Hammocks have been around for centuries. Columbus brought them back with him to Spain. Today’s boost in popularity is driven in part by advances in technology.
Made of nylon, many hammocks now weigh barely a pound and scrunch up into packets the size of a sandwich bag. You can start swaying for less than $100 — but then may be tempted by the rain tarps, underslings for gear, bug nets and little battery-operated lanterns to hang within reach.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to hammocks.|
That’s what Tess Linville and three girlfriends, all 14, do on pleasant afternoons — albeit without any apparent doubt — looping the straps of their featherweight nylon hammocks to the tracery of tree branches near Lake Harriet’s rose gardens. If they get the right spot, they all can face each other, like sitting around an arboreal card table.
The silhouette slung between two trees is unmistakable: a crescent moon, a daisy petal, a lazy smile — a hammock. The image is nostalgic in the way that we tend to file simple pleasures under the heading of “bygone times.”