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Tent, Fly, Tarp, Hoochie, Swag, Caravan etc what do you prefer and why?

chutes

Mors Kochanski
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I'm a dedicated hammock user. Hennessy ultralight backpacker. Couldn't imagine sleeping in anything else unless I had to due to an emergency or a lack of trees. I use mine with a hootchie slung diagonally because I find the original tarp to be a little too small for personal admin outside the hammock when you're stuck in drizzle or rain for a few days. I haven't yet come up with a solid solution to the cold back syndrome but I've been getting some ideas from different websites and forums. At the moment, I just sleep on a 3/4 mat which doesn't interfere with getting into and out of the hammock.
 

Wentworth

Bear Mears
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Hi Darren,
I've not seen the gatewood in Oz, only on backpackinglight. How does it go for rain gear when on overgrown track, or offtrack? Nice and light.
 

darren

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Hi Darren,
I've not seen the gatewood in Oz, only on backpackinglight. How does it go for rain gear when on overgrown track, or offtrack? Nice and light.

G'Day Mate
It suffers the same problems as most poncho's off track, its loose and you cant see your feet . Its made out of silnylon so it wont handle continual pushing through scrub. I haven’t tried to do this with it because of that. Like most things its a compromise. Its very light and compact, but its not as strong. I am happy with it though
 

koalaboi

Ray Mears
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Car camping: swag and down bag. I'm still using the Paddy Pallin Hotham sleeping bag I bought with one of my first ever paychecks when I was 15....I'm now nearly 60 and it is still going strong. Cost me $80.00 in 1968. Still have my first billy from those days and use it every week.

Bushwalking: lightweight one man tent, down bag and thermarest self inflating sleeping mat. From Tassie to Darwin to PNG it works...ditch the fly if not needed.

With family: they can have a big tent while I snore and fart loudly in my swag at an appropriate distance! I can also see the stars as I drift off....count the meteors etc

KB
 
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Stekker

Russell Coight
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I prefer sleeping under a tarp (DD 3x3 meter) in a Dutch army goretex bivy bag with my Dutch army M90 sleepingbag.
I also use a selfinflateble army sleeping matress Thermarest
When i lay down for the night you feel so much contact with nature and environment, you don't get this feeling sleeping in a tent.
 
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Templar

F. C. Selous DSO
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Hmmm... Hootchie for me, along with my HH Exped Asym for a hanging hotel, hootchie and bivi for ground dwelling, along with my German folding pad & softie elite 6 for winter use..
 

Corin

Jiffy
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I prefer sleeping under a tarp (DD 3x3 meter) in a Dutch army goretex bivy bag with my Dutch army M90 sleepingbag.
I also use a selfinflateble army sleeping matress Thermarest
When i lay down for the night you feel so much contact with nature and environment, you don't get this feeling sleeping in a tent.

Could not agree more. Though lately I must admit the hammock is getting more use.
 

wameron36

Les Stroud
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I had been using a hammock for a while now, with just a cheap tarp over the top. I think it's some no name brand hammock that I picked off ebay back a number of years ago for pretty cheap. Get's the job done though, is comfy, has mosquito netting and a built on fly, though I've been tempted to just cut the fly off as it's not waterproof and can be a hassle to tie up. Although the last few trips I've done have been without the hammock, just a cheap closed cell foam mat, mosquito net depending on where I'm heading and a tarp.
I'm looking at the moment to buy myself a decent silnylon tarp as I've been ripping the grommets off the cheap blue tarp in some pretty decent winds. It also leaks from a number of holes haha.
It just depends where I'm heading as to what I use really.

For those thinking about hammocks, you won't be let down. They really are a comfy set up and good to keep you off the ground if it's rough.
 

Greatbloke

Jack Abasalom
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*** I'm still using the Paddy Pallin Hotham sleeping bag I bought with one of my first ever paychecks when I was 15....I'm now nearly 60 and it is still going strong. Cost me $80.00 in 1968. ***

KB


I still have one of those too, that I've had since I was a young teenager, and it cost my Mum the same price. $80 on special. Very warm bag. Half way to Ayres rock I slept in the desert in the open, and woke up with ice on the bag, but still warm inside.
 

Benny

Richard Proenneke
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I got a DD Frontline hammock & XL tarp. I've also got the 3x3 tarp but prefer the extra cover of the XL (4.5x3), the ends can be closed in to form a tent type set up if the weather gets really bad. I use em pretty much for the same reasons every one else does- staying dry & comfortable. If there are no trees about it can be set up on the ground using a ground sheet to stop the hammock getting wet.

It's probably been mentioned but in a really cold climate you'll want an under quilt which will add a little weight & a bit of bulk. DD make one of the best as far as cost to quality ratio go.

Strongly recommend DD stuff, not ultra light but still not heavy, great value & quality. They have an Australian dealer that is actually reasonable in his rates, not trying to squeeze it for all it's worth- http://amtcgear.com.au/products_results.php

Anyone that ends up with a hammock set up should really check out the suspension upgrades/options you can make to the hammock & shelter, it will make the whole thing a lot easier & quicker to set up than tying a rope around a tree.
 

Benny

Richard Proenneke
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I got a DD Frontline hammock & XL tarp. I've also got the 3x3 tarp but prefer the extra cover of the XL (4.5x3), the ends can be closed in to form a tent type set up if the weather gets really bad. I use em pretty much for the same reasons every one else does- staying dry & comfortable. If there are no trees about it can be set up on the ground using a ground sheet to stop the hammock getting wet.

It's probably been mentioned but in a really cold climate you'll want an under quilt which will add a little weight & a bit of bulk. DD make one of the best as far as cost to quality ratio go.

Strongly recommend DD stuff, not ultra light but still not heavy, great value & quality. They have an Australian dealer that is actually reasonable in his rates, not trying to squeeze it for all it's worth- http://amtcgear.com.au/products_results.php

Anyone that ends up with a hammock set up should really check out the suspension upgrades/options you can make to the hammock & shelter, it will make the whole thing a lot easier & quicker to set up than tying a rope around a tree.
 

chutes

Mors Kochanski
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Thanks for the link Benny. I notice that amtcgear (no affiliation) also sells Hennessy style treehuggers and snakeskins for their DD hammocks (as well as pretty reasonably priced tarps for same). Nice link and nice to see an online retailer who's apparently cut out the middleman (distributor) to ensure a little less gouging of the consumer.
 

Benny

Richard Proenneke
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No probs. I should also state that I have absolutely no affiliation with any of the links I throw up, just like to share good deals I find
 

Wave Man

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full single person set up all sorted for me, consisting of a Darche Hybrid one man tent, several tarps, wool blanket, self inflating mat and pillow. I also carry a Army(150kg weight limit) hammock(I have a mossie screen coming as well). I can carry all of this in my German Mountain Pack.

I dislike open air sleeping in Australia, just too many poisonous things here to ignore.
 

Greatbloke

Jack Abasalom
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I'm not sold on hammocks.... I nearly was, but have back pedaled since reading some of the hassles on this site...also I'd rather not sleep under a tree if I can get away with it.

For bushwalking or bushcrafting It's my two man tent or out in the open, perhaps with a "One Planet" "Shrund" bivy bag, and or/or a tarp. I also have a light nylon type bivy that repels dirt and splashes. I have a few cheap nylon tarps that I've had forever.

Car based camping, we have a few tents, *canvas pyramid, *big canvas house thing with two rooms and an awning...but mostly we still use a *cheap 3-4 man tent [ in reality 2 man] that has great ventilation and the windows can be opened from the inside... If it looks like heavy rain we can throw a heavy tarp over it or pick it up and move it under the big tarp. I have a selection of heavy silver tarps and some poles to set up a shelter for small groups. In the pics below, we used a ladder as an extra tent pole. :)

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swampy99

Rüdiger Nehberg
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BASHA (British Army Standard Hotel Acomodation) IE Hoochie. Hammock or bivi bag. just cant go wrong.
 

Bartnmax

Richard Proenneke
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I'm not sold on hammocks.... I nearly was, but have back pedaled since reading some of the hassles on this site...also I'd rather not sleep under a tree if I can get away with it.

For bushwalking or bushcrafting It's my two man tent or out in the open, perhaps with a "One Planet" "Shrund" bivy bag, and or/or a tarp. I also have a light nylon type bivy that repels dirt and splashes. I have a few cheap nylon tarps that I've had forever.

Car based camping, we have a few tents, *canvas pyramid, *big canvas house thing with two rooms and an awning...but mostly we still use a *cheap 3-4 man tent [ in reality 2 man] that has great ventilation and the windows can be opened from the inside... If it looks like heavy rain we can throw a heavy tarp over it or pick it up and move it under the big tarp. I have a selection of heavy silver tarps and some poles to set up a shelter for small groups. In the pics below, we used a ladder as an extra tent pole. :)
QUOTE]

I've actually gone the other way.
I have a camper trailer I use on extended outings such as when I head away duck hunting, etc.
I also have a Southern Cross tent, which I rate extremely highly, for extended stays in areas I can drive into but cant take my camper (it's not a true off road camper but rather a HD, on rd camper, that can be used in some off rd locations).
The tent, along with it's dedicated fly, has proven to be absolutely brilliant. Best tent I've ever used, by a long way.
In other circumstances I've used a swag for a great many years.
unfortuantely I'm also a mechanic by profession & that means I suffer 'mechanic's back' (lower back probs - prolapsed disc years ago that still haunts me).
So the swag has become increasingly difficult for me to use as I'm now finding that with creeping age (51 this year) even the use of a good matress in the swag doesn't counter the hard ground as much as it used to. Fact is I just cant sleep on the ground anymore.
So, I started looking at alternatives.

One that works well is my camp stretcher. I often just setup an overhead tarp using one side of my 4wd roof rack & a coupla poles, lay the stretcher out (I have one of those brilliant Coleman folding ones similar to the modern folding camp chair), & whack me swag on top.
I've found this works brilliantly but obviously it aint possible when hiking.
For hiking use I am now going down the hammock route & so far things are looking pretty promising.
The areas I generally hike in have adequate support (trees) so setup aint an issue.
Yeah there's always the danger of camping under trees to consider but then there's also the danger of snakes/spiders, etc when sleeping at ground level.
What I'm saying here is that there's potential danger involved with any method I reckon.
The main issue I'm finding with hte hammock is the same as everyone else - that of insulation.
What I've done on a few occasions, just for testing, has been to put a light sleeping bag under the hammock (along with a heat reflective sheet) & another to sleep in inside it.
This has worked pretty well but it has the obvious draw back of requiring 2 sleeping bags to be carried.
Not a major problem with modern bags now given the incredibly small package many of them fold down into nowadays & with a bit more tesing it could be the cost effective answer I'm looking for.

Personally I'm not a great fan of the modern dome tent.
They are fine if you spend the money to get a top class 2 man or single man jobbie designed for snow camping, etc.
The one's I'm refering to here are the cheaper affordable 'family' type dome tents that are next to useless IMO, & in some cases are downright dangerous.
The reason is that many people believe that by having such a tent they are protected from bad weather, but in my experience they can be damned useless in bad weather in which case the occupants can then find themselves totally inadequately protected from the elements.
The number of these tents I've seen blown away & torn to shreds by wind/rain when storms hit has convinced me that I'll never own one.
On the other hand my Southrn Cross tent has weathered some of the worst storms I've ever camped in & never leaked or shown any sign at all of structural weakeness, even in the highest winds. Of course it's also not the sort of tent you can carry with you when hiking though, but I would far rather this tent then one of the dome tents, but then that's just my own preference.

Bill.
 
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