Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

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Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby Ms_Mudd » Mon 01 Feb, 2021 1:53 pm

After falling asleep on my Nemo Switchback while on a trip with the kids- when I was meant to be supervising their splashing about :oops: - I pondered whether anyone had tried all the modern mats (SI and air) and gone back to CCF?

I am truly the Princess and the Pea when it comes to sleeping and am extremely precious about it, having trialed many air mats and using a particular one exclusively for the past 18mths. The thought of CCF outside of a sit pad, extra insulation or lazing about on family walking trips where I am meant to read/watch the kids about camp makes me shudder and yet, I still can't say I sleep amazingly on the comfiest air mat I could find anyway.

Too much time on my hands to ponder things that are sheer idiocy, or have others gone back to the simple ways?
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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby Moondog55 » Mon 01 Feb, 2021 2:19 pm

What?
Such heresy!
Get thee to a rockery
ASAP
While almost always taking a short CCF as a sit pad/emergency back-up and never being totally sure about an air filled mat always taking a foam pad on snow trips I would never consider going back to using just a CCF or even a double CCF fr snow trips. My old bones would crack and I'd never get any sleep at all.
Ve are too soon old und too late schmart
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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby stry » Mon 01 Feb, 2021 3:51 pm

Only a masochist or a fakir would use CCF solely, although I always carry a thin GG CCF inside my pack, just in case.

I also use thicker CCFs and Ridgerests as the first layer (excluding ground cover) under a more comfortable mat when car camping.

The evolution of sleeping pads has led to comfort undreamed of in my early days, and I have no intention of ever willingly reverting to the old ways.
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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby JohnnoMcJohnno » Mon 01 Feb, 2021 3:54 pm

I have a Nemo Switchback but the stupid thing is I've never actually used it. I've considered taking it plenty of times, partly for the ease of set-up, partly because of the zero risk of failure, and partly due (in my case) to the 200g weight saving, which equates to another block of chocolate I could carry instead. It's just that it's really hard to go back to using CCF after a SIM, it packs so much smaller and I know I'll sleep well.
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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby Zapruda » Mon 01 Feb, 2021 5:45 pm

I regressed.

CCF is simple, comfortable on top of snow grass, lighter and more versatile. I rarely find my self rolling off or being kept awake because I’m on some weird angle, unlike inflatables...

I even used one on the Larapinta and slept like a baby.

Don’t get me wrong I love my Xtherm and it is a necessity for me in the colder months but the simplicity of the ccf is so nice.
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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby Ms_Mudd » Tue 02 Feb, 2021 8:20 am

Yes, much as I suspected, most would think it sheer lunacy. Perhaps considering it is. I suppose technology evolves for a reason and going low-fi may be less satisfactory in all senses, comfort, packability etc.

Zapruda, I just knew there would have to be someone. Interesting. Even on the Larapinta, that is an extreme-CCF'ing good effort. Did you wear trail runners on that trip btw? Most people seems to insist boots are necessary due to the terrain. I don't know that I could even lift my feet in boots! I am doing some day walks in the Flinders Ranges (borders willing) in the coming months, will not take my boots as not an extended trip.

So, I put my curiosity to a very tame test last night. I lay on the CCF watching TV with the family, the lounge is hot real estate and I am usually edged out of that market anyway. I decided to sleep there as there was a nice breeze in that spot and I think my husband was at his wits end with my sleeping with our ceiling fan on.
Disclaimer- my loungeroom is carpeted and does have an underlay over the concrete slab. I can confirm that the underlay and the carpet are not plush though, we had to gut a lot of the house after floods in 2015 and cheaped out as the kids were still young and we would go 'quality' once they were older if necessary.
Initially I had started my tv viewing (sidelying) with pillows from my bed. I thought for authenticity's sake I would get the pillow I use when out walking (S2S inflatable) and it actually worked better height and firmness wise with the set up, so I used it all night.
It was not bad, not bad at all.

I am going to take the plunge and just take the CCF on my upcoming 3 day walk. The camps should be grassy and/or sandy. I may regret that decision, but am interested to see if I end up any worse off for it.
310g and the bulk of it is not really any more appealing from a packing perspective, but the simplicity could be.
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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby Moondog55 » Tue 02 Feb, 2021 8:25 am

I bought a T'Rest Trail seat from the forum here last year, haven't used it for that yet but I was thinking that it could be just the ting for padding my hips on hard ground as an addition to a CCF mat. Weighs very little and takes up minimal room.
If sandy remember to scoop out a hip hole
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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby Kickinghorse » Tue 02 Feb, 2021 9:20 am

Yes, much as I suspected, most would think it sheer lunacy. Perhaps considering it is. I suppose technology evolves for a reason and going low-fi may be less satisfactory in all senses, comfort, packability etc.

Reminds me of the times I had to walk 5 Miles to school in deep snow without any Shoes. :-)

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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby Zapruda » Tue 02 Feb, 2021 9:26 am

Ms_Mudd wrote:Yes, much as I suspected, most would think it sheer lunacy. Perhaps considering it is. I suppose technology evolves for a reason and going low-fi may be less satisfactory in all senses, comfort, packability etc.

Zapruda, I just knew there would have to be someone. Interesting. Even on the Larapinta, that is an extreme-CCF'ing good effort. Did you wear trail runners on that trip btw? Most people seems to insist boots are necessary due to the terrain. I don't know that I could even lift my feet in boots! I am doing some day walks in the Flinders Ranges (borders willing) in the coming months, will not take my boots as not an extended trip.

So, I put my curiosity to a very tame test last night. I lay on the CCF watching TV with the family, the lounge is hot real estate and I am usually edged out of that market anyway. I decided to sleep there as there was a nice breeze in that spot and I think my husband was at his wits end with my sleeping with our ceiling fan on.
Disclaimer- my loungeroom is carpeted and does have an underlay over the concrete slab. I can confirm that the underlay and the carpet are not plush though, we had to gut a lot of the house after floods in 2015 and cheaped out as the kids were still young and we would go 'quality' once they were older if necessary.
Initially I had started my tv viewing (sidelying) with pillows from my bed. I thought for authenticity's sake I would get the pillow I use when out walking (S2S inflatable) and it actually worked better height and firmness wise with the set up, so I used it all night.
It was not bad, not bad at all.

I am going to take the plunge and just take the CCF on my upcoming 3 day walk. The camps should be grassy and/or sandy. I may regret that decision, but am interested to see if I end up any worse off for it.
310g and the bulk of it is not really any more appealing from a packing perspective, but the simplicity could be.


Yep, wore trail runners. Always do and as per usual they worked great.

Please let us know how you go. I often find that if my head is elevated enough then the ccf is even more comfortable. I usually use my food bag + pillow.

Remember, if you get cold you can always fold the pad in half for a bit of extra insulation.
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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby Ms_Mudd » Tue 02 Feb, 2021 9:36 am

Zapruda wrote:
Please let us know how you go. I often find that if my head is elevated enough then the ccf is even more comfortable. I usually use my food bag + pillow.

Remember, if you get cold you can always fold the pad in half for a bit of extra insulation.

I had wondered about the effect of the ground chill, I liked that my arm could be off the pad and not be 'hanging' like it was with my inflatable pad, but imagine on cold ground I could quickly lose some heat that way. Nice work with the trail runners, I just don't think I could ever actually wear my Scarpas.

Moondog, hadn't thought about padding out hips more, a good point if on harder ground. I imagine digging out a nice sand divet could be very comfy.
I do own a full length Gossamer Gear Thinlight pad too (70?g) and a cheap CCF sit pad which is 26g which could be coupled with the Switchback and still be sub 400g. I also have that wide piece of CCF I got from you a few years ago which has seen heaps of use, the kids use it as their camp lazing space and under my daughters inflatable at night. Will mix and match it on up. This next trip will give me an idea of if it will work for me regularly on non winter trips.
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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby icefest » Tue 02 Feb, 2021 12:30 pm

On my overnight canyoning trips I'll take a CCF mat, not needing to waterproof it and the added floatation make the uncomfortable night much more palatable.

I I was packrafting I'm tempted to take it, but almost every other trip I take the Xtherm.

JohnnoMcJohnno wrote:I have a Nemo Switchback but the stupid thing is I've never actually used it. I've considered taking it plenty of times, partly for the ease of set-up, partly because of the zero risk of failure, and partly due (in my case) to the 200g weight saving, which equates to another block of chocolate I could carry instead. It's just that it's really hard to go back to using CCF after a SIM, it packs so much smaller and I know I'll sleep well.

Would you be interested in selling?
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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby andrewa » Wed 03 Feb, 2021 6:21 am

As an aside, I find sleeping on an upturned packraft more comfortable than any mat I’ve ever used. Wouldn’t even take a mat if packrafting!
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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby dashandsaph » Wed 03 Feb, 2021 1:37 pm

I've recently been taking a larger than usual piece of blue mat which is for sitting on during the day but because it's a little bigger than necessary for that, I can use it as padding in the thermarest chair if i'm carrying that and add it as an extra layer under the xlite from hip to shoulder, protecting the xlite and adding warmth and comfort and it means the xlite is less likely to slide if I've pitched on a bit of a slope. I'm tempted to try a CCF mat on its own and see how it goes.
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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby Ms_Mudd » Wed 03 Feb, 2021 6:38 pm

Dashandsaph, that has also been my own use of ccf until now
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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby andrewa » Fri 05 Feb, 2021 8:35 pm

I'm old enough to recall how good a CCF (portable concrete) mat was compared with nothing.

An old enough to now enjoy a down mat and a helinox zero chair, with no CCF anywhere....except maybe in winter in my daypack skiing.

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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby Ms_Mudd » Thu 11 Feb, 2021 10:22 am

A chair, Andrewa. Lovely! I sat in one on a group walk and loved it.

My experiments with CCF are continuing and have started a bit of an unexpected habit. Since trialing it the first night, have slept on it every night bar the nights I have worked. I even slept between night shifts on it in my granny flat on a tiled floor. I thought that may have broken me as I thought it felt too hard initially, but it didn't. I slept 7 hours which is amazing for a daytime sleep, so I did it the next day also.

I am taking it to SA with me to sleep on at my sons place, then have a multiday walked planned pretty much immediately after so am definitely only taking the ccf mat, will be very interested to see how I sleep while on my walk now that I have been sleeping on it regularly enough that it will feel normal.

Something about the hard surface/pillow combo just works for me. I should be waking up sore, like I normally do in bed, but it is the opposite.
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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby kelvinn » Tue 16 Feb, 2021 6:38 pm

What I have found is there are some tracks where you might be sleeping at somewhat designated sites (i.e. hard pack), or in huts, and an inflatable is really nice. Then there are other places where there's lots of plush grass, and it would be easy to sleep well on CCF.

I'm _planning_ on regressing in the near future, or at least for a particular use case. I'm putting together a bit of kit specific for fastpacking in the 1-2 night range, so weight will be really important. And the extra stack height of an inflatable makes the poncho tarp unusable.
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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby Ms_Mudd » Tue 16 Feb, 2021 7:21 pm

Would be keen to hear how you go fastpacking, Kevin. I had grand plans to do some, but couldn't get my gear right to be comfy. Plus my marathon fitness disappeared really quickly, am running again now though.

About to do my 14th night on the CCF tonight, am still on hols.
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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby kelvinn » Tue 16 Feb, 2021 7:33 pm

I will certainly update here with what the result is. My last two times out I was nearly dialled in enough, but just a little too heavy for running any further than about 500 metres in one go.

And congrats on the 14th night! You should get a token for that or something!
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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby Ms_Mudd » Wed 17 Feb, 2021 9:05 am

That was my experience too Kevinn. I could pick up an amble, but had to stop frequently. I bought an UD Fastback, but unisex fit was not comfortable for me my gear was still too heavy to not bounce around. How would you attach the ccf for fast packing?


I feel like I have turned into a Japanese person wanting to sleep on a tatami mat.
This is my set up at my sons house for the past 5 days. At home, have been alternating between tiles in the granny flat or next to my king size bed. My husband is complaining he is very lonely in our big bed, I offered to buy him a regular size mat to join me on the floor....he declined.
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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby kelvinn » Wed 17 Feb, 2021 7:40 pm

That looks just fantastic! I guess the carpet would help, yet I am truly impressed you have levelled up to also being able to sleep on tile.

It looks like the pad can just barely fit in the elastic bungies on the outside of the pack. Still to be determined if it will work, or I need to attach some other way.

Too funny thinking of both of you sleeping on the floor next to your big bed.
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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby Kickinghorse » Wed 17 Feb, 2021 8:24 pm

Hi J
Obviously you have a very understanding partner. Can understand why he’s reluctant to join the brotherhood of the Fakirs -:)

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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby Kickinghorse » Thu 18 Feb, 2021 5:55 am

To explain further.

Beds of nails have been used as meditation and healing techniques by Indian yogis and mystics for hundreds of years, as well as by ascetics of various faiths.
:-)
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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby Lamont » Thu 18 Feb, 2021 10:23 am

I liked the ability to sprawl on a thin mat and woke up with no back pain, and really refreshed last I used a quite thin CCF mat, which surprised me. Arms and legs can move around without 'falling off 'and waking me etc, but I did get a bruised hip. Strangely though I didn't find out about the bruised hip until I got home.
If one of those thicker ones like yours fit inside my ruckie I'd be having it- no problem.
It''s not the comfort at all (I slept well on one of the 10mm green/blue ones for 26 days straight in NZ car camping ) but the packed size that puts me off. I just have an aversion to carrying it on the outside.
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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby Kickinghorse » Thu 18 Feb, 2021 11:06 am

It''s not the comfort at all (I slept well on one of the 10mm green/blue ones for 26 days straight in NZ car camping ) but the packed size that puts me off. I just have an aversion to carrying it on the outside.


Yes Lamont you’ll often see the Thermarest Z Lite type mats travelling 3rd class on the packs of US through hikers. Like you I like to keep my sleeping pad (STS Ultralight) inside in case of rain etc.
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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby Ms_Mudd » Thu 18 Feb, 2021 12:54 pm

Lamont wrote: but the packed size that puts me off. I just have an aversion to carrying it on the outside.


100% agree. I despise the idea of bits of orange foam finding their way into wilderness areas from an externally placed pad. When loaded out with the kids, I have put mine in the side pocket of my One Planet Canopy effectively and on my last snowy/sleety trip of the year in September, I put it at the base, using the gear loops, it stuck out too much for my liking there, but was quicker and easier to access rather than trying to wedge it back into a side pocket.

I am all packed out now for 3 days and it easily fits inside the Canopy with oodles of room to spare. I could fit two of them in there. I am walking with friends and not kids, so only have my gear to contend with. Much more satisfactory to have it inside the pack.

One thing that does bug me about the short version of the switchback is that it has an uneven amount of sections, so when 'accordion' folded up into a 2 section width to better fit packs or to sit on as a raised seat, it is unevenly stacked. Probably doesn't bug me enough to buy a regular and cut down though to +1 more fold than the short. I also would not cut down my short size -1 to make it even. Hmmm actually...maybe I would :?
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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby Ms_Mudd » Thu 18 Feb, 2021 1:06 pm

Kickinghorse wrote:To explain further.

Beds of nails have been used as meditation and healing techniques by Indian yogis and mystics for hundreds of years, as well as by ascetics of various faiths.
:-)


I admit I did google when you first referenced it as I was not familiar with the term :lol:

Yes, he is very understanding. He seems to like (or at least tolerate) my brand of crazy.
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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby Lamont » Thu 04 Mar, 2021 4:19 pm

Ms_Mudd wrote:
Lamont wrote: but the packed size that puts me off. I just have an aversion to carrying it on the outside.


100% agree. I despise the idea of bits of orange foam finding their way into wilderness areas from an externally placed pad. When loaded out with the kids, I have put mine in the side pocket of my One Planet Canopy effectively and on my last snowy/sleety trip of the year in September, I put it at the base, using the gear loops, it stuck out too much for my liking there, but was quicker and easier to access rather than trying to wedge it back into a side pocket.

I am all packed out now for 3 days and it easily fits inside the Canopy with oodles of room to spare. I could fit two of them in there. I am walking with friends and not kids, so only have my gear to contend with. Much more satisfactory to have it inside the pack.

One thing that does bug me about the short version of the switchback is that it has an uneven amount of sections, so when 'accordion' folded up into a 2 section width to better fit packs or to sit on as a raised seat, it is unevenly stacked. Probably doesn't bug me enough to buy a regular and cut down though to +1 more fold than the short. I also would not cut down my short size -1 to make it even. Hmmm actually...maybe I would :?

Just to add on here Muddy the idea of the Exped Flexmat (small) questions is that I think it's small enough to go inside my ruckie. I carried (and used) and Onda 11 for a wee while inside quite easily and I think the Exped 'may' fit as well for short milder weather trips.
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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby Ms_Mudd » Thu 04 Mar, 2021 6:22 pm

Lamont, do tell if you get one and if it fits inside your wee rucksack. You are running a smallish Wilderness Threadworks pack aren't you?
The OP Canopy is like the tardis inside, it happily gobbles the switchback up, no chance with my smaller packs though. I do have a Gossamer Gear Thinlight used for layering mats in cooler weather, but not willing to go to THAT extreme sleeping only on just that. Hmm although, never thought I would sleep on CCF at all and after trying it at home and in the wild, I decline the marital bed in favour of the floor. So never say never I suppose.

Would be very keen to hear if that little Exped Flexmat (orange one) is as compact as it looks online, I would probably pull the trigger on it, given my existing mats can be utilised as bedroom suites for me anyway. Exped offering is lighter than the Switchback, so I could even potentially take the GG Thinlight and Flexmat to layer for a bit of R Value ooomph and not come out any heavier than my current set up.

Lamont, also happy to buy any CCF rejects from your trials also ;-)
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Re: Anyone 'regressed' to CCF?

Postby Lamont » Thu 04 Mar, 2021 7:00 pm

Ms_Mudd wrote:Lamont, do tell if you get one and if it fits inside your wee rucksack. You are running a smallish Wilderness Threadworks pack aren't you?

That and another same size.
Ms_Mudd wrote:...Exped offering is lighter (and smaller) than the Switchback, so I could even potentially take the GG Thinlight and Flexmat ....

Bingo. :D
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