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Cot recommendations? 
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Joined: Mon Mar 12, 2007 11:07 pm
Posts: 71
Location: Grand Rapids, MI
My mom is 68 and will be coming to fest for the second time this year. Last year she slept on an air mattress on the ground, but found it too hard to get in and out of bed. This year she wants a cot she can put her air mattress on and have some room to store stuff under, since her tent is pretty small. Any suggestions?


Tue Apr 26, 2011 1:19 pm

Joined: Sat Jul 03, 2010 1:13 am
Posts: 60
Location: Cincinnati, OH
Thanks, hw for starting this thread! I've been meaning to ask for cot recommendations. I'm looking for a simple cot but one that is sturdy enough for a curvy girl. If you have one and can find it on amazon and can post a link, that would be super cool! Thanks!

Tue Apr 26, 2011 7:15 pm

Joined: Fri Apr 29, 2011 4:14 am
Posts: 110
check out cabelas and rei. they have some awesome cots and there is plenty of feedback to tell you whats comfortable. it all depends on how heavy you want the cot to be and how much space you want it to take up folded. plus how much you want to spend. campmor also has has some. i can't find the cot i used last time but i had a cot and the 2.5 inch air mattress from big agnes and i slept like a baby.

Fri Apr 29, 2011 4:57 am

Joined: Sun Jan 13, 2008 1:15 am
Posts: 65
Location: Southern Vermont
I slept nightly on a simple Coleman cot at home for over a year. It was lightweight aluminum and eventually one of the legs broke, but it was perfect for me until then. I think I bought mine at Dick's many moons ago. You can also check at an Army/Navy surplus store for options.

The first style decision to be made is if you want a single layer of fabric stretched over a frame or if you want your cot itself to include a "mattress" layer- usually a couple inches of padding. The single layer style is very light, easy to transport and usually a little bit cheaper, but I think it would get quite cold in the woods, creating the air mattress effect. The built-in mattress can create a warming buffer and also may be less slippery if you are just using a sleeping bag on top.

If you are looking to fit an air mattress on top of a cot, then the frame dimensions would be very important. Having the base larger than the mattress would be much better than the other way around. And you should also check, then, to make sure it fits both inside your tent and through your tent door (what are the folded dimensions?)

I've thought about getting a cot again for camping, but it doesn't make sense now that I snooze with another at my side. Double wide cots are expensive and there isn't much variety/ choice out there. If anyone has used a good one, let me know!

I've also worried about the stress to the tent floor- having all the weight focused into points, but I guess womyn do that with milk crate & plywood beds, too, and no one has ever reported a problem... Any ideas about that? Is that a silly worry?

Fri Apr 29, 2011 6:16 pm

Joined: Fri Apr 29, 2011 4:14 am
Posts: 110
just make sure you check the area for stray sticks and other pokey bits before putting it down and try a tarp and/or footprint under your tent. you should be fine. most cots have bent legs. if your cot has metal legs make sure there are rubber bits covering it.

most importantly check the specs of your tent before buying a cot online. you don't want to buy a cot and have to sleep with your feet outside the tent.

Fri Apr 29, 2011 9:12 pm

Joined: Tue Nov 07, 2006 2:11 pm
Posts: 385
Location: Miami Beach, Florida
some friends (over 50) needed a bed easy to get out of. They opted for an air mattress that comes with its own legs'/frame - They come in 'single' and seemed quite light weight with a carrying case.

Mon Jul 04, 2011 11:25 am
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Joined: Wed Apr 27, 2011 9:30 am
Posts: 22
Location: near Philly
I got this cot and it is really, really comfy:

Two people have come over and tried it, and they both started oohing and aahing and then nearly fell asleep :)
I'm so psyched to not have to deal with the air mattress and pump, especially since it's big and takes up most of my tent.

Tue Jul 05, 2011 4:37 pm

Joined: Wed Jan 03, 2007 1:18 am
Posts: 92
I also have the REI comfort cot, Ivoryellie! I love it. And....i converted two friends, as well! (too bad we don't win toaster ovens for THAT kind of conversion!)

And Macosta has a really good point about cot-length and tent dimensions. I actually had to take a new tent back because it was just shy of being long enough for the cot....which meant it was shorter than its published dimensions.


Tue Jul 05, 2011 5:42 pm

Joined: Fri Apr 29, 2011 4:14 am
Posts: 110
you want a couple inches on each side so it doesn't rub on the side of the tent b/c that will cause condensation.

Wed Jul 06, 2011 1:20 am

Joined: Mon Nov 06, 2006 3:51 pm
Posts: 223
We recently purchased two Swedish-style folding cots from LL Bean. ($99 each, free shipping)

It's really more of a bed than a cot. We currently have two set up in our living room. We wanted to make sure they were comfortable and it turns out they're so comfortable, we just keep lounging in them. The dogs seem to like them as well.

They don't have stick-style legs, instead there are three "U"s that are the width of the cot, so the weight is evenly distributed. I don't have any concerns about damaging the tent floor.

They come with a mattress that would be sufficient, but since we already have Thermarest DreamTime pads, we just put those on top and holy crap it's super comfortable.

I don't know the technical weight rating, but I've slept in mine a few nights with our two dogs (total weight = 280) and even with the dogs hopping on and off all night, the cot held up just fine.

I find it's very easy to get in and out of the cot - it's very solid and steady. I'm really looking forward to being able to sit on the edge of the cot to pull on socks and shoes while at festival.

Wed Jul 06, 2011 10:37 am
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