Get Ready For Camping Season

Free Shipping On Orders Over $50

The Ultimate Guide to Staying Dry When Hammock Camping

The Ultimate Guide to Staying Dry When Hammock Camping

Author Erik Abrams

Embarking on an outdoor adventure often comes with its own set of challenges, especially when opting for the lightweight convenience of a hammock over a traditional tent. While hammocks offer an unrivaled sleeping experience amid nature, they also require specific preparations to ensure a dry and comfortable night, especially when mother nature decides to surprise you. Let's delve deep into ensuring you stay dry and cozy while hammock camping.

Understanding the Essentials

1. The Right Tarp

Selecting the appropriate tarp is paramount. While there's always the temptation to cut corners and purchase an inexpensive tarp from a local store, investing in a hammock-specific tarp can save you a lot of time and effort in the long run. These tarps are crafted with the unique requirements of hammocks in mind, ensuring optimal coverage and easy setup.

Size Matters: Your hammock's height and the desired snugness of your shelter will influence the size of the tarp you need. A tarp that is a minimum of eight feet wide offers decent coverage. However, for those like me who prefer an expansive dry space, opting for a tarp ranging between 15 to 20 feet in length is recommended.

2. Sturdy Stakes and Rope

Ensuring your tarp remains secure, especially during unexpected gusts of wind, is crucial. This is where high-quality ropes and stakes come into play. By firmly staking the tarp's four corners, you can prevent it from flapping uncontrollably, maintaining the integrity of your shelter. For those using smaller tarps, consider staking or tying the tarp's midpoint to create additional space, reducing the potential feeling of confinement.

3. The Essential Drip Line

With your tarp firmly in place, the next step is preventing rainwater from sneaking its way to your hammock. Drip lines, although often overlooked, are the unsung heroes of hammock camping. They stop water from trailing down your hammock's suspension lines, ensuring you remain dry.

DIY Drip Lines: While there are numerous commercial options available, creating a DIY drip line is both easy and effective. Simply wrap a piece of rope around your hammock line to act as a barrier. Alternatives like zip ties or fabric pieces can also be utilized. The primary aim is to divert any water away from your hammock's suspension, ensuring you remain unaffected by the rain.

Additional Tips for a Dry Hammock Experience

Ground Sheet: Consider laying a groundsheet beneath your hammock. Not only does it offer a dry spot to place your gear, but it also prevents water splashes from the ground during heavy rain.

Angled Setup: Position your tarp with a slight angle. This ensures that rainwater slides off rather than pooling.

Ventilation: Ensure there's adequate ventilation. A well-ventilated space reduces condensation, further ensuring a dry sleeping experience.

Regular Checks: Periodically inspect your setup. Check for any potential vulnerabilities and address them promptly.


Hammock camping is an experience like no other, offering the freedom to sleep amid nature's beauty. However, this experience can quickly turn uncomfortable if you're unprepared for rain or snow. By understanding the essentials of setting up a dry hammock shelter and implementing the above tips, you can enjoy a serene, dry outdoor slumber.

We're eager to hear from our community! How do you ensure a dry hammock camping experience? Share your insights and tips in the comments below.

Holiday Surprises: Navigate Our Comprehensive Guide to the 11 Best Stocking Stuffers for Campers and Hikers