Where Do You Put Your Pack When Hammock Camping?

A couple hammock camping out in the wild.

There’s a good number of questions folks like to ask Google concerning the topic of hammocking. For instance, what’s the deal with extreme hammocking (or: sky camping in China, as some people wrongly classify this activity)? One of the questions goes something like this: where do I put my pack when hammock camping? It’s an honest question that deserves an honest answer!

No, really, where do folks put their stuff when they’re hammock camping? With traditional camping, things are downright simple, but this is another level of… Yeah, it’s better we give this topic a thorough scan. In the article you’ll find below, we’ll answer the question of where does your pack go when you’re hammock camping.

There are a couple of ways you can store your pack when hammock camping. You can store it inside the hammock (by using it as a pillow, for instance), place it on the ground close by, or hang it (either from your hammock, a ridgeline, or a tree). Also, try to use leave-no-trace straps to avoid harming the tree.

Of course, that was only the shortest-of-the-short preview! You’ll find more useful info downstairs!

Table of Contents

Hammock camping 101

Let’s see the so-called frequently asked questions (FAQ) related to this amazing outdoor activity! Here are some of them!

What is hammock camping?

Before we tackle the main issue of this article, it’s best we get the basic terminology out of the way. So, what’s hammock camping? It’s an activity that represents simply swapping the average tent for a hammock and, of course, a few useful additions that enable you to sleep comfortably.

Hammock camping’s a hit among backpackers and bikepackers. It’s because hammocks are so easy to carry and lightweight. Not to mention they take less space inside a backpack than a regular tent. Also, hammock campers have the opportunity to sleep and enjoy a higher vantage point; they’re excused from the discomfort and unease of sleeping on a sloped or rocky surface. A couple of solid trees is about everything that a hammock camper needs to achieve maximum comfiness.

What are the additions?

Okay, so we’ve mentioned certain “useful additions” that help hammock campers enjoy comfort sleeping while elevated. If you’re wondering what those items might be, here’s a quick list of ’em:

  • A suspension system with wide, so-called tree-friendly straps is a necessity if there ever was one. Usually, straps are sold separately from the hammock. More info on hammock straps you’ll find right here.
  • A rain tarp. It’s like a rainfly for your typical tent, just for a hammock. (What an observation!)
  • A sleeping pad or an insulating underquilt. They’re also sold separately. Their function is to keep you warm at night.
  • A bug net. There’s probably no need to explain its function. Some are cover the whole hammock, some only the top.

Where can you use a hammock?

In other words: where can one set up a hammock? It’s doable just about anywhere you can imagine. You can hang a hammock between:

  • two trees.
  • a sturdy building wall and a tree.
  • two buildings. 
  • a vehicle and a tree.
  • two vehicles.

For all we know, if you’ve got a solid roof rack and your vehicle’s pretty good in height terms, you can pull your next to a tree, tie the strap around it and the roof rack, and chill inside your comfy hammock.

For more tips on hammock-related stuff, click on this link.

Do hammocks hurt trees?

Good question! We’ve mentioned that you can set up hammocks just about anywhere. While there’s no point asking whether that will hurt your car or a building wall, one question comes to mind: do hammocks hurt trees?

If you’re not using a hammock with leave-no-trace straps, you can damage the trees. You’ll want to know that thin straps or ropes can cut into the delicate tree bark or even – strip it off entirely. That will leave the tree vulnerable to various pests such as insects or fungus. Not to mention the harmful drying effects of the wind and sun.

Lastly, let’s mention that hammocks are banned in certain cities and campuses exactly because of the above info. Okay, so that’s about it on the whole hammock camping 101 introductory section! Let’s see what’s the main dish on today’s outdoor menu!

A person wearing a cap resting inside an orange hammock.

Where do you put your pack when hammock camping?

One can assume hammocks aren’t what you’d call perfect storage space. Not even close. However, there are tricks you can employ to avoid having any problems with storing your backpack and the rest of the gear. Otherwise, many folks would completely forget about camping with hammocks.

Still, there are ways you can store inside your hammock without causing something of a major disturbance. Here’s who you’ll do it.

Storing your pack inside the hammock

Even though it seems absurd at first, you’ll want to know that there are certain advantages to storing your backpack in this manner.

Use it as a pillow

C’mon, tell us you didn’t think of this before we even said a thing! You can quite literally employ your trusty pack as a pillow for an overnight stay inside the hammock. If you haven’t packed a lot of hard equipment or don’t possess a framed backpack, there’s a good chance your pack will be a great substitute for a comfy pillow.

Keep it between your legs

Now, we get it! It sounds like something that’s way out of context. Still, let’s focus on what does this have to do with hammock camping. Once the weather turns cold, your pack can serve as an additional layer of insulation between your legs. Keep in mind that this only stands for lightweight packs, you’ll probably have some trouble with heavier ones.

Storing your pack on the ground

If none of the ideas from the text above work, here’s what you can do: store your backpack outside of the hammock. In other words: store it on the ground nearby. Needless to say, it’s a pretty straightforward way of storing your stuff.

Before you do anything, you’ll have to understand what the terrain you’re working with is like, and how will that affect the positioning of your bag. Also, you’ll need to find a dry bag to cover your pack, obviously. Never store it too far away from your hammock, since you want your stuff nearby if you need somethin’ in the middle of the night.

Store your backpack on top of a tarp or something similar that will keep it away from having direct contact with the ground. There’s no need to emphasize the fact that avoiding this will invite various bugs (here’s how to get rid of some) and moisture to the party inside your backpack.

Hang your pack

Now, imagine the ground’s all muddy and everything. By hanging your stuff above it, you’ll prevent most issues that would affect your pack in unfortunate weather conditions.

Hanging place #1: Under the hammock

One method is to hand your pack right underneath your hammock. Attach it to the carabiner that puts together your hammock and the straps. Not only will this protect your backpack from the rain, but you’ll also have your stuff close by if something was to go awry. For most hammock campers, this is probably the favorite method of storing the backpack.

Hanging place #2: On a tree

Here’s how you’ll go about this one: simply tie a length of cordage around a single tree and use a carabiner to hang your pack from a tree. Most hammock enthusiasts would tell you this is a great hanging method (sounds weird, right?) for your pack during the day.

What if you don’t have a spare carabiner to use? You’ll want to carve an average wooden stick into a straight line with a little hook at the bottom of it. Also, you might find out that Mother Nature already took care of the job since some of ’em have a hanger in their “original” design blueprint. Anyway, once you’re done with that, you’ll want to wrap, let’s say, about five lengths of cordage around your natural carabiner and the trunk of a little tree, and make sure you wrap it tight. Afterward, just tie off the cordage, and that’s it!

Hanging place #3: On the ridgeline

If you’re sporting a nice, solid ridgeline (obviously not the car model), it might be the perfect hanging place for your stuff at night. Additionally, you can hang your carabiners, lanterns, and other pieces of your hammocking gear. This is one of the most convenient methods of storing your stuff. Just use the identical carabiner concept we’ve suggested you use with method #2.

A word or two before we sign out

Okay, so that’s about it concerning the methods of storing your camping equipment while hammocking! Now you’re equipped with the right knowledge that will make you feel prepared for everything that might happen during your hammocking trip. Most importantly: now you know how to keep your stuff safe and secure from various weather conditions!

For more info concerning the fantastic activity called hammocking, pay a visit to this segment of our blog.

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