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Best Backpacking: Therm-A-Rest NeoAir XLite at Amazon "Better next-to-skin comfort and improved durability."
Best Budget Backpacking: Klymit Static V at Amazon "The best bang for your buck when it comes to sleeping pads."
Best Ultralight: Klymit Inertia O Zone at Amazon "Perhaps the lightest sleeping pad on the market."
Best Cold Weather: Therm-A-Rest NeoAir XTherm at Amazon "Loaded with top tech fabrics for the best warmth-to-weight ratio in the backcountry."
Best Comfort: Sea to Summit Comfort Plus Insulated at Amazon "Dual layer construction, so you can dial in the perfect amount of support."
Best Double Sleeping Pad: Klymit Double V at Amazon "Don’t skimp on the sleeping pad by tethering two single pads together."
Our Top Picks
Best Backpacking Sleeping Pad: Therm-A-Rest NeoAir XLite
Longtime sleeping pad specialist Therm-A-Rest just redesigned its best-in-backcountry NeoAir XLite with softer fabrics for better next-to-skin comfort and improved durability. The 2.5-inch pad provides a surprisingly supportive sleep on the strength of its horizontal baffled structure and rip-stop nylon bottom. The company's ThermaCapture technology means you'll stay warm on cold spring and fall nights because it's designed to trap body heat while the Triangular Core Matrix construction minimizes heat loss to air cooled by the ground. The pad weighs just 12 ounces and stuffs down smaller than a one-liter bottle.
Best Budget Backpacking Sleeping Pad: Klymit Static V
This Utah-based brand is focused on camping sleeping pads and they've made quite an impression in the backcountry. The new Static V is the best bang for your buck when it comes to sleeping pads — comfortable, rugged and surprisingly lightweight. Klymit developed this body-mapped pad with dynamic side rails to keep your body centered. It’s also chambered to limit air movement thus keeping cold air near the ground. Meanwhile, Klymit’s Deep Weld, V-shaped chamber pattern allows the loft of your sleeping bag to expand underneath your body, maximizing its warmth and venting capabilities. This pad is made of polyester for durability but manages to stay light enough for the trail — just 18 ounces when packed up in its attached stuff sack.
Best Ultralight Sleeping Pad: Klymit Inertia O Zone
Klymit's Inertia O Zone sleeping pad is perhaps the lightest sleeping pad on the market. The brand built on the body-mapping layout of the Static V and then carved out O Zones for support where you need it and thermal enhancing chambers where you don’t. The pad is tapered to fit into your mummy sleeping bag, and the built-in pillow is a nice touch. All together the pad and pillow pack down to the size of a water bottle and weigh just 12 ounces.
Best Cold Weather Sleeping Pad: Therm-A-Rest NeoAir XTherm
This cold-weather specialist is loaded with top tech fabrics for the best warmth-to-weight ratio in the backcountry. Like the NeoAir XLite, the XTherm is recently upgraded to softer, 30D nylon atop. Underneath, a 70D nylon bottom adds durability and increased insulation. Where the XTherm really distinguishes itself from the pack is its construction with multiple layers of proprietary ThermaCapture to ensure none of your body heat is wasted. Triangular Core Matrix construction keeps cold air at bay for four-season comfort. For all that tech, the XTherm only adds 3 ounces on its little brother, weighing just 15 ounces.
Best for Comfort Sleeping Pad: Sea to Summit Comfort Plus Insulated Sleeping Pad
Australian mountaineer Tim Macartney-Snape launched this brand after his epic 1990 “sea-to-summit” ascent of Everest — that is sea level to 29,029 feet. The company has engineered its 2.5-inch Comfort Plus with dual layer construction, so you can dial in the perfect amount of support. Each layer is pressurized independently — pump the bottom to high pressure for protection from rocky terrain, then adjust the top layer to the level of support your body requires. That design also engineers redundancy into the equation, so if you do puncture one side, the other is there to pick you up. Sea-to-Summit’s Exkin Platinum fabric and Thermolite insulation are combined to prevent radiant and convective heat loss — that is heat that escapes your body and heat leached by the cold ground. The pad packs down to a diminutive 6" x 9" package and weighs a hair under 2 pounds.
Best Double Sleeping Pad: Klymit Double V
So you picked up that double sleeping bag for your first trek as a couple? Don’t skimp on the sleeping pad by tethering two single pads together. Klymit’s Double V has everything you love in your Static V built for two. It will fit in your two-person tent, but it’s also tough enough to sleep under the stars. The double V does add a bit more weight: It inflates in 10 pumps from the included air pump stuff sack and weighs 2.5 pounds.