Reviews

2

Lightweight and extremely affordable self-inflating…

Rating: rated 4.5 of 5 stars
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: 3×15 USD

Summary

Lightweight and extremely affordable self-inflating sleeping mat (¾ length). Good addition to traditional closed-cell foam pad in temperatures below freezing. Also can be used for ultralight applications or for children.

Pros

  • Extremely affordable
  • Weighs only 450 g (1 lb)
  • Compact in folded state
  • Versatile storage bag included
  • Fits in the middle of traditional rolled pad for conserving space in backpack

Cons

  • When used alone, it’s easily pressed down to cold earth
  • Requires additional inflating by mouth for proper pressure
  • Slow self-inflation
  • No repair kit included
  • Possible chance of puncturing

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I purchased three of these self-inflating mats specifically for winter use by my entire family. Here are some specs:

  • Weight — 450 g (1 lb)

  • Dimensions — 117×50×2 cm (46×20×¾ in)  

  • Folded size  Ø25×13cm / 3.3L (Ø10×5 in)

The manufacturer's promo video:

With available discounts in my local store, these pads were extremely affordable (the cheapest Therm-a-Rest's were several times more expensive). Honestly, me and my wife don’t like the general idea of inflatable sleeping pads, as there is always a risk of waking up on cold earth in the middle of the night. Nevertheless, as an additional padding in very cold temperatures, these mats were proven very useful.

Usually we use various closed-cell foam pads about 15 mm thick (see my RidgeRest review). They are fine for temperatures above freezing, but in cold season sometimes we found ourselves carrying two closed-cell pads per person. It was quite possible (but not convenient though) until our child was born, but now we had to carry also his own sleeping pad. So in cold weather for two adults it became absolutely impossible to carry six closed-cell pads.

After purchasing a pair of Quechua Forclaz A100 mats for the SECOND layer (initially just for my wife and child) the things went much better. They fit nicely inside the rolled closed-cell pads, almost without increasing their total dimensions or consuming precious space inside the backpack. And they are also lightweight, which is important too.

During two winter nights I personally compared the sleeping comfort with and without the second pad at temperatures about -5°C (20-25 °F) — and after that I immediately purchased the same pad for me. It really makes a difference!

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The ¾ length is fine for second layer, as it covers the most sensitive body regions, while the weight and bulkiness are greatly reduced in comparison to full-length pads. This mat is thin for inflatable model — only 20 mm. This makes it quite Spartan when used alone — the adult body easily presses the foam down to cold earth, reducing comfort and warmth. And you’re also expected to top the pressure by several breaths, because it’s not enough after [very slow] self-inflation.

So I wouldn’t recommend this pad for standalone usage except for the uttermost weight-conscious applications. Contrary, the children’s body weight is much lower, and such pad will probably work well for them.

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This pad comes with a nice packing bag (rarely used in our case — mostly for carrying various accessories). We store our pads under the bed in relaxed state with opened valve for maintaining the elasticity of PU foam. Unfortunately there is no repair kit included, but it’s OK for the money.

In general, this pad has somewhat limited application due to reduced length and thickness. But it’s almost perfect for winter use as a second layer. And it also offers unbeatable value for money in its class.

Alicia TRAILSPACE STAFF

Nice review, Vladimir! Am I right that Quechua is a popular general camping brand in Europe?


4 months ago
Vladimir Gorbunov

Thanks! Quechua is a cheap own brand of Decathlon outdoor malls throughout the Europe: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Decathlon_Group


4 months ago
Alicia TRAILSPACE STAFF

Thanks! It seems somewhat common among European travelers.


4 months ago

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