Next time you go camping, we recommend getting off the ground and into the air. Hammock camping is a fun way to experience your favorite campsites from a different perspective. Our friends at Kammok want to set you up for the perfect fall hammock camping experience so they’ve pulled together a list of things to keep in mind before you head outdoors.
1. Swing low. Hang your hammock low to the ground for quick access to nearby gear, full use of the tree’s strength (thicker trunk, thicker bark), and less exposure to wind and weather. Keeping your hammock low to the ground may not seem as cool as swinging high, but it’s a heck of alot easier when you need to get into it late at night after the fire dies or when mother nature calls.
2. Find your perfect hang. We recommend you hang your Kammok at about 30 degrees; however, try several angles to see what is most comfortable for you. Kammok Python Straps have 18 points of connection, so you can easily experiment with multiple angles. Kammoks are also extra long (10 feet) so you can angle your body to lay flat. Spreading out diagonally help you get maximum sleeping comfort.
3. Stay warm. Hammocks create a “bridge effect” in the cold and wind (bridges freeze first!), so fall temperatures will feel cooler in a hammock than on the ground. Bring extra insulation and warmer gear – here are a few extra pointers:
- Find a place where you are not too exposed to wind and weather. If that is hard to find or not available we recommend using a rain tarp or weather shelter, even if it’s not raining. If you are leaving your tent at home, it is great to have even a lightweight fly. You will feel more protected since you are far less exposed to wind. Our Glider weather shelter is made with a heat reflective fabric that will help you retain warmth as the temperature drops.
- Bring warmer sleeping clothes and invest in a warmer sleeping quilt. Quilts come in so many varieties, but we recommend one designed for the outdoors.
- Use an underquilt. Traditional sleeping bags do little to insulate your back in a hammock. Underquilts insulate your hammock from the outside to block the wind and keep the warmth in. We call ours the Koala because of how it hugs your hammock.
- Use a sleeping pad, ideally mummy shaped, the tapering and rounded edges will help to have a more natural shape in the hammock and won’t fold over as heavily as a rectangular one might do.
4. Make yourself at home. Use the attached stuff sack to house your other camping essentials: head lamp, phone, book, etc. You can also hook these essentials on the gear loops around the edge of the Kammok.
5. Look up! Watching the autumn leaves from your Roo is quite the experience. The healthiest trees for a good hang will be close to water sources and these trees tend to have the greatest variation in color too. Cool nights = excellent star gazing. Make sure you have an open view of the sky from your Kammok.
6. Fuel up. Make sure to pack your camp coffee, favorite recipe ingredients and Biolite CampStove. Craft coffee and wood fired meals just tastes so good when the air is cool. The great thing about the smokeless fire of the CampStove is that you can cook right next to your hammock (though, don't put it underneath) and you won't smell like a campfire. Here is a favorite mulled wine recipe to try out during your next trip.
If you have any favorite hammock camping tips to share let us know, @biolitestove @kammok.