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15261Re: HH on PCT report

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  • jack_tier
    Aug 13, 2006
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      --- In hammockcamping@yahoogroups.com, "Brian Lewis" <brianle@...>
      > I'm a fairly new hammock camper, and I just came back (Tuesday)
      from a
      > 10-day (150 mile) trip on the Pacific Crest Trail in Washington
      > that I did with a couple of "dirt campers" (solo tent dwellers).
      > I used my HH UL backpacker asym, with the supershelter system
      > (undercover and underpad). I brought a 54" long ccf pad for
      inside as
      > well to hopefully ensure sufficient warmth, and I have a
      > down bag rated at 32 degrees that I used as a blanket. I also
      > a space blanket for optional use in between the layers.
      > Lowest temperatures were somewhere in the 30's. My cheap
      > told me it never got below the low 40's inside the hammock (I hung
      > this from the ridgeline inside). Only a couple of the nights were
      > cold, but my 54" long ccf pad wasn't long enough, so I sacrificed
      > shoulder area (wore more clothes there) to ensure the ccf pad
      > to my feet (and I just yesterday bought a longer and wider
      ccf ...).
      > Feet and butt were coldest. No real problems, but I did satisfy
      > myself that the space blanket really does help when temps are
      low. A
      > standard space blanket, btw, also has the same problem my pad did -
      > too wide but not long enough. Kind of a hassle to put in and take
      > the space blanket each night too.
      > Speaking of which, my total setup time is still substantially
      > than my dirt camper friends. Tear-down is just as fast, but
      > estimating or measuring space between trees (to decide how high to
      > hang), maybe clearly some sticks etc from the ground area, getting
      > straps sized to trees (I carry two sets of two sizes), getting
      > level, getting things taut, etc etc always took me longer. I might
      > continue to get a little faster at this, but I think my setup time
      > will just flat be slower than for pitching a tent. So be it.
      > Hiking with dirt campers made me a little concerned about finding
      > hanging spots nearby, but in none of the ten nights did I have any
      > significant problems. Sometimes I was a bit farther from camp-
      > than others, but no worries. OTOH, it was very handy some nights
      > that I had a hammock as we sometimes struggled to even find two
      > spots for their solo tents at some of the sites.
      > On my last night out I was pretty confident and setup with no
      > until I sat on the hammock to tighten up knots/etc ... and realized
      > that one of the trees I had tied to was dead (all the bark was
      > this wasn't immediately obvious). The way I found this out was
      > the tree started to give way (my way). I hopped off/out quick
      > that it didn't come down and I didn't even have to move much, as
      > another nearby tree offered an alternate anchor point close enough.
      > That same night I had a big rock with the remains of a small tree
      > stump poking up about where I ended up handing, and thought I had
      > high enough to avoid issues. Nope. At some point I realized this
      > somewhat pointy tree stumplet was poking me in the back/side.
      > on it in the dark with a big rock, raised my foot end slightly
      > and tightened cords and that solved it.
      > Using the supershelter system I'm still really enjoying a
      > stuff sack to keep the underpad in as part of the system. Works
      > great, saves some hassle.
      > Overall most nights the weather was surprisingly warm and dry (no
      > dew), to the point that I finally stopped putting up my tarp and
      > my bag in its stuff sack hanging just outside the hammock until
      > 2 am or so. This isn't what I consider typical for the pacific
      > northwest! A little warm underneath, but I left the undercover
      > underpad in place knowing things would get colder later in the
      > No major condensation problems, but always some with the ccf pad
      in there.
      > Trees are big here in the NW. I bought 72" straps from HH to
      > the 42" straps that come standard. Mixing and matching these
      > got me through. I use the standard HH wrap on one end, and a
      figure 8
      > and tautline hitch on the other (the figure 8 loop helps me quickly
      > figure out which end is which when pulling the hammock out of the
      > compression sack). On the tautline hitch side, sizing the
      > to the tree is easier because if it comes out a little long I just
      > one end of the strap through the other and tie off to that. This
      > solution doesn't work well with the HH wrap/knot.
      > I had been having trouble with a sort of crick in the small of my
      > on earlier trips. I had very little of this after the first
      couple of
      > days on this trip. Dunno if I just got over it, got used to it, or
      > was so tired I didn't notice it! <g> The hammock system worked
      > fine, with setup/tinker time and temperature control the biggest
      > issues. I didn't encounter enough rain to comment on. I did have
      > very windy night, and my dirt-camper-constrained location wasn't
      in an
      > ideal direction to the wind at that site. Weighting the side
      > of the tarp made a big difference; I just wrapped a mini-bungy cord
      > around a piece of volcanic rock for both sides and hung them from
      > supplied plastic hooks. The noise of the flapping tarp would
      > otherwise have been pretty annoying.
      > I originally was willing to try the HH based on the low weight of
      > base hammock, just under 2 pounds. I reckon, however, that by the
      > time I add up all the hammock-specific crap I'm carrying I've lost
      > weight battle substantially ... hammock + standard tarp +
      undercover +
      > underpad + two sets of straps + compression stuff sack weigh 3-1/4
      > pounds. Add in a space blanket, a ccf pad, light stakes, mini-
      > an optional tyvek ground cloth in case I have to pitch as a ground
      > tent, maybe a line level, maybe the HH funnels for rainy nights,
      > the total comes to over four pounds. My bivy sack + a
      > come out at 3 pounds.
      > The flexibility of setting up just about anywhere tilts me to
      > the extra pound. Grumblingly. <g>
      > Brian Lewis
      > P.S. Someone asked the weight of the standard HH fly (tarp) alone.
      > Mine is 7.6 ounces. That counts the thin plastic bag I carry it
      > but I think that's almost negligible.


      There is little reason for a three season hammock set up to 30-35
      degrees to weigh over 2.5 - 3 pounds....read the archive here and on
      www.whiteblaze.net in the hammock forum....there ares several
      alternatives to your approach...

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