Air Beds

The Best Backpacking Sleeping Pads

Chris King

In this article, check out the top 5 sleeping pads out on the market perfect for back packers. A most have to ensure warmth, insulating your body from the cold ground and added comfort.

The Best Backpacking Sleeping Pads

Whether you are hiking, camping or off on a longer expedition, a good nights sleep can make all the difference before a new day, so looking to improve comfort is crucial when sleeping outdoors.

Top 5 Sleeping Pads

We round up the 5 best sleeping pads ideal for camping and backpacking and a good replacement for an air mattress.

Therm-A-Rest NeoAir XLite

The Therm-A-Rest NeoAir XLite is firm and comfortable. The R-Value is 3.2 making an ideal sleeping pad for environments thatget down to32 degrees Farenheit. Also, it only takes 15 breaths to inflate.Two negatives that come withthe Therm-A-Rest NeoAir XLite are it makes a lot of noise when you move around on it and the width. The sleeping pad consists of several internal air baffles, that are covered in foil like heat reflectors, as a result, this pad is loud.

Secondly, you lose about an inch of width on the side you put weight on, which would leave some of your body parts hanging off the sides. Putting those to miner issues aside, the Therm-A-Rest NeoAir XLite inflates to a thickness of 2.5 inches, costs 140 dollars, and only weighs 350 grams, which makes it perfect for ultra light backpackers.

Our Choice
Therm-a-Rest NeoAir
Our Rating
  • Ultralight (16 ounces) inflatable air mattress for backpacking and mountaineering offers maximum warmth for the weight, ideal for 3-season alpine adventures
  • Reflective ThermaCapture technology traps radiant heat while Triangular Core Matrix baffled construction provides stability and minimizes heat loss
Buy on Amazon

So if you want a light, affordable, firm, and comfortable sleeping pad, that will give you warmth in temperatures as low as 32 degrees Fahrenheit. The Therm-A-Rest NeoAir XLite is the sleeping pad you need to drive down to the store and get because you won’t be disappointed I can promise you that.

Therm-A-Rest Z-Lite SOL

The good thing about sleeping on this pad is it provides comfort and insulation thanks to its R-Value being rated at 2.6. Also, the pad is practically indestructible and weatherproof.

Sharp objects, rain, snow, and dog teeth are no match for this pad, which is made out of an incompressible foam structure. Despite it only being 52 inches in length, it is still worth buying since it fits well in a backpack and is great for camping outdoors.

Therm-a-Rest Z Lite Sol Camping and Backpacking Sleeping Pad, Limon/Silver, Regular - 20 x 72 Inches
  • Lightweight and compact closed-cell foam camping mattress is a durable, dependable, and economical option for sleeping on the ground
  • Trusted by mountaineers and backpackers for generations, the classic pad features folding accordion-style construction that is compact and easily packable

Furthermore, Therm-A-Rest Z-Lite SOL, Small is very cheap, but it’s quality. The Therm-A-Rest Z-Lite SOL, Small only costs 35 bucks. That is a good deal for something this high in quality. So if you’re looking for a small, affordable, reliable, comfortable, and quality sleeping pad, this pad was specifically designed for you.

Exped Comfort Megamat 10

The Exped Comfort Megamat 10 in a lot of customer’s eyes is more comforting and relaxing than theTempurpedic memory foam mattress. This pad gives you cushion, support, and space. Also, once you inflate the pad it provides a flat surface to lay on and the 78″ x 30″ size gives you more than enough room to stretch out and relax. Furthermore, the insulation is at a very high level since the R-Value is rated at 9.5.You can also inflate this pad using only 25 breaths even though its so large, but expect to have to do a little more work deflating the pad, which will consist of a lot of rolling and squishing to get in its sack.

Analyzing the body of the The Exped Comfort Megamat 10, you can see the to surface is made out of aluxurious brushed fleece material. It is a very soft and quiet surface to lay on. While this sleeping pad is comfy, it is a bit of a hassle to travel with due to it’s enormous size.

The Exped Comfort Megamat 10 weighs 2,551 grams/5.6 pounds and is 31 inches long, but it is well worth the trouble since it’s so comfortable. Next, The Exped Comfort Megamat 10 will cost you 220$, which isn’t bad considering how big it is and the quality of material its made out of. So if you’re looking for a huge pad, that is extremely comfortable. The The Exped Comfort Megamat 10 is the right choice.

Therm-A-Rest NeoAir XTherm

This sleeping pad can be best described as the best cold weather sleeping pad. The layer of nylon on its underside is thick and strong. Also, with an R-Value of 5.9 the insulation is exceptional. This makes the Therm-A-Rest NeoAir XTherm perfect for temperatures that drop below 0 degrees Farenheit.

Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XTherm Ultralight Backpacking Air Mattress, Standard Valve, Regular - 20 x 72 Inches
  • The XTherm offers the most warmth-per-ounce of any ultralight sleeping pad for backcountry pursuits
  • Equipped with a dependable and rugged WingLock valve, the pad inflates 3 times faster than a classic valve and features lightning-fast deflation

One small issue with this sleeping pad is it does make a lot of noise, but considering it is a very light pad that carries a lot of insulation and comfort, this small problem can be easily overlooked.

The Therm-A-Rest NeoAir XTherm costs 150 dollars and if you’re looking for a sleeping pad that will give you warmth, comfort, and relaxation even in the lowest of temperatures. The Therm-A-Rest NeoAir XTherm is the perfect product for you.

Nemo Astro Insulated Lite 20R

The Nemo Astro Insulated Lite 20R is by far the best all around sleeping pad out on the market today. Whether you are backpacking, car camping, or just looking for a pad that can give you optimal comfort while sleeping outdoors, the best option out there is the Nemo Astro Insulated Lite 20R. Furthermore,The three inch pad provides enough insulation to keep you warm in temperatures as low as 15 degrees Fahrenheit. This sleeping pad also has lateral air baffles that evenly spreads weight across the width of your body, as a result, the edges of the pad don’t easily collapse when you put weight on it.

Nemo Astro Insulated Sleeping Pad - 20 Regular
  • Unlike typical vertical baffles, lateral baffles prevent the sides of the sleeping pad from curving around your body
  • Astro Insulated has a layer of PrimaLoft insulation for consistent and even insulation

The pad only takes 20 breaths to inflate and it is easy to deflate. All you have to do is fold it in thirds and roll it right up. Another positive is,this sleeping pad is extremely quiet compared to other pads that make enough noise to wake you and your friends up.

So in closing, if you are looking for the perfect sleeping pad, the 130 dollar Nemo Astro Insulated Lite 20R is it. Every pad on this list was quality, but the Nemo Astro Insulated Lite 20R was the only pad without any imperfections, which is why I had to put it in the number one spot.

About the author: Chris loves the outdoors and has developed a love of gadgets and inflatable toys, from kayaking and paddle boarding to relaxing in his hot tub at home. The founder of WhichInflatable and has been the editor for 7 years.

Which Inflatable is supported by its audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.