On a whim, I checked the mileage to Jefferson County fairgrounds, the home of Wisconsin's Sheep and Wool Festival. It's about 36 miles, which is a distance I can ride in a day, no problems (couldn't have last year, but...). WI Sheep and Wool offers the chance to stay on the grounds, for $15 a day. I have panniers. I have a sleeping bag (45F). I have a tent. I don't have a sleeping pad. I don't have a way to cook. I'm also not an experienced camper, and the festival has a *lot* of attendees, so bailing to a motel would not be an option.
This is usually my *big* trip to shop for spinning fiber. Mostly wool, tho this year I really could stand to stock up on cotton and silk. No matter what I decide to go for, it will be pretty light and fluffy, so the more space I can leave in my panniers the better. Squishing is not usually good for it, especially the sort of stuff I go to the show for.
I tend to sleep cold. My bag has been field tested, but it was on a mattress in a platform tent up in the Boundary Waters... so it got plenty cold at night, but I had something like a 4" thick mattress and 3 feet of ground clearance. I am pretty confident I don't need to bring a cot, but I don't know how to pick between the various sleeping pads.
I'm happy eating lentils and rice, and I really like burritos and pita sandwiches, so I'm not *sure* I need a way to cook. But if it turns out to be 50F in the morning, I will be very very sad if I can't have hot tea. (which says to *me* I should at least have a way to boil water)
So where should I start in looking for stuff to add to my kit?