User Review: Therm-a-Rest NeoAir
Price Paid: $160
So, this is for the NeoAir four season, supposedly the one with improvements over the original design.
Day one, before I take it anywhere. I inflated it for a trial and, yes, it is warming and comfortable. Then I put my hand down to support standing up—and POP. I think it was an internal baffle. I laid back down again ($160 or not, this thing bloody well has to survive my living room if I'm taking it on the trail) and POP at my elbow.
Not a big pop as others have described, but a small pop like popping bubble paper.
I wasn't trying to break it, hell it was expensive. The pad as a whole seems to hold air. But, did I break this thing after sitting down on it? Did I sort of break it and, a week into my hike, it fails entirely?
I am immediately not happy. The old Thermarests were bomb-proof and if you had a hole you could put it in a tub and repair it. Why should I have to worry about my wildly expensive SLEEPING PAD ever—EVER—breaking?
I bought this thing from a shop I trusted, and from a company I trusted. I'm gonna take it on a test hike and make it a point to...well not break the thing, but simply to demand as much from it as an old Thermarest would do. I'm gonna sit on it, maybe on a picnic table, maybe on sand, and I hope I won't have to worry about it.
Bottom line: this thing is advertised as the best of all worlds, packable and light and with a huge insulation rating. I am suspicious of it for even a light hike, and even after a day I wouldn't dream of taking it where my life depended on it.