We recently wrote about why preppers need a good sleeping bag. Following on from that, we’re going to take a look at another piece of kit you need for a good sleep: the best sleeping pads for preppers.
Sleeping pads are a vital item for anyone planning to camp or sleep outdoors. They provide a layer of insulation and support between you and the ground. A good sleeping pad can make the difference between sleeping well and a cold and uncomfortable night.
Why Preppers Need a Sleeping Pad
Preparation is key when it comes to surviving in the wilderness, and having a good quality sleeping pad is an essential part of any prepper’s kit list. Whether you’re camping for pleasure or forced to sleep outdoors because of an emergency, a sleeping pad provides a comfortable and safe place to sleep. Here are a few reasons why preppers need a sleeping pad:
- Insulation and Warmth. A sleeping pad provides insulation and warmth between you and the cold, hard ground. This can be especially important in colder weather, when temperatures can drop significantly overnight. By using a sleeping pad, you’ll stay warm and comfortable, even in the most challenging conditions. Look for the “R” value to determine how much insulation a sleeping pad provides. Higher R values mean more insulation, with 3-5 being fine for most conditions other than the coldest. Sleeping pads with a R value greater than 6 can be used in the coldest conditions.
- Comfort and Support. A good quality sleeping pad will provide cushioning and support, helping you to get a good night’s sleep. This can be especially important if you’re sleeping on uneven or rocky ground. A sleeping pad will provide a stable and comfortable surface to sleep on. Inflatable sleeping pads can usually offer more comfort than basic foam mats. Cheaper inflatable sleeping mats, however, can feel a little unstable as air moves inside them. Better inflatable sleeping pads have baffles to reduce this air movement and feel more stable
- Lightweight and Packable. Many modern sleeping pads are designed to be lightweight and packable. This makes them easy to carry with you on camping trips but also ideal for bug out bags. This means that you can take your sleeping pad with you wherever you go, ensuring that you always have a comfortable place to sleep.
- Durability and Longevity. A good quality sleeping pad is designed to be durable and long-lasting, ensuring that it will provide reliable and comfortable sleep for years to come. Whether you’re camping, hiking, or preparing for an emergency situation, a sleeping pad is a reliable and essential piece of gear.
The Best Sleeping Pads For Preppers
With a variety of options on the market, it can be difficult to know which one to choose. Here we’ll take a look at some of the best sleeping pads for preppers in the UK.
Best Foam Sleeping Pad: Therm-a-Rest Z Lite Sol
The Therm-a-Rest Z Lite Sol is a classic foam sleeping pad. It’s basic, but provides reliable insulation and comfort, making it a great piece of kit for preppers alike. Being a basic foam pad, it’s very quick to set up – just unroll it and it’s ready! The Therm-a-Rest Z Lite Sol is made of durable, closed-cell foam and has a low-profile design to minimise its size. This makes it very easy to pack and carry. The foam construction also means that it will last for years, making it a solid investment for preppers.
The difference between the standard Therm-a-Rest Z Lite and the Z Lite Sol is the addition of an extra reflective layer. The extra layer makes the Sol better at protecting you from the cold ground, although its R value of 2.0 means that you’d want more insulation for really cold conditions.
Best Lightweight Air Sleeping Pad: Therm-a-Rest NeoAir Xlite
Another option from Therm-a-Rest, the NeoAir XLite is an air mat rather than basic foam. This means that it needs inflating to use it, but it comes with a simple pump sack and is quick to inflate. The NeoAir XLite is an ultra-lightweight, packable pad that provides excellent insulation and comfort for its size. It is made of a durable, tear-resistant material and features an innovative design that provides optimal warmth by limiting air movement. It’s also very packable, making it easy to carry on extended wilderness trips.
The R-value of 4.2 ensures that you’ll stay warm even in cold conditions, although for extreme cold it would be best partnered with the Therm-a-Rest Z Lite Sol mentioned above. Put the foam mat on the ground first, with the NeoAir XLite on top and you’ll stay warm even camping on snow. For another cold weather option, check out the Therm-a-Rest XTherm below.
There are two sizes to choose from: regular and large. We tested the regular, and found that it was big enough (the tester being 178cm/5′ 10″ and 80kg/175lbs). For a larger person or someone who likes a bit more room to move, the large size would be better.
Best All Weather Sleeping Pad: Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XTherm
The Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XTherm is by far the best sleeping pad for any weather, including the coldest conditions. It has an R value of 6.9, providing enough insulation even for sleeping on snow. An easy to inflate air sleeping pad, the XTherm still packs down to a convenient size. It comes with a stuff sack and pump sack to ease the inflation and storage.
The only reason drawback is that this is the most expensive sleeping pad on our list. In our opinion though, it is well worth the price. It is also a little heavier and bulkier than the Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XLite mentioned above due to the better insulation. It provides insulation and comfort to allow for a good night’s sleep whatever the conditions.
Buy Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XTherm
Best Extra Comfort Sleeping Pad: Sea to Summit Comfort Plus
The Sea to Summit Comfort Plus is a versatile and comfortable sleeping pad that provides excellent insulation and support. The construction features a durable, multi-layer material that provides optimal warmth. This is also an inflatable sleeping pad; it comes with a pump sack that makes it easy to inflate. The packable design makes it easy to carry, and the exceptional comfort makes it a great option for preppers who want a high-quality pad for extended wilderness trips.
There are two different shapes available. The standard tapers towards the feet, while the rectangular shown here provides a little more room for movement.
The Sea to Summit Comfort Plus has an R rating of 4.1, making it suitable for most conditions other than the coldest weather. Pair it with the Therm-a-Rest Z Lite Sol foam sleeping pad for extreme cold.
Buy Sea to Summit Comfort Plus
Best Budget Sleeping Pad: Klymit Static V/V2
The Klymit Static V is an ultra-compact sleeping pad that offers excellent value for money. It is cheaper than the other sleeping pads listed above, making it a great piece of kit for preppers on a budget. It has a low-profile design meaning it won’t take up too much space in your pack. The included stuff sack makes it easy to pack and carry.
This sleeping mat is not designed for the coldest of weather, but provides enough insulation for milder weather camping. For an emergency bug out bag sleeping pad, it’s small size makes it idea.
The V2 is an improved version of the V, with lighter weight and a more modern valve system.
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