To make sure that you enjoy your outdoor stay, you have to make proper sleeping arrangements. Most people get camping tents in this regard but is that the only way you can spend the night outside?
Is sleeping outside without a tent an option that you can consider? Yes, it is and in this article, I will show you several sleeping options that you can take.
If you have forgotten to bring your tent with you to camp or you deliberately choose not to bring one, there are various options for sleeping outside. Most tents are heavy and bulky and carrying extra weight can limit your exploration.
The cowboy camping sleeping options mentioned below require almost no effort. This means that you will have all the time to engage in the activities that took you to camp in the first place.
1. Sleeping on the bare ground
This is one option that you can consider if you don’t have a tent for the night. Find a nice spot on the ground and lay there for the night. This option, however, is only viable if you are absolutely sure that it is not going to rain. It can get quite frustrating when the heavens open up and you are in the middle of nowhere without suitable shelter.
You are also exposed to other elements such as wind and the cold so sleeping on the bare ground will only work on a warm night. Other things that you have to be on the lookout for include animals and bugs coming into your resting spot as well as other humans.
The advantage of this option is that you don’t have to carry a lot of sleeping materials. It will ensure that you don’t have a lot of weight on you that may slow you down or make you tired.
2. Using a sleeping mat
This is another great option for sleeping outdoors if you don’t have a tent. A simple sleeping mat is just enough for you to enjoy a comfortable night under the stars. Most of these mats self-inflate and are quite comfortable.
When laying up a roll-out mat for the night, find a level area that is free of rocks and tree stumps. Lay your mat and enjoy a good night’s sleep under the stars. However, you need to choose your location carefully as you don’t want an area that is exposed to wild animals or insects.
Make sure that it is not going to rain on that particular night as you may only have the clothes on your back and a blanket. These are not enough to protect you from the rain.
Sleeping mats are not that heavy and carrying one in your backpack as you explore the outdoors is not difficult. You won’t use a lot of effort to lay the mat up for the night and rolling it back in the morning when dawn breaks.
3. Bivouac bags and shelters
For extra protection from the elements, bivouac bags and shelters are the way to go. The shelter includes a weatherproof bottom where you will set your sleeping bag and a tent-like structure that will shield you from the elements all night long.
Most bivouac sacks are light and compact so it makes them easy to carry around. Setting them up is easy and you won’t struggle when taking them down either. You can zip the sack up when it starts to rain to ensure that you don’t wake up wet and soaked.
Such shelters, however, offer you very little room to maneuver. You may not be that comfortable as you sleep. It can also get quite claustrophobic in there and this is something that you have to consider if you hate tight spaces. If you are interested in this option you can also look for a bivy tent that is very similar.
4. Setting up a tarpaulin
Tarpaulins are the latest craze in lightweight backpacking at the moment. They are compact and light just like a bivouac but with the added advantage of being able to offer a lot more space for moving around.
They offer several setup options for campers. You can leave them freestanding or erecting them with hiking poles or branches. The tarp will protect you from the rain to ensure that you are dry throughout the night.
Tarpaulins, however, are not as effective as tents as you are still exposed to wind, animals, and bugs.
Choose your favorite sleeping option
You don’t need a tent to be able to enjoy your outdoor stay as there are various options for sleeping outside without a tent. I suggest that you think about some of the options I presented to you and choose a sleeping arrangement that will fit your personal needs.