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Lawson Blue Ridge Camping Hammock Review

This model lacks the comfort needed to make up for its bulk and weight
Lawson Blue Ridge Camping Hammock
Photo: Lawson
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Price:  $230 List | $199.00 at Amazon
Pros:  Durable, can be used as a bivy
Cons:  Heavy, bulky, difficult to achieve a flat position
Manufacturer:   Lawson
By Elizabeth Paashaus ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  May 20, 2021
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39
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#16 of 16
  • Comfort - 40% 3
  • Weight - 20% 1
  • Durability and Protection - 20% 8
  • Ease of Set Up - 10% 5
  • Versatility - 10% 4

Our Verdict

The Lawson Blue Ridge hammock falls short of our expectations. It might be a good option for lounging on a car camping trip when weight and bulk aren't a concern but our testers couldn't get comfortable enough for an overnight sleep. We like the spacious feel that the spreader bars and tent poles lend to the hammock. Our testers also appreciate the self-contained nature of the design that eliminates the need for stakes but we feel there are just not enough redeeming qualities for this model to suit the needs of enough people for us to recommend it.

Compare to Similar Products

 
Awards  Editors' Choice Award Best Buy Award Editors' Choice Award Best Buy Award 
Price $199.00 at Amazon$155 List$159.95 at REICheck Price at Backcountry
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$21.99 at Amazon
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Pros Durable, can be used as a bivySpacious, comfortable, easy to set up and use, integrated bug net, customizableComfortable asymmetric design, budget friendly, package includes full shelter systemVery comfortable flat position, easy to set up, durable material and construction, attachable pillowComfortable, large, easy to use, versatile, surprisingly low cost
Cons Heavy, bulky, difficult to achieve a flat positionSuspension sold separately, can't remove bug net completelyMore complicated set up, small rain fly, bug net is not removableBulky, heavy, narrow for sharing, suspension straps sold separatelyNot the lightest, sticky carabiner
Bottom Line This model lacks the comfort needed to make up for its bulk and weightSuperior comfort with a dedicated footbox, spacious fabric, and all the features needed for many nights of cozy sleepThe trimmed-down design of the Expedition offers a comfortable asymmetric shape and keeps both the weight and the price lowReady for kicking back with a cold one or napping alike, the Skyloft is a durable and comfortable hammock for relaxing at the park or cragA great way to save money but still find all the comfort, simplicity, and webbing suspension straps that you expect from top hammock brands
Rating Categories Blue Ridge Camping Warbonnet Original... Hennessy Expedition... ENO Skyloft Kootek Portable
Comfort (40%)
3.0
9.0
7.0
9.0
6.0
Weight (20%)
1
8.0
7.0
3.0
5.0
Durability And Protection (20%)
8.0
9.0
8.0
5.0
5.0
Ease Of Set Up (10%)
5.0
7.0
4.0
8.0
9.0
Versatility (10%)
4.0
5.0
4.0
4.0
5.0
Specs Blue Ridge Camping Warbonnet Original... Hennessy Expedition... ENO Skyloft Kootek Portable
Measured Weight - Package (ounces) 93.8 oz 27 oz hammock, bug net, webbing/buckle suspension 42 oz 44 oz 23 oz
Measured Weight - Hammock Only (ounces) 66.8 oz (hammock, poles) 26 oz hammock, bug net, webbing/buckle suspension 30 oz (hammock, bug net, suspension) 42 oz 23 oz
Measured Weight - Hammock and Suspension (ounces) 76.9 oz (hammock, poles, straps) 26 oz hammock, bug net, webbing/buckle suspension 30 oz (hammock, bug net, suspension) 54 oz with atlas straps 37 oz
Measured Weight - Shelter System (no stakes) 93.8 oz 42 oz with Mini Fly tarp 42 oz (hammock, bug net, tarp, suspension) N/A N/A
Capacity (weight) 275 lbs 350-400 lbs depending on options selected 250 lbs 250 lbs 500 lbs
Hanging Straps Included? No no, can add onto purchase for extra $ Yes No Yes, 10' straps
Hammock Size 7'6" x 4'3" 10' x 5.25' 10' x 4.92' 7' x 3' 9'10" x 6'6"
Size Compact 25" x 6" x 6" 10" x 4" 9" x 7" x 4" 18.5” x 4.5” x 4.5” 9.8" x 7.4"
Connectors Nylon cord Whoopies/straps or buckle/webbing (sold separately) Polyester rope Aluminum carabiners Steel carabiners
Material Ripstop Nylon 40D or 70D Nylon (depending on options selected) 70D Oxford Nylon NewWave nylon 210D nylon
Construction Bridge style hammock, 10-point aluminum spreader bars, bug netting End gathered, asymmetric hammock, single or double layer fabric, zipper along 1 side, integrated bug netting. Storage shelf and foot box Single panel double-stitched seam connection to zipper and 30D polyester No-See-Um netting. 3mm integrated ridgeline. 5mm cord connected to hammock anchor point to tie around tree strap. Dual stretch cord attachments to pull hammock body away at sides. Durable ripstop nylon with aluminum spreader bars Triple interlocking stitching
Sizes / Colors 1 size, 1 color 27 colors, 3 fabric layering configurations Multiple other sizes/configurations available under other Hennessy product names 1 size, 4 colors 1 size, 5 colors
Capacity (height) Not stated 6' 6' Not stated Not stated
Accessories (compatible, not included) Suspension straps, wiregate carabiners, underquilt Rain flies, bug net, carabiners, fish hooks, under quilts, top quilts, suspension systems Tree straps, larger rain flys, insulation, "snakeskin" stuff sacks Suspension straps, rain fly, bug net, top quilts, under quilts, insulation pads, permanent anchors None
Accessories (included with hammock) Rainfly, bug netting Guylines, bugnetting, storage shelf, continuous loops (for attaching suspension system to), stuff sack Tree straps, 70D polyurethane coated polyester ripstop rainfly, integrated bug net Aluminum wiregate carabiners Tree straps, steel carabiners
Extra Accessories Tested Suspension straps, wiregate carabiners Mini Fly tarp, webbing with buckles suspension, None Atlas straps None

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Lawson Blue Ridge is spacious and keeps you well-protected from the elements with its spreader bars and tent poles to keep the netting well above your face but, as the most important feature of a hammock is comfort, our testers can't say they would recommend it to a friend. You may find it useful on a car camping trip for lounging during the day, but the price tag will likely steer you to another model.

Performance Comparison


A door zippers open to allow you into the Lawson Blue Ridge hammock...
A door zippers open to allow you into the Lawson Blue Ridge hammock tent.
Photo: Elizabeth Paashaus

Comfort


We were excited to try the Lawson Blue Ridge because of the high level of comfort offered by other camping hammocks with spreader bars but based on our testing, the overall comfort level was disappointing. The hammock is wide and spacious but the design limits your ability to lie down flat. The head and foot ends are not dropped and a diagonal lay is not possible in this design.

The interior feels spacious due to the spreader bars and tent poles...
The interior feels spacious due to the spreader bars and tent poles keeping it nice and open.
Photo: Elizabeth Paashaus

Weight


For those who plan to use their hammock car camping or in the backyard, the weight of the Blue Ridge may not be an issue but we do not recommend this model if you need to carry it anywhere. On our scales, as a full shelter, it weighs in at 93 ounces; that's 5.8 pounds, more than 2 pounds heavier than the next heaviest model in our review.

The Lawson Blue Ridge hammock is almost as tall as many backpacking...
The Lawson Blue Ridge hammock is almost as tall as many backpacking packs and heavier than most one person tents.
Photo: Elizabeth Paashaus

Durability and Protection


The durable materials and protection provided by this hammock are some of its best qualities. It uses thicker nylon than most camping hammocks which should stand up better to abrasion. The bug netting and integrated tarp will keep you well protected from bugs and rain. This tarp sits closer to the hammock body than many we tested which will provide added protection from blowing rain.

The rain fly covers the hammock fully from end to end.
The rain fly covers the hammock fully from end to end.
Photo: Elizabeth Paashaus

Ease of Set Up


The suspension straps are long and easy to adjust. We like the sliding buckles that allow fine-tuning in the tension of the hammock. The hammock then simply slips to the buckles to hang. Setting up the tarp is a little less self-explanatory as it's not immediately clear where all the clips and loops go. After reading the manufacturer's instructions you won't have any trouble but there are still a lot of pieces to individually attach. One nice feature is that the rain fly is self-contained with the hammock and you don't need to tie it separately to the trees or even stake it to the ground.

Slider buckles make adjusting the tension after set up easy.
Slider buckles make adjusting the tension after set up easy.
Photo: Elizabeth Paashaus

Versatility


Because of its weight and the non-removable bug net, the Lawson Blue Ridge loses several points in the versatility rankings. You won't be backpacking with this model or sharing with a friend due to the 275-pound weight rating. We do like that you can flip it upside down and sit on the opposite side without the bug net when lounging at camp. Lawson also provides instructions for setting the hammock up on the ground like a small tent or bivy when trees are not available.

The heavy hammock is suited to overnight camping when you don't have...
The heavy hammock is suited to overnight camping when you don't have to carry it any farther than from your car to a nearby set of trees.
Photo: Elizabeth Paashaus

Value


Based on our testing, the performance of the Blue Ridge in the comfort, weight, and versatility metrics do not justify its price. It ranks moderately in ease of set up and well in durability & protection but there are many options that will provide more comfort, less weight, more versatility that are just as easy to set up and that can offer plenty of durability and protection for less money. Read our other hammock reviews to find one that performs well in the metrics that are most important to you.

Conclusion


We had high hopes for this spreader bar hammock based on the performance of other similar models in our test but are unfortunately unable to recommend the Lawson Blue Ridge hammock. It lacks the dropped head and foot area that allows you to achieve a flat position in a spreader bar model. While it feels spacious on the inside, comfort is elusive. Other than the comfort, our testers found the weight and bulky limit its versatility. If you are shopping for a hammock to be your backpacking shelter and like the spreader bar style, there are other models that will give you more comfort that we highly recommend.

The many clips and buckles make the Lawson Blue Ridge a bit more...
The many clips and buckles make the Lawson Blue Ridge a bit more time confusing to set up than some models.
Photo: Elizabeth Paashaus

Elizabeth Paashaus