Forum Index » General Lightweight Backpacking Discussion » Notes from the Field: SuperUltraLight Hammocking on the Black Forest Trail in Pennsylvania

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Ryan Jordan
(ryan) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Greater Yellowstone
Notes from the Field: SuperUltraLight Hammocking on the Black Forest Trail in Pennsylvania on 10/18/2005 22:14:44 MDT Print View

Companion forum thread to:

Notes from the Field: SuperUltraLight Hammocking on the Black Forest Trail in Pennsylvania

kevin davidson
(kdesign) - F

Locale: Mythical State of Jefferson
modified G6 on 10/19/2005 00:57:32 MDT Print View

So, who modified your Uberlite, Carol ? That looks like a very neat job in the photo. Did you ever incorporate a sternum strap ( which seemed to be the only other aspect of the pack you were critical about)?

Another nice article in the under 5 # series, even though I'm not a hammock camper.

paul johnson
(pj) - F

Locale: LazyBoy in my Den - miss the forest
G6 Sternum strap on 10/19/2005 01:20:03 MDT Print View

the following thread contains some ideas for adding a sternum strap to a G6. i find them very workable.

G6 sternum strap

also, i've added a "poor-man's" pad pocket to the G6. using a NightLight Toros pad (or Z-rest pad), the pad can be very easily held in place by some 1/8" bungee threaded through either 4 or 6 of the webbing loops and crossed in a simple, obvious pattern. the friction of the pad and the fact that it's "sandwiched" b/t the pack and your back, when wearing it, results in the pad "staying put". it simply doesn't slide down. i use very little tension on the bungee. it doesn't pull very hard on the webbing loops.

storing the pad this way frees up volume in the G6. it also carries very comfortable. yes, it does move the pack a bit further away from the back, but no further than with a G5 or Mariposa, plus the pack (and its contents) are generally lighter, so it's less of an issue with the G6. no, it doesn't function as a frame - since there is no waist belt there is no way to transfer load from the shoulders to the hips anyways.

wish my G6 had a mesh front ocket; G5 does, and i miss it. i know. mesh weighs more, but, IMHO, it's worth it.

Edited by pj on 10/19/2005 13:27:56 MDT.

Bill Fornshell
(bfornshell) - MLife

Locale: Southern Texas
Weight of Mesh Pockets on 10/19/2005 03:46:52 MDT Print View

When I made my first pack from the Cuben material the pack would have weighed about 1 ounce without the mesh packets. The material for the full length side and front mesh pockets weighed 1.28oz bring the total weight of the Cuben pack to 2.10oz.

I have found a much lighter mesh that only weighs 0.35oz a sq yard. I will use it for the mesh pockets on my next Cuben pack and see how it holds up. I am also working on a few other ideas that will make the pack more versatile.

I am going to start a new thread and call it "The BMW Summit Pack- What do you want it to look like" Those that want to add their "2-cents" can list what (accessories) they would like to see for it such as mesh pockets, no mesh pockets, pocket for a fishing rod, pocket for a tripod, etc. and see what we end up with.

paul johnson
(pj) - F

Locale: LazyBoy in my Den - miss the forest
Re: Weight of Mesh Pockets on 10/19/2005 04:12:27 MDT Print View


FanaticFringe makes some really excellent UL packs. The smaller lighter of the two models, the AlpineTrail (a G6 competitor, though slightly heavier, but a tad more robust), comes in both 7oz and 6oz models. the 6oz version uses silnylon for the top closure, and no-see-mesh instead of a more typical mesh for the pockets.

in case you're curious, here's a link to their "home page", and a link to their packs:



Bill Fornshell
(bfornshell) - MLife

Locale: Southern Texas
Mesh Pockets on 10/19/2005 07:41:05 MDT Print View

Thank Paul for the link to FF. I have looked at that pack but the new pictures and colors now show it much better than what I saw some time ago. As for "no-see-mesh instead of a more typical mesh for the pockets" the No-see-em mesh that I have some samples of is 1oz + per sq yard. Light but not light enough. But is anything ever light enough?

Funny about the Oxford used by FF, I just got some from Quest yesterday to play with. White, Black, Burgandy, Silver, Yellow and Royal Blue. I also have most of the same colors in grosgrain for trim.

Oxford and Cuben sounds like a travel story. I will see how they work together.

jacob thompson
(nihilist37) - F
Mesh pockets. on 10/19/2005 08:45:04 MDT Print View

I was just thinking that myself Bill. I bought a few yards of the oxford that GVP uses specifically to make a thru-hike worthy pack. I also got my samples package from cuben a few weeks back and have decided to go witht the same fabric you use. I already have a pattern cut out for making more packs quite easily. I made my last one really small just big enough to put a single layer 3D quilt in, but i made the pockets way to small and all i can fit in them is a pair of driducks on each side and a 2L platy on the front.

On my next pack Made of cuben and oxford I was going to use a nano-see-um from thru-hiker. It comes up to .7oz which isn't too bad but if you know where to get lighter I would like to know. So I can get some myself. I think pockets on the outside of UL packs are absolut necessities. I was even thinking of making a removable cover for my pack that is a big pocket. for the time when I need the extra space but dont want a larger pack.

on another note I never got to find out the supplier for the really light silk for use on a quilt. It would be nice to know that since I could probably make a sub 1lb 40-45F bag with that kind of fabric.

Carol Crooker
(cmcrooker) - MLife

Locale: Desert Southwest, USA
modified G6 on 10/19/2005 11:15:00 MDT Print View

Hi Kevin,
Gossamer Gear added the pockets, and yep, it's a pofessional job! It's an idea GVP was playing with. Don't know if he'll ever offer G6s with pockets.
As to a sternum strap - I didn't miss it on this trip. I did miss a half height pocket like on the Mariposa so I coul dgrab water on the run. Chris at Fanatic Fringe is making me an Alpine Trail with a half height pocket - now that could be a sweet SUL pack!

Bill Fornshell
(bfornshell) - MLife

Locale: Southern Texas
Mesh Pockets on 10/19/2005 15:20:00 MDT Print View

Jacob: The Mesh stuff is from Hancock Fabric. It is Bridal Netting or something like that. It is really light but I think it might be strong enough for mesh pockets. I will try it in both single and double thickness. If you have a Hancock Fabrics near where you live ask them about Bar Code number 000836635 or 000836684 and if they have it they should have it in 5 or 6 colors. Mine was $.69 a yard for stuff 72" wide.

My silk come from ThiaSilks
Thai Silk Link

You may want something called Habotai - China Silk. #21H or 26L should work for a quilt cover.
The 21H is about 0.57oz a sq yard and the 26L is about 1.02 oz a sq yard.

Richard E. Matchette
(rematch) - MLife
Anybody know what this is? on 10/19/2005 15:32:14 MDT Print View

Although you can't see the "horn" in the photo it sure looks like the larval stage of a tomato hornworm. They're 3 to 4 inches long and will eventually turn into a very large moth with a 6 inch or so wingspan. They're real common where I live in northern California between San Francisco and Sacramento. According to this web site I found, those are probably baby wasps crawling on it.

Vick Hines
(vickrhines) - F

Locale: Central Texas
Re: Anybody know what this is? on 10/19/2005 15:43:36 MDT Print View

The fabric you describe is 'voile'. You might want to test it before you commit to using it. I tried it for mosquito net and it became progressively more religious (holey) over 2 nights. I lost confidence in it. Tear strength is about 3#. By the way, it stops mosquitoes but not noseeums.

Paul Kaercher
(paulkaercher) - F

Locale: Mid-Atlantic
re-what is this on 10/19/2005 17:18:13 MDT Print View

Those things on the caterpillar are probably (I can't see them well) the cocoons made by parasitic wasp
larvae which have bored out of the caterpillar's body after they have eaten much of the caterpillar's insides.

Carol Crooker
(cmcrooker) - MLife

Locale: Desert Southwest, USA
Creature on 10/20/2005 10:52:19 MDT Print View

Thanks Richard and Kristin! I added a note to the photo.

(sammyl) - F - M
sleeping bag in hammock on 10/20/2005 13:32:04 MDT Print View

Thanks for the fine article! Hammocks solve a lot of problems, as long as there are trees available. But insulating the bottom from the outside seems a little clumsy and less versatile. Have slept warm in a mesh hammock during sub-freezing temps inside a bag with an integrated bottom pad (instead of down or synthetic fill), like Gossamer Gear, Big Agnes and Stephenson Warmlite offer.

Bill Fornshell
(bfornshell) - MLife

Locale: Southern Texas
Mesh Pockets and Hammock Stuff on 10/20/2005 14:01:02 MDT Print View

Mesh Pockets:
For mine, as in for me, I use a mesh that looks a lot like onion bag material. It work very well but is a little heavy. The material for the 2 full side pockets and full front pocket on my first Cuben pack weighed 1.28oz. I have to laugh when I tell people that something that weighs 1.28oz is to heavy. But most members who read this will know what I mean. My onion bag mesh looking stuff isn't easy for me to get. You know how long it takes one person to eat a 50 pound bag of onions. So I am always looking for something light that might work that is easy to get Light is the trick. I get stuff from Thru-Hiker once in awhile and on my next order I will get some of his lighter no-see-em stuff. I tried his other no-see-em but it weighed 1oz per sq yard.

Hammock in cold weather:
I have a Silk Hammock made by Ed Speer. I use it all year round. When it is very cold I have a special home made sleep system that I use down to 0 degrees. Inside on the bottom of the Hammock goes my home made DAM or my Warmlite DAM. I have a home made Down 4" loft Top Cover that attaches to the DAM also inside the Hammock. I get inside this and botton up the entry side and hope I don't get to warm. I have bottons on both side and can open one or a few if I start to get to warm. I made a Down hood to wear if it is that cold. This is very easy to set-up and pack up. Everything is in the Hammock. It almost looks like a Bivy inside a Hammock.

jacob thompson
(nihilist37) - F
Silk on 10/20/2005 21:38:48 MDT Print View

Hi Bill I just noticed all your post on other sites forums. I have a lot of reading to do now.

Just wondering if the silk in this photo is the one you mentioned above.

Bill Fornshell
(bfornshell) - MLife

Locale: Southern Texas
Silk on 10/20/2005 22:07:16 MDT Print View

The silk in the picture Jacob posted the link to is what I used for the baffles that I put my Down into for my DAM and Down Top Cover of my "0" degree sleeping system. there should be more pictures of what look like stuffed tubes. Those are the filled Down baffles. The silk for the baffles and what you are looking at was 5mm or 0.64oz per sq yard.

Here are a couple of pictures of My Ed Speer custom made Silk Hammock. This is one of a kind. I sent the silk to Ed and he made the Hammock for me. The silk used for this Hammock is the 8mm or 1.02oz per sq yard silk. The bug net which is folded over to the far side of the Hammock and held in place with cloths pins is 3.5mm silk guaze and weighs 0.45oz per sq yard.

You also will see my Warmlite DAM in the Hammock, it is the yellow thing.

The Hammock complete as it is hanging but without me and the DAM weighs just over 16oz. That is everything, Hammock, Bug net, ridge line and webbing to tie the Hammock to a tree.

Edited by bfornshell on 10/20/2005 22:16:04 MDT.

Carol Crooker
(cmcrooker) - MLife

Locale: Desert Southwest, USA
Lightweight, cheap hammock on 10/21/2005 13:16:28 MDT Print View

Hi all, guys had a lightweight hammock at the OR show with integrated bug netting. They claimed a weight of 17 ounces, with hanging cord. I used their standard hammock (no bug netting) on an early SUL trip. Nice and wide - very comfy. It's inexpensive at $30. I don't see the bug netting hammock on their web site, but it might be worth checking out if you're looking for something inexpensive.

Weathershield bottom on 10/21/2005 21:26:21 MDT Print View

Isn't 9.1 oz too heavy for functioning as second wind proof/water proof layer on bottom? It seems silnyon would serve the same function at half the weight especially since no insulation is being added between the two layers.

Carol Crooker
(cmcrooker) - MLife

Locale: Desert Southwest, USA
Weathershield on 10/21/2005 21:44:57 MDT Print View

Yep it's heavy, but breathable, which might have some real advantages over a longer trip when you are using insulation. I would guess the thicker material adds more warmth than silnylon too. I haven't tried a silnylon bottom, but when I used a foam pad in the weathershield, I found moisture on the foam the next morning and my back felt damp, which could speak to loft loss if you're using an underquilt. Have to do some more testing next spring :)