Thursday, October 11, 2018

Sleep System: Covers, Pad & Pillow

When we say "sleep system" we are talking about what it takes for us to sleep at night. In the old days, you'd probably say a sleeping bag and, if you were lucky, some kind of pad. After lots of research for our backpacking adventures, I ended up with a quilt and a Therm-a-Rest pad, both of which I love.

Enlightened Revelation Quilt: If you haven't heard of using a quilt for camping, the theory is that sleeping on top of down crushes it and basically ruins its ability to keep you warm. With a quilt, you are carrying about 75% of the material, so you save weight. I'll get extra geeky here...this weighs in at 18.46 ounces for the options I selected. I love that it is extra soft and luxurious, it has two bands to slip around a sleeping pad to hold it in place, and you can snug up the bottom if your feet are cold. There isn't anything that I do not like about it.

Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XLite Sleeping Pad: This pad is so comfortable that after I got home from a week of sleeping on it, I had to buy a new mattress. It is super light (12 ounces); at first it is a little on the crinkly sounding side, but with use, it is just fine.

Pillow: I really couldn't find a pillow option that I liked and didn't want to spend an arm and a leg. So for a while, I used this great stuffed frog that I found at Target in the baby section. It was a little heavy (6.72 ounces), but it was so very comfy and soft when you laid your face on it.

About a year ago, I started using a Bliss Pillow (made in Bend, Oregon and filled with millet hulls) at home. It's a tiny little thing, but so very comfortable for the neck, back, and head. And then about a month ago or so, we received a Sierra Designs DriDown pillow (4.4 ounces, including the stuff sack) in our Cairn box. It's about the same size as my Bliss Pillow, so I thought I'd give it a try on our Katy Trail backpacking trip. It worked out quite well and I'm sorry to say that the old frog will get left behind on the next trip.

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