CAN YOU PLEASE ADVISE ME ON A LIGHTWEIGHT MATTRESS...IM CLUELESS, HAVENT CAMPED SINCE CHILDHOOD. FIGURED THAT IM GONNA NEED A DECENT ONE AS WELL AS MY FAVOURITE PILLOW. COMFORT IS EVERYTHING IF I DONT GET A DECENT SLEEP I WILL BE THE GRUMPY ONE. ALSO HOW ABOUT A SEAT, DO WE HAVE TO TAKE ONE? FEEL FREE TO THROW IN ANY OTHER ADVICE AS I REALLY DO NEED IT
I've done 7 rides now, and this is what I do:
1. Take an eye mask (like the ones they give you on planes). They really do make a difference if you're camping where a light is on your tent. It also makes it easier to sleep in past dawn.
2. Take ear plugs. The first zips start zipping at around 5am. Tent walls do nothing to block the noise of any loud snorer within koowee.
3. If using a thermarest like me, save weight by buying a 3/4 length one, but lash out on the thicker version.
4. Pillows: I'm a very big girl
, and so camping on the ground is a challenge. Years ago, I bought a cheap, light foam (not 'stuffed') pillow from somewhere like Big W or K mark (can't remember). I cut it in half, to give me the equivalent height of 2 pillows. Together they weigh 500g (including pillow slip), and each one compresses into the size of a small canteloupe (spelling?). I compress them in a 'sea to summit' waterproof bag... nothing worse than a wet pillow!!!
5. Sleeping position. When lying on my side on the ground, my lower back gets twisted and can get sore. I find my lower back is supported if I rest my upper leg on my bag. When lying on your back, a pillow placed under your bum/thigh area can help support your lower back too.
6. Sleeping in. I'm NOT a morning person (check out the time of this post). I get home from work at 11pm, and sleep from 2 - 10am, so the early mornings are a challenge! On the NZ ride, I stopped attending breakfast. Radical, I know. I would put my alarm on for 7.30am and spend a lazy 1/2 hr slowly opening my eyes and munching into a 'health' bar and diet coke (for the caffeine). By 8am, I was ready to pack up my tent and was on the road by 8.30 - 8.45am. This ride may be too hot for these late starts though... I'll see.
Good luck with the sleeping!!!