Camping, Elevated

This Sleeping Pad Makes Hammock Camping Better in Every Way

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Perhaps the primary advantage of hammock camping is carrying less gear. A camping hammock that packs down to the size of a grapefruit can replace a tent, sleeping bag and sleeping pad in one fell swoop (depending on the weather and location of the region you’re traveling in). That parenthetical statement has motivated Kammok to design a full range of accessories that make its exceptional camping hammocks significantly more versatile, from quilts that hang under them to prevent drafts to tarps that hang above them to shield off rain. And Kammok just added to that collection with the introduction of the Pongo, its first sleeping pad.

Like many backpacking sleeping pads, the Pongo is inflatable, swelling to a thickness of three inches to provide comfort and insulation against the ground. Unlike those pads though, the Pongo isn’t rectangular, and it isn’t an elongated oval; it’s a geometric mix of angled edges that creates a wide platform for the upper body and a narrow one for the legs.

Kammok chose this silhouette for two reasons. Comfort is one — the oversized shape provides more space to toss and turn than other sleeping pads — and hammocks are the other. According to Kammok, the tapered lower end slips neatly into a hammock while the wide upper portion pushes the fabric outward to create more space while providing a flatter sleeping surface, too. There are also sticky silicone accents on the Pongo’s underside to prevent it from sliding around during the night. In short, there’s nothing stopping you from laying the Pongo down on the ground or in a tent, but it’s in the air, suspended between two trees, that it truly outdoes run-of-the-mill sleeping pads.

Gear Patrol also recommends:
Nemo Equipment Fillo Elite Pillow ($45)
Kammok Roo Double Hammock Bundle ($108)
Therm-a-Rest Vesper Down Quilt ($330+)
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Tanner Bowden

Tanner Bowden is a staff writer at Gear Patrol covering all things outdoors and fitness. He is a graduate of the National Outdoor Leadership School and a former wilderness educator. He lives in Brooklyn but will always identify as a Vermonter.

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