Hide and go sleep
Tent Cot is $119; rain-fly, $22, from Kamp-Rite; (800) 709-9905, http://www.tentcot.com .
Aero, makers of quick-inflate beds, now has one especially for campers. The Comfort Camp Bag inflatable mattress comes with its own customized nylon sleeping bag, which has a pouch along the bottom that slips over the mattress, keeping the bag in place. Then, just unzip the bag and use it like any other sleeping bag. There's even a built-in "pillow" at one end. The Comfort Camp Bag comes with a rechargeable battery-operated pump that inflates the mattress in about a minute. The bed deflates in 30 seconds using a quick-release valve. Includes a stuff sack and repair kit.
Comfort Camp Bag with rechargeable pump is $99.99 from Aero; (888) 462-4468, http://www.thinkaero.com .
There's no need to fear when GoGear's here
The GoGear Emergency Preparedness Kit could come in handy in a variety of fixes. The nylon bag's 13 pockets contain a basic first-aid kit, a water bottle, water purification tablets, a nine-function multi-tool, a hooded plastic rain poncho, a combination flashlight-radio-emergency siren with extra batteries, an emergency blanket, a lighter, matches, a compass, a whistle, a notepad, a pen, a bandanna and a sheet of emergency first-aid tips, including performing cardiopulmonary resuscitation, dealing with frostbite and stopping bleeding. The bag has padded lumbar support and multiple straps so it can be carried as a waist pack, a shoulder bag or a backpack or by its built-in handle. The 12-inch-square by 10-inch-deep bag has plenty of space for extra gear.
Emergency Preparedness Kit is $69.99 from GoGear; (888) 462-4468, http://www.mygogear.com .
The Tracks Compact Travel Staff is a sturdy, lightweight aluminum hiking stick that collapses into three sections connected by elastic shock cords. The upper section has push-button adjustment for different heights, a contoured foam grip and an adjustable grip strap. Under the walnut knob, a universal camera mount turns the staff into a stabilizing mono pod. At the bottom of the staff, a molded flex tip with removable foot and trekking basket adds stability. The staff adjusts from 48 to 54 inches in length and measures just 19 inches long when collapsed. At 10.5 ounces, it's worth taking along in case the terrain gets challenging or you need some extra support.
Tracks Compact Travel Staff is $65. Cascade Designs; (800) 531-9531, http://www.trackspoles.com .
Just gimme some lightweight shelter
The Hubba Hubba from Mountain Safety Research is everything you could want in a backpacking tent — and less. Less weight (4.5 pounds with the poles and included rain-fly), less stuffy (virtually the entire tent is mesh netting) and less hassle to set up (the self-standing tent is held up by an ingenious series of featherweight collapsible poles, all connected to one hub by elastic cord. The two-person tent has two zippered doors so each camper has an exit. I found it better for single occupancy, especially with gear. The rain-fly and optional waterproof "footprint" ground cloth can be used with the tent poles (but without the tent) to create a free-standing tarp shelter.
Hubba Hubba tent is $289.95; footprint ground cloth, $34.95. MSR; (800) 531-9531, http://www.msrcorp.com .