Hammock Living is an Instagram account that’s amassed over 46,000 followers and is almost exactly what it sounds like: photos of a woman (and sometimes her boyfriend, and sometimes dogs) relaxing in her hammock in some of the most beautiful places in the world.
And Meredith Strodel is as surprised by her social-media success as you are.
“We really cannot believe how much it has taken off,” she says. “People love hammocks! And rightfully so. It’s one of those things where people don’t realize how much they love hammocks until they sit in one or see one. Then they remember a hammock experience from childhood or think, ‘Why do I not own one of these?!'”
Strodel launched her Instagram account after a backpacking trip to Havasupai, Arizona, and has been chronicling her chill spots ever since.
“We will not rest until we’ve rested in every hammock,” she says.
Who better to clue us in to the most glorious secret (and, OK, not-so-secret) spots around the country to string up your own snooze sack? Here, six of Hammock Living’s top places to kick back and relax.
Angeles National Forest
Drive up the Angeles Crest Highway from downtown L.A. and you’ll find plenty of trees off the side of the road that overlook the city, making it a great place to take in the landscape after dark.
“On a clear day, you can see all the way to the coast and Catalina Island,” says Strodel.
Strodel says one of her favorite places is the one that inspired her Instagram account: Havasupai, Arizona.
“The campground is 10 miles in (accessible by foot, donkey or helicopter only) on an Indian reservation,” she explains. “Havasupai has several waterfalls with the bluest water and reddest rocks you’ve ever seen. It’s a magical place.”
This Southern California escape is still one of Strodel’s favorite places to string up a hammock close to home.
“The rocks jutting out from the sand with the waves crashing beneath are simple breathtaking and so, so peaceful,” she says. “We found a pretty secluded spot here where we love to hang, El Matador State Beach.”
Zion National Park
Strodel calls this 229-square-mile park in Utah her favorite place to set up a hammock in the entire country — not that it was easy.
The duo found two “sketchy” small trees toward the top of Angels Landing to set up their hammock.
“That place is just beautiful beyond words,” she says. “And it was the scariest hang we’ve done so far, so that added to the excitement.”
The Eastern Sierra
Strodel says the close proximity of this rugged mountain range — home to the tallest peak in the contiguous United States — is just another perk of living in Los Angeles.
“We go camping, backpacking, hiking and climbing up in the Sierras pretty often, and there’s no shortage of places to hang a hammock, including the top of Mt. Whitney!” she says. “There are so many stunning lakes, too; it’s easy to lose a large part of your day relaxing in a hammock there.”
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