Author Topic: Sleeping pads  (Read 2329 times)

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Offline HikeBikeCook

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Re: Sleeping pads
« Reply #15 on: December 20, 2021, 05:33:18 am »
I have been using Big Agnes Air Core pads. I have one insulated and on non-insulated. I bought the insulated one for the my AT thru hike in 2007. It lasted to Harpers Ferry and I could not find the leak so I shipped it home and got a non-insulated replacement, since that was all the pack shop had in stock. The leaky one sat in a storage bin for a few years totally forgotten. Sorting out gear one day I came across it and tracked the leak to the valve area. I called BA and they said it was covered under warranty. - Cut off the valve to destroy the pad and sent them a picture and they sent a replacement.

After 10 years the non-insulated on failed as well and they replaced that one also. The new ones are lighter and noisier, but seem to be pretty durable, and the valves are different. They used to have a twist valve and I think I was too rough twisting it open and closed and that stressed the area where it attached. After that I would hold the valve in one hand and twist with the other.

I also picked up their inflator bag pump and it works incredible well. I usually fill the pad so it is tight and then lay on it and bleed out a little air to reach my comfort level.

BTW - Big Agnes just replaced my 15 year old Seedhouse SL2 from my AT hike (150+ camping nights) since the waterproofing was failing. Big Agnes and North Face have incredible product warranties and customer service. Jetboil it also very good, just not always 100% free :( - usually a steep discount to move to a current model.
« Last Edit: March 06, 2022, 06:22:43 am by HikeBikeCook »
Surly Disc Trucker, Lightspeed Classic, Scott Scale, Klein Mantra Comp. First touring bike Peugeot U08 - 1966

Offline BikeliciousBabe

Re: Sleeping pads
« Reply #16 on: December 20, 2021, 10:46:39 am »
Sea to Summit Comfort Light Insulated FTW!

https://seatosummitusa.com/collections/sleeping-pads


Offline hikerjer

Re: Sleeping pads
« Reply #17 on: March 03, 2022, 09:59:40 pm »
I'm looking for a DURABLE, lightweight and packable pad. I'm looking for a DURABLE, lightweight and packable pad." ----

Honestly, IMO, I don't think such a product exists.  Today's lightweight inflated air sleeping pads just don't seem to hold air for long before they get a leak somewhere. I've tried Big Agnes, Thermarest Neoair, etc. and sooner or later they all get some sort of leak. Granted, the companies generally stand by their product and will take care of the problem, but that can take weeks.  I still use the lightweight type pad for backpacking but for touring I've reverted to an old school,- 20 yrs, maybe - Thermarest. It's heavier and maybe not as comfortable but I've never had a leak with it and that's comforting when you're on the road for a month or longer. It's a trade off between weight and durability. On a long tour, I"ll take the weight penalty over sleeping on a deflated mat for who knows how long.
« Last Edit: March 03, 2022, 10:15:31 pm by hikerjer »

Offline staehpj1

Re: Sleeping pads
« Reply #18 on: March 04, 2022, 07:49:24 am »
I'm looking for a DURABLE, lightweight and packable pad. I'm looking for a DURABLE, lightweight and packable pad." ----

Honestly, IMO, I don't think such a product exists.
I think a lot of this has to do with the how it is used.  My Neoair have been used backpacking and bike touring in goathead country and held up fine with no problems.It probably has to do with my tent/bivy habits.  I never step on it.  I never get in the tent or bivywith shoes on.  I crawl in to the tent kicking my shoes off at the door.  I generally lay right down and when in the tent I am generally either sleeping or reading.

These days I use a bivy or cowboy camp a lot.  In either case i still do not step on the pad  I sit on it to get in the sleeping bag and bivy.

I did have one failure with the very first model neoair, but it wasn't catastrophic and they replaced it without it ever failing to the point of being unuseable.  It was the early delamination problem.  Not sure if they still have that or not.  I had the habit of sleeping on it with bare skin in hot weather.  Body oils, sunscreen, and insect repellent probably attacked it.  My bare skin was aklso very loud when I rolled over during the night since it stuck to the pad in hot weather.  I started wearing a tech tee shirt and it seemed to resolve both issues.  Anyone sleeping near me reported it was much quieter in camp when i wore the tee.

Oh, and fwiw I tended to have problems with leaks with the self inflating thermarest pads.  Not sure if I was maybe just harder on them in those days.

Offline John Nettles

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Re: Sleeping pads
« Reply #19 on: March 04, 2022, 10:09:06 am »
Out of curiosity, does anyone use the black closed foam pads anymore?  I rarely have an issue with my NeoAir and I always tour with several Tear Aid patches but have thought about going back to the foam pads.

Offline staehpj1

Re: Sleeping pads
« Reply #20 on: March 04, 2022, 12:13:39 pm »
Out of curiosity, does anyone use the black closed foam pads anymore?  I rarely have an issue with my NeoAir and I always tour with several Tear Aid patches but have thought about going back to the foam pads.
I haven't in decades, but have considered what I'd do for colder weather and figured that a foam pad under my neoair would be the ticket.  I'd probably go with an Exped FlexMat or Thermarest Z-Lite.  The rhing is that I have found the neolight warm enough even on chilly nights or even pretty cold ones as long as the daytime temps are warmish and the ground isn't frozen.  A 50+ F day leaves the ground fairly warm so even if the overnight low is in the teens I find the neoair up to the task.  These days I haven't been too inclined to tour of backpack in truly cold weather (like with sub freezing daytime highs).  XC ski or snowshoe trips haven't been in the mix but they would be the likely reason why I'd need to double up on the pad.

I can see using one of those pads as an only pad, but I expect that being as thin as they are they'd be less comfortable and I've become spoiled these days.  Also they are bulky if that matters to you packing needs.  Still I admit to being intrigued by them and the simplicity of not needing to deal with inflation.

Offline John Nettles

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Re: Sleeping pads
« Reply #21 on: March 04, 2022, 01:38:11 pm »
Pete, like you I haven't used one in decades (whenever the original thermorest came out).  Likewise, I like the simplicity and durability.  Probably just my body aging but I swear, they were fine when I was 17!

Offline staehpj1

Re: Sleeping pads
« Reply #22 on: March 04, 2022, 04:59:26 pm »
Pete, like you I haven't used one in decades (whenever the original thermorest came out).  Likewise, I like the simplicity and durability.  Probably just my body aging but I swear, they were fine when I was 17!
Yeah I wonder how I'd do with one now.  Maybe it would be better than I think.  I suspect that if the ground under it was flat and forgiving I'd be fine, but the 2-1/2" thick inflatable pads allow for a lot more bumps, rocks, roots, and irregularity in the ground.

Offline Ty0604

Re: Sleeping pads
« Reply #23 on: March 05, 2022, 08:44:12 pm »
I recently purchased a Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XLite from REI. I haven’t used it on any bikepacking trips yet but have so on two backpacking trips. Weighs 12 ounces and has an R-Value of 4.2. It’s extremely comfortable but also $200.

If you want something cheaper, my other pad is a Kelty Cosmic Air. Weighs 16 ounces and has an R-Value of 4. All for $40.
« Last Edit: March 06, 2022, 04:09:41 pm by Ty0604 »
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Offline staehpj1

Re: Sleeping pads
« Reply #24 on: March 06, 2022, 07:47:10 am »
I recently purchased a Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XLite from REI. I haven’t used it on any bikepacking trips yet but have so on two backpacking trips. Weights 12 ounces and has an R-Value of 4.2. It’s extremely comfortable but also $200.

If you want something cheaper, my other pad is a Kelty Cosmic Air. Weighs 16 ounces and has an R-Value of 4. All for $40.
Wow it has been a long time since I bought a neoair and I forgot how expensive they were.  I wondered what I paid for mine so I dug through old emails and found that I paid $150 in 2009.  I had forgotten what a big splurge it was.  I guess it was worth it though since it has been on a lot of trips, been super comfortable, and held up well.  Knocking off 4 ounces from the gear is worth a good bit if it is the only factor, but of course it never is.

That said the range of prices for various seemingly fairly similar pads seems kind of mind boggling to me.

I'd kind of like to try out one of the folding foam egg crate type pads.  Maybe the Z-Lite Sol?  I figure it would be useful if I ever need to supplement my Neoair for a real winter trip.  I also figure it would be fine for comfort on the sandy sites canoe and kayak camping here in Florida.  Also I am considering hiking the Florida Trail either in chunks or maybe even a thru hike.  I figure it would be nice to not need to inflate a pad every night if the comfort was adequate (which I expect it would be on most sites here).  I also figure it would make a decent seat cushion in my pirogue and be much lighter than what I am using now.  If REI's return policy is still good enough to allow for a decent trial and return I may buy one take it out for a local hike or flat a local river and return it if it fails muster.  We have a local REI opening soon (they say spring, but I haven't heard a date), so if I wait just a bit I can avoid dealing with return shipping.

Offline Ty0604

Re: Sleeping pads
« Reply #25 on: March 06, 2022, 04:15:11 pm »
I recently purchased a Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XLite from REI. I haven’t used it on any bikepacking trips yet but have so on two backpacking trips. Weights 12 ounces and has an R-Value of 4.2. It’s extremely comfortable but also $200.

If you want something cheaper, my other pad is a Kelty Cosmic Air. Weighs 16 ounces and has an R-Value of 4. All for $40.
Wow it has been a long time since I bought a neoair and I forgot how expensive they were.  I wondered what I paid for mine so I dug through old emails and found that I paid $150 in 2009.  I had forgotten what a big splurge it was.  I guess it was worth it though since it has been on a lot of trips, been super comfortable, and held up well.  Knocking off 4 ounces from the gear is worth a good bit if it is the only factor, but of course it never is.

That said the range of prices for various seemingly fairly similar pads seems kind of mind boggling to me.

I'd kind of like to try out one of the folding foam egg crate type pads.  Maybe the Z-Lite Sol?  I figure it would be useful if I ever need to supplement my Neoair for a real winter trip.  I also figure it would be fine for comfort on the sandy sites canoe and kayak camping here in Florida.  Also I am considering hiking the Florida Trail either in chunks or maybe even a thru hike.  I figure it would be nice to not need to inflate a pad every night if the comfort was adequate (which I expect it would be on most sites here).  I also figure it would make a decent seat cushion in my pirogue and be much lighter than what I am using now.  If REI's return policy is still good enough to allow for a decent trial and return I may buy one take it out for a local hike or flat a local river and return it if it fails muster.  We have a local REI opening soon (they say spring, but I haven't heard a date), so if I wait just a bit I can avoid dealing with return shipping.

They’re quite expensive! I’m impressed with the Kelty honestly. We were backpacking a route from Bryce Canyon to the Grand Canyon last March and my REI pad failed to inflate one night so I slept on the group. Couldn’t find the hole the next day so hitchhiked into Flagstaff and went to REI. They didn’t have any lightweight REI pads in stock so they gave me the Kelty since it was similar in price. I’d owned the REI pad for ~4 years and they didn’t give me any hassle with the return. I doubt your new REI will either.

If you end up with it, post a review!
Instagram: tyjames0604

WI—>WA—>CO

Offline ray b

Re: Sleeping pads
« Reply #26 on: March 06, 2022, 07:17:37 pm »
Out of curiosity, does anyone use the black closed foam pads anymore?  I rarely have an issue with my NeoAir and I always tour with several Tear Aid patches but have thought about going back to the foam pads.
Memory lane. Still have a couple of thicker pads for use in the snow, but they haven't found their way onto my bike in years.
“A good man always knows his limitations.”