“But hey, two trees anywhere is a bedroom waiting to happen, right?”
Hammocks of various designs have been used for centuries all over the world. Their versatility and simplicity of design has allowed them to work when and where a regular bed would not. Today, most people picture a hammock as a sort of brightly colored woven rug stretched between two trees. While that may have been the standard in years past, my focus here is on the evolution of the hammock into a lightweight ultra-comfortable sleeping alternative for campers, hikers, and backpackers. Camping hammocks are usually one or two layers of solid material, typically ripstop nylon or a similar fabric, with both ends gathered together and tied. The secret to their comfort is that when you lay diagonally, your body is almost flat and the support is evenly distributed without any pressure points.
About a year ago, I stumbled onto an online forum which sparked my curiosity. Of course I had to try what I learned, so I whipped up a hammock from some material I had on-hand. I was hooked. Of course this new addiction was multi-faceted, and I soon found myself experimenting with different fabrics, suspension systems, top quilts and under quilts, tarps, and all the cool accessories that might be found in any outdoor lover’s backpack.
Because I’m a tinkerer, I’ll probably never have my setup “dialed-in,” but rather will continue to try new ideas and designs as they come along. But hey, that’s part of the fun! Building your own gear makes any outing more enjoyable, whether a quick hang over lunch break or a week-long hiking adventure.
The links below will take you to pictures of my own homebrewed outdoor gear: