Should you bring a bug out hammock for your bag? When you’re bugging out, there are a few primary goals that rise above the others. You need to keep things light and keep moving quickly to reach your destination. You should keep a low profile when you can. Hammocks are an excellent solution to sleeping. Not to mention that they’re way more comfortable than a lot of other sleep options.
There aren’t a lot of other items that provide so much comfort with so little weight. Hammocks are just ridiculously comfortable. People use them all the time without it being a survival situation. If you don’t have a hammock your other options are leaves and wood.
Backpackers And Campers Already Use Hammocks
When you think of hammock you may think of the wide woven rope hammocks that you see on a lot of porches and patios. These are very comfortable. The problem with them is that they’re enormous! In come camping hammocks.
Camping hammocks are usually made of parachute-like materials. When you feel them, they’re quite thin. This might lead you to believe that they’re not durable enough for a serious situation. Despite how light they stay, they can handle it. The nature of them keeps them off the ground and out of harm’s way for most of their use. As long as you don’t wear knives on your belt, you’re not going to hurt them either.
Camping hammocks are still big. They can easily fit any full grown person. That said, they fold down small. Camping hammocks come with compact bags that compress it down to fit in darn near anything. Often, the bag is attached to the hammock. This is important for keeping track of it.
The thing it’s more important for is a pouch that keeps things close in hand at night. You can keep your flashlight, your multi-tool, even a firearm right there with you. This will keep you ready for anything at a moment’s notice.
I’ve personally spent many nights sleeping in camping hammocks. You can even get name-brand hammocks these days for under $30. I can attest that they’re comfortable and very easy to set up.
Setting Up A Bug Out Hammock
Most hammocks come with a carabiner on their end for attaching it to your hanging solution. Mine came with a couple cheap metal-ish S-hooks. They did the job for a while but eventually one gave out. If your hammock doesn’t come with any, they’re worth picking up.
They’re sturdier than other options and aluminum carabiners are light, too. As an eagle scout, I recommend just having a lot of carabiners in general. They’ve got a million uses for hanging on to things and for construction.
You can buy (and some come with) special straps. These elastic straps make setting the hammock up dead easy. These take all the rope work out of setting up your hammock. With these straps, setting up your hammock takes minutes, if it even takes more than one.
Even without them, you just need to tie some knots and play around with them a little to get the right hang. The paracord that I’m sure you’ll have in your pack will serve you well.
Another much needed upgrade is a roof. With another simple line you can throw your tarp or poncho over the top. Boom, for less than the price of your backpack you’ve got a lifted tent. You’ll be more comfortable than you were on the ground, and likely warmer. You can tie the edges of the tarp to give yourself a floating tent that’s sealed from the wind.
For the weight, a hammock is the best “luxury” item you can include in your bug out bag. It’ll turn scraping by in a stressful situation into a relaxed backpacking trip away from trouble.