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Backpacking COT or AIR MATTRESS?
Just wondered how many go the ultra-light cot route instead of an air mattress when backpack hunting?
I was always an air mattress guy, but I found a nice 4 lb cot for a decent price(under $80) so I will give it a try!
4 pounds is about what my sleeping bag and eXped pad weigh combined...
I'll stick with the pad...
The new backpack pads from Thermarest and Exped are great....thick, warm, light and comfortable (12 ounce Thermarest Neoair for me). I am unwilling to pack an extra 3.25#s in the pack, and you would still need a pad or you'll freeze your bottom side in cold weather, so it is an extra 4#s! Good luck if you carry the cot!
I'm with Mike^......less is better when I'm backpacking.
I'm a side-sleeper and pads aren't thick enough, sleep like crap and wake up with an aching shoulder. Finally broke down and bought a packpacking cot last year for Montana, best sleep I've had on a backpack trip. Up to you, but for me until the end of time the extra 4#'s are worth the punishment. Thermarest pad + cot will be in my backpacking kit forever, I'm with charlie on this one.
To be honest, I never even considered a cot until I saw the thread last week. Didn't know there even WAS such a thing as a backpacking cot. But the more I read and thought about it, it just might be the solution for me.
I've only ever done a couple backpack hunts and went with a closed cell foam pad as base layer under an inflatable pad. Light for sure, but always rolling off the matress and I too am a side sleeper, so shoulders get beat up. And if this works, NO MORE time and energy wasted to blow up the dang inflatable mattress!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ;-)
I sleep like a baby on my Neo-air and have never been cold. I am skin and bones and never had shoulder or any other problems. I prize my sleep at night! It weighs a few ounces and rolls up super small. I would much rather cart that around the woods than something that weighs 4 lbs! Holy smokes 4 lbs is a gob of weight added to a pack! I'm constantly trying to shed ounces off my back...4 lbs is a gob!
NEVER a cot....I have hip implants and had both shoulder done and sleep on my side. A quality pad works.
Jims I totally agree- 4 lbs is a huge amount of weight. But I've tried a lot of pads and really never sleep worth a darn on them alone. Not sleeping worth a dang weighs heavily on me over the course of a 10 day backpack hunt.
So... endure 4 additional pounds of misery on the way in or not sleeping worth a damn the whole trip? For me, the answer isn't totally clear.
Franklin, because a good pad meets your needs doesn't mean it does for everyone. I've got a broken vertebrae in my lower spine and it causes me a lot of problems trying to sleep anytime, but especially on a sleeping pad.
I may give a cot/pad a try on my next backpack hunt. I think I'll slip the cot in my hunting partners pack... :)
Have you side sleepers tried a thicker inflatable pillow? I might consider packing a cot on a backpack hunt if they got them under 2#. But my bag and mattress and pillow combined are right at 3# and seems to work well.
Sea to Summit inflatable pillow is fantastic for us side sleepers. I only use mats when backpacking and can say I definitely sleep better with the addition of that particular pillow. Got the idea from someone’s sheep hunt thread I think.
The Desert Walker is 2.8 lbs.
Midwest: and it comes with a "one year arranty?" LOL
You still need a pad with a cot so I prefer just a good pad. I’m a side sleeper and my Exped Downmat9 is perfect. Plenty thick. I inflate it fully then let air out until it’s forgiving enough to suit me.
I had always just used a foam pad because I like a really hard sleeping surface. Then I bought a Klymit insulated pad. I really like it. Don't know why it took so long to do it. Bought my wife a Klymit insulated lite. No back sleeping on these for me as my shoulders hang off but, I can live with that.
To those with shoulder pain on a pad, follow stick senders advice. Use a thicker pillow. God Bless men
Call me lazy, but FOUR POUNDS???
At that weight, if I can’t eat it, live in it or kill something with it, FORGET IT!!!
I sleep on my side, and a Thermarest works wonders as long as you don’t over inflate it. A lot of people blow them up, which will about kill you.
If you let it self-inflate and then burp it down ‘til your hip is pretty firmly on the ground, it’ll heat up just enough from your body warmth to take that pressure off. Varies a bit with 3/4 length vs full-size, and with thickness, and with the size of the user, but you can work it out.
Also helps to prep the ground before you pitch the tent... if you scoop out a little depression for your shoulder & hip, it can make a thin pad feel a good bit thicker..
ounces equal pounds, and pounds equal pain,,,,,,,,
"The Desert Walker is 2.8 lbs."
Well according to their ad it is 2.8lbs 2.86lbs, and only 3lbs. In addition it comes with a one year arranty and a 24 months warranty. Rest assured your message will be response within 12 hours! "If there have any problems about the products,please contact us."
3 lbs x 16 oz/lb = 48 oz....ouch! That hurts my back just thinking about hauling it around! I guess I'm a wimp when it comes to slicing ounces off my back! It sounds like it is worth hauling for some.
When considering that 4 pounds is a bridge too far in so far as extra weight - what is the overall weight of the pack with all the stuff in it?
Those little light cots are pretty sweet but for backpacking I’d stick to just a mat to save weight
I go with the pad, gets too cold elevated off the ground. Probably ok during warmer months scouting.
I've read many reviews of durability problems with the "backpack cots".
I'll stick with my Exped Synmat UL7. I have no desire to pack an additional four pounds. I'm always looking to reduce pack weight (on the way in).
Well, I got my 4 lb cot and set it up last night. Very comfortable. And wider than I expected. I am going to try it out camping this Spring and Summer. If I like it, the desert walker is 1.2 lbs lighter and 4" narrower. I will get that one for backpacking and keep the bigger one for car-camping and when I need an extra bed when traveling.
I bought a Helinox cot last year. Combined with a BA pad and a quilt I slept like a baby. My pack in is relatively short at about 2 miles and we were setting up a back country base camp so the additional weight was well worth it to me. I guess it would depend on how far you go in, how long you will be in, and how often you might move. If I were bivy hunting it would be a different answer, but I'll take comfort every night for a week or more over a little heavier load for a couple of hours.
That Helinox is top of the line.