After a long day backpacking on the trail, there’s nothing quite so relaxing as settling into your hammock to gaze at the trees, the sky, and the stars. The question is, which hammock is going to be lightweight enough to carry all your gear while being durable enough to hold up against frequent use, wear, and tear?
Today, we’re going to help you pick out the best portable hammock for your upcoming backpacking trip, including a detailed buying guide and our top 5 portable hammock picks for you to consider. For all of this, including our pick for the final winner out of the top 5, keep reading!
The top 5 portable hammock we recommend for 2021:
To choose the best portable hammock for your hiking needs, there are some key factors you’ll need to consider.
It’s critical to consider the size and dimensions of the best portable hammock you’re looking at before making your purchase. You can purchase either single or double hammocks. With regards to single hammocks, the majority of these products are 4 to 5 feet wide.
As you can imagine, single hammocks are definitely lighter than double hammocks, which will make a huge difference in the ultimate weight of the gear you’re lugging around.
On the other hand, single hammocks don’t allow as much space for relaxation or sleeping. Many single hammocks can support weights ranging from 300 to 400 pounds, while some of the super light versions support weight up to around 250 pounds.
In the case of double hammocks, you’ll definitely have more space to relax and sleep. Most products feature a width between 5 and 6 feet, but the double capacity means that 2 people can use the hammock at the same time if so desired.
Double hammocks can typically support weights between 400 to 500 pounds, with the super light varieties holding around 350 pounds of weight.
The material is another key factor to consider when selecting the best portable hammock to meet your backpacking needs. Not all products specify this feature, but denier fabric is a nice bonus to keep an eye out for. Thicker, more durable fabrics sport higher denier numbers and very light materials lower denier numbers.
A very sturdy product, for instance, might feature 70-denier material while a lighter model could sport 30-denier fabric. Lighter denier fabrics certainly won’t weigh your gear down as much, but they also won’t last as long or hold up against consistent wear and tear as well either.
A higher denier material is going to be heavier but will last far longer.
If you don’t go backpacking very often, a lighter denier model will probably last you longer. If you backpack more frequently and can withstand the heavier weight in your gear, you might want to consider a higher denier instead.
Accessories are another essential aspect you’ll want to take into account if you’re in the market for the best portable hammock. The vast majority of hammock accessories are compatible with any type of hammock, but it’s important to pay close attention to each product’s specs just in case.
The first kind of accessory you need to consider is the suspension system. The majority of hammocks come with carabiners with a quality strength rating, so no need to worry there. However, the tree straps required to suspend a portable hammock are typically sold separately.
When you do purchase straps for your hammock, you need to make sure they are a minimum of 0.75 inches in width, as narrower straps could damage the trees.
If you plan on spending the night in your hammock, you might feel a chill in colder climates when the air creeps in through the bottom of the product. A great insulating solution is to insert a sleeping pad in the hammock. For extra warmth, you might even want to consider purchasing an underquilt that droops outside the hammock.
If you’re going to be hiking in varying or damp weather conditions, you’ll definitely want a rain tarp to hang over your hammock to ensure you stay warm and dry. Larger tarps are definitely going to shield you more from the elements.
For warm weather with lots of bugs, consider purchasing a bug net to keep those pesky insects at bay. You should pick a bug net that offers 360-degree defense and extends beneath your hammock for an extra layer of protection. The net shouldn’t be see-through either since you don’t want any bugs slipping through.
Many backpackers prefer to use a portable hammock as a sleeping alternative to a regular tent. At campsites where there are plenty of trees, a hammock is a welcome and relaxing option to get the most out of your outdoor adventure.
A portable hammock is great in that you don’t need level ground to set it up, plus it won’t have as much of an effect on the land on which you set it up. Lightweight and folding portable hammocks are very easy to transport when compared to the majority of traditional tents too.
For summer backpacking excursions, you’ll stay much cooler using a portable hammock, whether you decide to use it for sleep or simply relaxing on your trip.
However, it’s important to know that you won’t be able to use your hammock anywhere above the treeline or where there aren’t stable trees to attack the device too. You also won’t stay quite as warm or protected from elements like rain in a hammock.
The best portable hammock is a fantastic option for relaxation and rest while on the road in moderate to warm temperatures. If you want to use your hammock in colder or more damp surroundings, you’ll definitely want to consider an underquilt and tarp. Just know you won’t necessarily be quite as warm and dry as you would be in a traditional tent in cooler conditions.
Ready to discover the top 5 best portable hammocks on the market today? Let’s go!
The feature that really drew us to this best portable hammock was its highly durable material, derived from 70D parachute nylon. The parachute nylon fabric means this product is highly resistant to wear and tear, but it is also waterproof and fights off damaging elements such as rot.
We love that the mesh design is highly breathable, so if you’re going to be backpacking and camping in very warm weather you don’t have to worry about feeling clammy when you’re trying to relax in your hammock.
The brand itself is excellent, offering plenty of user-friendly accessories backpackers will love so you can use this hammock in place of your traditional tent if you so desire.
We liked the fact that the Single Hammock by Trek Light Gear is fairly lightweight as well, so it won’t weigh your pack down when you’re out on the road. Another huge plus in our book is this portable hammock’s anti-slip and anti-flip design.
So, you won’t have to worry about slipping off the hammock if you fall into a deep sleep!
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The next best portable hammock selection on our list is the Patio Watcher Rope Hammock. While the hammock is great for patio areas, you can use it anywhere inside or outside as you prefer. We love the polyester yarn and PV design of this best portable hammock, with a comfortable yet durable bed to last you for many trips to come.
We were also happy to see that the hammock is resistant to tears and weather elements.
We liked the vinyl coating on this hammock, which means it will dry super-fast if it rains or if you need to clean it for any reason. Another reason we picked this particular hammock is that it is such a versatile product.
You can use this hammock at home in your backyard or by the pool, but you can also set it up at any outside location you prefer for great support, comfort, and durability. It is also one of the more affordable picks on our list, making it a great choice that won’t break the bank.
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The next best portable hammock on our list is another highly versatile product that is very portable, durable, and easy to use. It has a good weight capacity and includes a stuff sack to make it easier to transport the Grand Trunk Hammock from one place to the next.
If you’re going to be embarking on a wilderness backpacking adventure, this portable hammock could be the pick for you!
We love that this durable hammock weighs a mere 1.35 pounds, so you can bring it with you on the road, no problem. It is easy to fold up and transport in the 9.5 x 5.5 sack it comes with. For long treks where you need to lighten the load as much as possible, it’s definitely hard to beat the Grand Trunk Hammock.
We loved that the fabric of this best portable hammock is designed from 70D parachute nylon, so the product will last you for many trips to come. It can support up to 400 pounds which is impressive considering how light it is to carry.
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If comfort is your primary mission, the Hammocks Rada Handmade Yucatan Hammock is a worthy contender to consider. While being very light and comfortable, it still supports a high weight capacity. We love the stylish design of the hammock that is hand-woven and crafted by artisans using Mayan techniques.
The fabric itself is super soft, so when you lie on the hammock after a long day on the road don’t be surprised if you drop into a deep sleep right off the bat! While the material is hand-woven, it still offers fantastic longevity of use and can be used in an array of outdoor environments.
We liked that the hammock has a solid length of 13 feet, which means its width and length are sufficient to support not 1 but 2 adults.
The hammock itself can also support a weight capacity of up to 550 pounds, which is pretty high compared with some of the other products on our list. It is worth noting that despite the durability and weight capacity of this portable hammock, it is not very resistant to harsh weather elements. If you’re going to be backpacking in very damp or blustery weather conditions, you might do well with a weatherproof portable hammock instead.
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The final best portable hammock selection on our list is the Vivere Brazilian Style Sunbrella Double Hammock. We really liked that the hammock comes equipped with hooks and anchors so you can set the product up just about anywhere you please.
You can use it at home and on the road for double the versatility! We also liked that the hammock includes a stand, so if you prefer to set it up on the ground you can do that too.
The stand only takes a few minutes to set up and features a durable double steel design with a rubbed oil finish for extra durability. The material of the Vivere Brazilian Style Hammock is manufactured from a sunbrella fabric, which is not only resistant to damaging UV rays but holds up well against wear and tear too. The fabric wards off damaging elements such as mildew and mold too.
We love that the hammock is large enough to accommodate 2 people, making it a great choice for backpacking in groups. Plus, the hammock includes a handy storage pack which makes it easier to transport your Vivere Brazilian Style Sunbrella Double Hammock on the go.
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While we would definitely say that each of the best portable hammock products on our list caters to an array of backpacking needs, the ultimate winner in our humble opinion is none other than the Grand Trunk Hammock. The portable hammock really checked most of the key items on our feature wishlist, including everything from excellent weight support and quality 70D material to its 2 people capacity and wilderness-ready design.
We liked that it comes with a storage bag for easy carrying, plus its mere 1.35-pound design makes it one of the most portable options on our list.
For a lightweight, durable, versatile, and comfortable option to serve you well on many a backpacking adventure, the Grand Trunk Hammock remains in a class of its own and is an excellent choice for outdoor enthusiasts everywhere.