Monday, March 9, 2015

Hammock Tent Hangout

Discovery Park in Seattle is a great place to escape city life any day of the year, but this past weekend was especially beautiful so I called my friends, bought some beer, and headed to Magnolia to do some serious hanging. We had a sample tent at work that I had been hoping to check out, from a UK tent company and tree enthusiast organization called Tentsile. This style is called the Stingray, and it was a real blast to set it up and kick back for a few hours with friends, kids, and the dog.

Setup was really easy. We strolled around the park a bit until we found three nice bunches of trees to anchor the ratchet straps that connect to the three corners. It is like a personal, portable, temporary treehouse, and it is perfect for keeping our butts off of the cold muddy ground. For those of you who prefer to scope things out before the adventure, check out the Seattle Tree Map to find your own perfect hangout.

The shape reminded me more of a manta ray than a stingray, but then I watched this video and understood. I am the crab.

Our pup, Ransom, liked to hop up through the zippered hatch when it was open. We set up the tent with the straps about 4.5" up the tree trunk, but once there were a few people in there, it sagged closer to the ground. The tent holds up to 880 lbs and sleeps 3 adults.

 My little buddy Ro was scared at first. The motion is kind of like a trampoline. Once he chilled out, Ro seemed to enjoy the tent as long as he was on someone's lap. Later, some older kids came by to try it out and they had a great time rolling around and going in and out of the hatch.

We tried on the rain fly for kicks. It wraps all the way around the tent, and you get in and out through the hatch, which is the easiest entry point anyway. I want to set this up on a stormy day and see how it does in the rain and wind.

The Stingray was easy to fold up and comes with a nice bag. The hatch in the center made it simple to brush out the sticks and leaves that were tracked in over the course of the day. I rolled it up on top of broken blackberry sticks by accident, but the thorns did not rip or scuff the durable floor fabric. The whole setup with the ratchet straps is pretty heavy (almost 20 lbs), but it packs up nicely in the bag so it is easy to carry it back to the van. Fortunately, I brought my own sherpa:

We didn't sleep in the tent this time, but I plan bring it along to try the next time we go car camping. It will definitely make a comfy hangout for reading a book while keeping the bugs out, or playing a card game while keeping dry on a rainy day. 

This tent, and a smaller version called the Connect, is available through REI.

If you see me hanging out in a sunny park in Seattle this spring, come on over and say hello.


At September 6, 2015 at 9:40 AM , Blogger James Bond Bond said...

I’ve put together a list of projects and ideas to help around the campsite, a list of must-have home remedies for poison ivy, mosquito bites, etc., plus a bunch of fun ideas for cooking you might want to try this year…and don’t miss the old-timer’s fishing weather poem and dependable rope knot examples at the bottom of the page.Tents Outdoors

At February 25, 2016 at 6:37 AM , Blogger Ashlyine Brooke said...

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