Be Cool and Hammock On!
I have been hammock camping off and on for more than 15 years and I have been miserable cold for much of that time. I came across HammockForums.net while looking for a way to stay warm while camping in the cooler months and my eyes were opened. I knew I didn’t have the money to spend on one of the cottage vendors beautifully constructed down underquilts. Nor did I even have the money for one of the toasty warm synthetic quilts. So I compromised and started out with a Thermarest pad and a DIY pad extender (think – adding 18″ wings to the Thermarest pad at the shoulders and knees). I longed for an underquilt.
After staying warm through several cool weather trips with the Thermarest pad I was so glad I had found HF.net. Because I had been successful with the pad and pad extender, I kept reading. What I learned made me want an underquilt all the more so I started researching the different styles and options available for DIY underquilts and underquilt material (more about this later).
My research first lead me to a quilt known as the KAQ (DIY underquilt instructions here) and an insulation known as Primaloft (initially sourced here – Thru-hiker.com) because I was looking for Primaloft (again, more about this later). This is what I was looking for, so I thought, so I ordered the materials to make this underquilt. Before the material arrived, I also found a material called Insultex (later) and ordered some of it too.
Fast forward a bit… the underquilt is put together and it works very well but it wasn’t exactly what I was hoping it would be. It was not wide enough in the shoulders and there were too many cords and adjustments to suite. I wanted something a little easier to put together and a lot easier to use so it was back to the Hammock Forums for some more research.
Since the first DIY underquilt I have been trying to perfect my underquilt. And while not perfect, I have found a way that works well for me. The video below is the first in a group of vids that shows how I make my UnderQuilt.