In some open piney forest with a gazillion tree possibilities it sure helps to stick that push pin in a tree, walk off the knots and find just the right pair in the right wind orientation, instead off discovering that these two are too close, these two are too far apart.

That's a good idea. When I was hammock camping I would step it off. If I remember right my ideal distance was seven paces. Six or eight wasn't bad but five and nine were really starting to push it.

I swear every set of trees looks like the perfect distance until you get the hammock halfway set and realize otherwise. What used to really get me, when I used to use a diagonal Kielty Noah tarp which was a good deal longer than the hammock, was getting the hammock all set up and then finding out there wasn't room for the tarp.

Alan
 
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There are a couple options to consider when looking at hammocks, the main ones are either a bridge or gathered end style.

This is the gathered end that I designed, with "saddlebags"and bugnet. I sewed up the tarp from Silpoly and made the "Under" and "Top" quilts ... this is in Porch mode and is good to -20C (-4F)

ACtC-3e4a7gQVbKhvqq2UWDiByiviM0DTW5MxM-9uIqPV_AqFfPALXAKrpXTF2_jlDuxXeX2OYO-Lw5OJdlj1GdKHhome2QA7fBEafI3cAP363ql-GykL5wrt03ObwO2rl6rq5GMCGqxPyERSWpaOOIdbU5o=w1500-h1125-no?authuser=0.jpg

This is the Bridge I designed with basically the same setup, custom, full shelter tarp, and quilts that go to -20C (-4F) and a second set of quilts for -5C

ACtC-3el7CvJJpQXJtn1l_qXPbMGWK-qgLyG0J6EuO-R1sy5IDr3xptm4giYq7Otxri54La-1RKHLlfQfOgaTRWvrfyYu4qWBk91NcwMUkEblYyULMOFS6ZckP92FgxMAJbMjXnJwob3Lr-a8A9oVzPp7nNq=w1500-h1125-no?authuser=0.jpg

If you use a tent there are things you need besides the tent, like a pad, a sleeping bag etc., it isn't just the tent weight, it's the weight of the entire sleep system and the volume it takes up in your pack. Those quilts all use 850 down and pack up very small and are incredibly light .... but like i said before, as a sleep system, I think that a lot depends on what you think you need and what you will find comfortable.

The hammock movement is likely a lot bigger than some people realize, in the groups I camp with .... ground dwellers are rare. Like I posted, visit the HF site, data mine the posts a bit, you will find more information and possibilities than you likely realized existed.


Brian
 
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I have a REI Quarter Dome Air Hammock and love it. It allows me to sleep on my side or face down comfortably. This model is discontinued but I bet most bridge hammocks are similar comfort wise.
https://www.rei.com/product/110804/rei-co-op-quarter-dome-air-hammock

I am a belt and suspenders type of person. I carry a lot of gear in my canoe because I can and love my creature comforts. I have a large dry bag that holds my REI Half Dome 2 tent, hammock, Bivy bag and two tarps. Makes it a lot easier to find a camp site when you can choose what works best for the site.

Kayak_Ken (in a canoe)
 
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I don't know if you specifically meant pads or were referring to bottom insulation in general but, in my opinion, some sort of insulation under you is almost a necessity in all but the warmest weather, especially when a little breeze pics up.

My hammock has a double layer bottom so I can slide a pad in and it helps in stay in place but I never really liked sleeping on a pad and, unless I used an expensive inflatable, they were bulky to pack. A bottom quilt however is very nice. In hot weather, when I'm going to sleep, I let the pad slip off the back side (side without the zipper) so that my backside is cooler. When I wake up chilled in the middle of the night I just unzip, reach my arm under the hammock, and pull the bottom quilt into place.

Alan

Yes. I responding to yellowcanoe who was saying maybe skip the pad, but several of the hammocks I've looked at say they really require a pad (structurally, I guess?). This obviously adds to weight. I like the sound of yours and the flexibility it provides!
 
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There are a couple options to consider when looking at hammocks, the main ones are either a bridge or gathered end style.

This is the gathered end that I designed, with "saddlebags"and bugnet. I sewed up the tarp from Silpoly and made the "Under" and "Top" quilts ... this is in Porch mode and is good to -20C (-4F)

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/p...GqxPyERSWpaOOIdbU5o=w1500-h1125-no?authuser=0

This is the Bridge I designed with basically the same setup, custom, full shelter tarp, and quilts that go to -20C (-4F) and a second set of quilts for -5C



If you use a tent there are things you need besides the tent, like a pad, a sleeping bag etc., it isn't just the tent weight, it's the weight of the entire sleep system and the volume it takes up in your pack. Those quilts all use 850 down and pack up very small and are incredibly light .... but like i said before, as a sleep system, I think that a lot depends on what you think you need and what you will find comfortable.

The hammock movement is likely a lot bigger than some people realize, in the groups I camp with .... ground dwellers are rare. Like I posted, visit the HF site, data mine the posts a bit, you will find more information and possibilities than you likely realized existed.


Brian

Those look great! Thanks for the pictures and such a thorough response.

Like I said, I'm not at all experienced in the hammock realm, which is why I came here. All the hammocks at which I was looking required your own sleeping bag, so I had not taken into account those that did not. In terms of my comment about hammocks appearing to be heavier than tents, it seemed like I'd really be pushing it to get under two pounds for a complete hammock system (something like the Hennessy Backpacker Ultralite), whereas there are a bunch of 1- (and even 2-person tents) that weigh in at two pounds or less. I spent some time on HF last night, and I'll be back today! Thanks a lot!
 
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There is a lot going on in a good hammock setup. You do need your own bag (or top quilt) as well as some kind of insulation beneath (pad or underquilt). Lots of information to be mined over at HF, but a more distilled source lauded by many at HF is the Ultimate Hang - both a website and a book: https://theultimatehang.com/hammock-camping-101/

Thanks! What I meant was that I had not looked at any systems that were sold with top quilt/underquilt, so my weight comparison between tent and hammocks seemed accurate. I think Cruiser's point was that there are some systems (e.g., WanderLuxe Complete Kit) that don't require a separate sleeping bag, so even though it weighs in at just over two pounds, you can subtract the weight of your sleeping bag bringing it into line with lightweight one- and two-person tents.

I'll checkout the link! Thanks!
 
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If you use a tent there are things you need besides the tent, like a pad, a sleeping bag etc., it isn't just the tent weight, it's the weight of the entire sleep system and the volume it takes up in your pack.

From memory I think my hammock and tarp are pretty much the same weight as my tent, so the shelter is a wash. I use a top quilt in both of them so that's a wash. My bottom quilt in the hammock is pretty much the same weight as my sleeping pad so, again, it's a wash.

I could get a lighter tarp and hammock but I could also get a lighter tent.

I'm definitely not trying to say tents are better or lighter than hammocks but, in my limited experience, there really isn't much weight difference between them if you compare apples to apples (i.e., UL hammock to UL tent or mid-weight hammock to mid-weight tent). I'm happy to be able to choose either one (or bring both when car camping!)

Alan
 
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From memory I think my hammock and tarp are pretty much the same weight as my tent, so the shelter is a wash. I use a top quilt in both of them so that's a wash. My bottom quilt in the hammock is pretty much the same weight as my sleeping pad so, again, it's a wash.

I could get a lighter tarp and hammock but I could also get a lighter tent.

I'm definitely not trying to say tents are better or lighter than hammocks but, in my limited experience, there really isn't much weight difference between them if you compare apples to apples (i.e., UL hammock to UL tent or mid-weight hammock to mid-weight tent). I'm happy to be able to choose either one (or bring both when car camping!)

Alan

I'm with you all the way to "I could get a lighter tarp and hammock but I could also get a lighter tent." That's really my question. What lighter comparable hammock system could you get that is as light as an ultralight tent appropriate for shoulder season in Maine?

I want to be clear that I'm not basing my decision solely on weight, but that is the metric I'm looking at here in this post. I know a lot of folks will say getting a better night sleep in a hammock is worth the added weight, and I know a lot of folks will say that the added space of a tent when stormed in for a day makes a tent even more appealing.

I really appreciate everyone chiming in. It is helping!
 
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