Step 1: Find some great trees! You’ll want to look for two very sturdy options about 12-15 feet apart.
Step 2: Attach tree-safe straps around each tree at about eye level, or 6 feet up from the ground. (Tree-safe straps are typically a webbing strap that’s 1-2 inches wide.)
Step 3: Connect your hammock rope to the straps. You can do this via a carabiner, a toggle, or you can lash them together with appropriate knots. Just make sure it’s secure!
Step 4: Do your best to ensure that the line your hammock makes is about a 30º angle from the trees.
Step 5: Double check that your hammock is at the right height: about 12-18 inches from the ground. Too low, and you’ll hit the ground when you get in; too high and you’ll be sitting in a dangerous position if something goes wrong.
Step 6: Attach a tarp for weather protection. Hang it on a diagonal, and make sure it’s attached somewhere below the hammock straps. This way, you’ll still have coverage when the hammock sags while you’re in it.
- Webbed straps protect trees because they don’t dig into the bark and create lacerations on the tree. Some hammocks come with them included, but you can pick them up at any outdoors store
- Sleep at a slight diagonal in your hammock. We find this to be the comfiest position, because you can lie a lot flatter.
- If you’re setting up on a hill, your hammock should be tied at relatively the same height on the two trees, regardless of ground height. This is where you want to look at the ridge line of your hammock, not the line of the ground.
- We find that a 10 ft x 10 ft tarp is usually the perfect size when hung at a diagonal above your hammock.