Does damp make a difference?

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Apr 7, 2016
395
53
suffolk
Thanks for everyone's input. I've ordered a thermarest xtherm just to see what they feel and look like. So expensive! I have a "spend nothing" alternative, using stuff I already have: thermarest venture mat + old ccf mat + wool blanket. There's a massive weight and size difference when packed between the two options: 430g vs 1.9kg and 21x10cm vs 49 x 22cm. I'll test drive the spend-nothing option tonight to see if a beefed up mat makes the warmth difference I'm looking for.
Multimat make excellent quality SIMS for a lot less than Thermarest?
 
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Sub5mango

Tenderfoot
Oct 13, 2019
92
12
52
East Anglia
Multimat make excellent quality SIMS for a lot less than Thermarest?
Thanks. I haven't heard of them. I just checked out their site. The summit 25/38 is probably the one that would suit my needs. £90. Have you used these though? Would it be as comfy as the much thicker 60mm xtherm which is also a lot lighter.
 

Erbswurst

Native
Mar 5, 2018
1,489
545
Berlin
All the light air mats are constructed along the limits of the current technical possibilities.

Most buyers who really use it regularly use the warranty after a few years, some need it earlier.

Never trust and depend on an air mat!
 
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Woody girl

Full Member
Mar 31, 2018
2,742
1,842
62
Exmoor
Theres more than one reason to have a closed cell foam mat . as extra padding, extra r value , and insurance for a sim malfunction . For me the drawback is bulk. But to be honest in the winter the peace of mind I have with the extra mat is worth it. Or should I put that in the past tense as I don't winter camp any more unless it's a well heated caravan!! :)
 

oldtimer

Full Member
Most things seem to have been covered in terms of kit and technique, so may I offer another line of research?

Erbswurst and Toddy mentioned the food factor. I wouldn't underestimate the importance of this.

The only times I've been really cold has been at the end of a long day when tired but not feeling hungry. I remember once cooking up a quick hot meal in the night and then sleeping warm and cosy for the rest of the night.I

Have you considered you feeding routine and calorie intake?
 
Apr 7, 2016
395
53
suffolk
Thanks. I haven't heard of them. I just checked out their site. The summit 25/38 is probably the one that would suit my needs. £90. Have you used these though? Would it be as comfy as the much thicker 60mm xtherm which is also a lot lighter.
Yes . I bought a 50XXL (for base camping) on recommendation, and it has been superb with lots of thoughtful touches. They do mats in several differing ranges for varying purposes......
The Summit 25/38 looks an excellent mat,
Mine is superbly made and self inflates so well (I don't store them rolled!) that it's a bugger to roll!!
The bag is fleece lined, sort of, and reverses to make a great pillow, and it comes with a repair kit
 
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Sub5mango

Tenderfoot
Oct 13, 2019
92
12
52
East Anglia
Theres more than one reason to have a closed cell foam mat . as extra padding, extra r value , and insurance for a sim malfunction . For me the drawback is bulk. But to be honest in the winter the peace of mind I have with the extra mat is worth it. Or should I put that in the past tense as I don't winter camp any more unless it's a well heated caravan!! :)
HaHa! Caravan is definitely the warmest option! Cfc bulk is what is really putting me off.
 

Sub5mango

Tenderfoot
Oct 13, 2019
92
12
52
East Anglia
Yes . I bought a 50XXL (for base camping) on recommendation, and it has been superb with lots of thoughtful touches. They do mats in several differing ranges for varying purposes......
The Summit 25/38 looks an excellent mat,
Mine is superbly made and self inflates so well (I don't store them rolled!) that it's a bugger to roll!!
The bag is fleece lined, sort of, and reverses to make a great pillow, and it comes with a repair kit
It does look good. However recently my hips have been getting sore during the night and I'm wondering whether a 7cm air mat is going help with that more than a 4cm mat like the summit. You got any experience of the relative comfort for aged and dodgy joints?!
 
Jan 13, 2018
358
249
63
Rural Lincolnshire
It does look good. However recently my hips have been getting sore during the night and I'm wondering whether a 7cm air mat is going help with that more than a 4cm mat like the summit. You got any experience of the relative comfort for aged and dodgy joints?!
I'm a 'side-sleeper' and 'in my 60s', I have trouble with my hips and shoulders 'grounding' on my 5cm air-mat, it doesn't matter how hard I blow it up I can still feel the ground.
I don't know how much better a 7cm Air-Mat would be but with my 7cm 'Down-Mat' it is 'luxury' and as warm & comfortable as my bed mattress at home.

The 5cm air-mat is relegated to the JIC* Rucksack.

* JIC = Just In case.
 

Sub5mango

Tenderfoot
Oct 13, 2019
92
12
52
East Anglia
I'm a 'side-sleeper' and 'in my 60s', I have trouble with my hips and shoulders 'grounding' on my 5cm air-mat, it doesn't matter how hard I blow it up I can still feel the ground.
I don't know how much better a 7cm Air-Mat would be but with my 7cm 'Down-Mat' it is 'luxury' and as warm & comfortable as my bed mattress at home.

The 5cm air-mat is relegated to the JIC* Rucksack.

* JIC = Just In case.
Thanks. What down mat do you have? Do you use the down mat in wet conditions without a problem? I want a mat to use for the UK winter which I'm suspecting to be wet. The Autumn has so far! I'm wondering if the synmat 7 might be a better option than the downmat 7 in those conditions although I don't know the difference in bone comfort (heat wise the synmat is 1 r rating lower, but 4.9 should be enough for English winter I would have thought).
 
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Great egret

Full Member
Apr 17, 2017
24
17
Netherlands
Any mat that has just air in it and no insulation will never keep you warm in cold weather. You will need a mat with good insulation beneath you or the ground will extract all the warmth from you. A 7cm or 9cm exped downmat or synmat should do the trick. I have a 9cm downmat and i slept warm in Sweden in -10C.
 
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Sub5mango

Tenderfoot
Oct 13, 2019
92
12
52
East Anglia
Any mat that has just air in it and no insulation will never keep you warm in cold weather. You will need a mat with good insulation beneath you or the ground will extract all the warmth from you. A 7cm or 9cm exped downmat or synmat should do the trick. I have a 9cm downmat and i slept warm in Sweden in -10C.
Thanks. I am currently considering those expeds or a thermarest xtherm which has a similar r rating of 5.7 and is half the weight. It is air but has foil insulation.
 

Sub5mango

Tenderfoot
Oct 13, 2019
92
12
52
East Anglia
Once you got your mat sorted you might want to try out different ways to pitch your tarp.
I've tried several ways but I'm a great lover of the plow point configuration simple end quick. Doesn't rely on trees and definitely cosier on cold winter nights. View attachment 55933 this is a picture of my last camp. My friend has a small tent behind my tarp. It looks an odd shape as I'm inside sorting something out so my body is distorting it a bit! Taken at dusk on my phone so not a brilliant pic.
I had plenty of shelter for myself and able to sit in my chair out of the wind and cook. My pal struggled in his small tent having to cook and sit inside if he wanted to get out of the wind!.
When going for water or comfort breaks I'd often come back and find him sat in my chair looking at the view and moaning about the constrictions of his tent :)
Here was my viewView attachment 55936
Thanks. Yesterday I played with different tarp set ups and the plough point was my favourite! Definitely going to overnight with that one once I get my mat sorted :)
 

Sub5mango

Tenderfoot
Oct 13, 2019
92
12
52
East Anglia
Most things seem to have been covered in terms of kit and technique, so may I offer another line of research?

Erbswurst and Toddy mentioned the food factor. I wouldn't underestimate the importance of this.

The only times I've been really cold has been at the end of a long day when tired but not feeling hungry. I remember once cooking up a quick hot meal in the night and then sleeping warm and cosy for the rest of the night.I

Have you considered you feeding routine and calorie intake?
Thanks. I eat a hot meal just before going to bed. It includes fat and protein. Last night I woke at 2am cold, ate some sausage, fell back to sleep, warm until 6 am. So now I'm a believer in the food factor!
 
Jan 13, 2018
358
249
63
Rural Lincolnshire
Thanks. What down mat do you have? Do you use the down mat in wet conditions without a problem? I want a mat to use for the UK winter which I'm suspecting to be wet. The Autumn has so far! I'm wondering if the synmat 7 might be a better option than the downmat 7 in those conditions although I don't know the difference in bone comfort (heat wise the synmat is 1 r rating lower, but 4.9 should be enough for English winter I would have thought).
I have the DownMat 7M and have never had a 'damp problem' but the big difference maybe is I use a Tent rather than just a A-Shaped Tarp.

I don't have any experience of the SynMat but given the choice I go for the maximum insulation cold ground SUCKS the heat out of you.
If I didn't already have the 7M I'd be going for the 9M currently on ebay

Only 21 minutes left

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/EXPED-DO...951691?hash=item1cdce30c8b:g:fp4AAOSwDwhdwdF1

I'd rather be too hot, at least you can unzip the sleeping bag, strip off the 'thermals' or even sleep on top of the sleeping bag.
There is a limit to how much you can put on if you are too cold. Lack of sleep is a big 'killer'.
 
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Sub5mango

Tenderfoot
Oct 13, 2019
92
12
52
East Anglia
I have the DownMat 7M and have never had a 'damp problem' but the big difference maybe is I use a Tent rather than just a A-Shaped Tarp.

I don't have any experience of the SynMat but given the choice I go for the maximum insulation cold ground SUCKS the heat out of you.
If I didn't already have the 7M I'd be going for the 9M currently on ebay

Only 21 minutes left

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/EXPED-DO...951691?hash=item1cdce30c8b:g:fp4AAOSwDwhdwdF1

I'd rather be too hot, at least you can unzip the sleeping bag, strip off the 'thermals' or even sleep on top of the sleeping bag.
There is a limit to how much you can put on if you are too cold. Lack of sleep is a big 'killer'.
Thanks. I did consider the 9cm but because I use a bivi bag I thought it might be too big and therefore result in the sleeping bags loft being crushed. Also I wanted to keep the packed weight and volume down. I missed the ebay one. I wonder what it went for!