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Best Hammocks for Camping and Backpacking: 2017 Buyer’s Guide

best hammock camping

 Our choices for the Best Hammocks:

NameTypeMT Rank
ENO DoubleNestNetlessSolid Pick
Kammok RooNetlessTop Pick
Warbonnet BlackbirdIntegrated BugnetTop Pick
Warbonnet TravelerNetlessLight-Weight Pick
Dutchware 11ft. NetlessNetlessValue Pick
Dream HammockVarietyTop Pick

Read below for more info about our favorite camping hammocks!

Fact: The people of Central and South America have been sleeping in hammocks for hundreds, if not thousands of years.  So it should come to no surprise that modern campers and backpackers are looking at hammocks as a lightweight and comfortable solution to sleeping on the cold, hard ground.  I myself have been hammock camping on numerous backpacking trips over the last 4 years and love it!

Continue reading below for suggestions on some great hammocks that are great for new hammock campers and seasoned hammock veterans alike.

ENO DoubleNest Hammock

Yep, the ENO DoubleNest Hammock is basically the most popular camping hammock you can buy at this point. It’s simple to set-up and easy to use but perhaps a bit pricey for what it is.

Specs

Source: eaglesnestoutfittersinc.com

  • Weight: 19 oz / 539 grams
  • Dimensions:  6′ 2″ x 9’4″ / 188 x 284 cm
  • Material: 70D High Tenacity Nylon Tafeta

Pros

Cons

  • No bug-net, which is a draw-back for the average camper: camping mainly in buggy summer conditions
  • Tall users (6′ or greater) may find this one a little short and therefore not 100% comfortable
  • Lacks structural ridgeline, so user error when hanging can result in a tight and uncomfortable lay

Conclusions

You won’t know if you like hammock camping until you try it!  This is a simple, easy to use product that will get you hanging.  It won’t be right for everyone, but I think it’s perfect for beginners. It’s not a bargain, but it’s a reasonable price for a well-made introductory hammock.  Just make sure to get the DoubleNest.  The SingleNest is not nearly wide enough to sleep comfortably overnight.  ENO also offers a Double Deluxe for hammockers that need a little extra fabric on the sides.

Be wary that this hammock does not come with a suspension system with which to hang the hammock from the trees.   As such, make sure to pick up either the ENO Atlas HangTight, Kammok Python Straps.  They are “webbing” straps with loops sewn in that allow you to clip the hammock ends onto the loops with the carabiners provided with the DoubleNest hammock.  It makes it super easy to adjust the height and angle of the hammock when you hang it.

The ENO DoubleNest hammock is an fine option anyone that is new to hammock camping and just wants something simple and easy.  I’ll be honest: there are hammocks listed below that are better quality and value than the ENO DoubleNest.  But the fact that you can order ENO from so many places really makes it an easy sell to anyone.  The ridiculous number of color choices also helps.

Check current prices for the ENO DoubleNest:

  

 

Kammok Roo

The Kammok Roo is a little bit like an ENO DoubleNest on steroids.  It’s only a tad bit bigger, but has a really nice feel and is a great alternative standard the ENO offerings.

Best hammock kammock

The Kammock Roo in Nakuru Blue and Stone Grey.

Specs

Source: kammok.com

  • Weight: 24 oz / 680 grams (including suspension)
  • Dimensions: 5’7″ x 10′ / 170cm x 300cm
  • Material: LunarWave Ripstop Nylon

Pros

  • Simple, easy to setup hammock with a high quality suspension system included
  • “LunarWave” ripstop nylon is soft, breathable and comfortable
  • 24 ounce / 680 gram weight for both hammock and suspension is lightweight
  • 10 foot / 300 cm length is large enough to be comfortable for most users

Cons

  • No bug-net, which is a draw-back for the average camper: camping mainly in buggy summer conditions
  • May not be long enough for the tallest users (those over about 6’3″)
  • Lacks structural ridgeline, so user error when hanging can result in a tight and uncomfortable lay

Conclusions

At first glance this looks like an ENO knock-off, but the Kammok Roo hammock is actually an ENO upgrade.

It’s a little bit longer, making it more comfortable (and usable for tall hammockers).  The Roo also comes with a suspension system, and one that is lighter in than the ENO Atlas Staps.  This makes the Kammok (with suspension included) almost the same weight as the ENO Doublenest without a suspension.

The suspension system in particular is quite unique, featuring their own “Kanga Claw” carabiners and dyneema “Racer Sling” tree straps.  Not only is it unique, but is a functional and easy-to-use system.

The Kammok Roo also features Kammok’s proprietary LunarWave ripstop nylon fabric. This is a strong, lightweight fabric that is also a bit softer and more breathable than the “parachute” style nylon hammocks, making for above average comfort.

The one important feature that I think is missing on this hammock that would make it phenomenal would be a structural ridgeline.  Of course, you can also always add your own (buy one from Arrowhead Equipment).

Overall, I think the Kammok Roo is one of the best simple camping hammocks on the market.  If you can do without an attached bugnet, this is a great lightweight hammock.

Check current prices for the Kammok Roo:

Best ENO Knock-Offs

Mad Grit Double HammockBear Butt #1 Double Hammock
Wise Owl Double OwlErgaLogik Tree-Friendly Hammock
Honest Outfitters Camping HammockInfityle Camping Hammock
Whistler XL Double HammockOhuhu Travel Camping Hammock
Live Infinity Double HammockFlagstaff Outdoor Co. Double Hammock

There are all sorts of ENO knock-off hammocks flooding the market.  Some are built better than others.  Some are priced cheaper than others.  Most of them look like viable options, and might get you through for a few dollars cheaper than an ENO Doublenest.  You might even find some that come with tree straps!

If you buy a budget-priced ENO knock-off, just be sure to check the seams and fabric all the way around before use to ensure that you don’t end up on the ground!

Warbonnet Blackbird Hammock

Because hammocks are so new to the world of modern camping and backpacking, most quality hammock products are made by “cottage” manufacturers, which are basically hammock enthusiasts with mad sewing skills that make high-quality hammocks in their garage and sell them online.  Over the past few years, Warbonnet Outdoors has set itself apart from others in the industry with their popular Blackbird model, and nobody else has really caught up.

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Warbonnet Blackbird in action, via Warbonnet Outdoors

Specs

Source: warbonnetoutdoors.com

For the Single-Layer 1.7 oz. version with cinch-buckle suspension:

  • Weight: 25 oz / 709 grams (including suspension)
  • Dimensions: 63″ x 120″ / 160 x 305cm
  • Material: 70D Ripstop Nylon

Pros

  • “Asymmetrical” shape creates a “footbox” and provide a comfortable lay with little calf pressure
  • Zip-shut, built-in bug-net is easy to use and allows the Blackbird to be pest-free in the summer months
  • Structural ridgeline connecting hammock ends ensures the hammock body is never tight and uncomfortable to lay in
  • Built-in shelf adds storage space inside the hammock and bug-net
  • Comes with choice of lightweight suspension systems
  • XLC model is available, which is great for people over 6 feet tall, and also allows the bug-net to completely zip-off

Cons

  • Standard “cinch-buckle” suspension system tends to slip, required a knot to be tied in strap to ensure it holds firm
  • “Whoopie-sling” suspension system requires user to tie a marlin spike hitch style knot
  • Lead-time for these hand-made hammocks can be weeks out

Conclusions

For a seasoned hammock camper, the cons listed above are a non-factor.  However, for new hammock campers, and I do think the Warbonnet Blackbird is a bit daunting for a newbie wanting a simple, quick-to-learn experience.

But if you can get over the couple complicating factors, this is a fantastic hammock, especially with the ease and functionality of the bug-net. In fact, I think you would be hard pressed to find an easier to use hammock with a built-in bug-net and other premium features, especially at the Warbonnet’s price point.  It ain’t cheap, but it’s the going rate for a full-featured built-in bug-net hammock.

For a user looking for a relatively easy-to-use and full-featured hammock with a built-in bug-net, this one is highly recommended.  In fact, the Warbonnet Blackbird XLC is the hammock that I now use 100% of the time! This is perhaps the best hammock for backpacking considering both its features and price point.

Warbonnet Traveler Hammock

Another solid offering from Warbonnet Outdoors, the Warbonnet Traveler is a simple but extremely well made hammock.  It is perfect for backpackers that want to go light!

best hammock for camping

The Warbonnet Traveler in action, via Warbonnet Outdoors.

Pros

  • Simple, well-made ripstop nylon construction is both lightweight and durable
  • Option of cinch-buckle or whoopie-sling suspension system
  • Whoopie-sling option makes for a hammock and suspension package that is under 1 pound (450 grams) in weight
  • Structural ridgeline takes guess-work out of setup
  • Single and double layer options

Cons

  • Standard “cinch-buckle” suspension system tends to slip, required a knot to be tied in strap to ensure it holds firm
  • “Whoopie-sling” suspension system requires user to tie a marlin spike hitch style knot
  • Limited colors

Conclusions

The Warbonnet Traveler is an incredibly solid hammock, even for entry level hammockers.  Backpackers looking to go lightweight will love the simplicity. The option of the whoopie-sling suspension even cuts the weight of the system down to 14 ounces / 396 grams.

I do think that the two suspension offerings may be a bit daunting for new users as they require a slight bit of knot tying to work properly.  However, it is easy to learn these knots.  I do believe any user can use these systems with only a little practice.

Of course, a simple hammock like this does not include a bugnet.  If you regularly hike in buggy conditions, you might consider something like the Warbonnet Blackbird.

What I really like about this hammock is the value for price.  Overall, I highly recommend the Warbonnet Traveler, especially for ultralight backpackers.

Dutchware 11 ft. Netless Hammock

DutchWare is a quality cottage hammock maker that puts out a ton of excellent and innovative hammock products.  The Dutchware 11 ft. Netless Hammock is a simple hammock with plenty options.

Pros

  • This hammock combines quality with value
  • 11 foot length is long enough for most users to lay comfortably
  • Customizable: lots of available options and upgrades
  • Optional structural ridgeline makes hanging the hammock easy
  • Single and double layer options
  • “Whoopie Hook” and cinch-buckle suspensions options
  • “Dual Knotty Mod” makes for more consistent lay
  • No specs are available from Dutchware, but these hammocks are definitely lightweight

Cons

  • Cinch-buckle suspension requires an extra knot to hold firm
  • “Whoopie-Hook” suspension system requires  a marlin spike hitch style knot
  • No bugnet option
  • Dearth of options may be overwhelming for first time hammock buyers.

Conclusions

A little about Dutchware: it is a cottage hammock maker focused on making hammock gear specialized for lightweight backpacking. They are an innovative company that strives to make simple, lighweight, and functional products.

The Dutchware 11 Ft. Netless Hammock is a simple but high quality hammock. It is offered with lots of great options.

If you already have a suspension system (like the ENO Atlas Tree Straps), you can grab the single layer version of this hammock for $42 and know you will be getting a lightweight, durable, and high quality product.  A double layer version is also available (for a $32 upgrade) for those that use sleeping pads.

This hammock is also available with suspension included. The suspension options are similar to that of the Warbonnet hammocks, with a choice of either Whoopie-Hooks or Cinch-Buckles. These are both lightweight systems, but require some amount of knot tying and have a bit of a learning curve to use.

A structural ridgeline is also an option, which generally makes the hammock easier to hang and almost guarantees a consistent lay.

The last option is Dutchware’s own Dual Knotty Mod, which add cords along the hammock edge near where your head and feet will hit hammock.  These cords will cinch up the edges to eliminate the flappy material that forms when lying in a simple hammock.  It’s a pretty cool addition that makes the hammock a little easier to lay in.

Overall, I think Dutchware’s 11 ft. Netless Hammock is a great product with very few drawbacks.  The suspension systems might be the only thing to be wary of as they are not fool-proof.  If you really need bug protection, you might even check out their Half-Wit Hammock.

Dream Hammock

Dream Hammock is a cottage hammock maker that offers nearly full customization, with a focus on experienced hammock campers that want premium features.

best camping hammock backpacking

The Dream Hammock Sparrow, Dream Hammock’s top-of-the-line camping hammock.

Pros

  • Almost full customization of hammock features
  • Offers both netless and netted hammocks
  • Topcover options make for added warmth during winter camping
  • Option of zip-off bugnets and top-covers that save weight when these accessories are not needed
  • Loops on hammock ends make it easy to attach almost any suspension system
  • Zippers on both sides allow entry from both sides
  • Fixed structural ridgeline makes for consistent comfort
  • Choice of 3 suspension options

Cons

  • Cinch-buckle suspension requires an extra knot to hold firm
  • Whoopie sling suspension system requires  a marlin spike hitch style knot
  • Dearth of options may be overwhelming for first time hammock buyers

Conclusions

Dream Hammock is a unique brand in the hammock camping industry in that their hammocks are (almost) fully customizable.  You can literally order a bare-bones simple netless hammock, a fully-featured winter hammock replete with top-cover, or almost anything in between.

These are supreme quality handmade hammocks that are only available via custom order.  I included the most important options in the Pros section above, so I won’t rehash them here.  But just know that their selection of features is impressive.

My one qualm with Dream Hammock is that their options are not fulling customizable. They still break their hammock lineup into models, which is all well and good, but it results in quirky situations like the fact that there is no offering of a zip-off bugnet that does not also include a winter top-cover.  You might be able to contact Dream Hammock and arrange for a fully-customized order, but it can be confusing when looking at the options online.

Otherwise, Dream Hammocks are fantastic and are a definitely direct competitor to the Warbonnet Blackbird. Among the full-featured models on the market, this is one of the best hammocks for backpacking or camping.  With the topcover option included, the Dream Hammock might even be the best hammock for cold weather.

Factors for Choosing a Camping Hammock

Every hammock user has a unique set of needs that will determine what hammock (or hammocks) will best suit their hammock camping style.  Read below about the most important factors that you should consider when shopping for a camping hammock.

Price

This is an obvious one, but price is often a huge underlying factor in any purchase. Just know that you often get what you pay for, and if you buy a hammock for a “cheap” price, you will likely get a cheap hammock that will wear out quickly. Also know that some hammocks are overpriced.  Not to throw them under the bus, but a great example is ENO hammocks. While good quality, an ENO may not be a great value compared to what the same price may get you from a different manufacturer.

Size

This is usually a greater concern for tall users (6 feet / 183 cm or taller). If a hammock is too short, tall users may have a hard time getting comfortable and finding a flat lay in their hammock. Tall users should look for hammocks that are at least 10 feet / 305 cm in length, and the really tall folks should look at hammocks 11 feet / 335 cm and above.

Also, it should be noted that hammock length is measured when the hammock is layed out flat on the ground. When hung, the hammock is shorter.  Therefore, the hammock’s length needs to nearly twice the height of the user to ensure a comfortable lay.

Weight

For backpackers using a hammock as their shelter, the weight of a hammock is a definite concern, although some backpackers are more concerned with weight than others. Of course, weight is tied directly to many of the other factors. As such, in order to save weight, you may need to cut out extra features. Usually the biggest feature to be cut for weight savings is a built-in bugnet. If you aren’t an incredibly tall user, you may also want to consider shorter hammocks for the sake of saving a few ounces.

Other factors within the hammock system also effect weight, such as the hammock suspension, tarp, bottom insulation, and top insulation. As such, just because you buy a very lightweight hammock doesn’t mean that your overall system will be light in weight. Our site has additional articles (links at the top and bottom of the page) with recommendations of lightweight options for all the hammock essentials.

Netless vs. Built-In Bugnet

As alluded to above, some hammocks come with bugnets and some do not. A netless hammock is the more simple version that is cheaper and lighter in weight, but does leave the user exposed to insects. Many users can get by without a bugnet, especially if hammock camping in arid climates or winter conditions. If you constantly camp in buggy conditions, a bugnet is a good idea, and hammocks with built-in bugnets work great. There are even hammocks with zip-off bugnets that allow you to leave the bugnet at home when you don’t need it! These types of bugnet hammocks are more expensive that regular bugnet hammocks. Whether you go netless, built-in, or zip-off will be based on your needs and budget.

Don’t Forget the Bottom Insulation!

The number one biggest mistake a beginner hammock camper makes is sleeping in only a sleeping bag on a chilly night.  The hammock is suspended in the air, and your underside is exposed to the air currents!  On a 30 degree night, not even a zero degree sleeping bag will keep your underside warm in a hammock.  You need some bottom insulation.

The cheapest way to solve this is to bring a sleeping pad, either foam or an inflatable.  If you’re a backpacker, you probably already have one.  Of course, sleeping on a pad in a hammock does make it a little less comfortable, especially if you end up wrestling with your pad in the middle of the night.  Regardless, a pad is the most cost-effective way to keep your butt warm in a hammock, especially you’ve already got one in your closet!

My hammock camping setup from December 2014. Foam pad for bottom insulation inside a homemade hammock. Suspended with ENO Atlas Straps. The Warbonnet MamaJamba Tarp provides shelter.

My hammock camping setup from December 2014. Foam pad for bottom insulation inside a homemade hammock, suspended with ENO Atlas Straps and carabiners. The Warbonnet MamaJamba Tarp provides shelter.

The option that most seasonable hammock campers use is called an underquilt.  It’s basically half a sleeping bag that straps on the outside of the hammock.  Because they are mostly made by cottage manufacturers that use high quality down insulation, a good underquilt is typically at bare minimum $150.  Arrowhead Equipment does sell synthetic ones that run as little as $100 for a summer-use only 45 degree underquilt.

Other quality underquilt manufacturers include: Warbonnet Outdoors, Underground Quilts, Hammock Gear, and Enlightened Equipment.

Of course, the ever-popular ENO also makes its own lines of synthetic and down underquilts.  I have no personal experience with these, but they do look functional, and if you all already buying other ENO gear, it might make sense to grab an ENO underquilt while you are at it!

Check current prices on ENO Underquilts:

 

 

Additional Hammock Resources From Mountain Tripper

Need a tarp for your hammock? If you want to stay dry, you do.  Check out the Best Hammock Tarps For Backpacking and Camping

Looking for a good sleeping pad?  Check out the Best Sleeping Pads for Hammock Camping

Want a better way to hang? Check out the Best Hammock Tree Straps and Suspensions

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