With the joys and wonder of camping outdoors, there comes a few challenges. While basking in the setting landscape of mother nature, the bugs start flying out. Mosquitoes love to come out to play during the evenings. The idea of mosquitoes and bugs prevents many from spending the night out in a hammock. But we really don’t need to worry – we can hang bug free.
The first reaction I get from people when I tell them I only camp in hammocks now is a mix of amazement and fear. “What about the bugs!” Let’s dive into how to get these bloodsuckers out of our hair.
Fixed Bug Nets
A fixed bug net is one of the easiest ways to get mosquitoes out of your way so you can sleep safely while still enjoying the comforts of your hammock. A fixed bug net hammock is a hammock with a bug net layer that is attached to the hammock. The bug net can be hung onto a separate ridge line (Grand Trunk Mozzy Netting). Or in the case of a Hennessy Hammock, the ridge line is already built in. The biggest downside of this type of hammock is that the net isn’t attachable. Even if you’re camping in the winter or somewhere with no mosquitoes, you’ll have to carry the extra weight and space. Also, I have been bit through the bottom part (the hammock nylon) of the hammock. So be careful
Pro-tip: If you don’t need the bug net, or are just using the hammock to relax in, flip the hammock upside down so the mosquito net faces the ground. This way, you can relax without having the bug net in your face. Be careful about damaging the net when you do this however!
Modular Bug Nets
If you opt for a regular camping, single, double, parachute, most any kind of hammock without an attached bug net, you can get a separate bug net to go around the whole hammock. These usually have to be purchased separately and they’re hung over and around the entire hammock. If you don’t need the bug net, don’t bring it with it you!
These do tend to be a bit on the pricey side and can actually cost more than the hammock itself. The Serac Dartfrog is a super easy to set up mosquito net that will work for any hammock. If you’re a hammocker on a budget, See how to make your own DIY bug net.
Use of Permethrin
Permethrin is a chemical used to keep bugs at bay. Chemicals aren’t our favorite option, but is one you could consider if you’re planning to go somewhere mosquito infested. Permethrin is poisonous in nature but once dry it is not harmful and completely safe for people. You can soak the hammock in Permethrin and let it dry completely. There are permethrin sprays available in the market which can be sprayed to the outside of the hammock bottom and netting. Only use permethrin on clothes, nets, and other materials – don’t apply it directly onto your skin. Once applied, permethrin can go through the wash many times before it needs to be reapplied.
Don’t sweat it. There are a ton of options when it comes to bug free hammocking. Just don’t leave any gaps in the netting – mosquitoes will try to find their way into your hammock, and the last thing you want is to be inside the bug net with the bugs!