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#113043 - 03/19/09 05:31 PM Re: Winter hammocking (an oxymoron) [Re: 300winmag]
ringtail Offline
member

Registered: 08/22/02
Posts: 2296
Loc: Colorado Rockies
Eric,

You tried a hammock and found it did not work for you. It is good for you to try new things. Sorry it did not work for you.

However, some of the comments about hammock indicate the person has not used a hammock. We need to talk about the gear we use and not speculate about gear we have never used.

I use a hammock, but:

I do not snow camp with a hammock because snow is good insulation and I want to take advantage of what nature provides. Cold camping is different than snow camping.

I sleep on the ground in the desert. On a trip into the Grand Canyon I hung three out of five nights. I could have hung all five nights, but a couple of spots were too scenic to pass up.

I sleep on the ground above timberline. It is often possible to hang, but just not worth the extra effort.

I did a six night trip with a ground dweller. He used a bandana to wipe the condensation from his tent each morning. Bandanas do not dry quickly under a poncho and my buddy admitted he had been warm and wet for most of the trip, and that was with him cooking under my hammock fly. I was dry the entire trip.

When I pack with the same buddy I do not even start to set up my hammock until he has his ground cloth down and laid down to check for level. I always have my hammock up before he finishes with his tent.

I am not out to convert anyone. This is gear not a religion. However if Dr. Phil asks "How is that working for you?" and I answer, "Great", then it is not appropriate to try to convince me otherwise.

Shug is a professional entertainer. He rides a unicycle and camps below zero in a hammock. I suspect he is a guy that collects skills.


Edited by food (03/19/09 05:33 PM)
_________________________
"In theory, theory and practice are the same. In practice, they are not."
Yogi Berra

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#113044 - 03/19/09 06:05 PM Re: Winter hammocking (an oxymoron) [Re: ringtail]
DTape Offline
member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 654
Loc: Upstate NY
For the record, I use a hammock all four seasons in upstate NY. This past January I spent a weekend in -7*F weather in Allegany forest with winds blowing off the reservoir close to 20mph. I used an 8x10 tarp over my hammock. I was plenty cozy warm. I sleep better hanging than I do on the ground. Oh, my pack weight was less than 20#.
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#113045 - 03/19/09 06:18 PM Re: Winter hammocking (an oxymoron) [Re: DTape]
ringtail Offline
member

Registered: 08/22/02
Posts: 2296
Loc: Colorado Rockies
Exactly. Is it likely that someone that has never hung in those conditions can convince you that winter hammocking is a failed idea?

Theory and speculation are less persuasive than experience.
_________________________
"In theory, theory and practice are the same. In practice, they are not."
Yogi Berra

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#113060 - 03/20/09 12:28 AM Re: Winter hammocking (an oxymoron) [Re: ringtail]
Jimshaw Offline
member

Registered: 10/22/03
Posts: 3938
Loc: Bend, Oregon
food,

I thought we weren't taking sides... smile

Just to look at Shugs trip, he has a tent and hammock that weighs the same or more than my tent with the extra under insulation required and he hangs his hammock inside a tent. goodjob So is this really hammocking? Or is it something else like HAMMOTENTING?

Now seriously - his example of winter camping is this - HE SLEEPS IN A HAMMOCK INSIDE A TENT! And he says that he cooks in his hammock, when in fact he cooks NEAR his hammock while sitting in it.

I sleep on a down airmattress in a tent. The ONLY real difference is a hammock has a more rounded clingy shape and a tent floor has a flat shape. Depends on how you like to sleep. I sleep on my side, so a down airmattress on snow is great.

Some people love the feeling of hammocks.
Hammocks have been around for a long time.
Jim
_________________________
These are my own opinions based on wisdom earned through many wrong decisions. Your mileage may vary.

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#113068 - 03/20/09 09:14 AM Re: Winter hammocking (an oxymoron) [Re: TomD]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Originally Posted By TomD


Personally, I would not want to be in a hammock in a snowstorm or in high wind, but maybe that works for other people. For me, a hammock is too claustrophobic. I use a two person tent, which you can see in my trip reports and that's just for me.



Claustrophobic is my middle name. I can't sleep in tents or mummy bags. I had a two person tent. If I still had it I wouldn't go out there. And when I mention this to other hammockers they are surprised as well because it's true that some hammocks are claustrophobic. The Hennessy was okay, the Warbonnet is better. A simple gathered end is not.

High winds can be managed by site selection, and snow is less of a worry than heavy ongoing rain when you are using a tarp.

re: tarps that look like tents - this is part of the appeal of a hammock system. that's not a tent, it has no floor, but many winter tarps can be staked to the ground to provide more coverage or less as desired, and that flexibility works pretty darn well with very little additional weight. This helps a LOT with first item above, claustrophobia, as a couple of poles/sticks and you have a porch to look out from when you wake up in the morning. And can anyone stand up in a tent?

The bottom line is unless one actually uses an item requiring a bit of a learning curve more than a few times you don't really understand how to use it. This would apply to making and using your own stoves, IMO, or tarps (not tarptents), or hammocks. I gave up on making stoves after one try - it wasn't worth my time to develop that skill set. It's more than worth it to me to use the hammock because it's what keeps me hiking the next day instead of lying around trying to motivate aching joints to work and not wanting to move because I haven't slept a wink. Better to sleep soundly than not.

I can't speak to the weight of winter hammock setups - I am not about to go out with a Titanium Goat stove, hammock hut, six quilts and snow camp in below zero weather; I go out to be out, and sitting in a hut doesn't qualify, in my book, even if it's -5 outside and 72 inside the hut. I think some people do it for the cool factor. But there are plenty of gear nuts who go arctic camping without hammocks, too.


_________________________
"In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities. In the expert's mind there are few." Shunryu Suzuki

http://hikeandbackpack.com

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#113071 - 03/20/09 10:10 AM Re: Winter hammocking (an oxymoron) [Re: Jimshaw]
ringtail Offline
member

Registered: 08/22/02
Posts: 2296
Loc: Colorado Rockies
Fair enough, I guess I was taking sides.

Shug is in the learning curve. I use the same technique with new gear. I take way more than I think I need then leave what I did not use at home on the next trip.

I would be more interested in DTape's gear list of what does work than to have aeronautical engineers tell me a bumble bee can not fly.
_________________________
"In theory, theory and practice are the same. In practice, they are not."
Yogi Berra

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#113075 - 03/20/09 11:26 AM Re: Winter hammocking (an oxymoron) [Re: hoz]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Originally Posted By hoz


No, but I did read about a guy who was struck by lightning while sleeping in his hammock. An isolated incident to be sure, but it did happen.

This thread was about winter camping in a hammock. Personally, I don't consider having to bring and rig extra insulation and hanging a tarp so that it looks like a tent (completely enclosing the hammock) to be a particularly convenient or efficient way to camp in cold weather.

And one last time, why didn't the Ojibwe, the Cree, the Inuit, the Dene or the Sami sleep in hammocks?


I read about people struck by lightening on Half Dome. I still went. So do thousands of other people who don't get struck by lightening.

You have your reasons, I have mine. I like to stand up instead of changing clothes lying down. I like to cook under my tarp. I like to avoid hoisting myself up off the ground where I spent my whole night tossing and turning without sleeping. You are welcome to sleep anywhere you like, allow me the courtesy of doing the same without being heckled for my (perfectly valid) choices.

Think about the materials the native americans had on hand and whether they would make a comfortable hammock. I am certainly not going to take a hammock made of plant matter out in the rain. And that's a red herring argument anyway - if you are going to limit yourself to what historical people used in various locations, throw away your backpack, your nylon tents, your handy little cookstoves, your synthetic clothing, your fancy boots, and those store bought freeze dried meals in those little foil packets. Just because your great great great grandpappy didn't use it does not mean a particular item of gear is not useful today.
_________________________
"In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities. In the expert's mind there are few." Shunryu Suzuki

http://hikeandbackpack.com

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#113081 - 03/20/09 02:43 PM Re: Winter hammocking (an oxymoron) [Re: lori]
hoz Offline
member

Registered: 10/31/02
Posts: 138
Loc: midwest
Thanks for your permission to camp and sleep anyway I like, not that I asked for it. I'll grant you the same courtesy, but I still reserve the right to give a good natured heckling.

We are discussing the "concept" of hanging in a hammock outside in cold weather and the seemingly herculean adaptations required to accomplish it, not the materials used. Your extensive list of modern camping equipment is a non sequitur.
_________________________
We don't stop hiking because we grow old, we grow old because we stop hiking. Finis Mitchell

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#113083 - 03/20/09 02:53 PM Re: Winter hammocking (an oxymoron) [Re: ringtail]
DTape Offline
member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 654
Loc: Upstate NY
food, since you asked, here is an incomplete list of what I carry in the sub-zero days. only the sleeping gear...

Claytor Double bottom hammock
TNF -20 Down Bag
Equinox 8x10 Silnylon tarp
Sunshade
w-mart blue pad (wide dimply one)
2nd w-mart pad (3/8inch ccf)
poncho (used in my system as an undershield for the hammock)
_________________________
http://ducttapeadk.blogspot.com

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#113090 - 03/20/09 05:18 PM Re: Winter hammocking (an oxymoron) [Re: DTape]
ringtail Offline
member

Registered: 08/22/02
Posts: 2296
Loc: Colorado Rockies
Thanks, good to know.

I have a Claytor No Net and using two layers of GossamerGear 3/8" pads I have been cozy at 15. But, I am aware of the places that are only a single layer of pad.

Do you have any feel for how important the sunshade is in your system? How do you use the sunshade?




_________________________
"In theory, theory and practice are the same. In practice, they are not."
Yogi Berra

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#113091 - 03/20/09 05:48 PM Re: Winter hammocking (an oxymoron) [Re: hoz]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Originally Posted By hoz
We are discussing the "concept" of hanging in a hammock outside in cold weather and the seemingly herculean adaptations required to accomplish it, not the materials used. Your extensive list of modern camping equipment is a non sequitur.


We are discussing the reality that people can and do hang outside in the cold. It's not herculean if you are motivated to do it.

The matter of materials is not a nonsequiter - I don't know why those people you list did not use hammocks, but I can make a guess that materials derived from plants and animals degrade rapidly and need frequent replacement. This is after all why we use synthetics - cotton doesn't keep you warm and cotton thread rots in gear, which is why when engaged in any outdoors DIY project the recommendation in the directions is usually not to use cotton thread. Anything that bears weight will have additional strain. Suspension ropes and hammock fabric bear weight. If you are actively expending energy on a daily basis to hunt your food, are you going to spend it making hammocks or catching and butchering animals?

In cultures in South America many societies were not hunter-gatherers as in North America, so they were not out every day hunting and gathering to obtain food and living hand to mouth - their civilizations evolved to the point of specialization so there were farmers, hunters, etc and probably you could visit a Mayan city and barter a hammock from your local weaver. If I had to make a new hammock from animal skins or sit weaving it fresh from whatever plant materials I have available, I wouldn't do it either. I don't have the time. Since I have a paypal button, I can have nylon and down quilts, nylon hammocks, and sleeping pads delivered to my door with no extra effort to make it happen - I can spend most of my time making money to trade for materials that will probably last for years with proper care and keep me warm without issue.

So we are again discussing apples and oranges. We aren't hunter gatherers, and we aren't going to be needing to kill a buffalo to get our food and blankets.
_________________________
"In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities. In the expert's mind there are few." Shunryu Suzuki

http://hikeandbackpack.com

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#113096 - 03/20/09 07:52 PM Re: Winter hammocking (an oxymoron) [Re: lori]
hoz Offline
member

Registered: 10/31/02
Posts: 138
Loc: midwest
Originally Posted By lori

We are discussing the reality that people can and do hang outside in the cold. It's not herculean if you are motivated to do it.

The matter of materials is not a nonsequiter - I don't know why those people you list did not use hammocks, but I can make a guess that materials derived from plants and animals degrade rapidly and need frequent replacement.


The native peoples could have made perfectly serviceable sheet goods from any number of natural materials. I've seen Moose hide fleshed and finished so light you could almost see through it and yet it is as strong if not stronger than any modern day ripstop. They also wove grasses and bark into soft clothing, trays and pliable ropes. Many of which can still be seen today in museums. After contact with the whites linens and canvas was available.

Today the First Nations Peoples or the Sami of Lapland could use the internet or local outfitters to acquire a Hennesey or whatever.

They do not because through millennia of real experience living out on the land they know it's a futile exercise. They would much rather pitch their Tipi, Wigwam, Lavvu or build an Igloo and sleep on the ground where it's warm and the wind doesn't steal their warmth.

White man has always fought against nature, instead of living with it.
_________________________
We don't stop hiking because we grow old, we grow old because we stop hiking. Finis Mitchell

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#113100 - 03/20/09 08:32 PM Re: Winter hammocking (an oxymoron) [Re: ringtail]
DTape Offline
member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 654
Loc: Upstate NY
For a while I questioned the sunshade, but after numerous experiments it does a great job. At first I thought it was simply a vapor barrier, but when I played around with "where" I put it in the layering system, I am convinced the reflective properties do prevent a noticeable amount of heat loss. From the bottom up: poncho on outside of hammock, in the pad sleeve- large blue dimply pad, 3/8in pad, sunshade. Then sleeping bag. I think the net helps a bit too, since when I unzip it, I immediately feel a change in air temp. Might only be small bit, but I notice it.
_________________________
http://ducttapeadk.blogspot.com

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#113103 - 03/20/09 09:07 PM Re: Winter hammocking (an oxymoron) [Re: hoz]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Originally Posted By hoz

They do not because through millennia of real experience living out on the land they know it's a futile exercise. They would much rather pitch their Tipi, Wigwam, Lavvu or build an Igloo and sleep on the ground where it's warm and the wind doesn't steal their warmth.

White man has always fought against nature, instead of living with it.


What's so against nature about hanging in trees without damaging the undergrowth, taking animals for skins, and leaving no blade of grass bent?

I don't even have to use a tent stake. Why damage Mother Earth by stabbing her?

The ground steals warmth - just go lay on it for a while without that sleeping pad.
_________________________
"In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities. In the expert's mind there are few." Shunryu Suzuki

http://hikeandbackpack.com

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#113104 - 03/20/09 09:09 PM Re: Winter hammocking (an oxymoron) [Re: DTape]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Have you ever tried one of the overcovers? I draped a poncho over my bugnet one night to try it out. Seemed immediately warmer inside even with the ends vented.
_________________________
"In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities. In the expert's mind there are few." Shunryu Suzuki

http://hikeandbackpack.com

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#113106 - 03/20/09 09:32 PM Re: Winter hammocking (an oxymoron) [Re: lori]
DTape Offline
member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 654
Loc: Upstate NY
When I first started using a hammock, I was out and the temp dropped a lot. I did drape a poncho over my bugnet and you are correct about the increase in warmth. I haven't tried a real overcover, sock, etc...
_________________________
http://ducttapeadk.blogspot.com

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#113109 - 03/20/09 10:33 PM Re: Winter hammocking (an oxymoron) [Re: DTape]
Tango61 Offline
member

Registered: 12/27/05
Posts: 931
Loc: East Texas Piney Woods
DTape,
I've made and used a "hammock sock" and measured a 7degree F difference between "inside" and "outside".

For everyone else (just throwing in my $0.02)
My winter sleep system is the same for tent or hammock:
3/8 CCF pad, Exped7 downmat, RayWay Alpine quilt, 100wt small liteweight blanket to cover the ccf pad, appropriate sleep clothes depending on temps.

My hammock/tarp is slightly lighter than my tent, but I don't hammock due to weight. I do it for comfort. The pain in my shoulders when sleeping on the ground is excruciating. In a hammock, I have no pain.

My lowest temp has been 22F with 35mph winds. We don't have snow down here, just ice. I've done ice too. If I had snow, I'd try both a hammock and a tent and see which I liked best and go with it.

As for Shug and his video's, he is always testing gear!
_________________________
If you think you can, you can. If you think you can't, you can't. Either way, you're right.

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#113606 - 03/31/09 09:18 PM Re: Winter hammocking (One last comment...promise) [Re: Tango61]
300winmag Offline
member

Registered: 02/28/06
Posts: 1342
Loc: Nevada, USA
I must say that the times I slept in a hammock and was VERY glad to be in it was on the U.S. Brig Niagara as crew. This is a reconstructed 1812 warship that foughtthe British in the battle of Lake Erie. It's home port is Erie, PA, my hometown.

When it was rough weather we swabbies (35 of us in one compartment below deck) would never feel the ship rock because it rocked beneath us while we stayed quite still. Meanwhile the poor captain and officers were sliding on their bunks.

In the morning we'd unhitch our hammocks, roll them up, stenciled number out, and take them topsides and store them on the hammock rail "fencing", covered by heavy, white canvas.

So, yeah, under certain circumstances I DO appreciate hammocks.

Eric

BTW, handling sail on a spar 85 ft. above a rolling deck makes for a higher "pucker factor" but is actually such fun that we always looked forward to it.
_________________________
"There are no comfortable backpacks. Some are just less uncomfortable than others."

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#113620 - 04/01/09 12:25 AM Re: Winter hammocking (One last comment...promise) [Re: 300winmag]
Jimshaw Offline
member

Registered: 10/22/03
Posts: 3938
Loc: Bend, Oregon
300winny


I've done a fair amount of sailing, seams half of it in heavy weather gale to hurricane force. I've had green water over my tennies as I tied in reefs, and I've been at the helm of a 35 footer that was thrown 50 sideways, but I have never been aloft or climbed a rat line. I have a squarerigger model in my living room that an old sea captain gave me for doing his locks for him for free.
Jim

Did you ever dismount a mast or raise a mast section? How many sections high is it ? 3?
Jim
_________________________
These are my own opinions based on wisdom earned through many wrong decisions. Your mileage may vary.

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#122867 - 10/24/09 05:33 PM Re: Winter hammocking [Re: Bearpaw]
Knight Hawk Offline
newbie

Registered: 10/03/09
Posts: 13
Loc: UP Michigan
awesome setup! i've been looking for pictures of winter hammock setup for some pointers Cheers!

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