How many times have you heard a story about Hemingway-style explorers finding themselves eaten by a bear or a pack of rabid otters, with their limbs casually strewn about the terrain they were exploring just moments ago? Tragic stuff indeed, and our TopProducts research team all agreed that if such an unfortunate destiny should befall any of the team members, it would be quite a bummer
! (Especially since we're not that big on all that 'insurance' stuff.)
Anyway, this buying guide will be about- portable hammocks
, what else? These sleeping contraptions have been every explorer's best friend ever since they were first invented, which was awhile ago. Thanks to their simplicity and convenience, they've become an integral part of the outdoors-oriented cultures. More specifically, explorers of all kinds, including sailors and rainforest-frequenting folks, have made a hammock into the popular sleeping utensil that it is today. On top of that, many nations around the world such as El Salvador, for example, have extensive hammock-oriented history and culture.
When it comes to the consideration factors of these utensils, there really isn't much to say about them, since they're so simple. If you've been planning on buying one, though, the first thing to look into would be its material. Nowadays, most hammocks are made out of some sort of nylon or other artificial materials. Polyester also seems to be quite widely-spread. There's a reason for this tendency, too - these materials, though lacking in softness, perform pretty well in outdoors conditions where it often rains and experiences high humidity.
Of course, if you plan to use it only for your backyard, or somewhere indoors, you can always opt for a softer, more gentle material such as South American cotton. The second thing to pay attention to is the size of your new hammock. This one may sound like a no-brainer, but many people make the mistake of buying a model that's just about their size, so they end up feeling cooped up and uncomfortable while lying on it. What you want to do is get yourself a hammock that's slightly bigger than you, so that, depending on how tall you are, you can always have some room to make yourself comfortable!
For those of you exploration-inclined folks who like to take a nap in the midst of a badger vs snake battleground, you may also want to consider an appropriate anti-insect netting as well. If it's made of nylon or some related material, chances are - it's going to have a safety net attached to it, in this form or another. With one of these on, you'll be protected from not only flying creatures of the night, but also small but unusually quick Western jumping mice
- now, if a bear sounds scary, let us tell you that these little buggers take no prisoners!
If you'd like to go an extra mile and protect yourself to an even greater degree, you can get yourself a model with a rain tarp (at least one of the products we've reviewed features one of these). More parts, of course, will mean that you'll have more work to do setting it up, but once you're done, you can rest assured that you won't get wet when it starts raining, and it will
! Of course, a simple solution can also have its pros, so if you're after just a regular hammock, this mixed hammock review
may give you some useful insight. For those of you who'd like a hammock chair crossover
or a fully-framed hammock
, our reviews of those are also live, and you can check them out!
Even though hammocks are quite simple when it comes to their constructions and designs, the sheer number of varieties they come in means that their price ranges vary quite substantially as well. Now, the culprits for an increased price with some models tend to be quite obvious straight away! For example, models made out of tough parachute cloth are usually more expensive than the commonly-found nylon versions.
Also, attachments such as mosquito nettings, pockets, and rain tarps are going to result in an increase in price. The thing to keep in mind before you venture to make a purchase, though, is that more features don’t necessarily mean a better hammock, so make sure to carefully consider your options and needs so that you get yourself the perfect one from the first shot! And don’t be buying any of those cheap ones, either – that’s how to make it a badger vs snake vs you battleground!
Portable hammocks nowadays come in all shapes and sizes, so picking up a new one for yourself or, worse still, someone else, may come across as a daunting task at times. Worry not, however, as our TopProducts team once again comes to the rescue! The list below contains the most important features to pay attention to when buying a portable hammock.
- a list of the most important properties to take into consideration:
- Anti-Bug Netting Availability
- Rain Tarp Availability
- Packing Sack
- Mildew Resistance
- Type of Suspension Hooks
- Machine Washable
- Instruction Manual
A well-written instruction sheet can be a lifesaver when it comes to setup, especially if you're doing it the first time!
Construction and Design
Construction-wise, portable hammocks are perhaps the simplest of sleeping utensils, and that’s precisely what makes them popular and beloved around the globe. They're made out of a big piece of rectangle-shaped cloth with a couple of strings or ropes that serve to get it attached to a tree or a similar object.
Now, some of the more advanced versions of this sleeping utensil also feature a range of other additions, such as mosquito nettings and rain tarps. Typically, the inclusion of rain tarps means more cords and strings to manage, but it's all worth the effort if you're headed to a rainforest. The models predominantly backyard-oriented are usually made of some sort of cotton-based cloth since comfort is a priority. All in all, plenty of interesting pieces of 'hammocky' ware to choose from!
Performance and Ease of Use
As with any sort of outdoorsy utensil that requires some propping up from the mother nature, installing a hammock can be both a gratifying and an irritating experience, depending on 'the tree configuration' of the spot you've picked. Also, how experienced you are can play a major role in this, as your success rate of setting up a hammock will surely go up with practice. Once it's all up and runnin', you can sit on it, lie on it, go wild! (We do not recommend standing on it.) As far as maintenance is concerned, washing the cloth every now and then should do the job just fine. Just make sure to follow the instructions about the temperature of water and you'll be good!