Camping mattress/matt

Discussion in 'Touring and Adventure Cycling' started by Pottsy, 27 May 2008.

  1. Pottsy

    Pottsy ...

    SW London
    I'm a bit of a novice to this camping malarchy and it all sounds quite complex, though with plenty of opportunity to buy some new kit. :smile:

    So another question. You seem to be able to buy a basic matt for about £8 or so, or a self-inflating thermarest type mattress for about £80.

    What do people recommend given the usual cycling requirements of lightweight and compact, whilst still retaining a modicum of comfort?

  2. Bigtallfatbloke

    Bigtallfatbloke New Member

    alpkit mats
  3. numbnuts

    numbnuts Legendary Member

    North Baddesley
    self-inflating thermarest, but not for £80 I think my one cost £45
  4. Alves

    Alves New Member

    These self inflating mattresses are great and undoubtedly comfortable BUT they are expensive, can puncture and are heavier than a simple Karrimat. If you only do a little camping and it's not in winter and on grass sites you could well save a lot of money with a simpler thin foam mattress. They are adequate for warmth and insulation from the cold ground in summer and if you do plan to camp in grassy sites (ie most of the time) I find these quite adequate. They can also be cut to shape and will lose a little of their bulk that way.
    This is the sort of thing,0,0,0,9
    but there are loads about and they will all be cheaper and you can then buy a nice bottle of wine and sleep well with that inside you!
  5. Dayvo

    Dayvo Just passin' through

  6. andrew_s

    andrew_s Guru


    I'd get the wee airic 3/4 length option. It does shoulder to knee, a stuffsac with clothes in does for a pillow, and anything left over will do for the feet.
  7. Chris James

    Chris James Über Member

    I have a Robens Thermarest clone. I dare say the Alpkit one is similar or better. Really comfy, and hasn't punctured yet despite lots of use.
  8. JackE

    JackE Über Member

    A Thermarest RidgeRest (around £15-20) is much more comfortable than a thin foam cheapo one.
    Alpkit products are superb quality and value. I've just got one of their Pipedream 400 down sleeping bags and it's superb for the price (£110).
  9. coopman

    coopman New Member

    millets do a self inflating one that is 3/4 length and comes in at 25quid. I have bought this but not used it in anger yet. Planning a 4/5 day cycle camp some time this summer for the first time. As its my first time and Im not going to far in the summer I am not getting to carried away with the gear and intend to travel quite light. You can spend a fortune if you want to kitting yourself out with the best lightweight gear!!!!
  10. OP

    Pottsy ...

    SW London
    Decisions decisions ;)

    I like Alves idea of a cheap matt and more wine! I'm quite a good sleeper (one of my few talents) so I am erring towards a cheap, light foam matt at the moment. I think I'll look in a shop and see and feel the difference.

    Thanks for your help.
  11. Bigtallfatbloke

    Bigtallfatbloke New Member

    i have the full length alpkit mat and I also carry a blacks matt...I like both..I'm a big old softy at heart!...the blacks matt is useful outside of the tent like on a beach instead of a towel etc, weighs nothing, and adds a good layer of protection from sharp objects under the tent. The alpkit mat has a puncture kit supplied but you could use any bike repair kit i reckon. It rolls up really small. I carry mine inside a pannier, but I also sprayed the stuff sac supplied with waterproofing spray so i can carry the matt on the rack top if I need to.
  12. rich p

    rich p ridiculous old lush

    I got fed up with the thermarests and reverted to a lightweight blow up airbed last year for my long tour. I, personally, found it much more comfortable although slightly heavier and slightly more bulky. I bought one that has 3 air compartments so you can adjust the amount of air in each. It also allows you to have a pillow half filled which I found much more comfortable. In truth, an alternative for me would be a thermarest and a proper pillow of some description as it is that which determines how well I sleep.
    Mrs rich p still uses a thermarest.
  13. wallabyhunter

    wallabyhunter New Member

    Perth WA
    Don't buy a cheapie foam mat. on a bike they don't retrun enough comfort for their bulk. IMHO a 3/4 thermarest is best

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