Camping Mattress


Flashlight Enthusiast
CPF Supporter
Mar 28, 2013
New Mexico, USA
Maybe you could show your newer hammock/tarp and relate how a camping mattress is possibly supplanted by that system? You could discuss temperate use?


Sep 9, 2013
Upstate NY - Lake George region
Maybe you could show your newer hammock/tarp and relate how a camping mattress is possibly supplanted by that system? You could discuss temperate use?

Even at temps in the high 60˚F range, you will get "cold butt syndrome" if you sleep in a hammock without insulation. I use down underquilts in various temperature ratings as bottom insulation in my hammocks. Some folks do use sleeping pads (camping mattresses), though.

My newest hammock, the Warbonnet Blackbird XLC, was purchased with a double bottom layer option, making it easier to use a sleeping pad as bottom insulation. A sleeping pad certainly can be used in a single-layer hammock, but it may be difficult to keep in place while sleeping.

The benefit of using an under quilt, as I prefer, is that it is hung under the hammock and stays at full loft... your body weight is not compressing it and compromising its insulating qualities. With an under quilt hanging snugly below you and an over quilt on top of you like a blanket, you are basically inside a cocoon of down insulation. It's as comfy as it sounds. And, also important, ultralight in weight and extremely compressible for efficient packing.

I don't have links to any photos of my Blackbird XLC hammock or Superfly tarp, but you can see them on the Warbonnet Outdoors web pages. (I wish we could upload photos for posting on these forums...)


Newly Enlightened
Jan 2, 2018
United Kingdom
Another Exped fan here. I had a Thermarest Neoair but never felt comfortable on it, it rustled when I moved and never slept well as I felt like it was easy to roll off of. The Exped Synmat has vertical baffles with slightly higher ones on the edges to help stop you from rolling off. Let a tiny bit of air out so you sink into it and it's really comfortable. Selling my Neoair and getting a Synmat was one of the best gear decisions I've made.

Before those inflateable mats I'd used a couple of different self inflating mats but being a side sleeper I found them too shallow and I'd wake up with sore/cold hips and shoulders where my weight had bottomed out through the mat and touched the ground beneath.


Newly Enlightened
Feb 25, 2021
This thread is a little old but in case anyone is still interested...

MfrModelr-valueSizeWeight (oz)Width (in)Length (in)MSRPr/lbr/$100r/lb/$100SeasonRating
KlymitStatic V21.3Regular17.52372$601.192.171.98Summer
KlymitStatic V Luxe1.3Long27.23076$1000.761.300.76Summer
NEMOAstro Lite1.5Regular13.92072$1101.731.361.57Summer
Mountain Summit GearSelf Inflating 1.5 Camp Pad1.5Regular402072$500.603.001.20Summer
NEMOTensor1.6Regular Wide162572$1451.601.101.10Summer
NEMOVector1.6Long Wide222576$1701.160.940.68Summer
Therm-a-restNeoAir Venture with Mini Pump1.8Regular212072$601.373.002.29Summer
Therm-a-restZ Lite Sol2Regular142072$262.297.698.79SummerBest Value Summer
ExpedFlexMat Plus2.2XS12.520.551$452.824.896.26Summer
Therm-a-restNeoAir Uberlite2.3Small62047$1556.131.483.96SummerBest Summer
Therm-a-restNeoAir Uberlite2.3Regular8.82072$1954.181.182.14Summer
Therm-a-restNeoAir Uberlite2.3Large122577$2253.071.021.36Summer
Therm-a-restProLite2.4Short122047$853.202.823.763 Season
Therm-a-restProLite2.4Regular182072$952.132.532.253 Season
Therm-a-restProLite2.4Long242577$1151.602.091.393 Season
Sea to SummitUltralight Insulated3.1Regular212578$1602.361.941.483 Season
KammokInsulated Pongo Pad3.1Regular24.32674$1592.041.951.283 Season
Therm-a-restTrail Scout3.1Regular302577$701.654.432.363 Season
REIFlash 3 season3.2Regular162072$753.204.274.273 SeasonBest 3 Season and Best Value 3 Season
Big AgnesInsulated Q Core SLX3.2Petite172066$1303.012.462.323 Season
Sea to SummitEther Light XT Insulated3.2Regular17.321.572$1422.962.252.083 Season
Big AgnesInsulated Q Core SLX3.2Regular182072$1502.842.131.903 Season
REIFlash 3 season3.2Large212578$902.443.562.713 Season
Sea to SummitEther Light XT Insulated3.2Large222578$1572.332.041.483 Season
Big AgnesInsulated Q Core SLX3.2Regular Wide222572$1902.331.681.223 Season
Big AgnesInsulated Q Core SLX3.2Long Wide242578$2002.131.601.073 Season
Therm-a-restTrail Lite3.2Regular262072$801.974.002.463 Season
Therm-a-restProLite Plus3.2Regular312577$1251.652.561.323 Season
Therm-a-restTrail Lite3.2Large372577$1001.383.201.383 Season
REIStratus Insulated3.3Regular212072$802.514.133.143 Season
REIAirRail Plus3.3Regular252572$702.114.713.023 Season
REIStratus Insulated3.3Long Wide292578$1001.823.301.823 Season
NEMOFlyer3.3Regular302576$1401.762.361.263 Season
NEMOTensor Insulated3.5Regular Wide192572$1752.952.001.683 Season
PariaRecharge UL3.5Regular202072$752.804.673.733 SeasonHonorable Mention Best 3 Season and Best Value 3 Season
Sea to SummitComfort Light Insulated3.7Regular21.921.572$1802.702.061.503 Season
Therm-a-restNeoAir Topo Luxe3.7Regular232072$1452.572.551.783 Season
Sea to SummitComfort Light Insulated3.7Large26.62579$2002.231.851.113 Season
Therm-a-restNeoAir Topo Luxe3.7Regular Wide282572$1652.112.241.283 Season
Therm-a-restNeoAir Topo Luxe3.7Large302577$1851.972.001.073 Season
Therm-a-restNeoAir Topo Luxe3.7XLarge363077$2051.641.800.803 Season
Therm-a-restProlite Apex3.8Regular222072$1202.763.172.303 Season
Therm-a-restProlite Apex3.8Regular Wide282572$1302.172.921.673 Season
Therm-a-restProlite Apex3.8Large302577$1402.032.711.453 Season
Mountain EquipmentAerostat Synthetic 7.04Regular18.721.2572.8$1503.422.672.283+ Season
Mountain EquipmentAerostat Synthetic 7.04Long22.423.678.75$1552.862.581.843+ Season
Therm-a-restNeoAir Xlite4.2Small82047$1458.402.905.793+ Season
Therm-a-restNeoAir Xlite4.2Regular122072$1455.602.903.863+ SeasonBest 3+ Season
Big AgnesInsulated Q Core Deluxe4.3Regular252072$1602.752.691.723+ Season
Big AgnesInsulated Q Core Deluxe4.3Regular Wide312572$2002.222.151.113+ Season
Big AgnesInsulated Q Core Deluxe4.3Long Wide342578$2102.022.050.963+ Season
Big AgnesInsulated Q Core Deluxe4.3XL Wide413078$2401.681.790.703+ Season
KlymitInsulated V Ultralite SL4.4Regular162072$1204.403.673.673+ SeasonHonorable Mention Best 3+ Season
Therm-a-restTrail Pro4.4Regular292072$1202.433.672.023+ Season
Therm-a-restTrail Pro4.4Regular Wide372572$1401.903.141.363+ Season
Therm-a-restTrail Pro4.4Large392577$1501.812.931.203+ Season
Big AgnesInsulated Air Core Ultra4.5Regular182072$1004.004.504.003+ SeasonHonorable Mention Best Value 3+ Season
Big AgnesInsulated Air Core Ultra4.5Petite202066$903.605.004.003+ Season
Big AgnesInsulated Air Core Ultra4.5Regular Wide282572$1202.573.752.143+ Season
Big AgnesInsulated Air Core Ultra4.5Long Wide312578$1302.323.461.793+ Season
PariaRecharge XL4.7Regular262376$852.895.533.403+ SeasonBest Value 3+ Season
Mountain EquipmentAerostat Down 7.05Regular20.421.2572.8$2053.922.441.91Winter
Mountain EquipmentAerostat Down 7.05Long24.323.678.75$2153.292.331.53Winter
Sea to SummitComfort Plus Insulated5Regular25.521.572$1403.143.572.24Winter
REIGroundbreaker5Regular452572$601.788.332.96WinterBest Value Winter
REITrailbreak5.1Regular402072$702.047.292.91WinterHonorable Mention Best Value Winter
Mountain Summit GearSelf Inflating 2.5 Camp Pad5.7Large722676$701.278.141.81Winter
Mountain Summit GearSelf Inflating 3.5 Camp Pad6Extra Large882676$901.096.671.21Winter
Therm-a-restNeoAir Xtherm6.9Small112047$14510.044.766.92Winter
Therm-a-restNeoAir Xtherm6.9Regular152072$1857.363.733.98WinterBest Winter
Therm-a-restNeoAir Xtherm6.9Large202577$2255.523.072.45Winter
Therm-a-restMondoKing 3D7Large702577$2101.603.330.76Winter
Therm-a-restMondoKing 3D7XX Large883080$2301.273.040.55Winter
ExpedDownMat UL Winter7.1Regular22.220.572$2295.123.102.23WinterHonorable Mention Best Winter
REICamp Bed7.6Regular582572$1002.107.602.10Winter
REICamp Bed7.6XL843078$1201.456.331.21Winter
ExpedDownMat XP 9 with pump7.8Regular31.220.572$2304.003.391.74Winter
ExpedMegaMat Max 1510.6Regular12230.377.6$3001.393.530.46Winter


Newly Enlightened
Jan 20, 2021
Most of your heat is lost to the ground throughout the night, a sleeping pad that insulates you will keep you much warmer than even the best of sleeping bags.
I've heard people say this a lot.
In 35 years of camping and fighting in some pretty harsh conditions, I've yet to find any truth in it from my own experience, or any substantiation in the science behind the assertions.

Most of the training I've had asserts that 65-90% of body heat is lost through radiation, which is why we use (decent) sleeping bags in the first place.
Convection is the next biggest point of heat loss, especially when combined with evaporation, but is easily countered by wearing clothes and using a shelter (a windproof bivy bag is usually sufficient).
Conduction can be a factor, but depends on the ground. Dry foliage is actually a very good insulator, for example.


Newly Enlightened
Jan 13, 2021
I've only done "real" camping a couple times (with more experienced campers).

The longest I was camping was in Voyaguers National Park on a 2 1/2 week canoe trip. I didn't know better, but was completely comfortable on a foam pad (plain, not with the cutouts and shapes)... of course I was younger then. It was during the summer so it wasn't cold.

I tried to get away without using a sleeping pad when car camping at the Grand Canyon. I think the night got down to around 50 degrees, and I had a nice warm sleeping bag that I almost froze in because of the ground convection. I should have paid $10 for a foam pad... this was in the summer, too.

I recently read a lot of reviews and picked up a Sea to Summit Ultralight insulated air sleeping pad. I bought it as a do-it-all, but primarily for sleeping in a house I was working on with no furniture, and I didn't trust the Wmt air beds to work for long from reading the reviews. I wanted to also have a small portable air mattress for traveling and emergencies (I also keep a folding camping chair in my trunk).

I've only tested the air pad to make sure I understood the setup. It was a little more plush than a foam mattress. I got the XL, but if I got a second, it would probably be the L. The I think the XL is DC'ed anyway. I'm 6' 205 lbs. I haven't tested it out on cold ground, but if I wasn't as concerned with space, I'd probably just go back to a quality foam pad. I also purchased a blow up pillow (fits inside the air pad's case), but don't remember if it was the same brand or not... it's in my emergency bag now and I don't feel like taking it out.
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Newly Enlightened
Jan 19, 2021
A great mat is the Sea To Summit Air Sprung Comfort Plus Mat Regular. It has two independent inflatable layers. The bottom layer keeps out the cold, and the top layer provides comfort for your back.