Sleeping Pads

Info on gear, conditioning, and preparation for hiking/climbing.
User avatar
Posts: 1112
Joined: 7/10/2006
14er Checklist (42)
14ers Skied (18)
14ers in Winter (3)
13er Checklist (72)

Re: Sleeping Pads

Postby EatinHardtack » Wed May 01, 2013 2:03 pm

I bought an BA insulated aircore from recommendations on here about a year ago. Love it. Sleeps very well and I also bought a BA sleeping bag that integrates the pad. Loving the system. Another vote for Big Agnes.
User avatar
Posts: 857
Joined: 5/7/2007
14er Checklist (58)
14ers in Winter (58)
13er Checklist (400)

Re: Sleeping Pads

Postby dsunwall » Wed May 01, 2013 2:37 pm

some comparisons here in the comments area. I'm assuming you want something for fair weather not winter. I like the ridiculous lightweight, comfort and small package of the Neo's. I have not tried a BA though. see busted ribs comments at this forum You can find lots of comparisons with a search, seems like about 50/50 BA or Neo.
User avatar
Posts: 529
Joined: 7/13/2012
14er Checklist (39)
13er Checklist (7)

Re: Sleeping Pads

Postby ezabielski » Wed May 01, 2013 2:52 pm

I use a 3/4th length Neoair and put my pack under my feet. I used to use a 1/2 length Z-Lite, that I may return to.
Posts: 28
Joined: 6/11/2010
14er Checklist (26)

Re: Sleeping Pads

Postby aussie56 » Wed May 01, 2013 2:53 pm

I have an Exped Synmat 7 and I love it. Packs down to a water bottle on roids size and the 2.5" allows me to sleep on my side - and i am not a small person. Neo is probably similar but was more expensive - got a pretty good deal on the Exped at around $120 for the full length/wide size IIRC. And the 7 has a little bit of insulation too which is a good thing. I was camping at Trail camp (Whitney) with my son last year and he was using a regular old Thermaresr self inflater. He rolled on to my Exped getting out of the tent and he was seriously jealous! Said it felt like a Beautyrest compared to his! I bought him one for Christmas. Only quibble is that the built in pump takes a while to get it done.
User avatar
Posts: 11
Joined: 2/11/2013
14er Checklist Not Entered

Re: Sleeping Pads

Postby Fire_on_High » Wed May 01, 2013 3:11 pm

Yeah, seeing lots of BA insulated comments...looks pretty comfy!! Thanks for all the input. I recently noticed that some pads come with the sleeping bag integration and gotta say, that sure looks like the way to go, especially after sliding off this pad so much. Glad to see I'm not the only side sleeper! Thought maybe I just had to get used to flat-back sleep, which doesn't actually happen much :?
User avatar
Posts: 948
Joined: 2/26/2008
14er Checklist (50)
14ers Skied (48)
14ers in Winter (1)
13er Checklist (15)

Re: Sleeping Pads

Postby SchralpTheGnar » Wed May 01, 2013 3:21 pm

I have two therm-a-rests, one full size and thicker for winter camping, the other 3/4 size and thinner for summer. I've had both now going on 12 years, boo yah!
Posts: 12
Joined: 12/12/2011
14er Checklist (58)
14ers in Winter (6)

Re: Sleeping Pads

Postby OrthoMatt » Wed May 01, 2013 4:03 pm

I have both an Exped Synmat UL7 in the long/wide and a Big Agnes Q Core SL in the long/wide version that my wife and I use. I tried one of the NeoAir Xtherm pads and while I slept great, it didn't fly with my wife due to the noise. It sounds like you are crinkling a Sun Chips bag every time you roll over.

Having slept on both, they are both great mats. Sure, the long/wide versions are a little heavier, but I would rather carry a few extra ounces for a better night's sleep. My opinion for what it's worth...

The Exped:
A little quicker to inflate/deflate
It kind of reminds me of sleeping on a pool toy due to the vertical baffles
Not as high of an R value (insulation) as the Big Agnes so not good for winter unless you combine it with a closed cell pad underneath
Packs down smaller than a 1 liter Nalgene

The Big Agnes:
More comfortable due to its quilted top
Warm enough for me to sleep directly on snow without a foam pad beneath with a good sleeping bag
Packs down a little bigger than the Exped but it's only a little larger than a Nalgene for the long/wide version

I definitely prefer these to the old self-inflating 1-1.5" thick pads. As others have said, it isn't bad to blow them up by mouth and I sleep so much better with 2.5-3" of pad below me.
User avatar
Posts: 1872
Joined: 6/29/2012
14er Checklist Not Entered
13er Checklist (16)

Re: Sleeping Pads

Postby TallGrass » Wed May 01, 2013 5:47 pm

Therm-a-rest NeoAir Xlite, small to keep my core warm as I just toss my pack or other gear under my knees/feet to get them off the ground if needed. I can sleep on a hard surface so long as I'm warm, so it's more a R-value (3.2) thing for me (Xtherm goes to 5.7 and 11oz) and at 8oz and less than a liter it's hard to beat for weight and packed size. Bag is a MH Phantom 32F which is also small, light. Also have a silk bag liner.
Not sure if I'll do more 14ers. The trip reports are too tiring. :wink:
"A few hours' mountain climbing make of a rogue and a saint two fairly equal creatures.
Tiredness is the shortest path to equality and fraternity - and sleep finally adds to them liberty."
Posts: 178
Joined: 1/31/2008
14er Checklist (5)

Re: Sleeping Pads

Postby climbingaggie03 » Wed May 01, 2013 6:02 pm

I have 4 thermarests (I'm a bit of a gear whore)

My original and go to for a long time was the 4 season thermarest prolight in a 3/4 length. It keeps me warm enough on snow, it's comfortable enough, and when I bought it it was pretty much the lightest inflatable option out there.

After spending a month camping on snow with my 3/4 length and a square piece of foam that constantly slid out from underneath my feet, I decided that I liked having warm feet, so I bought the same mattress but in a full length version. I like my full length, it's a bit heavier but it keeps my feet warm and happy.

I also have the thermarest dream time which is fantastic but at 8lbs it's pretty much for car camping, rafting, and snow mobile camping.

I recently picked up an original neo air and it's great, it's super light, super comfortable and super compact. It is a bit crinkly and it's not very warm but for summer use and for travel, it's pretty awesome. The biggest pain about the neo air is inflating it, but with the use of the over priced stuff sack inflating thing it's much better. The sack only adds a couple of ounces and it's pretty useful for other things and it makes inflating the neo air without blacking out from hyperventilation very possible.

I think a combination of a ridge rest or z-light and a neo air would be awesome in winter and the newer neo airs do have some insulative properties so they may be an even better option than the original.
User avatar
Posts: 69
Joined: 9/10/2007
14er Checklist (43)
14ers Skied (1)
13er Checklist (1)

Re: Sleeping Pads

Postby bhaydin » Fri May 03, 2013 8:35 am

I have a number of sleeping pads, more for weight savings than anything else. I sleep on the BA insulated air core in the winter. Great price point compared to weight.

During the summer months I am happy with a thermarest prolight I purchased several years ago. Again, at just over 1 lb it is light enough and doesn't cost an arm and a leg.

If you want to read a bunch of reviews, you can head here:

I'm one of the testers for this group and I enjoy it (it is a volunteer position) because I can try out gear for free and keep what I like. If anyone else is interested in joining, we could always use some more testers.
User avatar
Posts: 110
Joined: 8/29/2008
14er Checklist (30)

Re: Sleeping Pads

Postby thespoonybard » Fri May 03, 2013 9:07 am

I used a BA insulated air core on Aconcagua. Kept me warm (far below zero) and let me sleep like a baby in complete comfort! Worth its weight in gold. Be aware you may have to give it a couple "pump-me-up" encouragement breaths throughout the evening/night.
User avatar
Posts: 398
Joined: 6/6/2011
14er Checklist (58)

Re: Sleeping Pads

Postby herdbull » Fri May 03, 2013 5:53 pm

All I know is these new Neoair mattresses are like sleeping on corn flakes. One big fart in the middle of the night and your tent mate will go through the roof :-D

I passed on buying one just because of the noise factor. You blink your eyes and the gosh darn thing made noise.

Return to “Gear, Climbing Prep, Safety, etc.”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: AndrewLyonsGeibel, nebclimber and 24 guests