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Ultralight Hammock Camping
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Ryan Jordan
(ryan) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Greater Yellowstone
Ultralight Hammock Camping on 08/04/2005 00:03:26 MDT Print View

A place for readers to share information about reducing the weight of their hammock rigs. Companion forum thread to Carol Crooker's SuperUltraLight Hammock Camping article.

David Plantenga
(IndianaDave) - F
My "champion" Carol Crooker on 08/04/2005 04:12:12 MDT Print View

Carol Crooker's gear reviews are just what my gear engineering mind ordered! Great service to Ultra-Lite hikers. Really enjoy the photos as I'm a "visual" learner man.
Thanks Carol and BPL!

Ryan Corder
(demo) - MLife

Locale: Arkansan in Seattle
little critter on 08/04/2005 08:34:38 MDT Print View

great article! isn't that critter in the picture a Horny Toad?

Carol Crooker
(cmcrooker) - MLife

Locale: Desert Southwest, USA
Horny toad on 08/04/2005 10:27:30 MDT Print View

Thanks Ryan,
Noted in the article.

David - thanks!

Edited by cmcrooker on 08/04/2005 10:27:48 MDT.

Victor Karpenko
(Viktor) - MLife

Locale: Northern California
Horned Lizard on 08/05/2005 00:30:32 MDT Print View

It is a Desert Horned Lizard, Phrynosoma platyrhinos. Now why would you want to call a lizard a toad?

(sammyl) - F - M
Enjoying the night out on 08/05/2005 10:48:37 MDT Print View

Thanks for this presentation. Appears quite idyllic -- lovely view of a brief escape. You made it look easy and comfortable, despite the rain, all perfectly manageable. We need more such invitations to spend the night out.

Edited by sammyl on 08/06/2005 08:49:28 MDT.

Patti Binder
(quiltbinder) - MLife

Locale: Southwestern Indiana
lighter hammock on 08/05/2005 21:41:31 MDT Print View

This hammock is a great inexpensive source of lightweight hammock fabric. I lightened mine by cuttung off and hemming one side to a 48"width(works better with underquilt). I don't trust the holes made by the stitches in the casings on ends, so I got rid of a little more fabric by cutting open each casing next to the seam on one side and an inch away on the other, turned the raw edge under and sewed it down to the seam. I then gathered the ends in little pleats and secured them with cable ties.
I used approx. 10ft. Air Core Plus on each end to secure the hammock to the Tree Huggers(1 1/2" webbing) from my Hennessy Hammock. A simple girth hitch is used to fasten the ACPlus to the hammock ends.
My modified Ultralight Travel Hammock with about 10 ft. of ACPlus on each end, and the hooks for the HH fly which I took off my HH, weighs 8.1 oz. That's certainly enough wgt savings to use the 2.4 oz. Tree Huggers and save a few trees. My HH fly with gold reflective spectra guylines in a little sylnylon stuff sack weighs 8.5 oz.
This was a great article. Gives me hope that I can lighten up some more. I think I'm about ready to graduate from my 1 1/2 lb pack to something lighter.
BTW, is there a review somewhere on the pack you used?

Carol Crooker
(cmcrooker) - MLife

Locale: Desert Southwest, USA
Mountain Laurel Designs Pack on 08/07/2005 08:08:39 MDT Print View

Hi Patti,
Sounds like some great mods to the Travel Hammock!
The Mountain Laurel Designs Prophet 25 pack is getting some more field testing by our editor Doug Johnson, including use on an attempted triple 50 - 150 miles in 3 days. The review will be out in a month or so.

Carol Crooker
(cmcrooker) - MLife

Locale: Desert Southwest, USA
Toad or Lizard? on 08/07/2005 08:16:56 MDT Print View

Thanks Victor, take a look at the "creature" caption now.

John Davis
(JNDavis) - F

Locale: Isle of Man
SuperUltralight SEries on 08/12/2005 13:56:20 MDT Print View

Carol, I'm really enjoying these articles. You'll have to do a follow up series next year. How about SuperUltralight in the Scottish Highlands:

Part 1 - Spring
Part 2 - Summer
Part 3 - Autumn
Part 4 - Winter

Given that Ray Jardine considers Britain unsuitable for tarps for several good reasons, it could be quite a challenge!

paul johnson
(pj) - F

Locale: LazyBoy in my Den - miss the forest
Re: SuperUltralight SEries on 08/13/2005 09:34:03 MDT Print View


If you care to enlighten me, please do so - i'd truly appreciate it.

Why does Ray J consider tarps inappropriate for the British Isles? I could make some guesses (like rain & wind in open areas???), but I hate to assume. I'd appreciate learning something, esp. since some of the reasons might apply to my "neck-of-the-woods".

Many thanks,

John Davis
(JNDavis) - F

Locale: Isle of Man
Ultralight Hammock Camping on 08/18/2005 10:39:56 MDT Print View

Perhaps I've got this wrong. I could have sworn there was something about Britain, Scandinavia and NZ in his Ray-Way Tarp book but a quick scan has failed to find it.

Anyway, British foul weather isn't too bad under a tarp. You know there is nothing the wind is likely to break, although pegs might pull, and a tarp with beaks can be closed off on the windward side, keeping out horizontal rain. In the aftermath of a torrential downpour, I was staggered by two things

1) How dry my cheap, Lowe waterproofs had kept me
2) The high quality of existence with the tarp pitched high (open sides and ends) in a forest glade. My breath was visible, floating one way then back under the tarp, so humidity was high, but condensation was minimal.

There have been two situations where my Akto would have been nicer than what happened under the tarp. The first was on a paying campsite which had turned to a sea of mud (although it looked grassy from a distance). Shutting out the view would have made things more homely.

The second was, of course, major insect trouble. I don't have the netting inner for the Cave and will not get or make one because, by that stage, I might as well take the tent. In New Zealand, possums would be the problem. They get into everything, and getting a bit radical, in his Bushcraft series, Ray Mears, in Tanzania, chose a single skin tent instead of his usual tarp because of hyenas.

By the way, do you know how to get slug goo off a down sleeping bag?

John Davis
(JNDavis) - F

Locale: Isle of Man
Ultralight Hammock Camping on 08/18/2005 10:43:41 MDT Print View

Just remembered!

Ray uses sticks not trekking poles to support his tarp and there are no sticks in many of the best places to camp over here - particularly the high, remote corries of NW Scotland. Fabulous places, those corries!

Tony Burnett
(tlbj6142) - F

Locale: OH--IO
Re: Ultralight Hammock Camping on 08/18/2005 13:33:07 MDT Print View

That would be "stout sticks". They are a bit heavier and have more "head" when you pour them into the glass.<g>

Mark Larson
(mlarson) - MLife

Locale: Southeast USA
Re: Re: Ultralight Hammock Camping on 08/18/2005 13:40:34 MDT Print View

If you have trouble finding stout sticks, look near large spreads of deep forest duff. Simpsons fans will recognize Duff easily, a little smoother than others.


Edited by mlarson on 08/18/2005 13:42:19 MDT.

John Davis
(JNDavis) - F

Locale: Isle of Man
Ultralight Hammock Camping on 08/20/2005 01:50:37 MDT Print View

Found it! Page 98 of my edition - Harsh Environments. Can't agree. If there is one thing the UK doesn't have, it's a harsh climate. Any bad weather gets on to the national news. One inch of snow can cause chaos in the London area because no one is properly prepared. It's true we get a good bit of rain and there is usually a breeze, but those of us who live here can choose when to get out and that means a high percentage of excellent backpacking weekends - with or without a tarp.

Back on topic - hammocks. For many years I camped without a sleeping pad. The UK precipitation levels keep most of the ground soft and any hard bits, e.g. aluvial lawns, come with natural hip holes. Using bothies - simple, untended shelters - led to the purchase of a sleeping pad. Bothy floors are hard, flat and sleep-destroying without some form of cushioning. Why use bothies? Midges tend to stay out. Most of the buildings have stood against storms for centuries. The craic can be very good.

Given the stats quoted in Carol's article - $20 and 10 oz - it seems there is now an alternative to the sleeping pad. A hammock at that weight could be carried in case of the opportunity to use it. It could be suspended from bothy rafters on midgey nights and, on stormy nights, opens up the possibility of comfortable shelter in forestry plantations. (Plantations are difficult with tents because of the way the ground is prepared for trees. The ground looks as if a huge plough has been across it, creating ridges and ditches. The trees go into the ridges, above the low pH soil water.) I'll be looking out for a cheap hammock to try.

paul johnson
(pj) - F

Locale: LazyBoy in my Den - miss the forest
Re: Ultralight Hammock Camping on 08/20/2005 02:25:53 MDT Print View


thanks for the diligent search. i'll check p.98 of my copy. appreciate the "heads up" on the misinformation. take care, pj

Craig Shelley
(craig_shelley) - F

Locale: Rocky Mountains
Source for the Hammock on 08/24/2005 22:41:30 MDT Print View

Can anyone tell me where this hammock can be purchased?

Craig Shelley
(craig_shelley) - F

Locale: Rocky Mountains on 08/24/2005 22:50:53 MDT Print View

OK. I found it in another article from the Winter 2005 Outdoor market. For others that are interested, I've listed it here.

Hershell Fannin
(hankfannin) - F
Tarps in Grand Canyon on 08/26/2005 07:52:10 MDT Print View

Anyone have any experience using tarps in the Grand Canyon. I'm headed there for 6 days starting Oct 1 and would rather not have to purchase a tent.