How To Choose Sleeping Pads: Important Factors

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You have to choose sleeping pads very wisely as they serve a dual purpose – they provide both good insulation and cushioning in the outdoors. As they are essential for a sold sleep at night, you have to take care of some vital things while choosing the pad. 

How To Choose Sleeping Pads: Important Factors
How To Choose Sleeping Pads: Important Factors

Choose Sleeping Pads – 3 Criteria

  • Three types of pads are there; one is a closed-cell foam, the second is an air pad, and the third one is self-inflating.
  • You have to decide on which purpose you are going to use the pad; whether it is for car camping or backpacking or winter camping.  
  • Consider the features of the pad, like size, weight, insulation capacity, and cushioning. 
  • Finally, you can test it yourself. Visit a few local shops for examining various pads. Lie on them on your back and roll for a few seconds to feel the comfort. 

Types Of Sleeping Pads

  1. The air pads are incredibly lightweight, compact, and comfortable. They are apt for backpacking and also camping during the summers. However, they are quite costly. The less the weight, the more will be the price. 
  2. Durable materials go into the making of self-inflating pads. Thus, they are sturdy and right for children. They are compact, comfy, and you can easily adjust their firmness by removing or providing air. But they are heavy and expensive too. 
  3. Closed-cell foam pads are less costly than the other two and insulate properly. The good thing is you do not have to worry about any leakage on them. However, they are quite stiff and not as comfortable as the other two varieties. 

Select Sleeping Pads Depending On The Purpose Of Use

  1. If you are going for car camping or backpacking, then opting for self-inflated sleeping pads is wise. You can adjust their size according to your needs and space available. Besides, both in car and backpacking hiking, you need a comfortable place to sleep, which these pads can provide you with. 
  2. Are you going for thru-hiking or winter camping? Then opt for the closed-cell foam sleeping pads without a doubt. 
How To Choose Sleeping Pads: Important Factors
How To Choose Sleeping Pads: Important Factors

Features Of The Pads 

  1. First of all, check the weight of the pad. It is wise to opt for the lightweight pads for ease of portability. 
  2. The width of most of the pads is 20 inches, which is enough for a human being. However, if you are large enough and need extra space for rolling, then opt for the pads that are of 25 inches or 30 inches. 
  3. Check the construction of the sleeping bag before buying it. Some pads come with pillow baffles and some with side baffles. Choose the one that suits your needs. 
  4. The inflation feature differs from one pad to another. While one pad comes with both inflation and deflation valve, there are others with a larger opening for quick inflation. Moreover, the new pads have separate inflation valves so that if one valve does not work, the second can serve the purpose. 

The pads should have excellent insulation capability so that it can provide you proper warmth, especially during the winter camping

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