If you love sleeping in the sky while camping, if you want to breathe fresh air without getting wet in sweat, if you enjoy hanging off the ground, then I have found a perfect thing for you. It’s a Hammock tent.
With a Hammock tent, you do not have to go inside the tent to avoid bites from bugs and mosquitoes.
In this article, you will find all the answers to your queries regarding hammock tent camping. And you will also get to learn to set it up without any long instructions to follow.
By the end of the article, I have also left a few tips for you to have an extra dose of enjoyment during your adventure.
What is Hammock Tent Camping?
Hammock tent camping is taking a step ahead of your typical ground tent. With a hammock tent, now you can peacefully sleep under the sky with a few pieces of equipment.
Hammock tents are ultralight and easy to set up that these have become the first choice of bikepackers and backpackers.
Not only that, but a hammock tent also liberates you from sleeping on rigid, uneven grounds. What you need are a hammock, suspension straps, and two solid, sturdy trees and that’s all your hammock tent is reading to use to give you a comfortable sleep.
Furthermore, Hammocks are far more fun than tents! Having a hammock is the best way to keep your kids entertained and happily napped throughout your camping trip.
Essentials of a Hammock Tent
Camping with a hammock tent is an enduring adventure, but there are a few things you need to pay attention to before starting your venture. Down here, I have compiled a few essentials of a hammock tent to make your experience worth-recalling.
The suspension comes to help when we want to tie, hang and secure a hammock between trees. Some hammock tents have compatible suspension options and some don’t offer. I will introduce some basic suspension options you can consider while setting up.
Rope: Rope is the most common option to use for suspension. What you do is tie the rope to the tree with knots and then with the hammock. It is inexpensive, easily available in any store.
Strap: instead of rope, campers prefer strap, because it is non-stretchable and also doesn’t damage the tree bark. You simply place the strap around the tree and then attach the other end to the hammock with no knot.
Ratchet: ratchet straps always come to resume, these are adjustable straps with loops. With these, it is easy to adjust the hammock upward or downward on the tree.
To deal with challenging weather, you need to have a tarp nearby to protect yourself from rain, wind, snow, and thunderstorms. Tarps cover the complete hammock from head to foot, providing a dry area around the hammock. You can also remove it when you want some room to breathe. The tarp is usually secured to the ground with stakes and guy wires.
In winter, you don’t need a bug net but when the summer is on peak and bugs are out in full force, then a bug net is a must-have because you don’t want to wake up with swollen bite marks. Therefore, an effective bug-proof net is highly recommended. You can either buy or make your bug-proof net that fits your hammock.
Either you like having extra comfort, or don’t want to get frozen on a chilly night, you must need a sleeping pad. When the night gets extra chilly, you also need extra layers to keep your body warm and while you sleep.
Benefits of Using a Hammock Tent
Those days have gone, where you had to carry an enormous weight of tent poles and stakes for typical tents. But with hammock tents, you only need two things: hammock and suspension straps, and that’s it. Your hammock tent is ready to be underuse. It is best for bike campers as it is light on your luggage.
- Easy to set up
The amazing and selling point of hammock tents is that they are easy to set up. It makes you free from dealing with confusing tent poles and pounding stakes in the ground. Once you have found the campsite, it will take only a few minutes to set the hammock tent up. And even less time in packing after enjoying your trip.
- Campsite of your choice
With a hammock tent, your tension for finding a suitable campsite is also resolved. You don’t have to worry about the rocky grounds, debris, tree roots, or twigs anymore. With uneven ground, you can still set your hammock up there between two trees with less effort because hammocks are suspended above the ground.
- Comfortable bed for sleep and relaxation
Peaceful hours of sleep, under the starry sky and off the rocky and uneven ground: sounds amazing. Hanging the hammock straight between two trees, you can have an amazing outdoor sleeping experience with hammock tenting if you use a tarp and net as well. You can also have reading and relaxing time in your hammock during the day.
Without being poky and cramped, your body will be perfectly aligned with your level.
- Keeping you dry
If it rains, don’t need to panic, the hammock tent got your back. If the ground has become wet and damped, your suspended tent with a rainfly will protect you from getting wet during a rainstorm. Water will automatically roll off of your rainfly and you will be perfectly comfortable and dry in your hammock tent.
How to Choose a Campsite for a Hammock Tent?
Choosing a campsite for a hammock tent is not a hard task. Since you will be having no contact with the ground, half of the distress has already been eliminated.
Following the ethics of wilderness during camping, you do not want to hurt the wildlife in any way. So for this sake, always go to an established campsite. But if you choose to go to a less inhabited place, your chances of campsites have been doubled.
- The first thing you need to keep in mind is the trees. Trees you choose as your anchor points, you cannot also damage their bark. Therefore, you need to use straps instead of ropes by following the leave no trace principles.
- Another thing you need to take into account is staying away from dead trees. You are not only risking your life but also ruining the tree as well. Any dangling branch can be injurious.
- Ground doesn’t really matter in hammock camping, but large rocks or debris are substantial to avoid. Because if any misfortune happens, you can get hurt even more by having rocky land underneath.
- With hammock camping, you can set your tent up near the water resource without thinking about having unleveled ground.
Hammock tent has made your camping life a lot more happening and adventurous by reducing your worries regarding campsite.
How to Set up a Hammock Tent?
Setting the hammock tent may seem daunting, but it is not, rather it is far easier than a traditional tent. Here is the step-by-step guide to help you in setting the hammock faster and more accurately.
Step 1: Find the trees for anchoring
Start by finding two solid and sturdy trees for anchor points to support your body weight and other equipment hanging in the hammock. The trees have to be at least 4 to 5 meters (10 to 15 feet) apart from each other.
Also inspect the trees minding wildlife, strength, and stability. Be sure about your trees having no hanging branches overhead, it could be dangerous.
Step 2: Place Tree-hugger/Tree straps
The second step is wrapping straps around the tree’s diameter, about 6 feet higher from the ground for extra safety. What you need to do is simply place the strap around eye height on each of the trees and loop the end of the strap and pass it through one of the loops on the strap. Adjust your straps properly so the hammock comes to your waist height after suspension. It should be about 18 to 20 inches above the ground when you sit.
Step 3: Attach hammock to the straps
It’s the fun part. After securely placing the straps, now comes attaching those straps with the hammock.
If your hammock tent doesn’t have a built-in strap, no worry! You can easily attach them separately. Start by directly attaching the straps with the hammock rope through a carabiner each on both sides.
And that’s done. You have set up your hammock tent efficiently. Make sure you are about a few feet above the ground.
And if the weather gets unfriendly, you can also add a rainfly and tarp anytime.
How to Install a Fly and Bug Net for Your Hammock Tent?
1. Rainfly installation
To install a rainfly or tarp, you need to use a ridgeline that can be attached to the same trees you are using for anchoring the hammock.
You have to attach the ridgelines high enough to have a comfortable ambiance and good airflow inside your hammock and also have good protection from rain, wind, or snow.
You must have four guylines to attach each of these to the ground with the help of camping stakes. The guylines and stakes will keep the fly tight and stretched. It will not only help you in protecting but will also prevent water from gathering at the top. And with that, a firmly grounded rainfly will also create less noise in the wind.
2. Bug net installation
Setting up a bug net is quite easy and there are two main ways to set it up depending on the type of hammock camping you have.
The most popular method is setting a separate bug net-like rainfly. To enjoy complete protection, you need to attach the guylines to the same trees you have straps around.
The other option is having the built-in bug net with your hammock tent. These nets are commonly installed on the top of hammock openings. These protect the top, while the hammock is protecting from the bottom. You can use a zipper to come out of it.
Some Tips for Hammock Tent Camping
- Lay diagonally in the hammock. You don’t want to end up looking like a banana while lying in your hammock tent camping. So avoiding the embarrassing situation, you should always lay in your hammock by angling yourself from 30 to 45-degrees away from the center point. In this way, your back will be straight and relaxed. Use one hammock for one person to reduce the risk of getting cramped or poky. In cold weather, it will be a good idea, but in summer, you don’t want to sacrifice your spacious corner.
- Choose your trees smartly. 12 feet apart two sturdy trees with hard and durable bark should be your choice for setting the hammock tent. It is better to avoid moss or lichen trees.
- Try using a drip line on rainy days. Sometimes water can dribble down into your hammock through suspension lines even having a rainfly. To prevent this, try using a drip line. What you have to do is simply tie the string around the suspension straps on both sides of your hammock and water will pour down the drip line rather than the hammock.
- Pitching the straps at the right height. You neither want to hang too high from the ground that it becomes difficult for you to climb in or out, nor you want to pitch it too low that your back starts touching the ground when you get in. Right? That’s why finding the perfect height is important. For most adults, tying the suspension straps five to six feet off the ground works fine.
- In summer, you just need a bug net to have a good sleep, but in cold weather, you need to do a little bit extra to keep yourself warm and comfy. For this, always use underquilt. Wrapping underquilt around the bottom of your hammock can help in blocking out the cold air by providing extra insulation.
With a Hammock tent, you will be having one of the best experiences of camping. You would love the feeling of sleeping under the sky hanging between trees and breathing in such openness.
By bringing the right gear: right suspension straps, underquilt, bug-net, rainfly, extra carabiners, sleeping pad, and the hammock itself you can have double fun during the adventure. Without harming the wildlife and following the principles of leaving no trace will also give you an inner satisfaction of being a responsible human being and you will get peace in the consequence of fulfilling all that was required from you.
Hopefully, this guide has helped you in learning all about hammock camping and take full advantage of this guide and enjoy your camping to the fullest. Happy Camping!