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6 Tips to Get Good Sleep While Camping

Nate Bolt /

Nate Bolt /

Bunking up outdoors in a tent soon? All because you’re roughing it in nature doesn’t mean you need to sacrifice a good night’s sleep. Here are 6 tips for getting adequate rest while camping.

Get the Right Sleeping Bag
First, identify the kind of sleeper you are. Do you sleep better in the cold or better in warmer temps? Figure out the temperature of the area you will be camping in. Then, choose a sleeping bag using the labeled temperature rating on the bag as a guide. This will identify the lowest temperature that the bag is intended to keep the sleeper nice and toasty. There are many choices, it all comes down to what you fancy; a bag made of synthetic insulation is cheaper, while a down bag is pricier but more durable and compressible.

Don’t Forget the Pad
If you’re thinking thin, foam mat-think again. What you sleep on top of is just as crucial as what you sleep inside of when it comes to achieving prime comfort and warmth. Really take your time and experiment with the plethora of choices. Self-inflating foam mats are great for camping, but can be too bulky for backpacking. Air pads are low weight with great cushioning, but lack insulation. Your standard foam mats are cheap, lightweight and excellent for insulation, but are bulky and lack cushion. Consider the pros and cons and take your pick!

More Sleep Aids to Keep You Snoring
It doesn’t just stop at the cushioning. There are a ton of age-old gadgets to help promote better sleep while camping. Of course, you can’t forget pillows, but try eyeshades to beat the sun and assist with sleeping in, earplugs to block any pesky noises and some sort of light source, such as a flashlight or lantern. Neck rolls are perfect for neck support and compact for traveling.

Get Mentally Prepared
You already know you aren’t staying at the Ritz Carlton, so don’t expect it. Accept that you are sleeping outside on the cool earth and embrace the experience with open arms. Sure, that thermostat is nonexistent and the flushable potty isn’t right outside your door, but out in nature there are no alarm clocks, electronics, work worries, or daily life stress. Take a walk in the woods, gaze at the stars, appreciate the peace- just enjoy it.

Get Physically Prepared
Warm up your body a little bit before bedtime with some light exercise. Jog in place, turn out some jumping jacks or do some light crunches to get that blood flowing. Eat a small meal before turning in to keep your body burning calories all night long and generating heat. Keeping hydrated is essential for blood circulation and can help tame headaches if you are camping in a high altitude.

Try to Stick with Routine
This will help with alerting your body that it’s bedtime. Do you like to meditate, stretch out, read, or brush your teeth? Whatever your everyday nighttime routine is, try to stick to it as much as you can, even while camping. Change out of your day time clothes and slip into something comfy, warm and dry and keep an extra comforter handy just in case.

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