October 1, 2022

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The Finest Backpacking Sleeping Pads of 2022

Our trail-loving consultants discovered one of the best backpacking sleeping pads for each use and price range. From side-sleeping consolation to ultralight packability, we’ve acquired you lined.

The most important concern with backpacking sleeping pads is discovering the correct steadiness between consolation and weight. And this steadiness relies upon largely on the person. Ounce-counters might desire the lightest pad doable, even when it means forgoing some consolation.

Nevertheless, different backpackers might desire to surrender weight in different areas to allow them to fortunately carry a bigger, extra snug sleeping pad.

There are advantages to each approaches, nevertheless it’s price understanding what issues most to you earlier than persevering with. We’ve damaged down one of the best backpacking sleeping pads into classes that will help you discover the correct sleeping pad for you.

Scroll by means of to see all of our really helpful buys or soar to the class you’re in search of. On the finish of our record, make sure to take a look at our complete purchaser’s information.

The Finest Backpacking Sleeping Pads of 2022

Finest Total Backpacking Sleeping Pad: Sea to Summit Consolation Plus Insulated

Our editor has been testing this sleeping pad ($219-239) because it got here out in 2015. And as of 2022, it’s nonetheless going robust, having by no means sprung a leak.

One among our favourite issues about this pad is the double air chambers. This characteristic has confirmed to be integral in stopping tears and provides it a built-in redundancy. If one facet pops (which it hasn’t in lots of, many tenting journeys for our tester), the opposite ought to nonetheless be good, protecting you off the chilly floor.

The double chambers additionally help you create a customized firmness. You possibly can inflate it by blowing, which may be very simple to do and doesn’t take many breaths to fill.

You may also use the pump bag that comes built-in into the stuff sack. Both method, it’s quick and simple to fill this pad.

Sea to Summit Backpacking Sleeping Pad
(Picture/Eric Phillips)

At 1 lb 11 oz, this pad is on the heavy facet for backpacking, however we’re keen to hold a little bit further weight for when temps drop low at evening. The redundancy alone is price a couple of further ounces, and the pad works nice for automotive tenting too.

Though the 40-denier cloth isn’t the hardest doable, we’ve discovered it lots robust along with being heat, packable, and comfy. And if one thing does go awry, the pad comes with a restore package. All in all, the Consolation Plus Insulated is a superb backpacking and automotive tenting sleeping pad.

Specs:
  • Weight: 1 lb. 11 oz.
  • R-value: 5
  • Thickness: 2.5″
Execs:
  • Twin air chambers present redundancy and permit for customized firmness
  • Packs down small
Cons:
  • Costly
  • Not as mild as different pads

Verify Value at REI

Finest Sleeping Pad for Aspect Sleepers: Large Agnes Insulated Q-Core Deluxe

Big Agnes Insulated Q-Core Deluxe

Are you in search of a sleeping pad that may maintain you snug and heat even once you’re deep within the backcountry? It’s time you met the Q-Core ($170-250). With an R-value of 4.3, it delivers glorious insulation from the bottom, protecting you cozy all evening.

We additionally discovered this pad extremely snug. The three.5-inch thickness is sufficient to fulfill even the facet sleepers amongst us, and the 20-inch width is simply sufficient to maintain most testers comfortable.

For added consolation, there are broad and XL variations accessible. Simply do not forget that rising the scale will add to the burden and packed measurement.

It’s not as quiet as foam-insulated tenting pads, however we discovered the slight crinkle stage acceptable. The twin valves made inflation simple, and when you get the hold of it, the inflation sack is useful and breath-saving.

Specs:
  • Weight: 1 lb. 9 oz.
  • R-value: 4.3
  • Thickness: 3.5″
Execs:
  • Heat
  • Extraordinarily snug
Cons:
  • Not the lightest accessible

Verify Value at REI

Finest Finances Sleeping Pad: Klymit Static V

Klymit Static V

This pad ($52) is an unimaginable worth. For lower than 60 bucks, you will get a super-packable and fairly snug backpacking pad. At a little bit over a pound, it’s not ultralight, nevertheless it’s actually on the sunshine finish of the spectrum.

It packs down simply and solely takes a couple of breaths to inflate. We’ve had one in testing that wore out after 6 months of laborious use and stopped holding air, however we’ve had one other in testing for greater than 18 months with no sturdiness issues.

In the event you sleep chilly or are tenting in the course of the fall or winter, you could wish to think about a pad with a better heat ranking. The Static additionally is available in a lengthy and broad model in case you want a little bit extra wiggle room. They weigh and price a bit extra, however they provide up extra consolation and nonetheless clock in below $100.

Specs:
  • Weight: 18.6 oz.
  • R-value: 1.3
  • Thickness: 2.5″
Execs:
Cons:
  • Not insulated
  • Lengthy-term sturdiness issues

Verify Value at REI

Finest Ultralight Backpacking Sleeping Pad: Therm-a-Relaxation NeoAir Uberlite

Thermarest NeoAir Uberlite Sleeping Pad

Probably the most spectacular factor about this pad ($190-$250) is the burden — or lack thereof. At simply 8.8 ounces, it actually received’t weigh you down. And since it packs all the way down to the scale of a soda can, you’ll have extra room in your pack for different gear and snacks.

However what actually received us over is its consolation stage. We had been pleasantly stunned to seek out it felt nice and wasn’t noisy once we shifted positions in the course of the evening.

As one tester famous, “It was simply as snug as different air mattresses of the identical thickness. I may sleep on my facet at my most well-liked air stress with out shoulder or hip ache.

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“I flip sides whereas sleeping, and the UberLite was worlds quieter than the XLite, one thing tentmates and campsite neighbors will respect. I’ve had neighboring campers rise up and transfer in the midst of the evening due to the crackling of my XLite.”

Since 2020, Therm-a-Relaxation backpacking sleeping pads have featured the WingLock Valve. The wings toggle for one-way inflation, making it far simpler to explode. It’s the identical easy-to-use Therm-a-Relaxation valves we’ve reliably used for years, besides significantly improved.

It’s additionally accessible in a massive model, which retails for $250 and weighs in at 12 ounces.

Specs:
  • Weight: 8.8 oz.
  • R-value: 2
  • Thickness: 2.5″
Execs:
  • Extraordinarily mild
  • Packs all the way down to the scale of a soda can
Cons:
  • Not as heat as insulated pads

Verify Value at REI

First Look: Therm-a-Rest NeoAir UberLite Air Mattress
First Look: Therm-a-Relaxation NeoAir UberLite Air Mattress
The Therm-a-rest NeoAir UberLite is the lightest insulated air mattress ever made. We examined the NeoAir UberLite for this assessment. Learn extra…

Most Comfy Sleeping Pad: NEMO Tensor

tensor

The NEMO Tensor Sleeping Pad ($190-220) has all the time been broad, supportive, quiet, and comparatively heat. The unique Tensor was someplace between good and nice. It’s been upgraded for 2022, and the outcomes are top-notch.

The pad’s enhancements come from the within out. NEMO redesigned its Spaceframe — what the model calls the structural baffles contained in the pad that give it assist and stability — to make each the insulated and uninsulated pads hotter.

The brand new baffle design nonetheless has particular person tack factors that stop the pad from feeling like a raft beneath you, and the insulation continues to be woven between the baffles in a method that retains it quiet. There’s no pad squeaking or crinkling whereas rolling round.

The pad comes with the NEMO Vortex Pump Sack, which inflated all sizes of the pad rapidly and effectively with out filling the pad with moisture from my breath.

It’s accessible in mummy and rectangular shapes, two lengths, and as each insulated and uninsulated choices. Although this pad is mild and compact sufficient to make use of for backpacking, it’s lots snug and sturdy for automotive tenting too.

Learn our full assessment.

Specs:
  • Weight: 13.8-15 oz.
  • R-value: 4.2 (insulated), 2.5 (uninsulated)
  • Thickness: 3 in.
Execs:
  • Very snug
  • Stays quiet when rolling round
  • Secure but plush
Cons:

Verify Value at REI

Most indestructible: Therm-a-Relaxation Z Lite Sol

Therm-a-Rest Z Lite Sol

There’s a motive closed-cell foam is a cult basic. It’s mild, it’s heat, and it’s just about indestructible. It’s no shock that you just often see it listed amongst thru-hikers’ favourite items of substances.

The aluminized floor (the silver facet) of this pad ($55) displays warmth again towards your physique and gives further heat at evening, whereas the egg-carton sample will increase consolation and insulation.

Even in case you don’t plan to make use of this as your sole sleeping pad, it’s an important addition to no matter else you select to make use of on prime. It gives unmatched sturdiness and further insulation, that are integral elements for getting a superb evening’s relaxation at camp.

Specs:
  • Weight: 14 oz.
  • R-value: 2.6
  • Thickness: 0.75″
Execs:
  • Indestructible
  • Multifunctional
  • Gentle
Cons:
  • Not as snug as different sleeping pads

Verify Value at REI

Better of the Relaxation

Therm-a-Relaxation ProLite Plus

Therm-a-Rest Prolite Plus Sleeping Pad

This Therm-a-Relaxation sleeping pad ($110-140) is snug and heat with out sacrificing a lot within the realm of value and packed measurement. Produced from a mixture of foam and air baffles, it gives a superb warmth-to-weight ratio.

We gave it a few breaths to prime it off and had been instantly happy with the consolation and insulation. It packs down smaller than a roll of paper towels and weighs a little bit over a pound.

With an R-value of three.2, this may very well be a year-round sleeping pad for many who run hotter. For many who are likely to get chilly at evening, you’ll most probably desire one thing extra insulated in winter.

It’s additionally accessible in a girls’s-specific design.

Specs:
  • Weight: 1 lb. 7 oz.
  • R-value: 3.2
  • Thickness: 1.5″
Execs:
Cons:
  • Not as mild as some pads

Verify Value at REI

Sea to Summit Ether Gentle XT Insulated

Sea to Summit Ether Light XT Insulated

This insulated sleeping pad ($179-209) packs down small and has some further options that make it stand out.

First off, we favored the built-in pump bag that’s constructed into the stuff sack (referred to as the Airstream pump). Principally, you flippantly blow into the bag after which squeeze the air into the pad. It appears bizarre at first, nevertheless it’s a lot much less energy-intensive than instantly blowing up the pad.

This pad additionally has a “pillow lock” that helps sure Sea to Summit pillows keep in place. Its sticky felt grabs onto the pillow to maintain it from shifting round when you sleep. If you have already got an Aeros Pillow, this may very well be nice. If not, it won’t do you any good.

These options apart, the Ether Gentle XT gives further insulation for chilly nights and is mild sufficient to simply take backpacking. It’s not the most affordable on the market, however this is a superb selection if further insulation and fewer weight are essential to you.

Specs:
  • Weight: 15 oz.
  • R-value: 3.8
  • Thickness: 4″
Execs
Cons

Verify Value at REI

NEMO Flyer

NEMO Flyer

The NEMO Flyer ($120-140) combines one of the best of foam-core consolation with air mattress packability. At 1 pound 6 ounces, it’s not the lightest possibility, however the added consolation is price it in case you don’t thoughts a couple of extra ounces.

As our reviewer famous, “The NEMO Flyer is a light-weight, three-season pad that hits the candy spot between an air pad and a self-inflating foam pad. The distinctive air-filled foam baffles create secure, cushioned thickness with extra sturdiness and resistance to bottoming than an air pad, with a slight weight and bulk penalty. But it surely’s lighter and packs smaller than a self-inflating pad.”

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Specs:
  • Weight: 1 lb. 6 oz.
  • R-value: 3.3
  • Thickness: 2″
Execs:
  • Foam sturdiness and padding
  • Plus air pad consolation
Cons:
  • Heavier/bulkier than another choices

Verify Value at REI

Why You Ought to Belief Us

Purchaser’s Information: The Finest Backpacking Sleeping Pads

A restful evening’s sleep units you up for fulfillment on a full day of backpacking adventures. Previously, individuals rightfully assumed sleeping on a pad on the bottom may merely by no means match the consolation of an actual mattress.

Nevertheless, lately, sleeping pads have improved considerably. Now, with developments in cell design and baffling, many high-quality sleeping pads provide distinctive heat and luxury.

Whereas consolation requirements have elevated, packed measurement and weight have additionally dropped, and the ensuing pads are mild, simple to make use of, and great to sleep on.

As a result of there are such a lot of nice pads available on the market, it may be tough to choose. On this information, we break down a few of the most essential concerns for buying the proper sleeping pad.

From weight and thickness to sturdiness and value, we hope to reply your entire sleeping pad-related questions on this purchaser’s information.

Sorts of Sleeping Pads: Foam, Self-Inflating, and Air Pads

Sea to Summit Etherlight XT sleeping pad
Inflatable air pads just like the Sea to Summit EtherlightXT provide plentiful consolation. (photograph/Eric Phillips)

There are three sorts of backpacking sleeping pads: air pads, foam pads, and self-inflating pads. Every class has its personal record of professionals and cons, and it’s essential to grasp the variations between them.

Air Pads

Air pads are the lightest and most compact sort of sleeping pad. When not in use, these pads are deflated and in a position to pack down right into a small stuff sack concerning the measurement of a water bottle. As a result of most of their insulation comes trapped in air, they’ll develop into fairly thick with out extra weight or bulk.

In comparison with different classes, air pads are essentially the most susceptible to punctures and air valve points. Normally, punctures are fixable with the correct provides, however some individuals steer clear of air pads as a result of puncture threat.

Self-Inflating Pads

Self-Inflating pads have been round for a lot of many years. Most pads on this class mix inflation with open-cell foam to lower puncture threat and improve sturdiness.

Nevertheless, self-inflating pads don’t pack down as small as air pads, they usually are typically a bit heavier. If these pads do puncture or deflate, you’ll nonetheless have some padding between you and the bottom, nevertheless it received’t be a cushty evening’s sleep.

Foam Pads

Closed-cell foam pads are the unique backpacking sleep system know-how. Though these are typically the least snug pad fashion, they’re extraordinarily dependable and may final for many years if handled with care.

On a foam pad, you’ll be able to sleep soundly with out worrying about punctures. Normally, foam pads fold or roll to pack away, however they take up far extra space in your pack than different sorts of pads and infrequently should be strapped to the surface.

Weight

For backpacking, the objective is all the time to reduce the overall weight of your pack. As of late, thick and comfy pads which are additionally light-weight provide a really perfect resolution to backpackers.

Some single-person pads are as mild as half a pound, whereas heftier choices might weigh 2 full kilos. For a superb steadiness between weight and sturdiness, think about a pad that weighs round 14-18 ounces.

Thickness

On uneven or rocky floor, a skinny pad will really feel solely barely higher than mendacity on the naked earth. As a basic rule, thicker pads are extra snug. Nevertheless, thickness does add weight and bulk, so we recommend you intention to discover a comfortable medium.

If you’re a again sleeper, your weight might be a bit extra evenly distributed and also you could possibly get by with a thinner pad. Aspect sleepers are likely to desire thicker pads.

Any inflatable pad over 3.5 inches thick might be on the extra plush facet, whereas most foam pads are lower than 1 inch thick.

Comparing Sleeping Pads
Tenting pad thickness instantly pertains to the general consolation and heat. (photograph/Eric Phillips)

Consolation

Typically, pads made for backpacking might be much less plush than pads made for car-based tenting. As a result of backpackers intention to reduce weight, pure consolation isn’t the precedence.

Nonetheless, many trendy pads provide a beneficiant mixture of insulation, padding, and sleeping space all in a light-weight bundle. For some backpackers, a bit of additional weight is a small value to pay for added consolation.

R-Worth Defined

The R-value of a pad describes the quantity of insulation between the person and the bottom. Insulation prevents your physique warmth from escaping into the earth under. With out a well-insulated pad, sleeping on the bottom may be very chilly, even when the air temperature within reason heat.

In hotter situations, a sleeping pad with an R-value of lower than 3 ought to be ample. Nevertheless, in case you plan to backpack within the shoulder seasons, you’ll be higher off with a better ranking (between 3 and 5). For winter tenting, an R-value of no less than 5 is the best way to go.

Sleeping Pad Dimensions

Sleeping pads usually are available numerous sizes, and customers can select the choice that most closely fits their physique and preferences. Frequent sizes embrace common, which is normally round 6 toes lengthy, and huge, which tends to be nearer to 80 inches. Pad width additionally varies, however anyplace between 18 and 26 inches is pretty customary.

Most backpacking pads are semi-rectangular in form, and a few taper down and develop into extra slender towards the toes. Two-person sleeping pads are additionally accessible, however they’re fairly cumbersome and usually not preferrred for backpacking.

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sleeping pad dimensions
The Thermarest NeroAir Uberlite is a really light-weight pad that’s nonetheless nice to sleep on. (photograph/ Therm-a-Relaxation)

Packed Dimension

A pad’s packed measurement will depend on building, supplies, and the quantity of insulation. Air pads with minimal further built-in insulation are likely to pack down smaller than all different sorts of pads. Most air pads match simply right into a backpacking pack — some are not any bigger than a soccer.

Packed measurement will be a difficulty for foam and self-inflating pads. As soon as absolutely rolled, these pads will be fairly cumbersome, they usually typically should be carried on the surface of the pack.

Inflation and Deflation

Whereas foam pads don’t require inflation to make use of, all different pad varieties are constructed with an built-in air valve. Traditionally, valves have been the weak level of sleeping pads, and they are often tough to exchange as soon as damaged.

However now, good-quality backpacking pads include dependable valves which are hermetic and provide fast and simple inflation and deflation.

Most air pads have flat valves, which embrace an inside flap that stops air from escaping in between inflation breaths. These valves are easy and sturdy, and most pads with flat valves will be inflated with someplace between 10 and 25 breaths.

Self-inflating pads are designed to refill on their very own as soon as the valve is open, however they normally want some common inflation breaths to completely pump up and develop into agency.

Z Lite Sol Sleeping Pad Backpacking photo
The Z Lite Sol foam sleeping pad is so sturdy that it may be carried on the surface of your pack with out concern. (photograph/Eric Phillips)

Sturdiness and Care

With correct upkeep, a superb backpacking pad can final for a few years with common use. Foam pads can take a number of abuse and final endlessly, however inflatable pads are fragile and should be dealt with with care.

Punctures are the primary risk to air pads. As with all outside gear, abrasion resistance and cloth thickness are measured with a denier ranking. Thick cloth is extra proof against punctures. Air pad denier rankings differ broadly, from round 15-denier to 80-denier.

As a rule, all the time clear away any doubtlessly sharp objects from beneath your sleeping floor earlier than organising your tent. When sleeping in your pad, the usage of a tent footprint creates an additional barrier between your pad and the bottom. It’s additionally sensible to maintain your pad away from fires which will spit sparks and bits of sizzling ash.

As the usual has moved towards light-weight backpacking pads, many corporations are utilizing skinny and doubtlessly susceptible supplies. As with all ultralight gear, sturdiness isn’t the precedence. The lifespan of a light-weight pad will rely upon how nicely it’s cared for.

Finest practices for storing a pad rely upon the kind of pad you personal. Self-inflating pads ought to be saved unrolled with the valve open to keep up the loft of the insulation. Air pads will be saved rolled up, however all the time maintain them in a stuff sack and ensure they’re absolutely deflated.

For foam pad storage, keep away from leaving heavy gadgets on prime of the pad. Additionally, in case you retailer a foam pad rolled up, it is going to be tough to get it to put flat sooner or later, although the z-pad design prevents this.

Pump Sacks: Do They Work?

Some air pads include pump sacks that help you pump up your pad with out respiration right into a valve. Pump sacks lower inflation time and stop moisture from getting inside your pad (which might result in a wide range of issues). Additionally, many pump sacks double as stuff sacks, so that they shouldn’t add a lot weight to your setup.

Nevertheless, many backpackers really feel pump sacks have solved an issue that didn’t exist within the first place. Whereas some individuals swear by them, they don’t seem to be a needed merchandise.

Value

The worth of a superb sleeping pad varies from lower than $50 to nicely over $200. Foam pads are the most affordable, and light-weight air pads are normally the costliest.

As you identify your sleeping pad price range, keep in mind your pad is a vital piece of substances that may have an effect on your high quality of relaxation after a protracted day on the path.

Two backpackers on sleeping pads hanging out in the tent
The standard of your sleeping pad could make or break your backpacking journey. (photograph/Eric Phillips)

FAQ

What Is the Most Comfy Backpacking Sleeping Pad?

Totally different backpackers have completely different consolation preferences. Probably the most snug pad is the one which permits you to sleep soundly after a full day of mountaineering. Earlier than you buy a pad, ensure that it meets your standards for measurement, thickness, supplies, value, and above all else, consolation.

What Is a Good Weight for a Backpacking Sleeping Pad?

On the low finish, light-weight air pads will be as little as 8 ounces. Heavy foam pads might weigh nicely over a pound. A four-season pad will comprise extra materials and insulation, and a complete weight between 12 and 18 ounces is regular.

What Is the Finest Sleeping Pad for Aspect Sleepers?

Aspect sleepers will need a thicker pad than again sleepers. In the event you persistently sleep in your facet, think about buying an air pad that’s no less than 3 inches thick. The Large Agnes Q-Core scored excessive marks from our facet sleepers.

What Sleeping Pad Has the Highest R-Worth?


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