This summer marked the first time I tried my hand at hammock camping. Afraid of the cold, I always preferred the protection of a tent. Frankly, I still do. But the launch of the Grand Trunk OneMade hammock this summer was a great opportunity to test a new product in what’s still a new experience for me.
As I said in my Kammok Roo hammock review, my biggest concern about hammock camping is staying warm. With all that air surrounding me, not just coming in from above, the prospect of getting cold was downright frightening. But even up in the mountain air of Mt. Hood this summer, choosing a warm sleeping bag made all the difference in the world.
Ironically, a sleeping bag removes some of the “special sauce” from the Grand Trunk OneMade hammock. Grand Trunk is especially proud of two things: that their new hammock is Made in America, and that it uses a super-soft material. I applaud the Made in America element, and I can vouch for the softness of the 1.1-ounce Ripstop TrunkTech Nylon material. The thing is, you only feel that softness when you’re setting up the hammock or resting in it. Once you spread out that sleeping bag for the night, the interior of the sleeping bag is all you feel.
Still, when you’re lounging around the campsite, the softness of the TrunkTech Nylon adds some serious luxury. It’s not quite as soft as silk, but darn close. And that softness doesn’t equate to weakness. Much to my chagrin, my two kids absolutely abused the Grand Trunk OneMade hammock. Swinging, jumping, hitting it with sticks. You know, normal kid stuff that drives parents bonkers when it’s directed toward gear. Yet still, the OneMade hammock came through relatively unscathed.
I did notice a little fraying at two seams, but I don’t think it was abuse-related. It looked more like some of the fine TrunkTech material just coming undone. Fortunately, it didn’t seem to have any negative effects, and it certainly didn’t make the hammock seem any less rigid or more fragile.
However, that same rigidity is my biggest issue with the Grand Trunk OneMade hammock. It’s nice to have a sturdy seat when sitting around the campsite. A nice, solid surface is also nice if you’re taking a quick forest snooze. But when you’re sleeping for hours on end, the sausage-like constriction of the OneMade hammock is a tad uncomfortable.
I tend to roll a bit when I sleep. I’m not putting on miles or doing pirouettes, but I’m far from stationary. When you lie down in the Grand Trunk OneMade hammock, the material envelops you like you’re a pig in a blanket. That’s fine for a short period, but if you’re broad-shouldered like me or tend to move around while sleeping, it feels tight and constricting. Even my wife, who has a slighter figure and doesn’t move as much, said it wasn’t comfortable. For sitting and lounging it was fine, but not for sleeping overnight. Something like the Klymit Hammock V, which I gave an OR Summer Market 2016 Hot Shot Award, might help spread-out the material a bit, but that won’t launch until summer 2017.
My first evening out, I also noticed that I began two feet off the ground but woke up in the morning dragging in pine needles on the ground. I was concerned that the Grand Trunk OneMade hammock itself was stretching, but it didn’t look deformed. So, the next time out I switched from Grand Trunk’s OneMade 14er straps to the Kammok Python Straps. I didn’t encounter any stretching at all. GrandTrunk’s new 14er straps are nice and long, which lets you setup the hammock between really separated trees. But the amount of stretch they have is disappointing, especially if you’re trying to stay off the cold, wet ground. Two feet up should have been a sufficient height.
Yet GrandTrunk’s choice of how to attach those straps is great. The Kammok Roo hammock bunches-up the material at either end. From there, a loop grabs the bunched-up material into a sort of death grip, and the carabiner then clips into the straps. Although the setup works, I questioned how durable and rip-resistant it would be over time. By contrast, the Grand Trunk OneMade hammock uses a “tunnel” at each end of TrunkTech material, with a seatbelt-strap loop running through that tunnel and attaching to the carabiner, which then attaches to the straps. This seems much more accommodating of twists and turns (e.g. kid friendly). It also seems far more stable over time, as you don’t need to worry about bunched-up material deciding to rip apart.
I also really appreciated how packable the OneMade hammock is. Whereas the Roo loses some of its packability over time, the OneMade packed down just as small even after multiple camping trips. I didn’t take it backpack camping, but if I had, such long-term packability would’ve been valuable in that space-constrained setup.
All that being said, I prefer the Roo over the OneMade. The softness, packability and strap-attachments definitely swing in Grand Trunk’s favor. And the stretchiness of the 14er straps is moot, because you can always just use the OneMade with Kammok’s Python Straps. But in terms of overnight comfort, I found the Roo more to my liking. However, if you like to wrap-up tight when you sleep, Grand Trunk’s new OneMade is the camping hammock for you.
The Grand Trunk OneMade hammock and Grand Trunk 14er straps were provided for review. All opinions and words are my own and honest, and the article contains no affiliate links.
Grand Trunk OneMade Hammock
- Very lightweight
- Packs down smaller than others
- Super-fine and soft material
- Survived some rather abusive behavior from kids
- Tunnel-like approach to carabiner attachments seems more durable than gathered material
- The cut of the material feels constricting/tight after a while
- Though long, the optional OneMade 14er straps stretch far more than competitors
- Material is super static-y