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Hennessy Hammock Hyperlite Backpacker

in Shelters - Hammocks & Accessories

Average Rating
5.00 / 5 (1 reviews)

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Keith Selbo
( herman666 - M )

Northern Virginia
Hennessy Hammock Hyperlite Backpacker on 04/20/2009 14:47:21 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 5 / 5

Price: $229.95
Weight: 1 lb. 10 oz.

I was sold after watching the videos and reading the specs. At 1 lb. 10 oz. there are very few fully enclosed tents that can compete on a weight basis and none for comfort.

My major concern was staying warm. I worried that I might have to purchase an under-quilt which would negate the weight savings. I packed it into the mountains of West Virginia in February for a test. My friend came along with a tent just in case. It got down to 21 degrees F, but I stayed warm in my 20 degree Western Mountaineering Alpinlite and my Wal-Mart pad. I must emphasize that the big, wide Wal-Mart pad was a necessity. I could tell immediately if any part of me was off the pad. It was like touching cold cement.

I started the night wearing merino wool long underwear, shirt, nylon pants, down jacket, wool socks and wool stocking cap. At 29 degrees, I was too hot so I removed the jacket. When it bottomed at 21, I was a little bit cold but it was too big a struggle to put the jacket back on so I toughed it out. It wasn't that bad.

That's my only issue with hammocks in general. It's very difficult to maneuver inside. You can't do much besides lay there. If you need to change anything besides your mind, you pretty much need to step outside, although with practice, you can come up with ways to maneuver a little.

About this hammock in particular: It has the trademark Hennnessy asymmetric cut that lets you lie fairly flat, and the Hennessy bottom entry with Velcro closure that I personally find very convenient. I stand in the entry, pull my sleeping bag up over my shoulders, then sit and raise my feet. The velcro opening closes automatically. No zippers to zip.

When I stand in the entry, just my legs stick out. Standing this way affords a little privacy for changing clothes, and cleaning.

Inside, the ridge line makes a fine place to hang the gear you absolutely don't want to do without in the morning. For me that's my shoes which I hang over the line and kick to the foot end. A mesh pocket hangs from the ridge. It's good for glasses, watch, headlamp, radio etc.

Setup is easy. You extend your hiking poles at arms length and find two trees that are at least that distance apart to wrap the tree friendly straps around. The straps aren't very long so the trees need to be of small diameter (like 4 or 5 inches). Hennessy sells longer straps if you plan to camp where there are no small trees. They add a couple of ounces to the weight though.

You lash the hammock to the straps, pull back the snake skins that enclose the hammock, attach the tarp, guy out the hammock and tarp and you're set. If it's raining, attach and guy the tarp before you pull back the snake skins so the hammock stays dry. The first time I camped with the hammock in driving rain gave me a real appreciation for the overhead tarp. It doesn't just keep you dry in the hammock. It affords a spacious, dry, high-ceilinged area for doing camp chores.

You can sit, or lounge on top of the integral netting. It's a great camp chair.

Hennessy came out with a tarp that doubles as a cape in 2009. I retired my 11 oz. poncho and bought the cape/tarp. On the very next hike I took it rained. The cape kept me and my pack dry as I hiked.

These features and others can be viewed on numerous YouTube videos of this hammock.

Edited by herman666 on 10/09/2010 13:14:50 MDT.

Price comparison from GearBuyer: Western Mountaineering AlpinLite priced at: $409.95 - $479.95

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