Comfortable night's sleep
I've used a RidgeRest closed-cell foam pad for decades, despite my propensity to slide off of it and my increasing lower back issues.
But for a recent car-camp trip in Mexico, I was advised to use a cot to remain elevated in case of heavy rainfall.
I appreciate the design and build quality of the Byer tripod chair I'd purchased a few years ago, so I stayed with the brand for the Allagash AL.
I'm fully satisfied, even delighted, with this purchase.
The low-standing design is good for clearing sloping tent walls, and the materials quality exceeded my expectations (I'm 5'7", ~160 lb, so my demands are low).
None of my wife, my 13yr old son, nor I experienced any difficulty in assembly or dis-assembly, so we discarded the soft yellow hand grips, but it's a clever tool that could make the difference for some folks.
My younger children (8 & 6 yrs) lacked sufficient strength to assemble it without assistance.
I'm a back sleeper, who can no longer sleep a full night on the ground without terrible lower back pain, but the cot is incredibly comfortable to me, and I never felt the need to elevate my knees or roll to the side.
My wife is a side sleeper whose hips ache on a firm surface, so she added a Big Agnes insulated air core mattress to her cot and slept beautifully.
The one issue I experienced was coolness from air circulating under the cot in the wee hours.
I donned a pair of socks, but for future car camping, I'll lay the RidgeRest over the cot to provide insulation.
I wish there were some way to afford the ~8 lbs on my next backpacking trip - it's such a delight to enjoy a comfortable night's sleep!
I can see where a heavier person might experience some sagging, but I'd recommend this cot as a high value purchase for anyone <185 pounds, and perhaps a bit heavier.
A MUST for adult scouters!
As a scout leader I camp about 10-11 months out of the year in every kind of weather. I normally consider myself a "minimalist" and try to pack as little gear as possible. But in recent years I have developed some health problems and my Dr. said no more camping if I couldn't be up off the ground. I knew I definitely didn't want to go the air mattress route, but all the cots I had ever used were between 18-22 in high (which means that you have to use a very large tent or else try to sleep with your face on the roof!) So I was thrilled to find this cot. I read all the reviews and was a little concerned about the difficulty people were having with assembly because I only have about 30% use of my hands. I have NO idea what all the fuss is about! I had this thing up in less than 5 minutes! I can see where young campers might have some trouble because it does take a little muscle, but for any adult it shouldn't be a problem. (I'm disabled and I did it by myself) The cot was roomy and very comfortable, and best of all because of the low height I'm able to use it in my favorite one man backpacking tent. The only negative I can find is that it didn't come with a carry sack. It's easy enough to carry with the legs as a handle but it would've been nice to have a sack just to help keep it clean and make it a little easier to carry.(I solved this problem by putting it in a bag with a shoulder strap that went to an old folding chair) All in all the best cot I've found for the money and definitely the best for someone who wants/needs to get off the ground but still wants to keep the amount of gear/weight to a minimum.
Improving on an already solid design
I've been using the previous version of the Byer Allagash cot for several years and it's a great cot. I've never had any problems with my old one, but kudos to Byer for listening to consumers and reinforcing the material and stitching on the new one. I tried this new model in the store and I would feel confident replacing my old one with it, when (or if) I ever need to.
For me, these are a good blend of lightweight, compact, sturdy, comfortable, and cheap. Obviously not designed for backpacking, but easy to strap to my pack for travel and cram into vehicles, boats or light aircraft with limited cargo space. It holds 200 lbs with minimal sagging, and is quite comfortable. In hard-standing tents or rustic buildings, I use it to keep up off the dirty floors and for insulating off the freezing ground/floor with the addition of a foam pad on top. It's also good for air circulation underneath in warmer conditions. On softer ground, you might want to put something down to stop the legs sinking in.
I find it a breeze to set up and can usually unfold it, attach the legs, and flip it over ready to use in about a minute or so. Note each steel leg needs to be tensioned to fit into a hole, so this cot is probably not the best choice for kids or others who have limited muscle/grip strength. Obviously this cot is low to the ground and less practical for some people laying down and getting up, or sitting with feet on the floor, or storing items underneath. But for compact, lightweight and quick, it's a great choice.
good for an adult -
This is a great product - very confortable and just fits in a 7 by 5 tent. The 30 inch width is a plus. Also not having any bars at the head and foot is great. It does save some space because you can put things under the cot. The cot only weighs 8 lbs so its pretty light. Much better than a air mattress and a lot less hassle. Much warmer too because you are off the ground. Can't beat the price ([$]). With a bad back and bad neck this was great. I go camping every month with the Scouts. I don't have to worry about a bad night sleep. Cons - no cover (I put it in a spare folding chair cover I had that has a carry strap). the legs take strength to put in - kids would not be able to install them.
I heard about this cot from a Scout buddy. He raved about this cot so I knew it had to be good, but I checked the reviews to be sure. Based on the reviews I knew I wanted it. I finally ordered it to use on a Fall Scout Camp-o-ree the upcoming weekend. I Ordered on a Sunday night hopeing to get it by Thursday and got it Wednesday... WOW! I did not have any trouble installing the legs as some folks mentioned... I also used a self inflating mattress pad on it and had the best nights sleep I have had in a long time on a campout. As an avid Scouter I camp @ 30-40 nights a year and would highly recommend this cot to anyone.
A high quality product
I purchased this cot for tent camping and also to use as a guest bed in my tiny apartment. I ended up using it for the first time after arriving at a campground very late at night in the rain. I was pleasantly surprised at how easy it was to set up and also that is was so sturdy. It fit perfectly in my 5x7 tent and I slept very comfortably on it. Its nice that it sits fairly low to the ground, allowing more headroom in the tent. Temps were in the low 50's during the nights I used it, so I added a sleeping pad on top for warmth and it was fine. I was also pleased with how compact it is when folded up.
The cot performed great. It was a lot easier than the first two I purchased. The only comment I have is, you need to have some sort of a carry bag for it. I modified the legs a little to protect the tent bottom. I purchased some plastic tubing to place over the curve of the legs which set on the the tent floor, so as not to puncture the floor bottom. The only problem now is that the legs won't fit back in the sleeve they came in. So, I guess I will have to try and make a bag for myself! But it is a minor issue. The cot sleeps well and it doesn't poke through the tent floor, thanks to my innovation.
Nice Cot For the Price
I like this cot because all you have to do is unroll it and put in the metal bars. Just don't pop out your sternum trying to get them in. Use both hands to pull the bar towards you and into the hole. That would be my only complaint.
I like that I can fold it up and put it back in the box it came in. (Neat car packer here.) I could fit a lot of these in the back of my car.
The cost is great, especially coming from REI. It keeps you off the ground which is the idea. Good for campground camping, or home use.
Excellent value for money!
I use this cot for occasional 'car camping' and odd overnights. While it could be packed for short hikes, its kind of heavy for backpacking. Great by itself, but if you throw on a pad it is mighty comfy. This would be perfect for a canoe trip.
Pros: Sets up & breaks down quickly; rolls up into its own package, with the legs as a handle; takes up very little space for car camping; low to the ground, fits even smaller tents; bent steel legs are kinder to tent floors. Good value for money!
Cons: Hard to get out of (for this 50 something guy).
"my back thanks you!"
This cot was a back saver on the boy scout camp outs. It was easy to set up and strapped easily to the backpack. The only thing I modified was the legs setting on the tent floor. I added 3/8 inch clear braided tubing at the bends of the legs to protect the tent floor. It only cost about $5 to add this tubing around the legs, but it will help to protect the floor. The only thing which would have made it better would to have a bag to contain the entire cot, for storage and keeping it clean.