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Cot or bedroll?

Q. On camp-outs I see some boys with cots and others with bedrolls. Which should I use?
— Elijah the Bed-less, Comstock, Texas

A. Personally, I prefer a bedroll. Cots are definitely comfy and keep you off the ground, which in theory should make you warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer. But here are some of the downsides of a cot: They can be bulky, take more time to set up, can malfunction or break (leaving you with no bed), and are way more expensive than a basic bedroll. And if you plan on doing some backpacking, it makes sense for you to start getting used to sleeping on the ground in your tent.

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15 Comments on Cot or bedroll?

  1. Cot= warm weather/ base camp.
    Bedroll= warm and cold weather/ base camp and backpacking.
    WINNER= Bedroll, more versatile and almost certainly more easy on your wallet!

  2. I would use cott because it wil keep you off the ground in the winter

  3. If you are cold weather camping, a closed-cell foam bed roll is the ONLY way to go. A cot will allow cold air to circulate under you all night. The ground temperature will be warmer than the air for most nights.

  4. Being a backpacker, I always use a pad on the ground with my bag on top. Realizing that air cannot get under the pad to chill you if the weather turns colder. This way you stay warm and the ground and pad are much more stable than the cot.

  5. Getting to be an old guy, I will use a cot if we are tailgate camping or at a council summer camp. If we are hiking in to some location, definitely a bedroll. The boys, being lighter weight, should use a cot only at summer camp. Noisy cot? Get a different one, my Roll-a-cot is quiet, comfy, and light weight.

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