Going camping with a hammock instead of a tent is all well and good as long as there are trees around. Being stuck with a hammock but no trees to use as anchor points to hang it from is a tough situation. However, with a bit of DIY creativity, you can find a solution.
Without trees to hang a hammock up between, look around you for the following as they can be good anchor points for a hammock:
- Use a portable hammock stand.
- Use a hammock stand designed for a vehicle.
- Use rocks as anchor points for a hammock.
- Use a vehicle as an anchor point for a hammock.
- Hang a hammock between building columns.
- Hand a hammock from roof joists.
- Build a hammock structure in your garden.
Your knot-tying skills need to be good if you are going to attempt hanging a hammock without trees. When going hammock camping, it’s important to take extra rope or webbing along with you in case you must make a creative plan to hang your hammock in an area without trees.
Here, we discuss solutions for how to hang a hammock without trees, whether you are camping in the wild or just relaxing in your yard.
1. Portable Hammock Stand
By taking a portable hammock stand camping with you, you never have to worry about finding trees for your hammock ever again! They are relatively light, compact, and easy to set up, so whether you are backpacking or camping with your vehicle, a hammock stand is ideal.
Hammock stands intended for lightweight camping or backpacking weigh in at just under 20-pounds (the ENO Nomad Hammock Stand is just 15 pounds, and the Kammock Swiftlet Hammock Stand weighs about 17 pounds).
Heavier hammock stands that are intended for camping with a vehicle weigh just under 30 pounds (the Tranquilo J6YQ Portable Hammock Stand and Ozark Trail 128″ Portable Steel Hammock Stand both weigh 28 pounds).
Portable hammock stands come with a carry bag, making them convenient to take with you. They have very clear instructions for setting them up (each one is a little different), and they are generally very easy to erect and take down.
To be on the safe side and always be prepared when hammock camping, just take along a portable hammock stand. Remembering to bring it and carrying the extra weight is a lot easier than making an elaborate plan to hang your hammock without any trees.
How To Set Up A Portable Hammock Stand
Follow these steps to set up a portable hammock stand:
- Assemble the two arm pieces.
- Place the two arm pieces opposite one another.
- Connect the arm pieces with a long bar if you want to lie down in the hammock, or a short bar if you want a hammock chair.
- Attach the hammock fabric to the stand by feeding the ends of the hammock through the cradles on the top of each arm piece, and securing them with carabiners to the sliders.
- Finally, adjust the height of the hammock by toggling the knob and moving the sliders up or down the arm pieces.
2. Hammock Stands That Work With A Vehicle
The ENO Roadie Hammock Stand is designed to work with a vehicle. If you enjoy hammock camping at sites where you can drive your car, this is the perfect hammock stand for you!
The ENO Roadie has two feet that you drive your vehicle onto. A steel pole fits into each foot, and the angle of the poles is perfect for hanging your hammock in between.
This super-simple hammock stand design works wonderfully and is very compact, taking up a tiny amount of space in your car. The ENO Roadie is quick and easy to set up and breaks apart into six pieces.
Other types of hammock stands that work with vehicles attach to the trailer hitch. The Hammaka Hammock Hitch stand is a nifty invention that allows you to lounge wherever you drive your car. It is easy to set up, breaks down into 5 pieces, and is convenient to transport.
The Hammaka Hammock Hitch stand can be used for one hammock, or for two hammock-type chairs, for the times you want to hang out with a friend. The hitch stand has a 300-pound capacity.
How To Set Up A Vehicle Hammock Stand
Follow these simple steps to set up a vehicle hammock stand:
- Park your vehicle and place the two hammock stand feet directly in front of your front and back tires with the angled pipes pointing forwards in the front and backwards in the back.
- Drive your vehicle forwards slowly so that the tires are on top of the two feet.
- Insert the two longer poles into the angled pipes on each foot.
- Secure the webbing straps attached to each foot to the tops of each pole.
- Tie the ends of your hammock to the tops of each pole.
- Finally, adjust the tension of the hammock so that it hangs at the desired height.
3. Hang A Hammock Between Rocks
After a pair of nice, sturdy, well-spaced trees, a pair of large boulders are the next best thing when it comes to a spot to hang a hammock. Rock climbers often set up hammocks and camp high above the ground against a rock face. It can be a very cool camping spot!
But how do you know if two large rocks are suitable for hanging a hammock up between? You need to look for rocks that are large enough to support your weight. They need to be at least 6 to 8 feet in height. The rocks need to have between 10 and 18 feet of space between them.
There are two main methods of hanging a hammock between two large rocks:
- Use webbing or a tree strap
- Use climbing gear, like nuts or cams
How To Hang A Hammock Between Rocks
Follow these steps to set up your hammock between two rocks using webbing or a tree strap:
- Create anchor points for the hammock by looping the webbing or tree straps around the rocks and tying them with a knot.
- Use two carabiners to secure the ends of the hammock to the anchor points on the rocks.
- Adjust the tension of the hammock so that it hangs at the desired height.
If the rocks have cracks and you have nuts or cams with you, you can create anchor points on the rocks using your climbing gear:
- Look for a crack that gets narrower and narrower down its length, and wedge the nut (or cam) into the crack.
- Use carabiners to secure the ends of the hammock to the nuts or cams.
- When you climb into your hammock, your weight will force the nut further down into the crack. This will strengthen the anchor points.
4. Use A Car As An Anchor Point For A Hammock
Vehicles are not the ideal anchor point for a hammock, but if you are in a pinch and you are looking for a creative way to hang your hammock, it can work.
The best way to use a car or truck for hanging a hammock is when you already have another anchor point, like a sturdy pole, rock, building column, or roof joist. If you have two vehicles, you can hang your hammock between them.
It is crucial to choose the anchor point on your vehicle very carefully to avoid injuring yourself or damaging your car. A rear-view mirror, for example, is a terrible choice as it is likely to break under your weight.
If a vehicle has a roof rack, that is the best anchor point to use for hanging a hammock as it is high off the ground and it is very sturdy.
How To Use A Car To Hang A Hammock
The top of the car door is a good place to tie one end of the hammock line (or webbing). Follow these steps to create a solid anchor point for a hammock:
- Roll the window down a little and open the car door.
- Tie the webbing around the top of the car door frame.
- Shut the door.
- Attach the end of the hammock to the anchor point created by the webbing.
5. Hang A Hammock Between Building Columns
If you are not in a completely wild place and there are some buildings around, you may be able to find a pair of concrete columns or a sturdy banister from which to hang your hammock.
Make sure that building columns are far enough apart for a comfortable hang. Too close, and you may give yourself back pain! The optimal distance between anchor points is the length of the hammock plus two feet. If your hammock is 15 feet long, you need columns that are 17 feet apart.
How To Hang A Hammock Between Building Columns
Follow these steps to set your hammock up:
- Use webbing or a tree strap to tie around each of the columns as anchor points.
- Use a taut-line hitch knot and tension the webbing well so that the anchor points stay in place.
- Attach the ends of the hammock to each anchor point.
- When you climb into the hammock, the anchor points should not slide down the column.
- If they do, tighten the tension.
6. Hang A Hammock From Roof Joists
If you can find exposed roof joists on the exterior of a building, these can make great anchor points to hang a hammock from. Follow these simple steps:
- Tie lengths of webbing around the horizontal beams.
- Tie each end of the hammock to a piece of webbing – voila!
7. Build A Hammock Structure In Your Garden
If you want to hang a hammock up in your yard but you do not have any trees that are large and sturdy enough, there are loads of options available to you. You could buy a free-standing hammock stand or build one yourself.
There is a wide variety of affordable hammock stands (called “turtle dog stands”) online. You are sure to find something to suit your needs and your budget!
The Sunnydaze heavy-duty steel hammock stand is strong enough to hold two people’s weight and is compatible with hammocks between 9 and 14 feet long. This simple structure does its job well
How To Set Up A Hammock Stand
Follow the assembly instructions for the type of hammock stand you buy. Generally, all you do is attach feet to each of the two arm pieces and link the arm pieces using a spreader bar. Then, just hang your hammock between the two arm pieces.
How To Build A Hammock Structure
Many people like to build a pergola-type structure to hang their hammocks from in the garden. You can build it as simply or ornately as you desire.
- Cement the wooden posts in securely. Use thick, sturdy wooden posts and sink them deep into the ground so that they can bear your load.
- Insert two large eye screws into each post. These are what you will tie the ends of the hammock to.
- Use carabiners to secure the ends of the hammock to each post.