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Going camping? You’ll need a sleeping pad. But not just any sleeping pad. To avoid having your sleep disrupted by an ill-placed root poking out, or the cold and humid ground as you sleep under the stars (or the tent), you’ll need a sleeping pad that’s comfortable and fits your needs. There are a lot of models available on the market, but a few brands distinguish themselves with their cutting-edge technology and their sustainable manufacturing processes. Here are the best outdoor camping sleeping pads from brands Nemo, Thermarest, SAIL, Sea to Summit and Coleman. Follow the guide and found the best camping sleeping pad.
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The New Hampshire brand is a market leader when it comes to ultra-light camping equipment. Its team of designers are constantly looking for ways to make its products (sleeping bags, tents, sleeping pads, etc.) as compact and minimalistic as possible, without sacrificing comfort.
Amongst the smart technologies designed by Nemo for its range of camping sleeping pads: the Vortex pump bag, which reduces the amount of moisture going into the pad and makes it easy to inflate with just a few breaths. Or the Laylow multivalve, a multifunctional and micro-adjustable valve allowing you to fine-tune how much you inflate the pad, and deflates it instantly.
That’s without even mentioning Nemo’s advanced sustainability policy. The brand has achieved the Climate Neutral certification in 2022 and aims to reduce its carbon emission by half by the end of 2023. Nemo also offers a lifetime warranty with all its products to ensure they are repaired and not thrown away. Pretty neat, right?
Quasar 3D insulated self-inflating sleeping pad
This sleeping pad is very versatile and insulated to provide both warmth and comfort whatever the season, even when sleeping on the cold ground. A non-insulated version is also available for summer campers.
A classic of the Nemo product range, this model has proven itself over the years. Built with baffles, a great feature for those with a bad back, it is still very light and compact.
“It all started because I wanted a better camping sleeping pad,” states John Burroughs, cofounder of Therm-a-Rest. As experienced mountaineers and engineers for Boeing in the 1970s, John and his two partners, Neil and Jim, focused on manufacturing a lighter, more comfortable and sturdier sleeping pad.
Fast-forward 50 years, and Nemo has a varied range of products featuring cutting-edge technology such as targeted pressure mapping (providing sleepers with added support around high-pressure zones such as hips and shoulders, and low-density foam in other areas) or thermal foam and smart shaping, protecting you from the cold ground while the pad remains as compact as possible.
To know more about choosing an insulated camping sleeping pad for winter camping, read our article.
A self-inflating 4.25 in. thick sleeping pad providing unrivalled comfort while being very light, weighing only 1,99 kg. A safe bet for more demanding campers.
Minimalist yet highly comfortable, this inflatable mattress (available in size regular or large) has all the qualities of a compact mattress and is perfect for backpacking trips.
SAIL’s philosophy? To make outdoor pursuits as accessible as possible for as many people as possible. To do this, the Québec brand works hard to create comfortable, quality, safe and well-designed products that are affordable. This isn’t always easy, but the result is a range of products that suit all camper types: from backpackers looking for comfort after a day on the trails, to families on their first camping trip (away from their backyard!) hoping to create great memories. Unbeatable when it comes to price, SAIL equips campers so they can spend great nights under the stars.
To learn how to choose a sleeping pad for your camping trip or backpacking trip, read our top tips here.
Rest Camper 30
Versatile and ideal for hiking, this self-inflating mattress is three-inches thick (one inch thicker than other models offered by competing brands) and provides a good level of comfort. It also offers excellent value for money.
Founded in Australia, this globally known camping brand manufactures some of the best sleeping pads on offer in your favourite store. Its Research & Development team is known for its innovative use of technology, materials and manufacturing processes, all of which result in pioneering products.
For example, its self-inflating sleeping pads are made with Air Sprung Cell air pockets, which provide added comfort and more cushioning than classic inflatable mattresses, while remaining as light as possible.
They are also wider than most sleeping pads on the market, which ensures maximum insulation for your body.
In addition, women’s sleeping pads are designed to fit women’s body shape better around the shoulders and waist.
Finally, if you’re not sure which model would suit your needs best, Sea to Summit has designed the Sleep System Finder, an online search engine for sleeping gear that will help you make an informed decision when buying your sleeping pad. To take the quiz and find the perfect sleeping pad for you, click here.
Ultra Light Air
One of the lightest sleeping pads on the market (345 g), the Ultra Light Air is inflatable, very compact and mummy-shaped to fit the shape of your sleeping bag.
Another key player in the camping gear industry ever since its foundation 120 years ago, Coleman offers a wide range of accessible camping products. Other than its classic naphtha lanterns, which made the brand famous very early on, the American company produces a wide selection of good sleeping pads aimed at casual campers.
The majority of the brand’s products are built with inner springs, making for a sturdy, firm and cushioned sleeping pad.
At Coleman, comfort and practicality come first. Technology isn’t far behind, and some sleeping pads use a built-in pump which can be charged via USB cable (inflating your 14-inch thick mattress in less than four minutes). Probably the best bed you can find outside of your bedroom.
SupportRest DH with built-in pump
An actual inflatable bed (available as a single or double bed) that’s perfect for car camping, or as a spare bed at home.