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Thread: Sleeping pads?

  1. #1
    Member tboehm's Avatar
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    Default Sleeping pads?

    Its a new year and I had to go quite a ways back to see any reports on pads. What did you use this year and how did it work for you? Anyone try anything new? I tried the cabela XPG and wasn't happy with it. An 1 1/2 pad just doesn't cut it so I'm looking for something new. The issue i'm trying to get around is the research or ideas that the air filled are thicker but the by using one they don't give you the warmth protection that the foam cells do. Then of coarse there is the weight issue to deal withand lets not forget the slipping issue as well. What are your thoughts? Who make the perfect pad?

  2. #2

    Default Sleeping pads

    I have the cabelas XPG. It works great for what it is. I also use it in moose camp on my slumberjack big cot as insluation from the air underneath me. However, Snyd has pretty much talked me into the Big Agnes http://www.backcountrygear.com/catal...oductID=BIG411. So I bought 2 pads. One for me and the little lady.

    Haven't had a chance to try them out yet but they get you 2.5 inches off the ground and are actually lighter than the XPG so seems like a win win to me. Yes you have to blow it up but it doesn't take that long. However I also blew up my XPG and Prolite 4 pads to get as much out of the 1.5 inches as possible.

  3. #3
    Member danattherock's Avatar
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    Default Thermarest Toughskin

    This will be my next pad. It has closed cell foam inside the air chamber so even if you get a leak and the pad will not stay inflated, you still get the warmth by having the closed cell foam inside. The exterior is a tough material that resist holes where other mats may fail. They are not cheap, but they appear to be very high quality. Here is a link with more info.

    http://www.thermarest.com/product_de...?pID=120&cID=2
    The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.

  4. #4
    Member danattherock's Avatar
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    Default Slipping...

    "Then of coarse there is the weight issue to deal withand lets not forget the slipping issue as well. What are your thoughts?"

    Forgot to say in the previous response, slip your sleeping pad inside your sleeping bag. That way it will not slide around. Some will argue that it will compress your sleeping bag and make it less effecient at keeping in heat as the material is cramped together and will not insulate as well. In theory, that is true. But I have used this setup in NW Alaska on float trips and it works well and I keep plenty warm. Obviously, you will want to be sure to have a warm bag. Even if it means taking a 0 instead of a 20 degree bag, it is a much more comfortable way to sleep in my opinion. What I like most is that you can slide (inside the bag) to the left and right, etc.. I like sliding when I want to change sides. But I agree, it is a real pain to slide off your sleeping pad all night using it under the bag. Try it inside your bag and you will never worry about that again.
    The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.

  5. #5

    Default

    Thermarest Prolite 4 is what we use, I've also heard good things about the Big Agnes pads too.

  6. #6

    Default Exped Inflatable Down Pad

    http://www.backcountry.com/store/ODR...57&id=xsJ6JcPG

    The absolutely best pad made.

    Only pad rated to -40 below

    Different air chambers, each filled with down. Inflates with its own carry bag. When needed you can compress down to the size of a loaf of bread.

    The harder you pump it up the warmer it is.

    Most comfortable pad ever used, can adjust pressure to fit your needs or temperature.

    Probably the most expensive pad out there, however you will never regret it.

  7. #7
    Member JamesMac's Avatar
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    Default Thermarest Z-Lite

    Probably not what your looking for but I use the Thermarest Z-Lite (Closed Cell) pad. It is very light weight, its water proof, and it only cost me $30. Plus you can sling it to the outside of your pack if space is ever an issue.

  8. #8
    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    Default

    Kudos to snyd for recommending the Big agnes insulated pad. I got the long mummy pad and just used it on a 20 below rex trail mis-adventure. The pad was one of the pieces of gear that proved worth its weight (well it is so light maybe that is not the best analogy!). I used it under the bag and didn't have a problem slipping off on level ground. I would probably put it inside the bag for sleeping on a mountain side. I wish my -15 degree bag had worked as well but my new wiggys bag will be here tomorrow I hope and I expect to have many years of comfortable back country sleeping in my future. Oh did I mention that it packs to about the size of a pack of english muffins! AK-Lanche you won't be dissapointed!

  9. #9
    Member 454casull's Avatar
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    Default Sleeping pad

    It really depends on what kind of trip you're using the pad for. Is it a backpack hunt in the mountains, are you using some sort of vehicle to haul your gear, are you sleeping in a heated wall tent(possibly on a cot), are you laying on the ground in a small two man tent, are you using it for a winter mountaineering trip, etc., etc. In my opinion, there is not one "do it all" sleeping pad. One thing to keep in mind is open cell pads can and will absorb water, but closed cell will not. For me it is a Thermarest Prolite 3 for most of my hunting. For winter I put a Z-Lite under it.

  10. #10
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by danattherock View Post
    "Then of coarse there is the weight issue to deal withand lets not forget the slipping issue as well. What are your thoughts?"

    Forgot to say in the previous response, slip your sleeping pad inside your sleeping bag. That way it will not slide around. Some will argue that it will compress your sleeping bag and make it less effecient at keeping in heat as the material is cramped together and will not insulate as well. In theory, that is true. But I have used this setup in NW Alaska on float trips and it works well and I keep plenty warm. Obviously, you will want to be sure to have a warm bag. Even if it means taking a 0 instead of a 20 degree bag, it is a much more comfortable way to sleep in my opinion. What I like most is that you can slide (inside the bag) to the left and right, etc.. I like sliding when I want to change sides. But I agree, it is a real pain to slide off your sleeping pad all night using it under the bag. Try it inside your bag and you will never worry about that again.
    That's not a bad idea. I think I just had a "DUH" moment. Big Agnes makes their bags to go with their pads in a system where the pad slips in the bag. There is no insulation on the bottom of the Big Agnes bags. It gets squashed anyway in a typical bag. That's why we use pads in the first place. I think my Big Agnes mummy pad will fit in my Cat's Meow bag. It's insulated and rated to 15 degrees, my bags rated to 20. Shouldn't make any difference in warmth. Might have to drag em out and try it. Thanks for the tip.
    A gun is like a parachute. If you need one, and donít have one, youíll probably never need one again

  11. #11
    Member danattherock's Avatar
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    Default That reminds me...

    The previous post reminded me of something. Big Agnes bags, while lightweight and very stowable, do not have insulation in the bottom, just a sleeve to hold a pad. Well, if you take one of their (or any other) inflatable pad and use it with that bag and the pad ruptures, you have N O insulation at all. That would be something to be mindful of if you have a Big Agnes sleeping bag.
    The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.

  12. #12
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    Thumbs up

    I have had good results with the Thermarest Prolite 4.

  13. #13
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by danattherock View Post
    The previous post reminded me of something. Big Agnes bags, while lightweight and very stowable, do not have insulation in the bottom, just a sleeve to hold a pad. Well, if you take one of their (or any other) inflatable pad and use it with that bag and the pad ruptures, you have NO insulation at all. That would be something to be mindful of if you have a Big Agnes sleeping bag.
    Ya no kidding. I've wondered about that myself. There is some Primaloft in the insulated air core pads so you may have some but not much.
    A gun is like a parachute. If you need one, and donít have one, youíll probably never need one again

  14. #14

    Default

    I've been very happy with a Pacific Outdoor inflatable / insulated pad. Comfy and warm down to about 15 degrees so far. I would take an additional closed cell to give some extra insulation for real winter use. It packs down to a nalgene bottle size.

    http://www.rei.com/product/751065

  15. #15
    Member AKGUPPY's Avatar
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    Default

    I use Thermarest. Also buy you a roll of "non-slip" rug liner material. I lay a 4' section between my pad and sleeping bag to keep from slipping. And just roll it up with the pad, it weighs practically nothing.

  16. #16
    Member danattherock's Avatar
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    Thumbs up One idea...

    I read in a expedition canoeing book recently how to prevent leaks in sleeping pads. He said the main cause is tiny holes from rocks/sticks/sand/etc.. and to sew a basic sleeve for the pad. Sew only three sides so you can take it off when you deflate and roll the pad. Slide the pad in the sleeve when you set up camp. He takes one piece of cotton sheet and one piece of wool. Both just an inch or two bigger than the pad. Use the cotton up side with warm weather camping to keep you cool and the wool side up with cold weather camping to retain heat. Neat idea for sure. But the main idea is to prevent the tiny holes that lead to leaks. Cheap and simple.
    The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.

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    Default Slice of Heaven

    I have used ridge-rests, thermarests, and have one of the Pacific Outdoor 2/3 length insulated air mattresses. The one I will never leave home without is my Exped Downmat 7 shortie (48" 1lb 6 oz with modified pump sack). Combined with a Montbell air pillow (2.7 oz), gives me a warm, sound, luxurious nights sleep in the mountains.

    It is bomber, just don't be dumb about preparing your sleep site. Check it for sharp rocks, sticks, etc. I have never slept so soundly in the mountains as I did this year on multiple sheep/goat hunts, due to the comfort and warmth of the Downmat and air pillow combination. No more tossing and turning and sore hip-bones, etc. I have punctured several therma-rests, and this thing appears to have a more durable bottom on it than a normal thermarest.

    So ++1 on the Exped Downmat!! Oh. Inflated thickness is practically 2.6 inches! Spendy but worth it!

    -Chris

  18. #18
    Member AKFishOn's Avatar
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    Default

    I just ordered the Big Agnes, after reading Synd's threads it must be a good pad if endorsed by him and seems to be a decent price.

  19. #19
    Member AKDoug's Avatar
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    Default

    My Big Agnes pad had been to HELL and back without a wear hole or leak ever. Until.....my nephew dropped a knife point through it in my bro-in-laws living room. I purposely took it outside in 30 degree weather and patched it with my patch kit. Several camping trips later and it still doesn't leak at all. i wish I could say that about my Thermarests.

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