From the Hennessy Hammock company comes the Expedition Zip, one in a series of specialty hammocks that serve as both a lightweight tent/survival shelter and a sleeping adventure off the ground.
An all-purpose hammock that is great for backpacking, family camping, expeditions, kayaking, motorcycling, and many other adventures, the Expedition Zip offers comfort and durability at an affordable price.
The packed weight of this hammock is 2 lbs 12 oz (1,232g) and the Expedition Zip requires no special skills for installation. But if in doubt, Hennessy has a set-up video on their site to help you through the process.
How to Setup Your Hennesy Hammock
One of Hennessy’s mid-weight range hammocks, the Expedition Zip is meant for anyone under six feet tall and no more than 250lbs (113kg) while offering more spaciousness than the Scout Zip and a competitive price for half the weight and size of the Deep Jungle Zip. The Expedition
Zip comes with an attached mosquito netting, a detachable rain fly, support ropes, webbing straps, and a stuff sack with set up instructions on the back. For easy installation, the Expedition Zip comes with two 42″ (107 cm) long “Tree Hugger” webbing straps which protect the bark of trees to cushion them from the ropes which attach to the straps to then support the hammock.
Hennessy Hammock’s most popular Zip model, the Expedition Zip has patented features such as the asymmetrical shape which ensures exceptional comfort as well as a quick and easy set up each and every time. Together with the structural ridgeline, this design ensures that this hammock fits the body the same night after night. This hammock has nothing to do with the banana-shaped hammocks of old.
The Expedition Zip is designed so you sleep diagonally across the hammock without the usual discomforts that traditional hammocks bring such as back and joint pain.
This design means that you are able to sleep flatter across the hammock—even sleeping on your stomach—especially given the built-in tie-outs which are attached to the ground. This construction prevents the sides of the hammock from folding into the center and it ensures a generous amount of spaciousness inside the hammock.
Side Zipped Entrance
One of the special designs of this hammock is that it has two entrances: the side-zipped entrance closure equipped with a heavy-duty #10 zipper and two double sliders and then the classic bottom entry sealed off with velcro. Everyone has their preference—side or bottom— but the trick is to keep the mosquitos out in hotter months before zipping up if you use the side entrance.
Classic Bottom Entry
Each of these hammocks is fitted with a 70 denier high-density nylon bottom to resist mosquitos with an optional double-layer bottom which can hold one of several types of insulation systems in colder months. The top layer of the Expedition Zip was created from 30 deniers no-see-um mosquito mesh together with an elastic “hold open” for the mesh.
There are also gear loft slides on the ridgeline which provides useful storage space to clip your money belt or watch and you can buy additional loft slides if necessary. To top off the hammock is the new 70 denier catenary polyester ripstop, wrinkle-resistant rainfly which will guarantee a dry night’s sleep and hammock.
Webbing and Ropes
Hennessy’s stock webbing straps are 42in (107 cm) long which should do the trick as long as you are not planning to tie to a tree more than 14in (60cm) in diameter.
Similarly, the polyester ropes that come with this hammock should be sufficient for your camping needs as they can hold 1,500lb (680kg), six times the maximum recommended weight. But should you need longer or thicker webbing straps or extra supplies of ropes, you can easily order additional pieces from Hennessy.
Hennessy Hammock also offers utilitarian accessories for this hammock, some of which may eventually be deemed necessities. The snakeskins not only makes packing up the hammock a thirty-second task which eliminates folding and fussing with corners but these covers also double as an automatic rain shelter for the hammock when you are out hiking, keeping the hammock completely dry.
The HH20 AutoMagic Water Collector & Rainfly Tensioner System is a water collection system which lowers the rainfly, holding it taught, while collecting water and is a welcome add-on if you don’t have a water purification pen nearby.
Although this hammock comes with two webbing straps, Hennessy makes three widths and lengths in case you need longer or wider straps. If you go camping quite a bit, it would be wise to get additional lengths of webbing straps.
Also, as minimalist as many adventurers might claim to be, an extra set of oversized mesh pockets are useful for internal storage and can be clipped onto the ridgeline or “O” rings at either end of the hammock’s ridgeline.
Lastly, while some hikers like the standard rain fly, others prefer a far bigger rainfly which can provide the maximum coverage in storm protection. Hennessy has been in business for over forty years and has a wide range of rain flies which you can mix with other hammocks as well.
If you are skeptical about the advantages of camping in a hammock, there are many reasons why more and more people are swapping out their ground tent for hammocks like the Expedition Zip. First, there is a good deal of scientific research which shows that sleeping in a hammock helps people fall asleep faster allowing them to achieve a deeper and higher quality of sleep.
Second, hammocks are far easier to set up than tents and due to their being suspended off the ground, you don’t have to worry about the wet conditions affecting the bottom of your hammock. Also, there are no more waiting hours for the tent to dry out before being able to fold it.
Third, the terrain is no longer a factor with hammock camping since it doesn’t matter what angle the ground is underneath. How you tie up the webbing straps and ropes will ensure that your Expedition Zip is horizontal and unaffected by the terrain underneath.
These hammocks are lightweight, take up very little room in your backpack, and they are quick to take down and mount. Don’t forget that you are sleeping above most critters as well as muddy or rocky surfaces in a spiderless, no-rock-in-your-back bliss.
And lastly, these hammocks leave no trace and are comfortable! Are there any disadvantages? Sure, these hammocks are constructed for a party of one only. But this has not stopped families and friends from tying up their hammocks close to each other while enjoying a spacious and comfortable night’s slumber in the summer breeze.
This article was last updated on May 7, 2021 .
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