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#202445 - 05/25/10 12:54 PM Re: Going camping first time in decades [Re: Compugeek]
hikermor Offline
Geezer in Chief
Geezer

Registered: 08/26/06
Posts: 5999
Loc: southern Cal
If this is a really new experience for you, you will probably be better rested if you simply drive home. Sleeping outdoors, even on a fairly decent air mattress, is an acquired taste.

On the other hand, you did say San Diego, right? Not exactly extreme conditions..... It can be different and a lot of fun.
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#202452 - 05/25/10 02:43 PM Re: Going camping first time in decades [Re: hikermor]
Compugeek Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 08/09/09
Posts: 392
Loc: San Diego, CA
Forecast is mid 70s day, high 40s night, and the sleeping bag can handle that just fine. I know the ground is a heat sink from reading here, and that's the only concern I have.

I've camped before, many years ago, and even spent a week at a Yosemite walk-in in college, and am looking forward to trying sleeping outdoors again.

I've even been to this event before, just never overnighted it, and it's supposed to be an even better experience in the evenings.


Plan B is sleeping in my car if I can't get to sleep in the tent for some reason. I've done that before (voluntarily), and, while it's a bit cramped, it's acceptable.

Plan C is driving home. I can't imagine Plan B not being enough, but there's always that. I've made the drive in the dark before.


The event is the annual May War of the local chapter of the Society for Creative Anachronism. I'll let you all know how it goes, and post some pictures if anyone's interested. It may not be as "outdoorsy" as Blast or Aloha's trips, but it should be fun!
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Okey-dokey. What's plan B?

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#202461 - 05/25/10 05:02 PM Re: Going camping first time in decades [Re: Compugeek]
ducktapeguy Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 03/28/06
Posts: 358
A lot of it depends on the type of person you are. When I was younger, I could sleep literally on a pile of rocks with no padding and still get a good nights sleep. Nowadays, I feel like I'm roughing it without a thermarest.

If it's a park, I assume it's going to be grass surface? Just throw a blanket down under your sleeping bag and you'll be fine. Or if you can get that eggcrate foam that'll work great. It's San Diego in May, not Alaska in the wintertime, so you don't have to worry about insulation as you would in colder climates, and even less so if you have a tent. The sleeping pad will be more for comfort than insualtion. If you do have some cold spots during the night, you can always throw some extra clothes under your sleeping bag for a little more padding.

Don't forget to bring a pillow. Most people aren't used to sleeping without it. A rolled up jacket or clothes in a stuffsack is better than nothing, but a regular pillow is a lot more comfortable.


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#202462 - 05/25/10 05:12 PM Re: Going camping first time in decades [Re: ducktapeguy]
dweste Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 02/16/08
Posts: 2463
Loc: Central California
P.S. Enjoy!

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#202463 - 05/25/10 05:16 PM Re: Going camping first time in decades [Re: Dagny]
rebwa Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 01/25/09
Posts: 295
Originally Posted By: Dagny


If you want to invest (and get a great deal) on a super comfortable and durable car camping mattress then LL Bean as the Thermarest DreamTime on sale (and free shipping on purchases over $75. I can attest to the comfort of the DreamTime, it's what I sleep on in my teardrop trailer):

http://www.llbean.com/llb/shop/67070?parentCategory=505122&feat=505122-tn&cat4=500305






I've had a couple of the Thermarest similar to what you linked for years and they are great! Highly recommend them.

Since I live in an earthquake prone area, I consider good camping equipment essential not only to my survival but to my comfort in an emergency situation. If you invest in quality equipment and take care of it you will have it for years. I would never want to be caught in one of those blue tarp cities as seen in Haiti!

Camping equipment really serves a dual purpose of great recreation and very nice to have things in a emergency or survival situation.



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#202464 - 05/25/10 05:44 PM Re: Going camping first time in decades [Re: rebwa]
pezhead Offline
Journeyman

Registered: 05/18/10
Posts: 76
Loc: Minnesota
We use an air mattress. We just strated camping last year because our friends go & my wife wanted to try it. I figured she'd never go but she did.
One of the conditions was an air mattress last year I think we had about 9" this year we went to a 22"(measures about 20"). It does make it easier getting up off the ground. We only car camp. If I where to do something with my brother and it was just me we wouldn't be taking the air amttress to big to lug around in a pack.
It did get a little cool when we've been camping at night just put a hat on or if you can't find it pull the blanket over your head(that's what was cold)
If it where really cold the air circulating would be an issue.

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#202468 - 05/25/10 08:16 PM Re: Going camping first time in decades [Re: Compugeek]
TeacherRO Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/11/05
Posts: 2192
an air mattress is worth it. Big one.

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#202475 - 05/25/10 10:10 PM Re: Going camping first time in decades [Re: MostlyHarmless]
Teslinhiker Offline
Veteran

Registered: 12/14/09
Posts: 1314
Originally Posted By: MostlyHarmless
I see a lot of people using air mattresses for car camping in the summer. In less than optimal summer temperature, an air mattress will conduct heat away from your body and to the surrounding air. If you or someone in your family wants an air mattress then put a groundsheet ON TOP of the air mattress to insulate yourself from the cold air mattress.


A sleeping pad such as a Zotefoams Evazote (they have a few different styles/ other models) under the mattress is very effective in stopping the cold ground from sucking away your body heat. We use this method whenever we overnight hike in cooler and cold weather well down below zero.
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Earth and sky, woods and fields, lakes and rivers, the mountain and the sea, are excellent schoolmasters, and teach some of us more than we can ever learn from books.

John Lubbock

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#202484 - 05/26/10 06:13 AM Re: Going camping first time in decades [Re: Teslinhiker]
MostlyHarmless Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 06/03/09
Posts: 982
Loc: Norway
Originally Posted By: Teslinhiker
Originally Posted By: MostlyHarmless
I see a lot of people using air mattresses for car camping in the summer. In less than optimal summer temperature, an air mattress will conduct heat away from your body and to the surrounding air. If you or someone in your family wants an air mattress then put a groundsheet ON TOP of the air mattress to insulate yourself from the cold air mattress.


A sleeping pad such as a Zotefoams Evazote (they have a few different styles/ other models) under the mattress is very effective in stopping the cold ground from sucking away your body heat. We use this method whenever we overnight hike in cooler and cold weather well down below zero.


Good, whatever works. But please be informed that you are ignoring one source of heat loss: From the air mattress to the free air. Evidently this heat transport was not effective enough to prove a problem for you on your trip.

It was a problem for me, both on my previous "America style" car camping trip and before that sleeping in a friends living room with an open window. The cool draft from the window zapped the heat right out of my air mattress. A thick wool blanket under me, tucked under the lining (sheet) worked well for insulating me from the rather cool air mattress. Of course, closing the window was not considered an option - I like a breeze of cool air when I'm sleeping.

That's why I recommend sleeping pads on top of the air mattress, not the other way around.

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#202489 - 05/26/10 10:32 AM Re: Going camping first time in decades [Re: MostlyHarmless]
Dagny Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 11/25/08
Posts: 1908
Loc: Washington, DC

Heat loss is a good thing when it's hot out.

During hot muggy nights in this area, I'd like to levitate -- with no sleeping bag.




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