Take A Peek At The Most Comfortable Hammock Before Reading The Entire Guide
Hennessy Hammock - Expedition Zip
Why is it better?
6 Best Camping Hammocks Of 2021
With that in mind, let’s now take a closer look at our top picks.
Let’s dive into the specifics and review each camping hammock individually. You can use the list below to jump and review specific models, or you can read along and go through all the information.
Best Overall: Hennessy Hammock - Expedition Zip
When catching your Z’s a good few feet above the floor, you want to be doing so in something that’s super-reliable, durable, well-made, and built to make sure you stay there for the duration of your slumber.
If that “something” also happens to be wonderfully comfortable, practical, weather-resistant, and packs a wealth of small conveniences that make it a standout amongst its competitors, then all the better.
The Hennessy Expedition Zip Hammock is all of these things and more.
One common line of thinking for many would-be hammock campers is that it’s sure to entail a few compromises on traditional tent camping, particularly with regard to comfort and practicality.
Where this hammock excels is in actually offering an upgrade on both, thanks mainly to its zippered bug net, large rainfly, and a handful of very handy bonus features like an integrated gearloft, asymmetrical design, double entry points, and very user-friendly webbing straps that facilitate hanging.
This one wins our vote as the best camping hammock on the market because it ticks all the boxes that need ticking and oozes the kind of quality that very, very few of its competitors come close to matching.
It’s water-resistant, comfortable, spacious, rugged, easy to hang, and effective when it comes to keeping the bugs at bay – what more could you ask for?
A great all-rounder that’s combines all the comfort of a camping hammock with the practicality of a backpacking hammock.
While this hammock offers a generous maximum weight capacity of 250 lbs, however, for users over 6’2” it might be a little on the short side.
- 250-pound weight capacity
- Zippered closure makes this possibly the best camping hammock with a mosquito net out there
- Tough, durable materials
- Very well made
- Solid weather resistance
- Quite expensive
- Max user height of 6 feet
- Relatively heavy compared to other models
- No-See-Um bug mesh
- Asymmetrical design for greater comfort
- Zippered closure
- Slidig mesh gearloft on ridgeline
- Dimensions: 8.3’ x 4.4’
- Material: 70d high-density nylon bottom; 30D no-see-um mosquito mesh; 70d ripstop polyester rainfly
- Weight: 2lb 12oz
- Suspension type: rope
- Number of persons: 1
Runner Up: Lost Valley Camping Hammock
Few camping hammocks out there can run the Hennessey Expedition Zip Hammock (featured above) a close second, but the Lost Valley Camping Hammock does just that, and, in fact, came very close to pipping it to the post.
This hammock is the ideal choice for those on a budget who want a solid, reliable sleeping setup with all the necessary trimmings included in the price.
At 9.5’ by 6’, and with a max weight capacity of 350 lbs, it also has the potential to be used as a very spacious one-person hammock or as a cozier option for a parent and their child, thereby making it more versatile than many other models on the market.
The most lovable aspect of this hammock, however, is the value for money it offers.
Other camping hammocks that offer the same performance, durability, and general quality of build as this one will, in most cases, cost at least twice as much.
The only significant downside to this hammock is its weight.
Tipping the scales at a fairly ponderous 3.6 pounds, this isn’t the lightest camping hammock out there and many ultralight backcountry travelers or backpackers may balk at carrying those extra few ounces.
While this is an excellent choice for those on a tighter budget or campers traveling with their kids, we wouldn’t recommend it for couples as there are far roomier double hammocks out there, such as the ENO DoubleNest (below).
- Very competitively priced
- Very spacious for one person
- 350-pound weight capacity
- Ideal for a parent and child
- Quality stitching
- A tight squeeze for 2 people
- Interior accessory pouch
- Reinforced stitching
- Tarp measures 9.5’ x 9.5’
- Dimensions: 9.5ft x 6ft
- Weight: 3.6 lbs
- Material: Tear-resistant parachute Nylon with reinforced stitching and knotting
- Suspension type: 9.5-foot tree straps (webbing) and carabiners
- Number of persons: 1/2
Best Double Hammock: ENO Hammock
How does a hard-wearing, spacious, incredibly well-made hammock for two people that costs very little more than most far more basic models for one person sound?
If the answer is “good”, read on…
ENO has become a backpackers favorite over the years on account its ability to provide low-cost, high-performing, and highly versatile camping hammocks that go that extra mile in terms of quality.
All of these characteristics are exemplified in ENO’s top-selling double hammock, the long-term favorite DoubleNest.
The DoubleNest scores high on every attribute we could possibly ask our camping hammock to have, but its most compelling selling point is the ability to combine a very low pack weight with a very roomy feel and tough, confidence-inspiring materials.
While it’s very hard to find fault with any of the DoubleNest’s specs or features, the most obvious downside is that the accessories necessary for hanging the tent are all sold separately.
This being so, if you’re weighing this one up as a potential purchase, be sure to factor in the additional cost required to buy the needed add-ons.
If you’re a snuggler and like getting cozy with your partner in the evenings, they don’t come much cozier than this!
That said, if you and your partner’s combined weight is pushing that 400-pound mark, you might be better off looking for a hammock with a more robust suspension system.
- Carabiners included
- 400-pound weight limit
- Spacious even for 2 people
- Highly breathable materials
- Suspension straps and tarp sold separately
- No bug mesh
- Made with breathable, quick-drying Nylon
- Aluminum wiregate carabiners
- Nautical-grade line with stainless-steel snap links
- Dimensions: 9ft x 6.2ft
- Weight: 1 lb 4 oz
- Material: Breathable Nylon taffeta
- Suspension type: straps
- Number of persons: 2
Runner Up: Grand Trunk Hammock
Every hammock on our list features a unique selling point that will make it more attractive to certain buyers.
With the Grand Trunk Double Hammock, that USP is undoubtedly space. Measuring in at 10.5’ x 6.6’, this is the largest hammock in our review and the ideal choice for those traveling with a partner or child.
But it has a lot more going for it than roominess alone…
Though lacking a rainfly and built-in bug mesh, this hammock weighs in at a very friendly 1 pound and 4 ounces and comes with everything you need to get started—10 feet of suspension rope, nautical grade carabiners, and a handy stuff sack that packs down into a neat, very portable little bundle.
It also uses tough, 70d-denier parachute Nylon materials and—perhaps most pleasingly—is priced very reasonably for such a large hammock.
In terms of downsides, the list is very short.
The absence of the rainfly and bug mesh will naturally add some expense for those who plan to do their hammocking in all weather conditions or in bug-prone areas, but even factoring in the added cost for these two accessories the Grand Trunk still represents great value for money.
One small quibble we had that’s worth pointing out is that the included suspension ropes are a little on the short side, meaning you’ll have to be very selective with the trees you pick to hang the hammock from unless you pick up some straps or additional cord to extend them.
As mentioned above, anyone considering buying this hammock should bear in mind that the short suspension ropes mean the options as regards potential hanging spots will be very limited.
- Reasonably priced
- Very spacious
- 400-pound weight limit
- Tough materials
- 400-pound max weight capacity
- Rainfly not included
- No bug mesh
- Suspension ropes a little on the short side
- Triple-stitched seams for extra strength
- Carabiners are nautical grade
- Dimensions: 10.5 x 6.6 ft
- Weight: 1 lb 4 oz
- Material: 70D parachute Nylon
- Suspension type: Rope
- Number of persons: 2
Best Under $50: Wise Owl Hammock
For the hammocking-curious, the thought of spending a hefty whack of your hard-earned dough on something that you might not enjoy and ultimately discard after only a few tries is unlikely to inspire a great deal of enthusiasm.
Buying a cheaply made, questionably reliable model to “test the water,” on the other hand, shouldn’t strike anyone as a particularly good idea.
So, what’s the solution?
Well, what if we told you that you could get your hands on a reliable, comfortable camping hammock for not much more than the price of the suspension straps on some pricier, big-name brand models?
That’s just what the wonderfully well-priced and surprisingly well-made Wise Own Outfitters Hammock has to offer.
This hammock, moreover, is not only cheap, but boasts the kind of construction we’d expect to pay twice as much for if bearing the logo of a bigger brand, using 210T parachute Nylon, triple stitching, and heavy-duty tree straps and carabiners.
The WOO hammock may lack some of the ruggedness and long-term durability of its pricier peers, but, given its low cost, it offers surprisingly good quality and is the ideal entry-level option for newcomers to the world of hammocking.
While we wouldn’t like to suggest this is the type of hammock that’s likely to last you a lifetime, if you’re new to hammock camping or just want to try it out without splurging on a more advanced model, this is a great option.
- Great value for money
- Tough materials
- Very easy setup
- Questionable durability
- No bug mesh
- Rainfly not included
- Knot-free suspension straps
- 9ft hammock straps
- Available in over 20 colors
- Dimensions: 9 ft x 4ft 7 inches
- Weight: 16oz
- Material: Heavy-duty 210T parachute nylon with triple interlocking stitching
- Suspension type: Tree straps (webbing) and carabiners
- Number of persons: 1
Best Hammock-Tent Combo: Lawson Hammock
When any product is rated number one by Backpacker, Outside, and American Survival Guide and also wins Gear Of The Year Award, you know it’s gotta be doing something right.
We’d go one step further and say the Lawson Camping Tent-Hammock is doing just about everything right.
This incredibly well-made hammock-tent combo opens up a whole new world of possibilities in terms of backcountry sleeping solutions.
It takes all the best elements of a tent, all the best elements of a hammock, and fuses them together to bring a product that makes us wonder if we’ll be tempted to revert to either a standard tent or hammock ever again.
This tent-hammock is made with very durable materials and offers solid weather and bug resistance thanks to a 2000mm detachable rainfly and an integrated bug net.
But the most endearing thing about this product is its downright peerless versatility.
One of the gravest failings of any hammock is that it can’t be used in the absence of trees.
The Lawson solves this problem by working just as well as a standard tent as it does a suspended, hammock-style sleeping system—when there are no sturdy trees in the area where you’re doing your camping, simply stake it out and pitch up like you would a regular tent…simple!
If you like the idea of hammocking but aren’t overly enthused by the cocoon/banana effect of standard hammocks and don’t fancy sacrificing the spacious, less-claustrophobic feel and convenience of a standard tent, this tent-hammock hybrid is the solution to your problems.
Far from being merely some fancy gimmick, this is a genuine game-changer that offers the type of take-anywhere versatility that makes it quite possibly the best backpacking hammock out there.
What is there to say?
If it’s within your budget and you’re interested in mixing up a bit of hammocking with regular camping, this option lets you have the best of both worlds.
- Excellent protection from the elements
- Rated number one by Backpacker, Outside, and American Survival Guide, and winner of Gear Of The Year Award.
- Incredibly robust
- Very well made
- Versatile: can be used as a hammock or a standard tent
- Quite pricey
- Spreader bar keeps hammock flat
- Detachable, waterproof rainfly, and integrated bug net
- Made with ripstop Nylon and polyester
- Two interior storage pockets
- Two interior O-rings for hanging gear, lights, etc.
- Dimensions: 7.5’ x 3.5’
- Weight: 4.25 lbs (with poles)
- Material: Waterproof ripstop Nylon and polyester
- Suspension type: Rope/Spreader bar system (rope/straps sold separately)
- Number of persons: 1
Table of Contents
Types Of Camping Hammocks
The most common types of camping hammock include the following:
These are usually bare-bones, frill-free models that sacrifice a little in the way of comfort and convenient features and ruggedness in order to cut down on weight and pack size. Ideal for thru-trekkers or gram-counters.
Ideal for hammock camping with a partner or children, these models boast a higher weight capacity, are far more spacious than single models, and are also a good option for taller or heavier users.
On the downside, double hammocks usually weigh a lot more than single varieties.
Built to do everything a three-season tent can do and offer a tough, weather-resistant, airborne alternative to traditional tent camping.
Most expedition models come with a full complement of bug net, rainfly/tarp, tougher materials, and bonus storage options like a gear loft and interior pockets for longer-term livability.
In short, this type of hammock is a suspended tent that offers all the roominess of traditional tents and none of the cocoon-like claustrophobia that may put some would-be buyers off of standard hammocks.
On the downside, these are generally much heavier and pricier than other varieties of hammock.
What To Look For In A Camping Hammock?
Newcomers to hammocking might think there’s not much to a camping hammock beyond a rectangle of cloth strung between two lengths of rope, but they’d be very much mistaken.
There’s far more nuance and subtlety that goes into the making of a good camping hammock than meets the eye.
As buyers, we need to pay particularly close attention to the following specs and characteristics:
For smaller users, the size of a hammock is usually not a major issue, but for anyone over 6”, it’s wise to read user reviews and carefully check the dimensions of any hammock before buying.
If the hammock is on the short side, taller users will be forced to sleep with their body in a curved position with their and head and feet more elevated than their trunk, which, we can assure, is not conducive to a good night’s sleep!
Tough, durable materials are crucial to ensuring you end your night of hammock camping where you started it—that is, in the hammock and airborne!
When buying, look for ripstop materials with a high denier count (70d and up is best) and triple stitching.
All camping hammock manufacturers will provide a max user weight in their product description. These are generally in the region of 200 pounds for single hammocks and 350-450 pounds for double hammocks.
If you plan on using your hammock alone and weigh close to that 200-pound mark, we’d recommend opting for a double hammock to be on the safe side and avoid excessive sagging.
The three main types of suspension system used with camping hammocks include the following:
Rope: Rope suspension was the original method used by all hammock campers. It’s light, cheap, and far more portable than many other suspension systems. Rope suspension works by looping a length of rope around a tree and either tying it off at the hammock attachment points or by attaching it to a carabiner.
While this system works perfectly well, it can damage the tree and the ropes won’t grip the tree nearly as well as broader webbing straps.
Webbing: Webbing is, essentially, woven straps of cord that have varying breadths, usually around the 1 to 1.5-inch mark for the purpose of hammock suspension.
Because of this increased breadth, more material is in contact with the tree and the webbing offers more grip than standard rope which, because of its round shape, is also prone to rolling and shifting about on the tree.
Additionally—and importantly for conscientious campers—webbing doesn’t damage the tree.
Webbing is used by looping the strap around the tree, threading the free end through one of the webbing loops and then attaching the free end to the hammock with a knot or a carabiner.
Stands: Hammock stands are used when there are no trees from which you can suspend your hammock.
While okay for roadside camping, these are very impractical for anyone headed into the backcountry on foot as they generally weigh upwards of fifteen pounds and will fill a 70-liter backpack.
A few handy accessories can optimize the comfort, convenience, and practicality of your hammock; others are not so much accessories as must-have logistical necessities that either may or may not be included with the hammock itself.
The most important of these include:
- Bug mesh
- Rain fly
- Suspension straps
- Sleeping pad
- Guy lines
When buying your hammock, pay particular attention to which of the above accessories are included and which are not. If they’re not included, then you’ll have to factor in the cost of any additional purchase to the overall price and value for money the hammock offers.
Most varieties of camping hammock offer very little in the way of insulation. For the most part, the materials used are thin, breathable, and not built to retain heat.
As such, when buying your hammock bear in mind that you’ll need to carry a sleeping bag or quilt and possibly even a sleeping pad if camping in cooler temps.
How to hang a hammock?
- Your hammock should be hung equidistant between two trees (check that the length of rope/webbing is equal on both sides)
- The ideal distance between trees is usually 12-15 feet
- Ideally, the trees should be at least the thickness of an adult human thigh (obviously, the thicker the tree the more secure your setup will be)
- Wrap your rope or straps around the tree 4-6 feet from the ground, making sure to leave space (if there are branches above) to attach your rainfly if you have one
What knot is best the best for securing your hammock?
When hanging your hammock with rope, in most cases you will need to tie two knots: one that you will attach to the hammock and one you will thread the rope through once looped around the tent.
The simplest and most effective knot for tying both is a basic overhand knot on a bight.
With suspension straps/ropes that don’t use carabiners, the most secure knot for the end that attaches to the hammock is a climber’s figure-of-eight knot or a bowline knot. For demonstrations of how to tie both of these knots, check out the videos below.
How do you lie in a hammock?
Once your hammock is hung, sit back into the center of the hammock and then slide your feet up into the hammock.
When inside, shift your weight so that your head is ever so slightly above your feet—this will reduce the chance of blood rushing to your head and giving you a headache at some point during the night.
The best camping hammocks for side sleepers are generally those with spreader bars that reduce the curve in the hammock material when suspended.
How to camp with a hammock?
Barring a few exceptions, camping with a hammock is just the same as camping with a standard, traditional tent. The most notable difference, obviously, is that a hammock requires trees.
Another significant variation is that hammocks lack the interior storage space of conventional tents, but this problem is easily overcome by storing your gear beneath your hammock while you sleep.
For more on how to camp with a hammock, check out this handy little video from DD Hammocks:
Is it comfortable to sleep in a hammock?
Although some users claim the cocoon-like feel and banana-like shape of a hammock can cause claustrophobia or an unnatural sleeping position, for many others this is not an issue and far preferable to sleeping on a lumpy and uneven sleeping pad in a tent.
The key to making your hammock comfortable is to play around with the tightness of the suspension straps/ropes until you find the angle that suits your sleeping style best.
Can you sleep in a hammock long-term?
There’s no real reason why not.
In fact, a series of studies have demonstrated that sleeping in a hammock is not only more comfortable than sleeping in a bed, but can also allow you to sleep in a more natural position, fall asleep quicker, beat insomnia, and fall into a deeper sleep.
There are, of course, pros and cons to both setups, but if you find sleeping in a hammock comfortable and develop no aches or pains as a result, then hammocking is just as feasible in the long term as any other outdoor sleeping system.
Hammocking has revolutionized the way we do overnight stays in the backcountry.
It’s a lightweight, versatile, comfortable method that allows us to avoid many of the drawbacks commonly associated with traditional tent camping. In most cases, moreover, it can save us a pound or so in pack weight and a lot of hassle when setting up camp.
In the above review, we’ve seen a selection of the best camping hammocks out there in 2019.
Whether you’re new to hammocking or an old hand, camping with a partner or child or looking to “fly” solo, we’re sure one of our featured tents will let you enjoy many a happy “hang” on your camping adventures in the years to come!