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“Time and time again, the most comfortable camping cot is the biggest camping cot…”
Fat people aren’t meant to enjoy the outdoors. Or at least that’s the conclusion I came to after my search for the most comfortable camping cot for large adults. I could find lots of extra-wide, double, and even plush-looking cots but only a few of them were heavy-duty cots and none were rated for more than 300lbs.
What’s the purpose of a doublewide cot that will only hold a single-wide person?! I guess big guys and gals are just supposed to stay at home on their heavy-duty couches!
Well, fear not. I put in the hours of research and testing that will allow me (and you) to camp comfortably on a camp bed that is specifically meant for big and heavy people! If you don’t get a high capacity cot then you leave yourself open to the possibility of a crappy cot folding up on you in the middle of the night or else feeling like you’re sleeping on a high capacity board. So, without further ado, here they are! The best heavy-duty cots for large adults!
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7 Things That Make A Cot Suitable For Large People
In order to find a cot that was comfortable for my size and weight, there were a few things that I knew right at the beginning I needed, and a few more things I learned about along the way that I would like:
1. Weight Capacity
The first hallmark of a heavy-duty cot is, obviously, its capacity. After all, I could never be comfortable on a cot that creaked and groaned when I laid down. I would just end up laying there in constant fear of it folding up on me! Because of this, I searched for cots with a 500lb capacity as I felt this would be a comfortable buffer.
While most camping companies seem to have figured out that heavy people tend to be wider than average, I found several cots that had ultra-high capacities but no extra width. In the end, I chose 5 cots that range from “wider than average” to wider than a twin bed!
While I’m taller than average, I’m no Shaq. However, I feel that more space often means better sleep. I searched for cots that were long enough for even tall guys to stretch out on and enjoy their night.
4. No Gouging Bars
No sane designer of heavy-duty cots would put a bar or support where it could dig into your spine during the night. The problem is since the designer is often not a big and heavy person, they don’t understand that, over time, my weight will typically cause the fabric to stretch. This can lead to me settling on a bar. An experience that can turn the most comfortable camping cot into a hellish experience.
5. Breathable (Not Sweaty) Fabric
Big guys sweat, I’m a big guy. I looked for cots that would breathe well enough to keep my temperature regulated throughout the night. While none of them were quite on par with a hammock, all the options I chose were able to keep me from sweating, even in my sleeping bag.
6. Stuff Storage
I have always struggled to find a spot to put my glasses at night when I camp. I figured if I’m getting an extra-large cot anyway, it might as well have a spot for me to put my glasses, a flashlight, and maybe even my water. Most heavy-duty cots are not usable for backpacking so, since I wasn’t going to be carrying it very far anyway, I figured it could be a few ounces heavier and a ton more useful.
7. Easy To Set Out And Pack Up
Last but not least, I needed a cot that was easy to set up and easy to take down. I remember sitting on the ground with my first cot, bracing my feet against the cot legs, and trying to pull the last corner into place without giving myself a hernia. In my opinion, a heavy-duty cot should be easy to set up for big and heavy people! So I found cots that fit that bill!
Now, the one thing that wasn’t a huge deciding factor in my search was the price. While I did steer clear of anything that was unduly expensive, camp beds are, in general, not very spendy. There is only so much that can go into them so you can get yourself a very nice heavy-duty cot for significantly less than almost any mattress. Even if it seems expensive up front, you’ll thank yourself after spending a few nights on it! Buy once, cry once!
I’m sure you never knew that anyone could take cot shopping so seriously and look at so many options, but that’s my job and that’s why you’re here! I spent dozens of hours thinking about these things so you don’t have to. All you have to do is check out the four following options I found and get your favorite!
Best Heavy Duty Cots For Large People (High Capacity)
1. Teton Sports – The Best Cot For Big And Heavy Campers
If you are looking for the best all-around heavy-duty cot for big people, this is it! While most cots are fairly similar in design (it’s just a cot after all….) this one has two areas where it outperforms the competition and takes the win. First of all, it has the highest capacity of all the cots I checked out. It will support a full 600 pounds without protest. The other major bonus is that this is the easiest cost to set up! It uses a revolutionary pivot-arm set-up which means that the final corner that you put together stays in alignment and simply rotates into place! Goodbye cot set-up struggles!
In addition to those two attributes, this cot has all the features you would expect in a well-built heavy-duty cot:
- Lots of space: this cot is the widest option in our review by nearly 5 inches! It is 7″ wider and 10″ longer than a twin mattress which provides sufficient room for two small people or one big and heavy person to get a good night’s rest.
- Aluminum & steel frame: The legs of this extra-large cot are made of steel for strength while TETON went with aluminum for the frame to keep the weight down. As far as weight goes, this huge cot weighs in at 26lbs so you probably won’t want to carry it far!
- The top material is made of super heavy-duty 600D Poly Canvas which is long-lasting, resistant to the elements, and won’t stretch or deform under you over time.
One of my other favorite features of this cot is not necessarily about the cot per-say. What excites me is: Teton makes a fitted sleeping pad(Amazon link) that fits this mattress perfectly for added comfort! With the addition of the Outfitter XXL Camp Pad, this truly becomes the most comfortable camping cot for people of any size!
2. KingCamp – Most Comfortable Extra Large Cot
KingCamp is one of the biggest names in outdoor furniture for big and heavy people. We loved their 1000lb capacity camp chairs in our camp chair review so I knew we had to test out their heavy-duty cot!
They seem to have been going for comfort and overall usability rather than outright weight capacity so this coat holds a mere 440lbs. While it lacks the overall capacity of the first option, it makes up for it in other ways. For starters, this heavy-duty cot weighs in at only 15lbs, almost half of what the TetonSports cot weighs.
Additionally, this cot forgoes the heavy-duty nylon in favor of 1200D Jacquard Oxford fabric which is softer and more bed-like. This fabric is stretched over a frame made of the same aluminum and steel but with the crucial absence of the pivot arm for easy set-up.
One of my favorite features of this bed is its ergonomic shape. If you are used to sleeping flat as a board on a firm mattress, you might wake up with a sore back but, for most big guys, this sleeping position is pure bliss and can help alleviate snoring!
So if you don’t need the extra size and capacity of the TetonSports plus-size cot, this could be a great heavy-duty option!
3. REDCAMP – Extra Large Adult Camping Cot
If your idea of a great camping cot is a barebones model that doesn’t weigh a thousand pounds or come with unnecessary storage pockets etc. then this one is for you!
At 33″ wide, this code is large enough for most heavy adults but only weighs 17 pounds! The days of needing help to carry your cots to your campsite are long past!
Apart from this cot’s 500lb capacity, its simplicity and price point are what set it apart. So if you want something that can be set up quickly and has minimal parts to wear out, pick up this great option from REDCAMP!
4. Slumberjack – Best Cot For Big Guys On A Budget
If you’ve been camping since you were a kid, you’re probably very familiar with the brand Slumberjack. They’re best known for their sleeping backs but they make a full line of camping sleep gear. This behemoth of a cot is the largest and highest capacity cot they’ve ever made and they simply dubbed it “Big Cot.”
The Big Cot has a 500-pound capacity and an impressive 86″ length. This makes it not only the longest cot in our review but the best big and tall cot on the market!
The “make-or-break” factor in this cot is its simplicity. If you’re looking for a bare bones but heavy-duty cot this is a great option. However, if you want a contoured bed shape, a built-in pillow, storage space, etc. then you’ll probably need to pass on this one.
The other person who will want this cot is anyone who has trouble getting on/off a low surface. I used to sleep on an air mattress when I camped but eventually it got too laborious to lay down and stand up multiple times from that near the ground. At 20″, this is the tallest cot in our review (it beats out the Teton by 1/4″) which makes it easy to lay down on and easier to stand up from.
So if you want a heavy-duty cot than won’t break the bank (or your back) get the Big Cot from Slumberjack!
That’s a wrap on our heavy-duty cot review! I did my best to show the entire spectrum of what is available and could be considered the best camp bed for a heavy person! So, if one of the above appeals to you, scroll back up and get it! If none of them were quite what you’re looking for, then it’s probably time to get inventing! If you found your cot, check out a few of our other articles before leaving:
- Best High Capacity Hammocks for Camping and Relaxation
- High Capacity Paddleboards for Big and Heavy People
- The Best Walking Shoes for Morbidly Obese People
But if you feel like you need a bit more info, read on to get out 5 tips for sleeping on a heavy-duty cot!
5 Tips for Sleeping on a Heavy Duty Cot
1. Get a Mattress
Although the best heavy-duty cots provide a nice flat surface to sleep on, many people find them uncomfortable just because they are too firm. Get yourself a 2″ twin size memory foam mattress topper and you’ll feel like you’re at home in a feather bed!
2. Learn How to Stay Warm
When you sleep on the ground, you stay warm because your body can warm up the air between you and the ground which insulates you. In a cot, however, the air is free to circulate around you which can get pretty uncomfortable in colder weather. One fix is to get the mattress we mentioned above, another is to add a backing to the bottom of your cot to stop air flowing through. Since that is more labor-intensive and can make for hot summer nights, just get the mattress.
3. Don’t Ruin Your Tent’s Floor
It’s not uncommon for people to hate cots and there are two main reasons: they don’t sleep well on them (user error…) and they ruin tent floors (user error…). The cure for both of those issues is typically to put something under the feet of your heavy-duty cot that will not only protect your tent floor but level your sleeping surface, improving your night sleep. You can bring some small wood planks with you, try some castor cups, or even put tennis balls on the feet of your cot.
4. Don’t Get Stuck in a Sleeping Bag
As a big and tall guy, I don’t sleep well in the average sleeping bag. They are too constricting and I either end up sweating, freezing, or just getting so wrapped up from rolling around that I can’t stay asleep. The game-changer for me was when my wife asked why I even slept in a sleeping bag. Since I sleep well at home, why not try to replicate my home situation while camping! These days I just take a couple of blankets and make myself a bedroll on top of my cot. Extra-large cots have the bonus of being large enough for my full-size blankets from home. Just as warm as a sleeping bag, and way more comfortable! Unless you’re backpacking, you probably don’t need the size and weight savings of a sleeping bag anyway.
5. Use a Pillow!
While this could have fit into the last point, I think it is important enough to get its own mention. I spent a bunch of time using wadded-up hoodies and camp pillows under my head while camping and it was always terrible. Even when backpacking now I carry a full-size pillow. If I can’t sleep well, I can’t hike and I certainly won’t enjoy the trip. So take a pillow! Or at least get a full-size one to use for camping (since it will probably get dirty).
I hope those tips will help you turn your new heavy-duty cot into the most comfortable camping cot you’ve ever slept in! While there are several camp beds for heavy people, none of them can beat a well-thought-out cot and sleep roll (at least in my humble opinion). Sleep well!