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Sea to Summit UltraLight Insulated

rated 4.5 of 5 stars
photo: Sea to Summit UltraLight Insulated air-filled sleeping pad

Lightweight comfy pad, gives a great night's sleep.


  • Lightweight
  • Comfortable
  • Easy and quick to inflate/deflate
  • Packs down small
  • Warm


  • A bit noisy on the tent floor
  • The "bleed" valve is a little fussy at times

I was intrigued by Sea to Summit's new line of sleeping pads, so when the REI dividend and coupon came out, I decided to give it a try.

The first thing I notice was how small the packed size was. I'm always trying to put less bulk in my back, so this is good news for me.


I was taken by the pad's interesting new valve design. There are essentially two "plugs" in one. You open the outer plug to inflate, and both plugs to deflate. I find that it takes about a dozen or so breaths to inflate it fully, which is much faster than my previous pad, which usually took a couple of minutes to inflate.

There is a little button in the center of the outer valve, which one can use to release a small amount of air to fine tune the firmness. It is an interesting idea, though I found it took some fiddling to get it to work sometimes.


Opening the valve fully deflates the pad in seconds. This is a great time saving feature when packing up.


Considering the novel quilted design, and the lack of thickness compared to my Big Agnes pad, I was quite pleased with how supportive and comfortable it is. It distributes body weight pretty nicely through out, and is very stable. I also noticed that my bag didn't move around or slip off the pad at all, which was a nice change.

The only nitpick here, is that when the pad rubs on the tent floor, it made a bit of a squeaking sound. 


On a chilly spring night in Northern California, camped out on wet grass on a multi-day bike tour, the pad provided great insulation from the ground, and I was quite warm all night long. 

The pad includes a stuff sack and repair kit, which includes self-adhesive patches, and a replacement bleed off button for the valve.


The pad (size regular) weighed in on my food scale at exactly 1 lb, shaving a half-pound off of the weight of my current pad.

All in all, very happy with this pad, so far. Can't wait for summer backpacking trips to test it further!

Update: I have used this pad for numerous summer trips over the last several years… two extended trips to Mount Rainier, numerous multi-day trips in the High Sierra, Lassen, Three Sisters, Pacific Coast, etc. It still is super comfortable in a variety of conditions, and for the weight and pack ability, there’s no reason to use anything else. Durability is good… after several years of use, it has never had a hint of a leak. 


Numerous backcountry trips in the Sierra, coastal ranges, and Cascades. Multi-day cycling trips too.

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $104

Lightweight, insulated pad that weighs a little over a pound.


  • Lightweight
  • Stuff sack pump
  • Comfort
  • Pack-ability


  • Welds between air sprung cells hold dirt

A 17-ounce pad, good for all but the coldest weather. 

Air sprung cells add comfort, but hold small amounts of dirt carried into a tent. Also they will make you feel small bumps (rocks, ridges) when set up on. The fabric is solid, 40D nylon. 

The Sea to Summit valve was revolutionary when it debuted, and is still the best I believe. It allows for the pad's firmness to be adjusted while atop it in a sleeping bag.

0128191943a.jpgAbove the pad in its 4" by 9" stuff sack.

The stuff sack opens at both ends, the bottom has a pump that attaches to the pad's valve to make inflation easy and keep bacteria out of the pad. It comes with a ziploc repair kit, but no internal pocket for it. The repair kit will fall out when opening the stuff sack pump.

IMG_20190329_212800_701.jpgAbove the StS Ultralight Insulated in use.

The pad's design is excellent: comfortable, lightweight, and great looking. Its stuff sack pump is a huge plus. The pad's lightweight design does make it move around easily when it has no weight on it, ie. when moving things around in a tent. 

It deflates easily. Getting it folded up and back in its sack was tough at first. The pad folds horizontally twice before rolling. I found that folding the top half under the bottom half when rolling up keeps the pad from becoming too wide to pack back into its sack.

It's a great lightweight insulated pad, perfect for three-season use; the r value is 3.3. I believe you can use it down to 15 degrees if the temperature is above freezing during the day. It's perfect for 50-degree days, and 25-degree nights. 

I highly recommend if comfort and pack weight are a priorities. 


I have used it down to 20 degrees comfortably.

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $95

This pad provides excellent comfort for very little weight, at a very reasonable price point. The only complaint about this sleeping pad came from the other folks in my party: It "sounds like a bag of corn chips when you roll over."


  • Lightweight
  • Comfort


  • Loud when rolling over

I purchased the Sea to Summit Ultralight insulated sleeping pad to replace an older and heavier pad. The pad packs down very small and weighs only a pound. It provides excellent insulation and comfort.  

An added bonus is the ease of inflation, as it only takes about 30 seconds to blow it up in comparison to some other pads that take 2 or 3 rounds of inflation before they are ready to be used. The downside to this is that the pad is thinner than some competitors and a bit narrower as well. I am a side sleeper and even so have found the pad to be adequate in thickness and width for me to sleep comfortably on my side.

I've taken this pad on a 4-day backpacking trip in PA and on an 8-day trip in the Sierras as well as a few nights in friends' apartments getting to and from the trail. It has shown no signs of wear during that time and holds air very well.

I've also found that the surface of the pad has just enough grip that it's fairly hard to slide off in the middle of the night.

The only complaint I can make about the pad is that it is a bit loud when you move around on it. It never bothered me, but my hiking partners commented often on how loud it was when I rolled around.

Overall a great pad that I would purchase again.

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $149

This air pad is not only warm but the most stable air pad I've ever used! I would highly recommend this pad to all. It's very compact and light with a great valve system that is very easy to blow up and even easier to deflate! This is the perfect backpacking air pad!


  • Easy inflation and deflation
  • Compact
  • Very stable
  • Super light
  • Not noisy like most air pads


  • I can't name one!

if you are an ultralight backpacker or just a weekend warrior you will love this air pad! I never bottomed out even though it's only 2" thick! The stability that the pad offered is unmatched to the Neo and Big Agnes pads!

I use a Tyvec footprint and the pad didn't slip even on an incline! My fellow hikers, this pad is a must! With an R value of 3.3 at 15.5 oz and holding 181 air sprung cells this is the best $149 I've spent.

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $149

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Price Current Retail: $89.99-$189.00
Historic Range: $83.96-$189.00
Reviewers Paid: $95.00-$149.00
Weight 15.5 oz / 440 g
R Value 3.3
Length 72 in / 183 cm
Width 21.5 in / 55 cm
Packed Size 4 x 9 in / 10 x 23 cm
Price Current Retail: $119.99-$189.00
Historic Range: $97.93-$189.00
Weight 15.5 oz / 440 g
R Value 3.3
Length 72 in / 183 cm
Width 21.5 in / 55 cm
Packed Size 4 x 9 in / 10 x 23 cm
Product Details from Sea to Summit »

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