Molly and Chris are two people who like to camp. They've camped for years in their tent, but never had the gear to make the hammock camping leap. We geared them up so they could sleep off the rocks with the full Kammok line. Their experience is recorded below.
Words by Molly, photos by Chris.
In case you didn’t know, July is ‘Hammock Camping Month’ and July 22nd is ‘National Hammock Day’! We’ll be celebrating all month and hope you’ll join us!
“Elevated Camping” – this is what Kammok believes in.
Whether that’s quite literally getting yourself elevated off the ground, or simply taking your adventures to a new level. Homegrown in Austin, TX, Kammok is a company we’ve followed since their first Kickstarter.
We enjoy our cozy 2-person Mountain Hardwear tent with our dog curled up at our feet and being protected from bugs and the elements. It’s how we've camped over the years. However, when Kammok gives you the opportunity to do something you’ve never done before, you can’t say no...
We were stoked for the opportunity to take out a bunch of Kammok gear and try our first camping weekend using only Kammok equipment. First on the to-do list – where are the best camping spots near Austin for hammock camping? After researching, we still weren’t sure. (*new blog entry idea, “best spots for hammock camping near Austin.” Dibs.). So, we set our sights on Pace Bend. With 200 first come, first serve sites, we felt confident we would find something great. And we did.
We set up camp at site #49 off of S. Gracy road, and it was phenomenal. Private, spacious, and a ton of hammock-friendly tree coverage. Perfect for all of our Kammok gear. As our first ever hammock camping experience, we weren’t sure what to expect.
Kammok hooked us up with some rad equipment, and we’re excited to share our thoughts with you:
Roo™ Camping Hammock: We had used the Roo hammocks before for relaxing, but never to sleep in. Mostly because we bring our dog on every camping trip, and he’s grown accustomed to sleeping in a tent. However, I’m sure he’d love his own dog hammock... Setting up the Roo hammocks are so insanely easy. Using the reliable Python Straps, we quickly each got our hammocks up and ready. The material is soft, sturdy, and lightweight. Seriously, you can instantly feel the difference the LunarWave™ Fabric makes.
Dragonfly™ Insect Net: Hands down this was my favorite product of the weekend. One of the main reasons I have personally never hammock camped is because I get eaten alive by mosquitos. But this lightweight, 360° protection net fits easily around your Roo hammock for ultra protection from bugs. I was a little nervous about feeling claustrophobic, but it’s airy and spacious, and leaves you with no bites!
Kuhli™ Weather Shelter: The Kuhli™ shelters are amazing. And they were perfect to have on our weekend trip with the unpredictable rain. Very light and versatile, and could be used in a few different “modes.” We used it mostly in awning mode to sit under while it drizzled, and then again to hang over our hammocks for the night in case it rained. We got a little crazy with our Kuhli’s. We definitely took advantage of how large and easy they were to hang, and created quite the fort to sleep under for the night.
Koala™ Underquilt: Although we didn’t need to use the Koala for sleeping on this trip (it was warm weather), we tried it out to see how it felt. And it’s great. Took us a minute to get it correctly attached under the Roo, but it’s easy to see how it provides ample warmth and work easily with your hammock.
Firebelly™ Trail Quilt: Available in synthetic and down material, the trail quilt is warm and lightweight. With the temperature in the low-mid 70’s, we used it for sleeping. A really cool feature about the Firebelly™ is that it can be used as a traditional flat blanket, or you can cinch the end to create a makeshift sleeping bag for night.
Thylacine™ Sleeping Bag: This sleeping bag was named Gear of the Year in Outside Magazine’s 2017 Buyer’s Guide and it’s easy to see why. I snuggled up in the synthetic bag in the morning to enjoy the light breeze, a cup of coffee, and a morning read.
So, how did we sleep?
Like a baby in a bassinet! I enjoyed the different experience. Being elevated off the ground, we woke up with no back pain, and no weird indentations in our bodies from accidentally sleeping on a rock. Once you settle in and find your position for the night (pro tip: sleep at a diagonal to lie flat), it’s pretty awesome. We used pillows in our Roos, but I’m sure you would be just fine without one.
Overall, Kammok makes incredible products. They are intuitive, lightweight, and soft as hell. On my personal to do list: learn how to tie some knots. Luckily, Chris has some skills and kept referring to hanging the Kuhlis as a “game of knots,” while I was sticking to a classic double knot or bow.
Check out Kammok's gear shop here in Austin, located at: 1401 E 7th St, Austin, TX 78702.
About the Authors
Mountains & Molehills is a travel blog stemming from our love of adventure. With our Texas State Park pass, we try to see as many new places as possible. In addition to our blog and working in the creative industry, we are both freelancers for HipCamp. Molly is a Freelance Writer, and Chris is a Field Scout Photographer.