How to Make a Bedroll for Camping?

How to Make a Bedroll for Camping
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Bedrolls are an ever-living part of camping history. Bedrolls help you carry your sleeping stuff as well as some camping gear easily. Backpacks might come in all shapes and sizes, but you never know when you’ll run out of space. A bedroll takes care of all your shelter needs. On the outside, most bedrolls have strong waterproof canvas shell. In the inside, you can put clothing, blankets, sleeping bag or even a camping mat. After a long day of outdoor adventure, just unroll your bedroll. Within seconds you have a nice comfortable sleeping arrangement.

If you want to take a bedroll, you should know how to make a bedroll for camping. Making a bedroll is very simple, you just need to be smart about it. I have made a guide below which will help you to make a bedroll for camping.

Related: For Comfortable Camping Sleep, You Need These 7 Best Camping Mattress

How to Make a Bedroll for Camping

Making a bedroll is quite simple if you have all the things you need for making it. I have made a list of things that will help you make a good bedroll for your camping trip.

6 Things You Will Need for Making a Bedroll

1. Ground Sheet

It is never a good idea to place your blanket or sleeping bag directly on the ground. Moisture can easily be absorbed by your blanket or sleeping bag. A groundsheet keeps any dampness or moisture away from your bed. It also acts as an insulator, limiting heat loss to the ground. So, make sure you have a waterproof groundsheet. A waterproof groundsheet will protect your bedroll from rain and water spills.

2. Sleeping Bag

A sleeping bag is a must-have for camping in today’s world. A good lightweight sleeping bag will do just fine. Before buying one, make sure the sleeping bag is rated for temperatures you will be camping in. A sleeping bag will give you a very cosy and warm sleeping experience.

3. Small Pillow

If you are like me who cannot sleep without a pillow, then get a small pillow for your bedroll. A pillow can be a make or break situation for some. A pillow will help you get a good night’s rest without any discomfort.

4. Two Blankets

Blankets are a fundamental part of any bedroll. Depending on your preference you can use a fleece or wool blankets. Blankets provide extra comfort and utility while sleeping. Don’t want to stuff yourself in a sleeping bag, just use a blanket.

5. Air or Foam Mattress

For getting the best experience, take a compact and light mattress with you. You can easily deflate an air mattress and fold it for easy storage. When needed, you can just inflate the air mattress by mouth or a pump. Foam mattresses are also a good option but make sure there are light and easy to store. Mattresses lift you from the ground, keeping you safe from any bugs or insects while camping. They also act as perfect insulators. Mattresses preserve your body heat and keep you warm. You will not feel any discomfort due to the cold ground.

6. Rope

The most crucial yet the smallest part of a bedroll is the rope. After rolling your bedroll, the rope is what keeps the bedroll together. It is a good idea to get a durable rope that is easy to tie and untie. You will need three small rope lengths.

 You can also use adjustable straps with clips. They are far easier to use but cost a bit more. 

Related: 11 Best Budget Sleeping Bags for Camping that are Sturdy and Will Last Long

8 Steps for How to Make a Bedroll for Camping

After you have all the items for making a bedroll, let’s go through the steps for making a bedroll.

1. Spread the groundsheet

Try to find a big and flat surface to make the bedroll easily. After finding such a place, start by spreading out the groundsheet flat on the ground. It is better to have a groundsheet that is twice the size of your mattress. The groundsheet needs to be large enough as it is the outermost layer of the bedroll. Everything that goes into the bedroll will be placed on the groundsheet. Make sure the groundsheet lies perfectly flat. An even groundsheet will make a compact and organized bedroll.

2. Placing the Air or Foam Mattress

Next thing you need to place is the mattress in the centre of the groundsheet. Air mattress is a good option as they can be deflated. Deflated air mattresses can easily be rolled like sheets. Foam mattresses, on the other hand, need to be thin and light so they can be rolled. Make sure the mattress is small and not larger than your needs. A twin-size mattress is a good fit. Try to keep your mattress in good wrinkle-free condition. A wrinkled mattress will make the bedroll bigger in size.

Related: Keep Yourself and Others Warm with These 8 Best Heater for Tent Camping

3. Placing the Sleeping bag

For the next step, place the sleeping bag right on top of the mattress. Make sure you place the sleeping bag lengthwise. Try to lay the sleeping bag as flat as possible. Press the sleeping bag to remove any air and to make it thin as possible. If possible, buy a good thin and lightweight sleeping bag that takes less space.

4. Tucking the small pillow

After placing the sleeping bag, tuck your small pillow inside the top of the sleeping bag. Only bring a small pillow if you think you need one for restful nights. If you can manage without a small pillow, it is best to not bring one. For camping, your main goal should be to travel as light as possible.

5. Placing the Blankets

Now, place the blankets on top of the sleeping bag. Spread the blankets as flat as possible on the sleeping bag. Uneven blankets can make your bedroll bulky and difficult to carry. So, make sure the blankets are of good condition with little wrinkles. If you are going to a place with hot weather, you can opt to not bring the blankets. Bring a light and cool sheet for hot weathers, to protect yourself from flys and mosquitoes.

6. Any Other Items

If you have other small items that are not needed much, put them next on the blanket. Just make sure the items are not too large or bulky. Large items can make the bedroll not roll properly. Put only small and flat things that will not be a problem when rolling the bedroll. Don’t put anything that might break while rolling the bedroll.

7. Folding the side edges of the groundsheet

After you have placed everything, it’s now time to roll the bedroll. For this, fold the side edges of the groundsheet over the top of the blankets. The groundsheet side edges should lie flat and as neatly as possible. Now, start rolling everything together. Try to roll firmly and tightly. Keep the mattress, sleeping bag, blankets and groundsheet aligned while rolling from head to toe. The tightly you roll the bedroll, the more compact and easier to carry it is.

8. Fastening the rolled bedroll with ropes

For the last step, you need to fasten the bedroll with ropes. You will need three ropes for this. Wound two ropes around the two ends of the bedroll. Use the third rope and tie it between the two end ropes to make a handle for carrying. To make the bedroll even more secure tie slipknots with the ropes.

You can use straps as well, instead of ropes. But ropes give a more tradition and historic look. Choose as you like.

Whenever you need to rest, just untie the ropes and unroll the bedroll. You will have a resting or sleeping arrangement in no time.

Related: 7 Best Camping Pillows for a Restful Night after a Long Camping Day

Some other Tips and Suggestions

Practice and Feel

It is a good idea to practice assembling your bedroll at home before your camping trip. Make the bedroll at home and see if it is light enough to carry and can fit everything you need. The main goal of a bedroll is to be light and portable.


You should check what kind of weather you’ll be facing at your camping trip. Make your bedroll accordingly. If the weather is too cold, you should bring more blankets. Also, no need to bring any blankets if the weather is too hot. If there are mosquitoes there, then pack a mosquito net instead.


A bedroll is a very versatile camping companion. You can make changes in it to suit your style and needs. To get the most out of a bedroll, you should know how to make a bedroll for camping. A well-made bedroll is both easy to assemble and unroll. Within seconds you can set up your bed while camping. Every camper should know how to make a bedroll. Hopefully, after going through my guide, you can make a bedroll as well.

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I am Steve Hudson. I write about Fishing, Climbing, Hiking, Backpacking and Camping here at Living Ambition.

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