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Anyone use a sleeping pad?

Discussion in 'Shelter' started by campforums, Feb 15, 2013.

  1. campforums

    campforums Founder Staff Member

    They aren't too much of a hassle to bring along because they are usually just a foam pad which you can fold up and squeeze the air out of and can make a big difference if you're sleeping on bumpy terrain.

    My sleeping bag is pretty thick so usually I don't have a problem, you just have to make sure you check the ground for roots and sharp stones before laying your tent down.

  2. R. Zimm

    R. Zimm Newbie

    The only one I used did not seem to help much. These days I would much prefer an inflatable mattress. The ones they have now include a rechargeable air pump. You don't put them right on the ground but inside a tent they would be very comfortable.
  3. campforums

    campforums Founder Staff Member

    Yeah these ones are meant to be used inside the tent also I think. The thing with the air mattresses is they are much bulkier and some have heavy pumps attached to them, I guess if you aren't concerned about space that would be the better option.
  4. Esperahol

    Esperahol Newbie

    On especially rough terrain I will take a hammock rather than a bedroll. Of course taking a hammock means laying aside a tent in favor of a tarp setup.
  5. Fitness

    Fitness Newbie

    I just sleep in the back of my Xterra, but I use a self inflating mattress pad. http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000MNBLY4/ref=oh_details_o03_s00_i00?ie=UTF8&psc=1
    It is so much better than just sleeping on the hard plastic and dealing with the hump were the seat folds down. It deflates and rolls up nicely and has it's own stuff sack. I thought about getting a blow up mattress, but it just seemed like a lot more work and took up a lot of space deflated.
  6. Angelle

    Angelle Newbie

    I haven't went camping yet; next month will be my first time going camping. My boyfriend and I were discussing if we should sleep on the ground or purchase a pad. I stated that I wanted to get the whole camping experience and sleep on the ground but he said he doesn't care for that; he even went as far as saying he was going to bring the bed that we have in our bedroom. How outrageous is that! That kind of defeats the purpose of going camping. I am dealing with people who are not that adventurous so I am guessing that I will be purchasing that pad.
  7. campforums

    campforums Founder Staff Member

    A bed?! You can't be serious, haha. I would say okay as long as he carries it.

    Kidding aside, you two will have a great time. Being alone in the wilderness is very surreal.
  8. R. Zimm

    R. Zimm Newbie

    They make a number of varieties of the inflatable mattresses so check around to find something that suits your needs. We've had them that you need to plug into the car cigarette lighter and those that have a rechargeable battery (my preference). The battery ones can power the mattress inflation a number of times before needing a recharge so if you are only needing it inflated a few times you should be ok. Some of them the pump/battery is separate so you can charge it up disconnected from the mattress. Some do that via the wall, some 12v (car) so investigate the options.

    Also, the tops of these mattresses are covered with a sort of short "fur" so you are not lying on plastic but you really need something else like a thick blanket to make them more comfortable. As I mentioned before, you also should have something on the bottom if you are directly on the ground. You do not want a twig or thorn puncturing the mattress.
  9. lindsay365

    lindsay365 Newbie

    Yes, they occupy little space so you do not have to worry about using a lot of space to carry it. It is however quite uncomfortable therefore I prefer an inflatable mattress which may occupy a lot of space but is much more comfortable on the ground.
  10. campforums

    campforums Founder Staff Member

    Funny you should say that, normally I don't use a sleeping mat at all and just put my sleeping bag straight on the bottom of the tent and am able to cope with it. Maybe try a thicker sleeping bag?
  11. lindsay365

    lindsay365 Newbie

    Sleeping on any of these mats is the most uncomfortable thing that I have ever done. It is unlikely that the you will find any outdoor camp with a perfectly flat surface. I always suggest having light mattresses as opposed to using these mats. If you have to use a mat, carry some extra clothes to add on as cushion for the hard surface. This way, you will not have to dread going to sleep on a camp due to the hard and rough terrain
  12. lindsay365

    lindsay365 Newbie

    While there are worse ways to spend a night, attempting to sleep without a sleeping pad is an absolute receipt to both a long and cold night. having spend the whole day walking i can never like to spend a whole night in a cold and uncomfortable place damn it i really hate that. i thus prefer having pad in camp because it also covers a small space.
  13. spuncookie

    spuncookie Newbie

    Absolutely. These mats are so much to make the ground more comfortable. I mean look at them. There isn't very much padding there. It's to put something in between you and the cold ground. I've spent many nights without one, and it pretty much sucks. These pads ability to keep the ground from sucking up your body heat basically make them into a whole extra blanket. I consider these to be essential camping gear. Especially in cold weather.
  14. Kementarri

    Kementarri Newbie

    I usually bring one with me when I go camping not because they help with the comfortability, but rather they help more-so with keeping the cold at bay. There isn't too much padding with them at all, but they do take up very little space and they do help a bit, especially if the ground is uneven and you cannot find a completely flat spot. But if you find that they are not enough, then I would suggest just getting a thicker/heavier sleeping bag; you can actually make your tent really comfortable if you lay down a nice thick sleeping bag and then have one for on top of you (or to sleep inside of). But it really just depends on the type of camping you are doing... if you are doing the overnight hiking camping, then you really should nab one of these and make sure you have a good sleeping bag with you.
  15. 2sweed

    2sweed Natural Camper Staff Member

    When I went camping as a child we always used the rubber pump-up air mattresses. We also had cots to sleep on, but we found them to be good protection against a wet tent floor when we didn't use a cot. No wet sleeping bags and the ground was not felt through the air mattress.
    I don't know if these are available anymore, but I would think that a foam pad would soak up dampness and water if the tent floor became wet from heavy rains. Has anyone here ever experienced using different pads or picking ones that do the best job? I know I would need to use a thick pad with my fibromyalgia.
  16. AurelioLeo

    AurelioLeo Newbie

    Anything to make the ground more comfortable is great. I have used a sleeping pad several times because some of places I have gone isn't the most comfortable ground to lay on. I recommend taking a sleeping pad because it's light and doesn't weight you down like a flatable bed and pump would.
  17. I got a Therm-a-Rest Z-Lite Sol pad for backpacking. It's a light weight, closed-cell foam (totally waterproof), egg-carton pattern that is really comfortable. The top side has a silver coating designed to reflect body heat back up. It folds accordion style rather than rolls so depending upon the way you pack, you may be able to put it in your pack and wrap it around your other stuff or just attach it to the outside of your pack like you would with a roll-up pad. No pump, no chance of a puncture. Even sleeping on my side, my hips didn't get sore.

    Anymore the ground is just too cold and hard for me. This pad resolves both issues.
  18. campforums

    campforums Founder Staff Member

    REI makes good stuff I know, does that pad fold up or roll? I've been wanting to get a new pad. The one I have tends to curl up at the edges from being rolled and for my last few trips I've gone on I've just used a blanket and a tarp to pad the floor a little bit.
  19. It's a fold-up pad, no curl yet, lays nice and flat.
    campforums likes this.
  20. Onatah

    Onatah Novice Camper

    Leaves and/or pine needles/straw work great under a sleeping bag and are usually readily available where we are at. A nice pine bough or two makes for a nifty rake system (wear gloves, though. yuck). We usually camp with our horse trailer and converted the tack area to a place where my hubby built a bed frame where upon we placed a couple layers of thick foam padding. You could roll that up as well, just bulkier.
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