When planning to go camping with friends or family members, it is imperative to carry a sleeping pad to make the retreat more enjoyable and exciting. Otherwise, sleeping on the ground can turn out to be stressful, as you will have nothing to protect your body from the hard ground. To get the best camping experience, it is recommended to scout for the best backpacking sleeping pad in market by carrying out an intensive research online as well as offline. You could ask for recommendations from your peers to get value for money especially if this is your first time purchasing this product.
Different Types of Camping Sleeping Pads
Manufacturers have worked smart to design different sleeping pads to meet the diverse clientele needs and preferences. Here is a quick look at the various types of sleeping pads in the market. It is our hope that this information will help you find the best camping sleeping pad.
The new technologies have made it possible for manufacturing companies to make air pads that are extremely light in weight and ideal for camping expeditions. They come with reflective and insulation materials that will keep you warm throughout the night. The modern ones can be inflated with your breath in less than 3 minutes. Some also come with an inbuilt pump for inflation purposes. There are also manufacturing companies that sell an external hand pump alongside the pad.
- Comfortable and light in weight
- Have a compact design that makes it easy to pack
- Have additional insulation and reflective materials to increase warmth
- One can customize the mattress’ firmness by releasing or increasing the air quantity in the chambers
- Can be ripped by thorns and tree twigs
- In rare case, moisture can get trapped inside leading to mold issues during summer and freezing during winter
- Some make annoying crinkly sounds when moved
Self-inflating pads have an open valve that you can use to fill the air chambers before night falls. Just like the air pads, they have proper foam insulation to increase warmth and can be folded or rolled up to fit in the backpack. Models that are tailored for car camping can be easily rolled up without folding.
- Compact and comfortable
- Firmness can be adjusted by increasing or releasing some air
- Made using sturdy fabrics that can stand the test of time
- Heavier than the simple foam pads
- There is always the risk of it being punctured and ripped
These are considered the primary backpacking pads and are made from a foam material that has numerous air cells. You can roll or fold them in a Z formation after the camping expedition.
- Very lightweight
- Offer excellent insulation
- Less prone to leaks and punctures
- Can be used as sitting pads in the camping site
- Less comfortable
- Relatively firm and stiff
This video can also give you more insights on how to select the light backpacking sleeping pads.
How to Choose the Best Sleeping Pads for Camping, Backpacking
Let us shift gears and look at some of the key factors that you should consider to the camping activity.
Go for a self-inflating pad or a thick air pad that offers lots of cushioning. Even though it might be heavier and bulkier, you will enjoy the insulation that it provides.
For this kind of retreat, you do not want to carry heavy stuff. The best is an air pad that is self-inflating, has a compact design, and is lightweight. By deciding to use this one, you will save time and avoid exhausting your body muscles unnecessarily.
For a minimalist backpacking activity, should an ultra-light air pad instead of the heavier options. Ideally, the air pad should be light in weight and easy to pack up.
When going for a thru-hiking trip, it is recommended to have a closed cell foam pad that is durable and capable of keeping you warm during the night. Though it may not be comfortable, this type of sleeping pad is less prone to punctures. You can also easily repair it in the field if it is ripped accidentally.
The cold weather outdoor during winter does not mean that you should not have some fun. Get yourself a new well-insulated air pad and go camping to relax and connect with nature in spite of the cold weather. The best are often made from synthetic fiber material and has enough insulation material to prevent you from freezing. Check the R-value to know the level of insulation that it offers.
Reviews 2017: Top 7 Best Sleeping Pad for Camping and Backpacking
Klymit Static V sleeping pad is one of the most comfortable and top rated pad in the world today. One of the main reasons why most people prefer it to other conventional models in the market is that it has a compact design. You can fold it to the size of a water bottle. It also has dynamic side rails that are tailored to keep it firmly rooted on the ground all night.
Fox Outfitters is a premium sleeping pad that is made of a durable material that is less prone to tearing or ripping. The base fabric is abrasion resistant, and this makes it perfect for camping on rugged outdoor terrains. The manufacturer also went ahead to add an open cell foam that offers additional comfort as well as a diamond pattern that lowers its total weight.
Lightspeed Outdoors is a one of a kind self-inflating sleeping pad that comes in three different thicknesses and sizes to suit your preferences. Unlike other similar products in the market, this one has dual oversize air valves that allow one to inflate in within two minutes without using a pump. Has a high R-value and so you can count on it to keep you warm throughout the night. The materials used to make it are PVC free, so no crinkle plastic noises at night.
Basecamp sleeping option is an affordable and luxurious product that you can use for car camping as well as outdoor camping activities. It is ideal for all seasons and offers immense support and stability to all users. It is one of the top rated self-inflating products in the market, and the materials are durable. The die-cut foam will keep you comfortable throughout the night.
Made with comfortable stretch microfiber material, this is by far one of the most comfortable sleeping pads. The gray non-slip base made it possible for campers to set it up in different terrains. The deflation and inflation valves allow you to set it up or pack in the morning quickly. The material is durable and easy to clean. It comes with a stuff sack with a shoulder strap and a half-moon shaped handle for easy carrying.
Big Agnes Sleeping Pad comes with a two-piece valve that facilitates quick inflation and rapid deflation. The manufacturers also offer a repair kit that is packed with everything that you might need to repair it. It is comfortable and the weight is evenly distributed thanks to its stabilizer construction. The synthetic insulation material will keep your body warm and protect you from the cold surface beneath the pad.
Nemo sleeping pad is tailored to make your camping experience memorable and fun by providing a comfortable sleeping surface. The lateral baffles on this product prevent the pad from curving around your body while you sleep. The compact design allows one to pack it alongside other luxuries quickly. The material is durable and can withstand adverse weather conditions well. The manufacturer also offers a lifetime warranty, and this is clear proof that this product can stand the test of time and it is worth the price.
Frequently Asked Questions about Backpack Sleeping Pad
After carefully testing and evaluating all the above backpacking sleeping pads, we have arrived at a unanimous decision that the Klymit Static V Sleeping Pad is the best. One of the reasons why we choose this product is that it is ideal for any outdoor activity and environment and it is lightweight. It also has a V-chamber that prevents air movement and heat loss during the night, and this is the reason why it has a high R-value.
The synthetic materials used to assemble it are durable, friendly to skin, and comfortable. There is also a push valve that facilitates quick deflation and inflation at any time of the day. You do not need any prior experience to get maximum utility from this product, as it is easy to use and all the information that you need to operate it is provided in the user’s manual. Finally, it is moderately priced to suit all customers.
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