Tent or Hammock?

Questions about equipment and supplies to bring on a trip (including reviews).

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Mark_NK8Q
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Tent or Hammock?

Post by Mark_NK8Q » Tue Jun 14, 2016 7:22 am

In less than two weeks I'll be setting foot on ISRO for the first time. I'm getting VERY excited!

Originally I planned to use a hammock instead of tenting would be a great way to save some pack weight for my upcoming week-long hike. Speaking with a park ranger several months ago it was indicated to me that the campsites are set up for tent camping, not hammocks. I thought I read on one of the forums here that others have used hammocks, though.

Can somebody give me a sanity check on this as I would really like to save some pack weight ...

I plan to stay at the following campgrounds:

Feldtmann Lake
Siskiwit Bay
South Lake Desor
Hatchet Lake
McCargoe Cove
Daisy Farm
Rock Harbor

Backup/alternate plans would possibly include the following campgrounds as well:

Island Mine
Todd Harbor
East Chickenbone Lake
Three Mile

The campgrounds where there is a shelter I would possibly stay in the shelter instead of using a hammock/tent.

I was also contemplating which sleeping bag to take with me. I didn't want to take my NorthFace -10F as it is too big/bulky/heavy/overkill. I've opted for the Snugpak Sleeper Lite which has a comfort rating down to 32F and a low temp rating of 18. A lighter alternative would be my Snugpak Jungle Bag, but with its comfort rating of only 45F and low temp rating of 36F it seemed a bit light for this trip. I see a weather station reporting that low temps lately have been in the mid-40s which is about just right, but as they say, past performance is no guarantee of future performance ...

Thanks for the sanity checks and advice!

Mark

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IncaRoads
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Re: Tent or Hammock?

Post by IncaRoads » Tue Jun 14, 2016 7:47 am

The Snugpak Sleeper Lite sleeping bag sounds like a good choice. There is always a chance of a cool/cold night.

Have fun on your upcoming trip!

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jrwiesz
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Re: Tent or Hammock?

Post by jrwiesz » Tue Jun 14, 2016 7:54 pm

Rangers claim camps are set-up for tents for a reason; my impression, as I wandered the Isle, was that it is a place that has limited hammock hanging possibilities.
YMMV. I would/will be using a tent, hiking or paddling the park.
"And standing on the the crest of the Greenstone Ridge, I suddenly had this desire to retreat north to where I just come, to stay in the backcountry, to spend another day in a place where the only deadline I had was to pitch the tent before dark."
Jim DuFresne


Donk_67
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Re: Tent or Hammock?

Post by Donk_67 » Tue Jun 14, 2016 8:26 pm

I am usually a hammock camper, however National Parks tend to be a challenge in finding suitable trees. I have seen trip reports where hangers have made it work, but that wasn't generally my experience on IR. Camps I remember using my hammock: Lane Cove, Moskey and West Chickenbone. I camped at Hatchet in the rain and wasn't able to Hang. Desor South might have some sites east of the spur trail, but the west side was dominated by dead birch trees. Be prepared to go to ground if you elect to leave the tent at home.


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hooky
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Re: Tent or Hammock?

Post by hooky » Wed Jun 15, 2016 7:27 am

I've hung at Feldtman, Siskiwit, S Desor and Malone. It was late in the year and I had my pick of of sites at each place. Not all the sites are suitable for hanging, so if it's busy/crowded, you may be up the proverbial creek.

Down into the 30's, your sleeping bag alone won't keep you warm. You'll need something under you for insulation that won't compress, since the the bottom of the hammock will bleed heat quickly. I go back and forth between a closed cell foam pad and an underquilt.


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Mark_NK8Q
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Re: Tent or Hammock?

Post by Mark_NK8Q » Wed Jun 15, 2016 7:57 am

Okay, thanks for the feedback. I'll continue with my original plan of the tent with a closed-cell foam pad and the SnugPak Sleeper Lite, should be okay.

Starting my drive there a week after tomorrow. Stopping half way at my parent's house in Frankenmuth and then to Houghton the following day for a flight to Windigo on Saturday morning (assuming WX allows it).

Kelty FINALLY took care of the backpack problem that I had with my Kelty Trekker 3950 (now it is called a Trekker 65) and I had a chance to try out all the replacement parts on the trail last night and seems okay. The replacements are a bit nicer than the ~16 year old original ones! Replaced the waist belt due to some stitching that came loose and was not allowing for proper tightening and they sent matching shoulder straps and eventually a sternum strap (which arrived on Monday). It took over a month because Kelty had run out of replacement parts. I was very close to getting a whole new pack but instead bought a used pack of the same type but slightly different vintage at a good price, figuring I have LOTS of spare parts now. In the end Kelty did come through, though.

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Ingo
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Re: Tent or Hammock?

Post by Ingo » Wed Jun 15, 2016 11:55 am

If your the sleeping is rated well you should be fine. I use a 35 deg Mt Hardware bag (EN Comfort 41/Limit 32) and a silk liner. Around 40 I'm good in base layers and a light fleece, but would rather do that than carry a heavier bag.

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DonNewcomb
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Re: Tent or Hammock?

Post by DonNewcomb » Fri Jun 17, 2016 6:30 am

Setting up a hammock requires some flexibility on choice of location. On I.R. you have to camp in the campgrounds and, except at a very few campgrounds, you have to camp inside the designated box. Very hard to find a space in a campground that will work with a hammock. Now, if you had a backcountry permit and were off-trail...

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