Does your idea of the world’s best camping experience include sleeping in a camping hammock? If you said yes, your interest in the topic of straps and suspension systems is understandable.
Who wants to wind up on the ground at 2 a.m. after a strap snaps while you’re still snoozing?
Hammocks have been around for around 1,000 years say, anthropologists, many of whom still rely upon them when they do fieldwork in areas that offer two choices: swing or sleep with critters. Remember that next time you gather gear and think that any rope will do!
ENO Atlas Chroma Suspension System – Our Pick!
This Eno Atlas Chroma Suspension system is a strong, powerful hammock suspension system that supports up to 400 pounds of weight. It’s a breeze to set up and takedown.
Strengthened by 30 combined adjustment points, you might think this system weighs a ton, but 9-foot lengths of poly-filament webbing weigh just 11 ounces.
Tether this web system to trees, roof racks, poles, and other secure anchor points. Carry the two straps per package (each supports 200 pounds of weight) to and from your campsite in a matching stuff sack.
ENO Atlas Hammock Suspension System
What’s the difference between the system profiled above and this one? Not much. Pricing is identical.
Two 9-foot-long straps are included. Both support campers weighing 400 pounds (2 straps handle 200 pounds each), and 30 combined adjustment points add strength and security. Reflective stitching makes sure nobody bumps into you during the night.
Tether this system to trees, roof racks, rocks and other stable supports. This “no-knots-needed” product promises fast installation and removal, and if you use trees as your anchors, they won’t be harmed.
No stuff bag is included with this system, but you do get assurances that this product makes a perfect alternative if you can’t find the Chroma system described above.
Kammok Python 10
This comparably-priced product consists of 10 hammock straps offering 40 connection points (20 each) via two 10-foot straps designed to hang almost anywhere. Polyester webbing construction supports up to 500 pounds of body weight (250 for each strap).
Lighter and more adaptable than previous straps, this is accomplished via Nano Weave technology. Each daisy chain connection replaces traditional bar tacks.
Lightweight (8.2-ounces), compact styling, and material sport reflective tracers for low-light and shoppers seeking extenders to boost strap length can buy them separately from the manufacturer.
That stated, the maker is confident that their straps “will outlast your adventures,” so take note of their lifetime warranty, just in case that isn’t true.
ENO Helios Ultralight Hammock Suspension System
You’ll pay a few dollars more for this ENO Helios Ultralight system, but if you’re looking to cut back on gear weight drastically, this 4.3-ounce suspension system is sure to do the job.
This 8-foot network, constructed of Silverlite™ Cord, may be light, but it promises maximum strength for people occupying hammocks who weigh up to 300 pounds and seek “the perfect hang” courtesy of this product’s Microtune™ Adjustment System.
As the lightest suspension system ENO manufactures, this product won’t let you down thanks to the company’s signature Poly-filament webbing that is in it for the long haul.
Emerald Mountain XL Hammock Tree Straps
Get two inexpensive suspension straps that fit all hammock brands. Made of non-stretch polyester, each is 10-feet long and fitted with 21 loops that are triple bar tack stitched.
Forget knots, rope and complicated instructions. You suspend your hammock between two anchor points and jump in.
Emerald Mountain uses “material tested to support up to 800 pounds,” and these straps won’t stretch out or absorb water. As if you weren’t already impressed, this manufacturer is serious about the environment.
Buy a set, and Emerald Mountain will donate two trees to the non-profit Trees For The Future.
Wise Owl Outfitters Straps
Are you looking for “tree-friendly” straps at a competitive price? Turn to the Wise Owl where XL hammock straps measuring 20-feet plus 2 D carabiners have what it takes you to get your hammock up securely and quickly.
These straps are highly-rated because even kids can help with set-up that doesn’t require tying a single knot. Use the two carabiners to achieve the perfect height and comfort level. Each 10-foot strap has 19 loops and you get a carry bag to constrain these essentials when you travel to and from your destination.
Nature’s Hangout XL Hammock Straps
If the thought of a total of 28 feet of strapping plus 48 loops gets your attention, you’ll be interested in learning more about the “longest, strongest and most versatile” hammock straps on the market.
Each is 14 feet long and has 24 loops. According to company tests, you can count on reinforced, double-power stitched 100-percent polyester webbing to hold 700 pounds.
Safely suspend your hammock by anchor points placed up to 28-feet apart. The daisy-chain loop system makes it easy to adjust the height and once it’s up, it stays put.
A carry bag and two premium aluminum wire gate carabiners are included with these straps in addition to a 100-percent guarantee of satisfaction.
Foxelli Camping Hammock Tree Straps Set
This inexpensive set offers you 20-feet of a no-stretch polyester strap with 42 loops (21 on each 10-foot strap) plus assurances that set-up only takes a minute.
These straps work with any hammock and any tree – as well as roof racks, docks, and other well-anchored structures. These straps are so lightweight, and they weigh just 0.66 lbs.
Two of the loops are used to adjust your hammock’s height and angle, and there’s a carry bag to contain the straps, so they don’t stray when not in use.
Foxelli will return your money if you aren’t satisfied, and while you can’t beat the price, it’s anyone’s guess how much bodyweight these straps can handle since Foxelli doesn’t mention it.
Levi Industrial Tree Hugger
Well reviewed and popular, the Levi Industrial Tree Hugger will run you over twice the amount of the Foxelli, but in return, you get a quality product that literally won’t let you down.
Engineered to hold up to 400 pounds of weight per strap, these straps set standards for weather-resistant polypropylene material and construction.
You don’t have to buy D- and O-rings separately, nor do you have to provide the 2 S-hooks needed to hang your hammock.
Levi Industrial says that their Tree Huggers are eco-friendly, and at 2-pounds, they won’t add much weight to your gear bag either.
Bear Butt Kodiak Hammock Straps
Love the company name? You’ll probably love these straps too because you get lots of value for a reasonable amount of money.
Reinforced triple stitching on polyester webbing offers you a good night’s sleep since these straps have been subjected to 1000 pounds of weight when tested.
Get everything you need to hang your hammock: 2 extra-large straps, two extra-strong metal carabiners, and a carrying case. Each strap is 10-feet long and features 20 loops.
In concert, they form a stronghold that makes the process hammock-rigging process fast, easy, and hassle-free. These straps come with a “happy customer policy” that makes returns and exchanges easy.
Confused by the differences between hammock straps and suspension systems?
Don’t be, say experts at the Ultimate Hang.com. “A suspension system spans the gap between the hammock and the anchor point,” they explain. In doing so, they provide a mechanism to “adjust that gap, depending on how far apart the anchors are”.
Hammock straps and suspension systems are today’s answer to ropes for myriad reasons. Yes, you can still use ropes to tether your hammock to trees, but by choosing hammock straps or suspension systems, you are likely to enjoy more security, confidence and you’ll be kinder to trees.
Additionally, it’s essential to know that some park systems and wilderness areas prohibit ropes from being used, so always check before you leave home with your hammock because you could wind up paying a fine if you’re caught.
Reasons to invest in these essentials.
Mac Misseldine of Territory Supply.com calls hammock straps “the least expensive of your hammock camping setup’s main components, but they deserve just as much attention as the rest of your gear,” he notes. If you’ve ever had a hammock strap break in the middle of the night, you get it.
Misseldine considers daisy chain suspension systems the most user-friendly because they are crafted of thick synthetic webbing materials and include at least 15 loops per strap.
Not only does daisy-chain stitching offer a more secure hanging experience, but it supports more bodyweight than rope and is kinder to tree trunks.
Is there a downside to daisy chain systems?
They tend to weigh more — up to a pound — and while there are more lightweight options on the market, suspension systems already weigh so little. Even the heaviest ones are no burden — especially since they accommodate between 400 and 500 pounds of body weight.
Other types of hammock straps and suspension systems
The folks at Hobo Hammocks define the suspension systems and straps as essentials that keep your hammock off the ground.
Ranging from simple to complex, suspension systems tend to allow more distance between trees, and Misseldine agrees that daisy chain systems are best because ropes and knots are left out of the equation: “you simply attach the strap around the tree and clip your carabiner into one of the holes.”
Campers preferring straps, are likely required to tie a knot to install the hammock, while ridgeline systems (not technically suspension systems) are extra-supportive because they consist of rope that runs from one end of a hammock to the other. “A hammock ridgeline is great because it sets the sag in your hammock so you have the most comfortable hang.”
Visit Outdoorser.com for the best explanation of strap and suspension system types to fully understand the three most common types of hammock hanging methods: Rope, webbing, and stands. Dare we add that personal preference will always win out when choosing gear?
It’s important to remember that while both hammock strap and suspension system manufacturers test their products and often promote them as having the capacity to support thousands of pounds.
These numbers often refer to test results when webbing is stretched to endurance to see how much pressure the material can sustain. Bodyweight is an entirely different measure, so consult marketing material to learn max capacity when a hammock is in actual use.
How much space between trees should you allow?
For avid campers invested in the perfect hammock experience, discussions about proper distances between trees can get interesting. We turn to bloggers at Hammock Universe for their take on the topic.
As a general rule, “You’ll need 10 to 15 feet of distance between trees, depending on the length and style of your hammock, and how much tension you want.”
If you own a “spreader-bar” hammock, its’ length should determine the amount of space between trees. “For example, a 13-foot hammock will need at least 13 feet of space between trees. For more tension, you’ll need to another foot or two of space,” bloggers explain.
Suspension systems should hang at a 30-degree angle to provide adequate force, remembering that the tighter the pull, the more pressure on the suspension rig and anchor points.
“At the minimum, consider securing the tree straps, rope, or other suspension and anchors at 48 inches up the trees” using a knot, carabiner or other hardware to finish securing the hammock.
That stated, anchoring hardware frequently damages trees, which is why some forests and parks prohibit their use. Tree straps are considered the most environmentally friendly.
Do you need hammock straps? If so, make sure yours don’t harm trees!
If you want to be sure to take care of the trees you use when you hang your hammock, straps, and suspension systems are important, say bloggers writing for TrekLightGear.com.
Succinctly, there is more likelihood that ropes can cause damage to trees than webbing products like straps and suspension systems because webbing “disperses pressure more than rope and therefore is tree-safe.”
The wider the strap, the more pressure is disbursed, but keep this in mind: tree types are more important than the debate over hammock fasteners. Trees with soft bark should always be avoided – even if you invest in “tree-safe” products.
Further, using straps that are between 1- and 1.5-inches in width concentrates weight in a small area, leading to more damage potential. While trees with strong trunks are recommended, you can take one more step to protect trees: put towels or other textiles beneath the straps. If they could, those trees would thank you!