As much as I love the outdoors, I can't stand mosquitos! Here's all you need to know about bug nets for camping and my top picks.
There you are enjoying the great big outdoors when a pesky little bug comes to bite you. It's amazing how frustrating something so small can be!
While bug spray is good when you're on the trail, it's nice to have an alternative when relaxing on-site. And one of those great alternatives is bug nets. They offer excellent bug protection without any of the potentially harmful chemicals!
There are many options to choose from when searching for a high-quality mosquito net. So, to narrow it down, I outline what to look for in the best mosquito net. Then, I list my picks for the best bug net on the market.
Now, mind you, these bug nets are mainly for outdoor camping or lounging in hammocks. For RVers who want a bug-free lounge area, I recommend screen tents instead.
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Before I jump into the best products, I wanted to introduce you to a really cool resource I just learned of. This OFF!Cast Mosquito predicts the local mosquito activity anywhere across the US up to seven days in advance. It’s based on mosquito biology!
This tool was created using an algorithm co-developed by SC Johnson Institute of Insect Science for Family Health in partnership with Google Cloud and Climate Engine.
With OFF!Cast, you can now get your local mosquito forecast as easily as your local weather forecast. This can help anyone looking to travel or to do any outdoor activities across the US, to prepare and plan ahead.
Pretty cool, huh?!
Benefits of Bug Nets
While there are several benefits of using a portable mosquito net when traveling, there are two major ones: keeping you pest-free and disease-free.
Nobody has to tell you that bugs bug you! The little pests buzz and bite and bite and buzz. While mosquitos are arguably the worst culprits, no-see-ums give them a run for their money.
Jennifer and I have also had to deal a lot with bees at campsites. While we value bees and certainly don't swat at them, we don't want them buzzing around our heads and landing in our food.
Mosquito and no-see-um netting helps prevent all those little buggers from, well, bugging us!
Another major reason that outdoor lovers want great mosquito nets for camping is that mosquitos and other flying insects can carry disease. No one wants to get Dengue Fever, Yellow Fever, West Nile Virus, or any other disease from the pests.
What to Look for in the Best Travel Mosquito Nets
Many travel mosquito nets can be used as a stand-alone shelter when sleeping on the ground, and not in a tent. Others can work in conjunction with your setup if you are relaxing in a hammock or hammock camping all weekend.
For example, ENO hammocks not only offer excellent hammocks to rest in. The company also offers many hammock systems that include some of the lightest mosquito nets on the market. They can cover your entire hammock, so you get the best of both worlds: the lightness of sleeping in the air and protection from annoying bugs!
If this sounds nice to you, check out our article on The Best Camping Hammocks.
A double zipper provides easy access for any user. It lets you access your sleeping quarter's, and can provide a nice ease of use for those sleeping with another person. You can use separate access points to climbing in to go to bed at night, especially in situations where there is limited space.
A lightweight mosquito net is great, but having an easy way to store and carry it is equally important. Look for a net with an included stuff sack so that you can throw in your net and be on your way easily.
Hanging Point & Hanging Kit
Another thing to check out is the hanging point of the bug net. Make sure the hanging point and the hanging kit will work in a campground or wilderness setting.
The 5 Best Bug Nets for Camping
Finding the right mosquito net comes down to personal preferences. One great option for one person might not work for another. However, these are the best options that provide a range of products to choose from.
Remember, these are mainly for campers who are pitching tents or hanging hammocks to relax or sleep in. If you're looking more for a screened-off area, scroll down for a link that'll take you to an article all about screen tents.
Outdoor enthusiasts will love this inexpensive and light option. It is simplicity at its finest, though, which has its pros and cons.
The pros are the low cost and super compact, light design. The con, however, is it does not offer tent-like construction. You'll have to string it to numerous hanging points.
Once it is set up, it creates a 78″l x 63″w x 59″h rectangle. You can fit a good-sized inflatable mattress or lounge chair inside.
Even though this product works best with Wise Owl Outfitters hammocks, it can be used with many other brands. Just be sure to check the dimensions of your hammock and compare it to the Snugnet.
This camping hammock doubles as a complete sleep system. This hammock features an integrated bug hammock, but still offers the sleeper a spacious interior for a great night's sleep or nap.
If you already have an ENO hammock, you can get the ENO Guardian Bug Net to make a bug-free zone. It sometimes works with other hammock brands, too. Just be sure to compare the dimensions.
This protection system is durable and comes complete with a rain fly!
This one-person system has an inner layer made with an ultra-fine mesh, which definitely keeps out unwanted insects.
While this is an excellent choice, it is not the most lightweight option available. If you are backpacking, you may want to look for a lighter option.
This option is actually for protecting your food, not you. It's like a little screen tent for your food!
It's excellent for keeping bugs from landing on and crawling over your picnic. Jennifer did a great little quick tip about this product, which you can watch here.
Screenhouses vs Bug Nets for Camping
If you want a completely screened-off area for more than just sleeping in, you'll want a screen tent rather than a mosquito net. Be sure to check out the Best Screen Room for Camping (Top 7 Picks).
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