Summer is already in full swing.
Kids are out of school… and we even had our first pool party.
It’s also the perfect time to hang a hammock. Summer is for slinging inside a hammock with a good book and basking in some sun.
Sounds like such a simple thing — hanging a hammock. Grab some rope, tie it around a tree and there ya’ go. Well it’s not so easy. Especially since the palm trees we were trying to hang the hammock from did not have typical tree bark and instead had a very smooth exterior. We quickly found out that rope slides down the tree falling on the ground as opposed to swinging gracefully between two trees.
Apparently it is necessary to be some sort of nautical master to tie a rope so that it doesn’t slide down the tree.
We tried all kinds of sailor’s knots to no avail. Once we finally got it somewhat tight to stay temporarily with a super duper crazy knot, it started to rain. The super duper crazy knot was a pain to untie causing the hammock to get soaked.
Hanging with rope was actually our 2nd failure. Our amazing sweet friends who gave us this gorgeous hammock as a gift included chains and clasps that were supposed to allow easy attachment to trees. The chains were unsuccessful and slid even faster down the tree than the rope.
After both unsuccessful attempts, I headed off to the hardware store to browse around hoping to find something that would work as a solution. I went to my new favorite place, True Value, and as usual they were very helpful.
The representative at True Value, told me my worst fears – it was mandatory to insert a hook into the tree. After watching hours of hammock “how-to” videos online, I had known this was an option but resisting it because damaging a gorgeous tree would feel like a sin.
However he explained that it would not really harm the tree, especially since it was a mature tree. And he also explained that hanging a rope or chain taut around a tree combined with the weight of a person pulling on it was probably worse over time.
I had also been resisting inserting a large hook into the tree because I didn’t think I would have the muscle strength. But as I have discovered with most of the DIY projects, if done correctly things are actually much easier than expected. And as it turned out… hook insertion was easy and simple.
So here is how you hang a hammock with a hook:
2 Hooks – use heavy duty hooks that have the ability to hold a few hundred pounds. The hardware store should show weight capacities on product displays.
1) First measure the lengthy of the hammock and the distance between the two trees you intend to use.
2) If the measurements seem to fit well, hold the hammock up between the two trees to make sure. Having another person assist helps unless you have arms that span more than 12 feet. :) I didn’t have anyone helping me so I laid the hammock on the ground between the trees and did a little bit of guestimating (estimating + guessing = guestimating).
The hammock needs hang at least 2-3 feet off the ground because it will lower significantly once a person is laying inside the hammock.
There needs to be sufficient spacing between the trees and a mark needs to be made on each the tree where hook will be installed.
3) If everything seems like a good fit, use drill to pre-drill hole where hook will be inserted. I can’t deny I felt guilty drilling into the tree. To make matters worse, when drilling a little tree sap ran out that made me feel like the tree was crying. :( (However all has ended up well and there is a happy ending to this story. It has been several weeks and the tree is doing just fine.)
4) Insert hook and start screwing hook in tree with your hand. Somehow the hook “finds it’s way” and is actually very easy to insert and hand turn.
5) About half way through, the hook will become difficult to turn by hand. At that point, use pliers to continue screwing in tree. (Using the pliers takes zero to very little muscle strength).
6) Screw in all the way with pliers until the shaft of the hook is not visible.
Hang hammock and enjoy!
The hooks also allow fast easy removal of the hammock when it rains!
For convenience (not necessary) we also used the chain and clasps that came with our hammock and attached them in between the tree hooks and the rope that was attached to the hammock.
The chains provided extended length and also the ability to manipulate length quickly. If you also want to use chain or clasps, they are available at the hardware store where they can also cut the chains the exact length for you.
Will you be putting up a hammock this summer?
Check out these fun blogs for amazing inspiration!
Between Naps on the Porch, DIY Showoff, Domestically Speaking, Finding Fabulous, Funky Junk Interiors, House of Hepworths, Miss Mustard Seed, My Backyard Eden, Perfectly Imperfect, Primitive & Proper, Remodelaholic, SAS Interiors, Shabby Nest, Whipperberry, Today’s Creative Blog, The Thrifty Home, Savvy Southern Style, Some Day Crafts, Eisy Morgan, Green Door Designs, At Home with K