At Everest Active Gear, we believe in giving new adventures a try. Especially if any new venture has anything to do with being able to spend time outdoors!
Which brings us to camping hammocks and how fantastic it is to be in one. Even in our own backyards, a camping hammock is ideal for use as a chair or an afternoon nap.
If you have never used one it might seem like a challenging process, but in actuality, once you know-how, you can have a camping hammock set up in a few minutes.
Gather your Materials
You will need your hammock, your straps, and two trees about 10-15 feet apart. Any less than 10 feet and your hammock will be too loose.
Trees have to be at least ten feet apart because applying body weight will make the hammock hang lower towards the ground. touch the ground.
If the trees are farther apart than 15 feet, the hammock will not have enough slack and will be too tight.
It is best to use straps instead of ropes since rope will cut into the bark of the trees and will affect their health, possibly causing the tree to die.
Keep in mind that these trees are like your hosts, they are keeping you safe for the night and you don’t want to repay them by damaging them.
Straps are also incredibly durable, lightweight to carry and can be easily adjusted.
Check the Terrain
Check your trees. Are they alive and well?
You are looking for a tree that has a decent size span of about eight inches or more. If you are unable to fit both of your hands around the trunk of the tree, it should support your weight.
Once you have selected your trees, look up. You are checking for broken branches that might come down in a wind and make for a rude awakening.
There is a saying, never hang your hammock higher than you want to fall.
It also holds true not to hang your hammock over objects you would not want to fall on, such as rocks or in a river.
It can be beautiful to camp near cliffs and ravines, but you will have a better time observing nature rather than becoming part of the landscape!
Park Rules & Regulations
So, you’re all set and ready to have a hammock adventure. You’ve checked all the safety regulations, you found the perfect spot with the perfect view, and you cannot wait to jump into your hammock and just relax.
Then it happens, the park ranger storms over with an annoyed look on his face. You try and explain that your tree saver straps won’t damage the tree, but the ranger wants nothing to do with it. He has you pack up your gear and sent home in disgrace.
What went wrong? The fact is, that parks have rules and regulations. You need to make sure that your hammock is allowed in the park. The ranger will not turn a blind eye and it doesn’t matter how pure your intentions are.
If it is against park rules and regulations, there is nothing that anyone can do to plead your case. Be prepared and check these things beforehand.
Hammock Hang Calculator
Derek Hansen (credit for the image above) has a hand guide that is ideal for a perfect hammock hang.
You can also get the Hammock Hang Calculator App by Dan Wilson on your iPhone or iPad for easy quick measurement calculations.
A hammock hang calculator factors in the distance between trees, ridgeline length, preferred sit height, weight in a hammock and hang angle then calculates how high you should put hammock anchor points for hanging your hammock.
Once you have been hammock camping a few times, the process will become second nature and you will be able to sight and hang your hammock in a matter of minutes.
In regard to hanging a hammock, the saying is true, practice makes perfect!
There are times in our lives when we miss out because we are reluctant to try something new. But activity is only new once, after that you build on your experience.
Learning to hang a hammock is much like learning how to drive a stick shift. It might take a few tries at the beginning, but once you learn how, it will stay with you always.
Any activity that gets you out in nature is worth learning!
Can I hang a hammock on a hammock stand?
Yes, you can hang a hammock on a hammock stand. Hammock frames come in various materials, shapes, and sizes, they are designed to be portable so you can hang your hammock anywhere.
How much space does a hammock stand take?
Hammock stands require a lot of space. The dimensions vary, but commonly they range at 4 feet wide and 5 to 15 feet long.
What’s the ideal sit height for a hammock?
The ideal sit height between your hammock and the ground is 18 inches, but still, it would vary on your height or length, adjust to what is adequate for you.
The same average height of that of a chair, for ease when changing positions and for comfortable sitting.
How tight should the hammock be?
The most common mistake campers make in hanging a hammock is setting it up too tight. As you set up the hammock from the side, it appears like a banana.
You can also check this cool hammock calculator for more informal estimation when you install your gears.
Can I mount a hammock on top of another hammock?
Seasoned campers are capable of stacking hammocks on top of another or, as others call it, “Hammock Ladder.”
If you are compelled to do the same, be sure that your campsite allows such activity, anchor points are strong enough to support the weight of the hammocks and above all else the safety of all campers with you.