Hammock vs Floorless tent

MN Hunter

Junior Member
Joined
Oct 28, 2016
Messages
26
Location
Minnesota
I'm doing a solo DIY elk hunt in Idaho this fall (Sept 12-26) I have been using a lightweight single backpack tent for all of my previous backcountry hunting trips. I'm thinking about switching it up and trying a hammock sleeping system or a floorless tent. Trying to save weight, whats everyone preference when elk hunting in the backcountry. I want to hear the pros and cons of both.
 

fishdart

Junior Member
Joined
Aug 5, 2019
Messages
10
Not a pro by any means, but, IMO:

Hammock pros:
- uneven, rocky, muddy ground is no concern as long as there are trees to hang from
- 10x10 tarp would give great cover for the hammock plus storage space for gear out of the weather.
- hammock tarp can be propped up during the day for shade/weather protection as opposed to holing up in a small tent. Easy to cook under as well.
- I find condensation easier to control vs. a small tent, though this experience is largely based on high-humidity, east coast conditions which is well different than dry Idaho air, so maybe a moot point.


Hammock cons:
- generally need to use a specialty underquilt to keep warm PLUS a top quilt. You will likely be colder in a hammock vs a tent/pad/quilt at same weather conditions because of the cold air on all sides of your body.
- you may not save any weight/pack space by the time you get the tarp, guy lines, both quilts, hammock, tree straps vs a floorless tent that uses a trekking pole plus R-rated pad, down quilt, ground cloth.
- high wind can be problem for sure.


That said, if I'm camping here in Pennsylvania in the warmer months when less insulation is needed, I go hammock for comfort especially when kayaking the Susky because there are only 4 types of ground along the river: mud, rocks, poisin ivy, stinging nettles.
 

Goodtimekiller

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 29, 2017
Messages
301
I think floorless is the lightest system but i sleep much better in a hammock so i deal with a little extra weight


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

maverick

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 5, 2012
Messages
143
Location
Oregon
I tried a hammock last year in Montana and loved it. Even when we set up our base camp with cots and pads 2 out of 3 of us slept in the hammocks.
I bought it about this time last year and had it all figured out by summer camping trips.
20 degree underquilt and quilt and I was good to 25 (as cold as it got). It is not the lightest setup. Plan on 5-7 lbs.
You can definitely save weight with a floorless tent.
 

Marble

Senior Member
Joined
May 29, 2019
Messages
655
I will not do a hammock. 2 reasons for me...uncomfortable and super cold. Think about air going over and under you all night long... no thanks!!
 

Dinger

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 9, 2014
Messages
289
Location
Australia
I will not do a hammock. 2 reasons for me...uncomfortable and super cold. Think about air going over and under you all night long... no thanks!!
Whatever you were doing in a hammock it was all wrong if you were cold or uncomfortable. They are hands down the most comfortable sleep I get in the bush and I've never been cold in one. I've slept hot under a down bag on nights that were cold enough to make sure alpine blend diesel waxed up.....not very cold by some standards but still pretty nippy. Prior to the snow dump the air blasts of sugar snow coming up the valley roared like a jet.



That said I prefer to run a Supertarp due to the flexibility and the fact I can get away from tree'd areas on windy or stormy nights.
 

Marble

Senior Member
Joined
May 29, 2019
Messages
655
It's like sleeping on a cot. Which is actually comfortable for me, but has the potential to be cold with air above and below. But I'm a side or belly sleeper so the hammock really sucks for me.

I saw 5 to 7 pounds listed above for a hammock set up. I'm 5 pounds and change for a 10 degree bag, pad and tent. Maybe 6.

I like a tent. Haven't used a floor less but I would if I had one. I like the tent, keeps bugs out, provides all the comfy stuff a shelter gives, keeps my stuff dry.

If you are gonna try something new, just make sure to give it a rip before you go on the trip and get to your destination. You dont want to find out it doesnt work for you after you're stuck with it.
 

Shraggs

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 24, 2014
Messages
518
Location
Zeeland, MI
Marble, i think you’re assessment is missing some fundamentals of basic hammocking.

you most have insulation above and below you... no different than sleeping on the ground, a ground pad is insulated, then your bag over you.

In a hammock its called an under quilt, and is as essential to the top quilt.

my two quilts, hammock and tarp is exactly 4 lbs...
 

Marble

Senior Member
Joined
May 29, 2019
Messages
655
Marble, i think you’re assessment is missing some fundamentals of basic hammocking.

you most have insulation above and below you... no different than sleeping on the ground, a ground pad is insulated, then your bag over you.

In a hammock its called an under quilt, and is as essential to the top quilt.

my two quilts, hammock and tarp is exactly 4 lbs...
I understand it now. But for me, hammocks dont work with the positions I like to sleep.

My brother in law has a hammock and loves it. I keep trying it whenever he breaks his out but its just not comfy for me.
 

MAVinWA

Member
Joined
Aug 15, 2012
Messages
88
Location
Based in WA, OTC archery public land in AZ, UT, so
I used to have a partner that swore by his hammock system. he was always warm, dry and slept well. I stayed with my tent system.
one night after particular hard day hunting & dead tired, he carelessly left a Mtn house packet within his hammock grounds area.
middle of the night, I heard the bear first, then him screaming. Grabbed 357mag, light and peered outside. Bear was gone, mtn house torn up and friend's hammock raked by bear's claws. Ripped 2' length of it in shreds.
3 things happened after that. 1-partner switched to tent, 2- I bought a 10mm Glock and never w/out bear spray ,
3-he was always nicknamed; "hanging meat".
 

beachbunny

Senior Member
Joined
Oct 12, 2013
Messages
778
I understand it now. But for me, hammocks dont work with the positions I like to sleep.

My brother in law has a hammock and loves it. I keep trying it whenever he breaks his out but its just not comfy for me.
ever try a bridge hammock? regular hammocks did not do it for me ,then i got a warbonnet bridge hammock
 

Goodtimekiller

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 29, 2017
Messages
301
I used to have a partner that swore by his hammock system. he was always warm, dry and slept well. I stayed with my tent system.
one night after particular hard day hunting & dead tired, he carelessly left a Mtn house packet within his hammock grounds area.
middle of the night, I heard the bear first, then him screaming. Grabbed 357mag, light and peered outside. Bear was gone, mtn house torn up and friend's hammock raked by bear's claws. Ripped 2' length of it in shreds.
3 things happened after that. 1-partner switched to tent, 2- I bought a 10mm Glock and never w/out bear spray ,
3-he was always nicknamed; "hanging meat".
That could have just as easily happened if he had left the wrapper in a tent.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

Goodtimekiller

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 29, 2017
Messages
301
I understand it now. But for me, hammocks dont work with the positions I like to sleep.

My brother in law has a hammock and loves it. I keep trying it whenever he breaks his out but its just not comfy for me.
I sleep in all positions with different size hammocks, there are ways to set it up and ways to sleep (diagonal) to make things more comfortable


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

twall13

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 21, 2015
Messages
1,687
Location
Utah
That could have just as easily happened if he had left the wrapper in a tent.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
I had the same thought, a bear's claw will go through a tent wall just as easily as through hammock fabric. Maybe it's a psychological thing that you feel more protected with a thin wall of fabric between you and the critters? I don't know but personally I'd rather be hanging in the hammock where I can see them if I hear something. If I'm asleep and I get attacked it probably won't matter much one way or the other.

Sent from my SM-N960U using Tapatalk
 

805Bowhunter

Senior Member
Joined
May 8, 2017
Messages
403
I will not do a hammock. 2 reasons for me...uncomfortable and super cold. Think about air going over and under you all night long... no thanks!!
This is me to a T. I have friends that swear by hammocks but I could not sleep in one if my life depended on it. I would highly encourage spending some time in one before you get into the field. The air under your back is certainly something to think about as it was very noticable to me. I love a floorless shelter but I have been running one for a while now. Whatever it is you go with, just make sure to spend time setting them up in various conditions outside of your backyard before you head out on your elk hunt. Im curious to see what you end up going with.
 

Mosby

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 1, 2015
Messages
722
I have slept in my hammock in snow and freezing cold in the teens and found it to be uncomfortable and difficult to stay warm. Over several nights I figured it out but I have decided that I prefer to use my hammock when temps are above freezing. The warmer the weather the more I prefer a hammock over a tent.

When I know there is going to be bad weather and freezing temps, I use one of my tents.
 

Goodtimekiller

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 29, 2017
Messages
301
This is me to a T. I have friends that swear by hammocks but I could not sleep in one if my life depended on it. I would highly encourage spending some time in one before you get into the field. The air under your back is certainly something to think about as it was very noticable to me. I love a floorless shelter but I have been running one for a while now. Whatever it is you go with, just make sure to spend time setting them up in various conditions outside of your backyard before you head out on your elk hunt. Im curious to see what you end up going with.
If you us an underquilt there is no air going under you. Most of the time, down to 30 degrees, i only need a 20 degree underquilt and no overquilt. With a good tarp set-up you can keep out almost any weather too.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
Top