Therm-a-Rest UltraLite Cot
This is excellent for side-sleepers! I can sleep through the whole night and wake up refreshed with no soreness. Packs down reasonably small and is reasonably lightweight. I have used it for backpacking.
- Packs down small
- Very comfortable
- Takes longer to assemble and pack
- Less durable
(Note: This is the newer version that's green, with crescent moon shaped side supports, not the full circles.)
I am a side sleeper and I have had difficulty sleeping on traditional sleeping pads that backpackers use. I typically wake up multiple times each night, tossing and turning, and in the morning my hips and shoulders will be very sore. This makes for some long days backpacking.
I am 6'5", and I weigh about 250 lbs, and I can sleep very comfortably on the long version of this cot. Yes, my hip touches the ground, but that's actually not a problem. The vast majority of my weight is not on my hip—it is supported by the other parts of the cot. I can even sleep with my hip directly on one of the bars with no pain or discomfort. This cot allows me to sleep through the night and wake up refreshed. It is amazing.
I do get funny looks at first because... I'm taking a cot on a backcountry backpacking trip. But people tend to be impressed that it packs down so small and is so light. Check Therm-a-Rest's website for proper specs, but it's about 2.5 lbs and packs down a bit longer and about as wide as a Nalgene bottle. It does take a bit of effort to assemble as well, but at least I'm not getting light-headed blowing up a sleeping pad. You will learn how it works and get faster at assembling/deconstructing/packing it.
I have taken this cot on multiple backpacking trips, and it only just recently had a durability issue. There is a mylar heat-reflective sheet sewn to the underside of the cot. My last trip, this tore. I am considering just sewing a new mylar sheet to the underside, or maybe just going without the mylar. The structure of the cot itself is fine. This is the only reason I gave this cot 4.5 stars instead of 5 stars. I think I was sleeping on some sort of rocky ground that might have lead to the tear. Wish this was a bit more durable, but I still love this cot.
I've owned this cot for three years and taken it on five different backpacking trips. I haven't used any other backpacking cots, but I have used traditional backpacking sleeping pads. This cot is far better for someone of my size (6'5", 250 lbs) who is a side sleeper. It is very comfortable and I can sleep through the whole night, waking up without soreness. Minor durability issues with the mylar under-sheet, but can do self-repair or remove the mylar entirely.
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $200