There’s nothing quite like hammock camping. It’s just you, your trusty hammock, and the seemingly infinite night sky. Make sure that your next trip is a success by consulting our guide to keeping warm, even when the temperatures dip. Now get out there and have fun!
Create a Sub-Layer
Before settling in, you’re going to want to ensure that you have a nice, warm buffer between you and the great outdoors. The fabric of your hammock is strong and durable but it needs a little bit of a boost to keep you nice and toasty. Even if you’ve got a great sleeping bag, you’ll be compressing it while you lie in it which might result in a cooler underside.
Some campers recommend using a thin, inflatable mattress or pad which not only provides insulation but creates an extra comfortable sleeping surface. Another trick is to use an additional sleeping bag as your layer. They’re usually pretty easy to pack and most people have an extra one lying around, making for an easy and ingenious solution.
Dress for the Elements
Any camper worth their salt will tell you that half the battle is being well dressed. Nothing puts a damper on a night under the stars quite like being too cold to enjoy the view. When it comes to camping in a hammock, think layers. Start with thin, natural fibres that wick moisture. Skip cotton and instead opt for long underwear or base layers made of lightweight wool or silk.
Next, you want something to insulate and keep all that warmth against your skin, where it belongs. This is where a thin yet cozy sweater comes in handy, as do a pair of toasty fleece pants. Lightweight gloves and socks are key as well- it’s hard to sleep with cold hands and feet.
Finally, you need a barrier layer. Something to break the wind and repel water (if need be.) During the cooler months, heavier, insulated jackets are your best bet but if it’s not too chilly, you’ll likely be just fine with something a little lighter.
Select the Right Sleeping Solution
While the idea of grabbing a quilt and heading out may seem romantic, a single blanket won’t quite cut it when it comes to hammock camping. As the mercury dips, you’ll find yourself wishing for something a little warmer, which is where the sleeping bag comes in. Even during the summer months, you want a sleeping bag that is well insulated and offers full coverage. Look for a bag that is rated to the temperature you need and that offers a cinching hood. Mummy-style sleeping bags are an excellent option.
Here we have a hammock camping hack that can’t be beat. If you’re heading out to a frigid destination and want to ensure total warmth, bring a spare sleeping bag to zip around your hammock. With the insulating sub-layer, your warm clothing, your own sleeping bag and the external bag, chilly air doesn’t stand a chance. Other tried, tested, and true tips include a water bottle filled with hot water in your sleeping bag and instantly activated heating pads before bed.