Why I am ditching my TENT when moto-camping

Discussion in 'Camping Toys' started by dredman, Nov 3, 2019.

  1. dredman

    dredman Dirty Moto-Tourist

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    I prefer the noise of the wind thru the tree, birds, deer, and rushing water. Only a few miles more?
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  2. Jollyrogers

    Jollyrogers Long timer

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    I ride east coast from PA down to FLA, so mostly state/national forests in the ‘mountains’. I have only done two RR for the SEAT/TETS and MABDR. Do post a lot in our local area thread, mostly weekend stuff. I’ve never had a problem finding a place to put my tent, either dispersed or a campground :shudder:. WTF would I camp in a golf course? However, lakeside was nice. Is that what you think qualifies for a tent spot? No rides out west and have no in’tent’ to do so, mostly due to work.

    IMG_1913.JPG
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  3. dredman

    dredman Dirty Moto-Tourist

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    Your picture qualifies as a golf course - they are out there, but very rare IMO. My guess is we ride and think differently. Typically I ride/explore until I get tired, then start looking HARD for a camp spot before the sun goes down. I usually try to get close to a creek, and a nice, quiet view. I have camped quite a good bit in a tent, but I always ride a LOT longer trying to find that perfect spot, and have wound up setting up a tent after dark many more times than my hammock. I also camp a good bit in "non-camping" areas that require stealth - hiding my bike, my gear and body. Roadside camping in the perfect spot also comes with other issues - well-worn spots typically mean well-trashed, complete with garbage, feces and neighbors - I really hate camping with people I don't know, or at least ride in with?
    #23
  4. Jamie Z

    Jamie Z I'm serious. Supporter

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    Good video; thanks for posting.

    It's true that everybody's views are different. I disagree with almost all of your nine points. :lol3

    It really sounds to me like you have the wrong tent. Aside from the crawling-on-the-ground aspect, I think the right tent would solve almost all your problems. Maggot mentioned the 15 pound Redverz, but I was going to suggest the smaller, 6 pound model: https://redverz.com/tents/redverz-hawk-ii-four-season-mountaineering-tent/#product-description

    The tent I currently use is some basic REI 2-man model that I bought mid-trip a few years ago when the tent I was carrying started coming apart. I can set it up in under five minutes. It doesn't have a vestibule, which makes getting in and out a lot easier. It's something like 4 pounds. It's green, so it stays fairly well hidden. I only occasionally stake it down, and it's fine. And this from a tent I bought without any research. I just needed a tent so I stopped at REI and picked up whatever they had that was cheap.

    IMG_8154.jpg

    But... folks like their hammocks. I can't say for sure. I've never used a hammock. I did travel for a few days with a guy who had a hammock, and I have to be honest, it really turned me off from them because each night was a struggle to find a suitable place for him to hang his hammock. I've rarely had trouble finding a good spot for my tent when I camp in the backcountry or stealth. It really doesn't need to be perfect. I sleep on an inflatable mattress so uneven ground, twigs, or small rocks aren't an issue. Even if the space is sloping, I set my tent so my head is on the high side. The most trouble I ever had finding places to set up my tent was when I went through Mexico, and almost all the rural areas are covered in small, spiny, desert scrub. But even then, I usually only had to look around for a few minutes to find a small square that didn't have pokey things.And there certainly wasn't any trees for a hammock.

    I'm curious to hear what you think of the hammock after you've used it for a bit. It's not going to fix your claustrophobic issue, or not being able to sit/stand up.

    Good luck!

    Jamie
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  5. Yinzer Moto

    Yinzer Moto Sloppy 300 rider Supporter

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    This topic has been discussed a lot on this site. The hammock is a nice way to go and I logged many nights in mine. Last year I switched to a bivy sack. It (all the related gear) packs up smaller and lighter than the hammock setup. I still carry the hammock rain fly as a shelter at the entrance to the bivy. The bivy is a little awkward to get in and out but that is only a slight inconvenience.
    #25
  6. Maggot12

    Maggot12 U'mmmm yeaah!!

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    Jamie,

    have you thought about swapping the Miata for a van, and skipping the tent requirement altogether?

    Could hang a hammock in the van too... :D

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  7. dredman

    dredman Dirty Moto-Tourist

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    I welcome everyone that disagrees with me, especially when they bring some new ideas - and yes I am sure there are better tents out there, I was shopping for them, and may buy another one eventually for desert camping (no trees) as that looks like where you camp? That may explain why you never had problems finding flat spots?

    To be clear, I have been hammock camping for nine years (and tents for 40+), and have always realized the pros and cons. Mostly besides trees (or lack there of), my only issue is temperature. Camping beyond October has always been an issue in hammocks, mainly because of the extra gear, setup, and lack of expertise on this critical variable. Now that I think I may have solved this issue I am trying year round use of the hammock. I think your bad opinion of hammock camping may be due to your lack of experience with them (except for the painful one with your buddy) so I'm trying to resolve that in the next video. The proof is always in the pudding, and you will never know until you try one, but my next video is a really strong push for WHY you should try one - coming out tomorrow or Weds.?

    BTW, do you moto-camp with that mattress? How big is it?
    #27
  8. Jollyrogers

    Jollyrogers Long timer

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    @dredman, we don’t think a lot differently. However, I just think a tent or a hammock has its place, and though I love the hammock, I won’t be ditching my tent anytime soon.
    View attachment 1975736
    #28
  9. dredman

    dredman Dirty Moto-Tourist

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    I brought an optional bivy on a very rainy Canada trip. Awkward is an understatement - you must be a young feller? Us old folks struggle on the ground ya know? Lots of grunting, moaning and slobbering - not a pleasant site.
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  10. dredman

    dredman Dirty Moto-Tourist

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    Cannot argue with that.
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  11. Amphib

    Amphib A mind is like a parachute....

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    Tent ditcher here... this year. I've used tents for 30+ years and my back won't let me sleep on the ground anymore no matter what kind of thermarest type thing I've tried.

    I sleep so well in the hammock and I find it's versatility in the environments I travel in perfect and much easier then finding a place for the tent. I'm going to try using the hammock in colder weather this Thanksgiving time for a trip up the mabdr. I did buy a 0° sleeping bag which unfortunately will offset any packing volume and weight benefits of carrying a hammock, but I really value my sleep.
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  12. Yinzer Moto

    Yinzer Moto Sloppy 300 rider Supporter

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    I am in my early 40s with a few bad discs in the back
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  13. Albie

    Albie Kool Aid poisoner

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    While I much rather use my hammock setup, I know I won't be ditching my tents entirely. I did the MABDR last month and knew it would be no problem finding places to hang a hammock. I didn't bring my underquilt, just the insulated pad I normally use tent camping and stayed comfy on the couple nights it dropped into the 40's, add to that the sylnylon tarp, bug net, and top quilt, the setup took much less room than my tent setup would have. The tarp and bugnet pack up half as small as the fly on my tent, and the hammock and straps are a third the size of what the main body of my tent packs up. The rest of the stuff I have to have for either way of camping. The comfort level is just so much better in a hammock.

    Next year, we are going to be doing one of the west BDR's so I will have to take the tent because I can't be sure if I will be able to find a spot to hang.

    So for me it's not one or the other, it's which one is going to be the right tool for that job.
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  14. Jamie Z

    Jamie Z I'm serious. Supporter

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    A van instead of a Miata? Are you nuts?

    Actually, I did have a van for a few years. You might recall my Uber Driver thread. I drove a Toyota Sienna minivan. I did use that van for a few car-camping trips and slept in it. But that was only a few times when my Miata was unavailable for one reason or another. I'm out there for the experience, and the Miata gives an almost-motorcycle-like wind-in-the-hair, road-under-your-feet feel. I'd never trade it for another car, especially a van.

    I camp everywhere. That was a trip to Utah a few years ago. Here's a few more:

    IMG_0132.jpg

    IMG_9320.jpg

    IMG_0358(1).jpg

    IMG_2317.jpg

    (full disclosure: those aren't all the same tent, but they're very similar in design)

    I actually have three air mattresses. Trying to find the right one. Two of them pack up to around the size of a soccer ball. One of them packs up really tiny, a little bigger than a one liter soda bottle, but you can feel the material is really thin, and even though it's never given me any problems, I do worry about the long-term durability. And none of them were cheap. If you'd like more details about them, I'd be happy to go into more detail.

    Jamie
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  15. dredman

    dredman Dirty Moto-Tourist

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    When you said air mattress, I was thinking the big WalMart 10 pound guy? I call them sleeping pads, and just got in another one as an option for my underquilt - yet ANOTHER video soon :)
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  16. Amphib

    Amphib A mind is like a parachute....

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    Good points, but I'm hoping this solves those issues. I'll be picking it up soon.

    https://www.tensaoutdoor.com/shop/
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  17. Maggot12

    Maggot12 U'mmmm yeaah!!

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    If not sure where I'll be camping I'll take the hammock and the tent. I always take the hammock tarp anyway, so the extra space of the hammock and underquilt is minimal for me.

    #37
  18. Jamie Z

    Jamie Z I'm serious. Supporter

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    No. All my mattresses are around two pounds. I'm a minimalist. It's why you'd think I'd prefer a hammock, but I like the versatility of a tent, and I've almost never had a notable problem using a tent that a hammock would have solved, at least from my point of view. Also, each of my sleeping pads cost in the area of $200. :(:

    Probably two of those will be in the flea market in about six months or so.

    Jamie
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  19. ChopperCharles

    ChopperCharles Long timer

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    I basically am hammock curious, but have no idea what I need. I’m 250 lbs too, so that makes it more difficult. I only camp until mid October, but it is often cold in the mountains.

    I also need some kind of shelter I can set up a Kermit chair under and live and cook under if there is a long extended period of rain.

    I’ve been thinking of the redervez solo, but it’s very, very large all packed up. The thought was maybe a tarp and a hammock would pack up smaller and actually help me sleep better.

    Tarp is worrisome though because I have one now and it’s still not great in a cold driving rain. I want to be able to sit with a book and a thermos of soup in the wilderness and enjoy myself when it’s pouring. Then curl up into a nice warm sleeping bag.

    Charles.
    #39
  20. dredman

    dredman Dirty Moto-Tourist

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    I am filming today and will answer these comments hopefully?
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