Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Old_OX_Eagle83

Does your troop sleep on cots?

Recommended Posts

We don't use cots, summer or winter. They are generally just extra weight to drag around and any lad sufficiently exhausted will happily sleep on the ground. As far as winter camping goes I would think that a cot would have a serious drawback when it cam to offering warmth as only one boy could sleep in the cot at a time. Generally when winter camping we find them in a heap just like a bunch of puppies.

 

If it's really cold we tell them to bring their summer bag and their winter bag, but we've don't have serious cold like some other areas of the country. The coldest it ever got over night on a camp trip was -5.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Troop growing up never used them, Troop I camped with this weekend has them and uses them. They are the ones with legs instead of "U" bars underneath, so the 3-4 year old tent floors are wearing out fast and they are looking for new tents.

 

Funny thing is, for one of those years, they only camped about 4 times, including summer camp.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Eagle92, neither correlation is shocking. I find the units with the best outdoor programs do it right, because they are proud of their outdoor skills. During my time as SM our troop averaged 14-16 tent camping events a year (not including patrol events).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I had to respond because I had this discussion with a fellow scouter last year.

 

As a matter of keeping warm on a winter campout, a cot with a sleeping pad on it will keep you warmer than sleeping on the ground with a sleeping pad. It’s a matter of physics.

 

You stay warm by having your body heat the insulating layer of air surrounding it. On top and the sides of you this insulating layer of air is trapped in the insulation of your sleeping bag. Under you this insulating air is provided by your pad plus the compressed insulation of your bag. Keeping warm is a race towards equilibrium between how quickly the cold outside exchanges heat with the air heated by your body.

 

It’s a bit of an oversimplification but broadly there are three different types of heat exchange: radiant, conductive, and convective. We’re concerned here with conduction and convection. Again this is oversimplifying, but conduction usually occurs between objects that are touching, convection is between objects in near proximity. Conduction is much more efficient. Think of an oven, you can stick your hand in a 400 degree oven for a brief period and nothing bad happens, that's convection. But touch anything in that oven and it will instantly peel off your flesh, that's conduction. When you are sleeping on the ground you are trying to exchange heat with the ground through conduction; when you are on a cot you are exchanging heat with the air via convection. The ground will cool you off much more quickly than if you are up in the air on a cot.

 

We generally do two outdoor winter campouts each year, one is a “Camp Alaska†backpacking trip where we don’t even bring tents and build our own shelters, In the other we camp in a state park and the scouts stay in a big old MASH style tent. In that one the scouts sleep on cots.

 

On one of the “Camp Alaska’s†I had a scout string a hammock rather than build a shelter, the same principal applies, that’s warmer than sleeping on the ground. On the other hand I had a trio of first timers crawl out of their shelter one year complaining how cold they had been, I took a look inside, none of them had unrolled their sleeping pads, they used them as pillows instead.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I had to respond because I had this discussion with a fellow scouter last year.

 

As a matter of keeping warm on a winter campout, a cot with a sleeping pad on it will keep you warmer than sleeping on the ground with a sleeping pad. It’s a matter of physics.

 

You stay warm by having your body heat the insulating layer of air surrounding it. On top and the sides of you this insulating layer of air is trapped in the insulation of your sleeping bag. Under you this insulating air is provided by your pad plus the compressed insulation of your bag. Keeping warm is a race towards equilibrium between how quickly the cold outside exchanges heat with the air heated by your body.

 

It’s a bit of an oversimplification but broadly there are three different types of heat exchange: radiant, conductive, and convective. We’re concerned here with conduction and convection. Again this is oversimplifying, but conduction usually occurs between objects that are touching, convection is between objects in near proximity. Conduction is much more efficient. Think of an oven, you can stick your hand in a 400 degree oven for a brief period and nothing bad happens, that's convection. But touch anything in that oven and it will instantly peel off your flesh, that's conduction. When you are sleeping on the ground you are trying to exchange heat with the ground through conduction; when you are on a cot you are exchanging heat with the air via convection. The ground will cool you off much more quickly than if you are up in the air on a cot.

 

We generally do two outdoor winter campouts each year, one is a “Camp Alaska†backpacking trip where we don’t even bring tents and build our own shelters, In the other we camp in a state park and the scouts stay in a big old MASH style tent. In that one the scouts sleep on cots.

 

On one of the “Camp Alaska’s†I had a scout string a hammock rather than build a shelter, the same principal applies, that’s warmer than sleeping on the ground. On the other hand I had a trio of first timers crawl out of their shelter one year complaining how cold they had been, I took a look inside, none of them had unrolled their sleeping pads, they used them as pillows instead.

Wonderful insight! I learned something I didn't know.

 

Thanks!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I had to respond because I had this discussion with a fellow scouter last year.

 

As a matter of keeping warm on a winter campout, a cot with a sleeping pad on it will keep you warmer than sleeping on the ground with a sleeping pad. It’s a matter of physics.

 

You stay warm by having your body heat the insulating layer of air surrounding it. On top and the sides of you this insulating layer of air is trapped in the insulation of your sleeping bag. Under you this insulating air is provided by your pad plus the compressed insulation of your bag. Keeping warm is a race towards equilibrium between how quickly the cold outside exchanges heat with the air heated by your body.

 

It’s a bit of an oversimplification but broadly there are three different types of heat exchange: radiant, conductive, and convective. We’re concerned here with conduction and convection. Again this is oversimplifying, but conduction usually occurs between objects that are touching, convection is between objects in near proximity. Conduction is much more efficient. Think of an oven, you can stick your hand in a 400 degree oven for a brief period and nothing bad happens, that's convection. But touch anything in that oven and it will instantly peel off your flesh, that's conduction. When you are sleeping on the ground you are trying to exchange heat with the ground through conduction; when you are on a cot you are exchanging heat with the air via convection. The ground will cool you off much more quickly than if you are up in the air on a cot.

 

We generally do two outdoor winter campouts each year, one is a “Camp Alaska†backpacking trip where we don’t even bring tents and build our own shelters, In the other we camp in a state park and the scouts stay in a big old MASH style tent. In that one the scouts sleep on cots.

 

On one of the “Camp Alaska’s†I had a scout string a hammock rather than build a shelter, the same principal applies, that’s warmer than sleeping on the ground. On the other hand I had a trio of first timers crawl out of their shelter one year complaining how cold they had been, I took a look inside, none of them had unrolled their sleeping pads, they used them as pillows instead.

You've been using your sleeping pad as a pillow all this time Sentinel? :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

T2Eagle, everything you say is correct. The issue here is when a Boy Scout troop is using cots on all camp outs. At summer camp, or any place where you're staying in structures, or floorless tents set up for you, and having your gear and attendees delivered to the door, cots are a good choice ... but these scenarios do not represent typical scout camping.

 

When winter camping I use a closed cell foam pad, with an emergency blanket over it, works very well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I had to respond because I had this discussion with a fellow scouter last year.

 

As a matter of keeping warm on a winter campout, a cot with a sleeping pad on it will keep you warmer than sleeping on the ground with a sleeping pad. It’s a matter of physics.

 

You stay warm by having your body heat the insulating layer of air surrounding it. On top and the sides of you this insulating layer of air is trapped in the insulation of your sleeping bag. Under you this insulating air is provided by your pad plus the compressed insulation of your bag. Keeping warm is a race towards equilibrium between how quickly the cold outside exchanges heat with the air heated by your body.

 

It’s a bit of an oversimplification but broadly there are three different types of heat exchange: radiant, conductive, and convective. We’re concerned here with conduction and convection. Again this is oversimplifying, but conduction usually occurs between objects that are touching, convection is between objects in near proximity. Conduction is much more efficient. Think of an oven, you can stick your hand in a 400 degree oven for a brief period and nothing bad happens, that's convection. But touch anything in that oven and it will instantly peel off your flesh, that's conduction. When you are sleeping on the ground you are trying to exchange heat with the ground through conduction; when you are on a cot you are exchanging heat with the air via convection. The ground will cool you off much more quickly than if you are up in the air on a cot.

 

We generally do two outdoor winter campouts each year, one is a “Camp Alaska†backpacking trip where we don’t even bring tents and build our own shelters, In the other we camp in a state park and the scouts stay in a big old MASH style tent. In that one the scouts sleep on cots.

 

On one of the “Camp Alaska’s†I had a scout string a hammock rather than build a shelter, the same principal applies, that’s warmer than sleeping on the ground. On the other hand I had a trio of first timers crawl out of their shelter one year complaining how cold they had been, I took a look inside, none of them had unrolled their sleeping pads, they used them as pillows instead.

Haha. Nah. What you wrote about convection vs conduction makes a lot of sense. Never thought of it that way.

 

And thankfully, in the last 10 years I've been a Scout and a Scouter, I have enough sense to use my sleeping pad as a sleeping pad. =P

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

but these scenarios do not represent typical scout camping.

 

 

Given the Small percentage of the numbers of Scouters there are and the percentage of active posters..nothing on theses forums represent typical scout anything..

 

In all my Scouting Experience I have never Encountered any Troops like what yall describe yalls as your "typical" Unit

Never been to a Camp except Philmont that allowed 300 feet between Patrols, or had enough miles between camp sites for back packing every day.

 

I sure can tell the difference in the East Coast Scouters and the Rest of the Scouters of America.

Last Troop we had around here from that area tried Back Packing to Camp...After 2 Miles humping a Ruck sack in 114 weather they gave up..Needless to say they did not hang with our Scouters much during Camp Activities...even in their ultra light weight tents they had trouble sleeping in the 90+ Weather at night on their sleeping Pads, while our Boys enjoyed their Old Baker Tents and Cots.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I had to respond because I had this discussion with a fellow scouter last year.

 

As a matter of keeping warm on a winter campout, a cot with a sleeping pad on it will keep you warmer than sleeping on the ground with a sleeping pad. It’s a matter of physics.

 

You stay warm by having your body heat the insulating layer of air surrounding it. On top and the sides of you this insulating layer of air is trapped in the insulation of your sleeping bag. Under you this insulating air is provided by your pad plus the compressed insulation of your bag. Keeping warm is a race towards equilibrium between how quickly the cold outside exchanges heat with the air heated by your body.

 

It’s a bit of an oversimplification but broadly there are three different types of heat exchange: radiant, conductive, and convective. We’re concerned here with conduction and convection. Again this is oversimplifying, but conduction usually occurs between objects that are touching, convection is between objects in near proximity. Conduction is much more efficient. Think of an oven, you can stick your hand in a 400 degree oven for a brief period and nothing bad happens, that's convection. But touch anything in that oven and it will instantly peel off your flesh, that's conduction. When you are sleeping on the ground you are trying to exchange heat with the ground through conduction; when you are on a cot you are exchanging heat with the air via convection. The ground will cool you off much more quickly than if you are up in the air on a cot.

 

We generally do two outdoor winter campouts each year, one is a “Camp Alaska†backpacking trip where we don’t even bring tents and build our own shelters, In the other we camp in a state park and the scouts stay in a big old MASH style tent. In that one the scouts sleep on cots.

 

On one of the “Camp Alaska’s†I had a scout string a hammock rather than build a shelter, the same principal applies, that’s warmer than sleeping on the ground. On the other hand I had a trio of first timers crawl out of their shelter one year complaining how cold they had been, I took a look inside, none of them had unrolled their sleeping pads, they used them as pillows instead.

I disagree.

 

Once your on the ground on your pad you are insulated from the ground. Pad R values vary too widely to make a blanket statement about which is better. Air mattresses are a huge no no during winter, because of convection, unless you spend the big bucks on a thermarest which has an R value of 5.7.

 

http://www.cascadedesigns.com/therm-a-rest/mattresses/fast-and-light/neoair-xtherm/product

 

which is better than their foam pad which is 3.5..

 

So your cot and all that air flowing underneath it all night has what R value??????

 

I contend that once your on the ground and you get your insulating layer warmed up you will be warmer.

 

I am colder in my hammock than sleeping on the ground, and I have spent the money on the proper underquilts.

 

So I disagree?

 

So how many boys are in that Mash tent and how much warmer is it than the outside air????

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
T2Eagle, everything you say is correct. The issue here is when a Boy Scout troop is using cots on all camp outs. At summer camp, or any place where you're staying in structures, or floorless tents set up for you, and having your gear and attendees delivered to the door, cots are a good choice ... but these scenarios do not represent typical scout camping.

 

When winter camping I use a closed cell foam pad, with an emergency blanket over it, works very well.

so why then, at northern tier do you sleep on a pad instead of a cot????

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

but these scenarios do not represent typical scout camping.

 

 

Given the Small percentage of the numbers of Scouters there are and the percentage of active posters..nothing on theses forums represent typical scout anything..

 

In all my Scouting Experience I have never Encountered any Troops like what yall describe yalls as your "typical" Unit

Never been to a Camp except Philmont that allowed 300 feet between Patrols, or had enough miles between camp sites for back packing every day.

 

I sure can tell the difference in the East Coast Scouters and the Rest of the Scouters of America.

Last Troop we had around here from that area tried Back Packing to Camp...After 2 Miles humping a Ruck sack in 114 weather they gave up..Needless to say they did not hang with our Scouters much during Camp Activities...even in their ultra light weight tents they had trouble sleeping in the 90+ Weather at night on their sleeping Pads, while our Boys enjoyed their Old Baker Tents and Cots.

that is why you camp and backpack places other than Scout camps. if you camp at your local camp then you rent multiple sites that are 300 feet apart.

 

If your talking about a summer resident camp situation????? then we sleep in the camp provided tents and on the camp provided cots.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Slightly off topic but, way to reinforce sexism.

 

I've never known Girl Scouts to sleep on cots unless they were using them in the big platform tents, where they were provided, or cabins. We prohibited them in our last Overseas Committee from being in our tents due to wear and tear. I didn't sleep on a cot in a tent until I was around 40.

 

Love to meet these GSA volunteers since I'm a GSUSA member.

Hi, Vicki used to scold me for "sexist claptrap". Made me proud. So in the future, if anyone wants to spout sexist claptrap, check with me first for pointers on how to make the maximum effect. Hey, at least I'm good at SOMETHING!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This unit does not use (and never HAS used) cots. OK, one exception, an adult leader used one at summer camp...one time in my memory.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't see the big deal either way. We had a very experienced SM who cotted in the summer. Now, he didn't use a tent, but liked the air below him. Cots aren't for backpacking, but they are appropriate for car camping. I hammock, because my back prefers it to the ground. All the boys pretty much either have foam pads, self-inflating pads, or just sleep on the ground in their bags.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...