1/01/2012

Week 1

Weather: Temperatures ranging 10-30 degrees. Strong winds, sustained 10-25 mph, 50+ mph gusts. 1.5 inches of wet snow fell over the course of about three hours.

Gear: ENO Singlenest Hammock, ENO Slapstrap suspension system, ENO Dryfly Raintarp, Thermarest heat reflecting foam sleeping pad, Minstral -20 degree sleeping bag, Coleman rechargeable lantern.

Comments: This was my first night out of 52, and it was probably one of the hardest ones on my gear. I went out at about 11:00, and came back in about 8:00 the next morning. The gear was all set up from the night before, and the weight of the initial snow fall really weighed down the tarp.  The tarp however, stood up to the weight, and I brushed the snow off and re-tightened the guy lines a little before climbing into the hammock. The snow stopped about an hour and a half after I had gotten in to my hammock. At this time, the wind had really picked up, at speeds of around 23 mph.  The tarp still yet stood up to the constant barrage of snow falling from the trees above. Regardless of the wind gusts reaching around 50 mph, the tarp held its ground and its taughtness. I got about 5-6 hours of very comfortable sleep, regardless of the crazy weather conditions. I have yet to find something to dislike about the hammock, but the slap straps stretch quite a bit. I would highly suggest opting for some whoopie slings instead of the slap straps. The tarp stood up to consistent abuse throughout the night, and the guylines did not loosen the least bit. Contrary to all the people writing about the cuts on the tarp being to deep, I found that now snow was on the ground under the tarp in the morning.  The sleeping pad and sleeping bag worked like a charm, keeping me warm through out the night. Over all, i had a great night despite the unforgiving Minnesota winter weather.

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