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14096Re: HH supershelter experiences sought

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  • Brian Lewis
    Jun 14, 2006
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      Thanks, André --- it's very helpful getting different perspectives on
      this stuff, I think *particularly* where we end up making different
      assumptions (!). I wasn't at all thinking of "going to ground" based
      on temperature, though that's a very logical issue and concern. It's
      just that until I've backpacked with it a fair bit, I'm not confident
      that I'll always find two sufficiently strong trees at the requisite
      distance, not too thick to wrap straps around, sufficiently clear
      between them of tall brush or other trees. And in a location that's
      sufficiently close to where my non-hammock fellow party members decide
      to sleep. I hike in the Pacific Northwest, so that seems laughable in
      a way, but I guess I'm by nature a bit pessimistic (realistic? <g>).

      I tried another variation of sleeping in it again last night (as a
      hammock), so your last comment about "more comfort" really grabbed my
      attention. Despite the above, the primary attraction for me is the
      flexibility of finding a camping spot; I'm still not sold on the
      "comfort" part yet. It can be comfortable for limited periods. After
      3 different nights, I'm finding that when I sleep on my back
      (otherwise the most comfortable), after several hours of having my
      shoulders rounded forward I end up with a sort of minor pulled muscle
      feeling in between the shoulders near the spine. It seems hard to
      believe I'm doing something wrong, other than having the musculature
      and bone structure I'm currently blessed with (yes, I understand the
      a-sym aspect). Likely this is related to a lifestyle that has me
      sitting at a computer a lot (which also rounds the shoulders forward).

      I generally sleep fine on the ground, with just a 3/4 length
      thermarest prolite 3 (13 oz). I tried adding that to the mix last
      night; putting it between hammock and undercover was definitely wrong;
      the fully inflated mattress is stiff, and I think that pushed the
      overcover out to increase rather than decrease cold spots. I moved it
      inside the hammock and that seemed to work okay, so maybe I'll accept
      yet another 13 oz of weight and hopefully be fine for temperature in
      the air or for cushioning when on the ground.


      > Based on *some* experience with it, I very much doubt that open-
      > celled foam will do much for you by way of insulation when on the
      > ground - particularly if the temps are such that you're going to
      > ground because you get chilled when hanging.
      > For the ground option, you absolutely *need* something which won't
      > compress underneath you. DownAirMat, Big Agnes Insulated Air Core,
      > ccf pads all work - with the ccf pads being the simplest and cheapest
      > option. *Or* you decide that when you see a night coming in which
      > you'll have to go to ground, you start looking for a camp site early
      > on and find one where you can gather a lot of natural insulation
      > (dead leaves and the like) to build a nest. Not necessarily
      > comfortable, but nothing short of a DAM will feel comfortable on the
      > ground once you're used to hammocking.
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