Angelina River Canoe Trip – February 2011

The SFA Outdoor Pursuits planned this trip for the stretch of the Angelina River between Highway 63 and Martin Dies Jr. State Park. I was stoked to do this trip. I’ve done a decent bit of paddling, but I’ve never camped out of my canoe before. My wife and I signed ourselves up and hoped for the best.

We had a full roster, but had a few last minute cancellations. A couple of those spots got filled, so thankfully we didn’t wind up with a small group. It was a good group of folks. The group dynamic worked pretty well, and I never saw any conflicts. Unfortunately, I’m absolutely terrible with names so I only remember a couple of the folks who attended. My lack of short term memory in general doesn’t help here.

Hammock Camping at Ratcliff Lake

March 19-20 was a nice trip to Ratcliff Lake campground to meet some of the Hammockforums personalities and see some different hammocks. Unfortunately, I notice I took fewer pictures of people than I did of the hammocks and stuff. I seem to have that tendency.

Slinky got there sometime on Thursday to do some fishing and snag us a campsite or two. I arrived early Friday afternoon under sunny skies and warm temperatures. I proceeded to set up my Eno Doublenest hammock with its guide gear tarp for my first night of hammock camping.

Ratcliff Lake 19-20 March 2010

ENO Hammock Test Hang

Today’s a nice day, and I finished sewing loops in my tree huggers last night, so I did some test hanging.

I’m happy to report everything went off without a hitch. I hung the hammock from my newly built pergola. It uses 6×6 posts, and the short side is about 14′ wide. I figured doing it in a controlled setting like this would go off a bit easier than trying to find the right two trees in the woods at the back of the yard for a test hang.

I’m using a whoopie sling/tree hugger setup with a couple of SMC rings, too.

Hammock Suspension: Whoopie Slings with a Fixed Eye Loop

As I work out a good way to hang my hammock with a minimum of knotwork (that derates the cord and is complicated to tie, especially in the dark) and metal hardware (that’s heavy), I settled on whoopie slings. Grizzly Adams from Hammockforums has a nice video that does a good job of explaining how they work. SlowBro also has a pictoral on how to make the whoopie sling.

ENO Doublenest hammock

Christmas found me pretty happy this year.  After my wife got home from emergency calls, we exchanged gifts.  She got me an ENO Doublenest hammock for backpacking.  Right now, I only plan on using it for summer backpacking, but many folks figure out how to use them in the cooler seasons, too.

The hammock itself packs up pretty small.  This does not include, however, a bug net or a tarp.  These are extra parts.