BEST sleeping pads for backpacking 2020


♦ Best sleeping pad EVER: Therm-a-Rest NeoAir X-Lite
♦ Best closed-cell sleeping pad: Nemo switchback
♦ Best R-value sleeping pad: Exped Downmat xp9
♦ Best ultralight sleeping pad: Therm-a-Rest NeoAir Uberlite
♦ Best sleeping pad on a budget: Klymit Static V
♦ Best sleeping pad for side sleepers: Sea to Summit Ether Light XT

Worth mentioning:
NeoAir Xtherm
Nemo Tensor Insulated
Therm-a-Rest Z Lite SOL

The following recommendations are based on my own personal research and is by no means a guarantee that it will be perfect for you. If you want to find out more about how and which sleeping pad best suits your needs, check out this article about how to select a sleeping pad.


The Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XLite is the best sleeping pad when it comes to combining weight, comfort and insulation. The XLite has been a leading sleeping pad for many years and is hard to beat. With an R-value of 4.2 (5.4 in women’s version), it is suitable for most 3-season hiking adventures. Click the picture to find out about the latest pricing.

R-value: 4.2
 12oz / 340g


2. nemo switchback

The Nemo Switchback is not probably not as comfortable as inflatable sleeping pads, but this foam sleeping pad is cheap and will never pop. It is thicker than the popular Therm-a-rest variant but still only suitable for warmer weather with an R-value of 2.

R-value: 2
Weight: 14.5
oz / 411g


3. Exped Downmat xp9

The Exped DownMat XP 9 is the ideal winter sleeping pad. It has the highest R-value available on the market right now: 7.8. The only trade-off is the weight at 895g. It includes a waterproof compression sack that doubles as a pump bag. For a lighter variety with a slightly lower R-value, check out the NeoAir Xtherm. It’s a little bit more expensive, but is worth the price if you have the budget for it.

R-value: 7.8
 1lb 15.6oz / 895g


4. Therm-a-rest neo Air uberlite

One of the lightest in its kind, the Therm-a-Rest NeoAir Uberlite is the favourite of many ultralight hikers. Very good weight to warmth ratio, but if you are a cold sleeper, I would upgrade to something with a higher R-value.

R-value: 2.3
Weight: 8.8oz / 249g


5. Klymit Static V Lite

The Klymit Static V is one of the most affordable lightweight sleeping pads. The V-shaped baffles keep you supported and centered, making it very comfortable. It offers a wide platform that is ideal for active sleepers. It is very compact with a good R-value of 4.4, but the trade-off here is that it is not the lightest. 

R-value: 4.4
1lb 3.6oz / 550g

6. Sea to Summit Ether Light XT

If you are a side sleeper, then this might just be the sleeping pad for you. Rated as the most comfortable sleeping pad for side sleepers, the Sea to Summit Ether Light XT. It offers 10cm of cushioning, making it the thickest sleeping pad on our list that gives you that little bit of luxury on the trail. It also comes with a pump/stuff sack for inflation. 

R-value: 3.2
Weight: 1lb 1.3oz / 490g


other sleeping pads worth mentioning:

winter backpacking sleeping pad
Therm-a-rest NeoAir XTherm
Nemo Tensor Insulated
Therm-a-Rest Z-Lite SOL

Do you have a sleeping pad that deserves a spot on this list? Please let us know in the comment section 😀

We would love to hear about your favourite sleeping pads.


Disclaimer: Links included on this page might be affiliate links. When you make a qualified purchase through these links, I might earn a small commission at no additional cost to you.

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