By Bobby Browning
If you currently hammock camp or have ever thought about hammock camping, you probably know that there are TONS of options out there. Some people are brand loyal, some like to DIY their hammock gear, and most folks (like myself) really just want to find a comfy way to sleep and really enjoy hanging in a hammock.
Being that there are lots of types of hammockers (is that a word?), we wanted to take a look at two readily available options that cover both ends of the hammock spectrum: the Grand Trunk Nano 7 Ultralight hammock and the Grand Trunk Skeeter Beater Pro hammock system.
This offers people multiple options at an affordable price and helps get you in the hammock game. So whether you want ultra light, or want full on bug protection and space, there is an option for you! More than a specific review, we wanted to take a look at 30,000 feet to make known what’s available for our awesome GearRat family!
Let’s start with the Nano 7:
Weighing a mere 7oz, this hammock packs up to about the size of a baseball. It fits perfectly into your backpack, daypack or really even a pants cargo pocket. It is a gathered end hammock and the lightweight wire-gate carabiners are what keeps the ends together.
It’s made of a durable ripstop nylon, resists stains and drys really quick if it gets wet. It is rated at 300 lbs, so it’s definitely not a double person hammock (unless you’re quite small), and it does NOT include a hanging kit, so you’ll have to purchase that separately.
Comfort wise, we found this hammock to be just right. I’m right at 5’10” and I can get a reasonable diagonal lay in it (listed at 9′ long). Anybody much over 6 feet tall may have issues with their feet hanging over, but this isn’t meant to fit every single type of person. It is also only 4′ feet wide, so if you’re a more broad shouldered individual, you may find yourself feeling scrunched up in this.
Overall, this is my go to hammock and I have loved sleeping and just hanging out in it. It is listed at $69.99, but with some searching I’m certain you can find it for less (I did!).
Now on to the Cadillac of hammocks: the Grand Trunk Skeeter Beater Pro…
This hammock system is a double person hammock rated at 400lbs, and comes with an integrated bug net. My wife is the primary user of this hammock and loves the extra protection of the bug net.
Size wise, the SBP is 10’6″ long and 5′ wide so it should fit the majority of people regardless of size. With a width like this, getting a nice flat lay is SUPER easy, and you can really sleep just about any way (side, back, even stomach).
This hammock is also a gathered end hammock but unlike the Nano 7, it uses nylon rope attached to nautical grade caribiners. This really allows for some hanging when the trees are further apart. It also comes with a starter rope set which is great if you are looking for a super high quality all-in-one system and don’t mind carrying a little extra weight.
We would recommend upgrading your suspension to something a little more tree friendly as the nylon starter ropes can really dig into trees and cause some major damage.
The bug net is suspended off of your face by a couple super stretchy peices of elastic type ropes, and actually allows plenty of room even sit up in your hammock without issue.
The other great feature with the SBP hammock is that you can simply flip it upside down to use it like a normal hammock without the bug net! That way, yu could attach an underquilt, gear sling, or whatever you’d like! The SBP retails for $84.99 which really isn’t bad for an all inclusive hammock system. As with most gear we recommend on here, you can find this for a chunk less with a little looking around.
When hammocking, personal preference and comfort are really what it comes down to but you can’t go wrong with either of these setups. They both offer exceptional value at a reasonable price and with a little searching they can almost always be found cheaper than retail!
Now get outside and get to hanging!