Buying a Hammock?
Summer is approaching and hammocking is still quite popular. It's fun, easy and folks seem to get quite creative...like hanging 10 hammocks one on top of the other. Ah, to be in college again. So much time. So much freedom.
In our jungle expedition agency, we have seen lots of different hammocks. Some really cool ones and some really stupid ones. If you're in the market for one or thinking about it, use this simple guide and review. Yeah, we know...there are a slew of hammocks out there and you can drive yourself plumb crazy at REI trying to find "the right" hammock. In reality, your hammock is your sanctuary. Its the only place you can get that is dry and free of bugs. So, you want to make sure you are getting the right hammock for you.
We have a great deal of experience and have seen some pretty cool hammocks (with a cool price tag too!). We like to keep it simple and keep with what works.
Why are you buying a hammock? This will help you when making a purchase. Cold weather, hot weather, rainy, dry, just lounging around, serious hiker, etc. All of these will play a part in what kind you select.
This quick guide/review is for our environment - rainy and hot.
Eno (Eagles Nest Outfitters) Double Nester
Price with Straps and Net: US $160 total
ENO Provides a great range of accessories for your ENO hammock. ENO is a lot like Apple products...there are only a few hammock options to select. Makes it simple. However, there are like a billion color options...that can be stressful if thats your thing. Also, its fun to get crazy colors. The only downside is that you must purchase net, straps and rainfly separately.
ENO is our go-to hammock. You can pick these up at most outdoors stores (Academy, REI) and online.
NOTE: ENO has a super cool light system that you can add to your hammock. They come in a few different colors. And, only $19. Make camp awesome and like a dance party.
Def worth the investment. You'll be the coolest person at camp. You will host the dance party!!!
Hennessy makes an incredible hammock. Set up is simple and clean. Most of their hammocks come with a rainfly. This is huge. They have an entry level (starts around $70) and then the sky is the limit. Probably our favorite is the line which opens from the bottom. Yeah, weird right? The hammock and net is one system and the only opening is on the bottom via Velcro. When someone gets in or out it looks like a whale giving birth. You're welcome!
The guys we have seen with Hennessy hammocks swear by them. Solid hammock for the price.
Cheap, standard hammocks designed to get you through the night.
Parachute Style Hammocks
Purchased from Walmart or Target type stores.
If you are planning on taking a trek or want something simple and cheap, this is the way to go. Little investment, however don't plan on this thing lasting a long time. As the saying goes...you get what you pay for. Right?
If you are not a serious hiker and want something without spending the cash...this is the one for you. There are several types like this you can pick up pretty cheap at WalMart, Target or on Amazon.
What We Use
Our agency uses Eno exclusively. Bottom line: they are cheap, super durable and lightweight. our Hammocks have held up extremely well.
My personal go-to hammock is the JungleNest by ENO. It is a net and hammock combo - all attached together. This saves time at camp, less cordage, and keeps those stupid bugs out. I like this system because there are no openings where the hammock and net are attached. For the nets you can add on your hammock, it leaves a small opening on each end, leaving the possibility of bugs getting into you space. Not fun. However, its funny watching guys who are not quite "jungleish" go crazy when they realize a freakish size bug has found its way in.
NOTE: For the JungleNest hammock...although the net is attached, it is simple to let it lay inside of the hammock and then you have an open style hammock. Nice for hanging out around camp or at the house. At night, simply hook the net on the string and then you are set to sleep.
And just because...yes, all of these images were pulled from Google. My laptop with all of my professional, awesome, campsite shots took on water and is not longer with us (tear). So, this is all I've got.