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Snoring and the Exped SIM Light

Cades Cove Bear

Bear with her cub's

How many times have you tried to re-pack a tent, bag or sleep pad into its original stuff sack only to be stymied by the realization that the only time the blasted thing was ever efficiently stuffed into this shallow, tight bag with a narrow opening was just before shipping, most likely by some guy snickering with his buddies on the line, “Let’s see ‘em get this back in there. Stupid backpackers.”

Almost for that reason alone I returned my REI Trekker self-inflatable. As I chronicled a couple of posts ago, I decided on the Exped SIM Light as my new form of nighttime ground insulation. Not only can I actually get the thing back into its stuff sack easily, I can roll it smaller than how it arrived and do so without having to act like a 165-pound rolling pin.

The SIM Light is also comfortable. The only reason I didn’t sleep through the night on my recent trip to the Smokies is because from two tent sites away, a really loud snore can be easily mistaken for a curious bruin, which in turn triggers you to second-guess whether you did indeed pack away the easily-opened bag of honey-roasted beef jerky. And then of course, you have to piss. But at least you found out it was just a fat guy with an obvious apnea issue. You gotta love developed campgrounds in national parks.

(Side note: four of the backcountry sites I wanted that night were closed due to bear activity. And have been all summer. So that’s kind of where my head was that night.)

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