Maybe you love your urban lifestyle, but the urge to get away from the city and camp out in nature must have crossed your mind at least once. There are many popular camping spots in Australia, where you can discover the beauty of nature with family and friends, or by yourself.
Spending some time in the great outdoors is an amazing experience. Whether it’s your first time camping or you’re an experienced camper already, you want to make sure it will be an enjoyable and memorable journey. To camp safely and comfortably, you need to make sure you’ve packed all the essential camping gear before you take off.
Keep in mind that you’ll need to pack a lot of equipment, especially if you’re sleeping in a tent. While you could use some tips for packing and camping light, make sure you don’t forget your sleeping roll mat as this item is often overlooked by campers who are trying to save some space in their bags.
The Importance of a Sleeping Mat for Your Camping Experience
Sleeping mats are soft pads that campers place beneath their sleeping bag. They are available in a range of styles, sizes and colours and usually serve as a mattress. If you have a comfortable sleeping bag, you might think that you don’t need a sleeping mat, but you may want to think twice as this camping accessory offers a lot of benefits.
If you want to enjoy a safe and fun experience, make sure you get a sleeping roll mat that will make sleeping in your tent more comfortable. We all know that quality night sleep is important for the proper functioning of our mind and body, which is very important when you’re in the great outdoors exploring nature.
A sleeping mat will keep your sleeping bag dry and act as a protective barrier between you and the ground. Additionally, it will protect your sleeping bag and keep it in a good shape for longer. Investing in a camping mat is a good idea as it will insulate your body and keep the cold from the ground away. There are three basic types of sleeping pads – air, self-inflating and closed-cell foam.
Air pads come in a variety of styles and most of them contain insulation and/or reflective materials to increase warmth. They are comfortable and lightweight and the most compact type of pads when packed. Air pads are ideal for lightweight camping, car camping, backpacking, or if you’re a side sleeper.
Self-inflating pads are a combination of air and open-cell foam insulation. Using a combination of air pressure, soft fabrics and foam, these mats are reminiscent of a traditional bedroom mattress. Some are specifically designed for backpacking and can be folded lengthwise and rolled up to fit inside your bag, while others are designed for camping and are rolled up without folding. This type of pads offers a wide range of options for warmth and size.
Self-inflating pads are durable, comfortable and compact, provide excellent insulation and allow you to adjust the firmness by releasing or adding air. They are ideal for backpacking, car camping, overnight hiking trips, canoe camping, and a great choice for those who don’t want to blow up a sleeping pad at the end of a long day.
Closed-Cell Foam Pads
Closed-cell foam pads are lightweight, durable and offer insulation in all conditions. They can be carried on the outside of your bag and can double as seat pads in camp, but keep in mind that they’re relatively firm and stiff. Closed-cell foam pads are ideal for bike touring, ultralight adventures, mountaineering, alpine and ice climbing and if you don’t have any problem with sleeping on the ground.
Tips on How to Choose the Right Sleeping Bag for Your Adventures
When preparing for camping fun you want to choose the popular outdoor clothing, but understanding how to choose a sleeping pad is crucial for getting a proper night’s rest. Sleeping is one of the most personal experiences and only you know the level of comfort you need to sleep peacefully.
To begin with, think about the terrain you’re going to be sleeping on, so if you’re going to lay your pad on rough ground or you need a certain level of cushion under your back to help you fall asleep easily, then choose a thicker pad. If you can sleep soundly in any conditions, then you can opt for lighter weight and packability.
If you like mountaineering or winter camping, make sure you get a pad with insulating properties, like a heat-reflecting inner layer or foam. If you’re going to be in a situation where your pad could be punctured easily, then a closed-cell pad is your best option.
Different users have different needs, therefore a long-distance backpacker planning to thru-hike a trail in the summer can opt for a lightweight mat, but a cold-sleeping car camper will prefer warmth over the need to save weight or minimise pack size. Regardless of its intended use, a sleeping mat is a must on everyone’s camping checklist.
In the end, spending a little more on a high-quality mat can make a huge difference to how comfortable your camping experience is and how much you enjoy your time in the great outdoors.