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Ultralight Airbeds

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  • Inertia X Lite Short Mat
    R-Value: Not Quoted / Dimensions: 107 x 46 x 4cm / Packed Size: 15 x 4cm
    Weighs 175g
    Reference: 3164

    You CAN believe your eyes at 6.1 ounces the Inertia X-Lite is the world`s lightest most compact and most technically advanced 3/4 length camping pad ever.  Designed with body mapping technology it gives you support and comfort where you need it and not where you don’t.  

    The Inertia X-Lite rolls up smaller than that bannana in your pack and can be inflated with as little as 1.5 breaths. It offers the adjustable comfort through the use of a dry air pump which allows you to reach higher pressures than ordinary mouth-inflate pads.

    The cut out regions of the pad not only reduce the pad`s bulk and weight but is the basis for Klymit`s patent pending loft pocket technology. Loft pockets allow the insulation on the bottom of sleeping bags to maintain loft and warmth beneath your body where it would normally be compacted and useless while promoting breathability.

    Built with durable ripstop 30d top and 75d bottom fabrics the Inertia X-Lite is also one of the toughest pads on the market.  

     

    Item out of Stock
    Now £58.99 RRP £59.95 | Save: £0.96
  • NeoAir XLite Small Sleeping Mat Top
    Pick
    R-Value: 0.56 / Dimensions: 119 x 51 x 6.3cm / Packed Size: 23 x 9cm
    Weighs 207g
    Reference: SS15109

    UOG TOP PICK - Thermarest's Xlite Series Sleeping Mats - Best for low weight and packsize without compromising comfort - We've singled out Thermarest's Xlite series of Sleeping Mats as one of our top recommendations because they deliver the lightest weight and smallest packsize yet are among the most comfortable mats available.

    Thermarest says: The NeoAir XLite mattress delivers more warmth and comfort per ounce than any other three-season air mattress available. Our patent-pending technologies deliver that performance with minimal weight and less bulk than a one-liter water bottle.

    This year, new softer fabrics bring better next-to-skin comfort and a boost in durability, all with no added weight. For the discerning alpinist, thru-hiker or backcountry minimalist who’s counting every ounce, there is simply no better choice to assure the kind of rest you need to get done what you’ve got planned for tomorrow.

    9 In Stock   |   Usually dispatched within 24 hours
    Now £98.99 RRP £104.99 | Save: £6.00
  • Tensor 20S Short Mummy Airbed
    R-Value: Not Quoted / Dimensions: 122 x 51 x 7.5cm / Packed Size: 20 x 6cm
    Weighs 238g (excluding bag)
    Reference: SS16243

    The Nemo Tensor 20 Short is an ultra lightweight and compact airbed that provides comfort and stability for a restful night's sleep. 

    Nemo says:

    Tensor features NEMO'S lightest weight fabrics and cutting edge insulation. Constructed with low stretch fabric baffles to eliminate elasticity, Tensor's height, stability, quiet fabrics, paltry weight and pack size make it the ultimate in ultralight pad design.

    3 In Stock   |   Usually dispatched within 24 hours
    £74.99
  • Inertia X Frame Regular Mat Top
    Pick
    R-Value: Not Quoted / Dimensions: 180 x 45 x 3.81cm / Packed Size: 8 x 15cm
    Weighs 258g
    Reference: 3163

    UOG TOP PICK - Klymit's Inertia X Frame Sleeping Mat - Lowest weight and packsize for any mat - We've singled out Klymit's Inertia X Frame Sleeping Mat as one of our top recommendations because they are the lightest of any type of sleeping mat with the smallest packsize, though there's a small compromise on comfort.

    Klymit says:

    The multiple award winning Klymit Inertia X-Frame is the world`s lightest most compact and most advanced full length camping pad available. Designed with body mapping research it gives you support and comfort in all the key pressure zones while eliminating unnecessary material to reduce weight and pack size.  

    Ideal for 3 season use the Inertia X Frame rolls up to the size of a Coke can and takes only a few breaths to inflate. However it still offers the adjustable comfort through the use of a dry air pump which allows you to reach higher pressures than ordinary mouth-inflate pads.

    The cut out regions of the pad not only reduce the pad`s bulk and weight but is the basis for the patent pending loft pocket technology. Whether you place your pad underneath or inside of your sleeping bag Loft pockets allow the insulation on the bottom of sleeping bags to maintain loft and warmth beneath your body where it would normally be compacted and useless while promoting breathability. Simply put you can always sleep in any condition that the sleeping bag is rated to on any of our camping pads with loft pocket technology. 

    Built with ripstop 30d top and coated 75d bottom the Inertia X Frame is also one of the toughest pads on the market.     

    1 In Stock   |   Usually dispatched within 24 hours
    Now £67.99 RRP £69.95 | Save: £1.96
  • Superlite Air Blow-up Airbed Regular
    R-Value: 0.16 / Dimensions: 183 x 49 x 7cm / Packed Size: 6 x 24cm
    Weighs 330g
    Reference: 2862

    Multimat's Superlite Air Blow-up Airbed Regular is an excellent sleeping mat for those who want to reduce the weight of their gear without breaking the bank. The simple six tube design provides a stable base for sleeping on and the vertical tubes help keep you from slipping off to one side. The bed is made from 20D rip-stop nylon which is durable but still very lightweight and Multimat recommends always using this mat with a groundsheet. The Superlite Air is a 3 season mat providing good insulation for usual spring, summer and autumn weather.

    Multimat says:

    The Superlite Air is not just an extra-light inflatable sleeping mat – it’s one of the lightest ever made.

    As such, it has been designed for ultra-light camping where every gramme saved counts. Yet it is still sure to give you the comfort you need in spring, summer and autumn.

    As the name suggests, this mat is super-light - even though it is full-sized it weighs an incredible 330g and rolls up to just 8ins x 2.5ins.

    You’ll hardly notice you’re carrying it so just remember to check it’s there before you set out.

    The weight saving has been made possible by the development of a special material; rip-stop water repellent nylon, which has increased durability and can be used much thinner.

    Here, we’ve pushed the balance of lightness and toughness to the limits - the fabric is just 20 denier thick.

    The mat is quick to inflate and even quicker to deflate through two valve and it comes with a repair kit should you need to make emergency repairs.

    For an extra-light inflatable sleeping mat, we think the Superlite Air has pushed weight reduction to the limit.

    10+ In Stock   |   Usually dispatched within 24 hours
    Now £46.49 RRP £49.99 | Save: £3.50
  • Womens NeoAir XLite Sleeping Mat Top
    Pick
    R-Value: 0.69 / Dimensions: 166 x 51 x 6.3cm / Packed Size: 23 x 10cm
    Weighs 338g
    Reference: SS15111

    UOG TOP PICK - Thermarest's Xlite Series Sleeping Mats - Best for low weight and packsize without compromising comfort - We've singled out Thermarest's Xlite series of Sleeping Mats as one of our top recommendations because they deliver the lightest weight and smallest packsize yet are among the most comfortable mats available.

    Thermarest says: The women’s NeoAir XLite mattress delivers more warmth and comfort per ounce than any other three-season air mattress available. Cold sleepers will appreciate our Women’s version, featuring an added layer of our reflective ThemaCapture technology for added warmth.

    This year, new softer fabrics bring better next-to-skin comfort and boost in durability with no added weight. For the discerning alpinist, thru-hiker or backcountry minimalist who’s counting every ounce, there is simply no better choice to assure the kind of rest you need to get done what you’ve got planned for tomorrow.

     

    2 In Stock   |   Usually dispatched within 24 hours
    Now £124.99 RRP £134.99 | Save: £10.00
  • Evolite Small Sleeping Mat
    R-Value: 0.37 / Dimensions: 119 x 51 x 5cm / Packed Size: 20 x 10cm
    Weighs 344g
    Reference: SS15102

    Thermarest's Evolite mats combine the convenience of self inflation with the comfort of a hybrid airbed construction with a small increase in weight and packed size compared to insulated airbeds.

    Thermarest says: Air mattress fans rave about comfort and self-inflating mattress fans hold fast to convenience and reliability, but what if you could have both?

    Enter the all new EvoLite mattress. Its patent-pending AirFrame construction combines the ultralight, high-loft comfort of an air mattress, with the convenience of self-inflation, creating the next big leap in camp comfort innovation. 2-inches (5 cm) of loft deliver bump-swallowing comfort and support while our exclusive Atmos Foam beams expand to inflate your mattress, leaving just a few breaths to top it to your desired firmness.

    And of course, it’s ultralight and compact enough to keep it squarely in the realm of those looking to move with a minimum through the backcountry.

    Atmos foam:

    Our exclusive Atmos Foam is the lightest and most advanced foam made. Poured in an atmospherically-controlled chamber, a near zero-gravity environment allows the foam to loft higher and more uniformly than any other process.

    In addition, the controlled environment allows all the gasses to be captured and “scrubbed” before being released, making this the cleanest and most environmentally-friendly foam production in the world.

    2 In Stock   |   Usually dispatched within 24 hours
    Now £84.99 RRP £89.99 | Save: £5.00
  • NeoAir XLite Regular Sleeping Mat Top
    Pick
    R-Value: 0.56 / Dimensions: 183 x 51 x 6.3cm / Packed Size: 23 x 10cm
    Weighs 353g
    Reference: SS15110

    UOG TOP PICK - Thermarest's Xlite Series Sleeping Mats - Best for low weight and packsize without compromising comfort - We've singled out Thermarest's Xlite series of Sleeping Mats as one of our top recommendations because they deliver the lightest weight and smallest packsize yet are among the most comfortable mats available.

    Thermarest says: The NeoAir XLite mattress delivers more warmth and comfort per ounce than any other three-season air mattress available. Our patent-pending technologies deliver that performance with minimal weight and less bulk than a one-liter water bottle.

    This year, new softer fabrics bring better next-to-skin comfort and a boost in durability, all with no added weight. For the discerning alpinist, thru-hiker or backcountry minimalist who’s counting every ounce, there is simply no better choice to assure the kind of rest you need to get done what you’ve got planned for tomorrow.

    3 In Stock   |   Usually dispatched within 24 hours
    Now £124.99 RRP £134.99 | Save: £10.00
  • Tensor 20R Regular Mummy Airbed
    R-Value: Not Quoted / Dimensions: 183 x 51 x 7.5cm / Packed Size: 20 x 8cm
    Weighs 354g (excluding bag)
    Reference: SS16244

    The Nemo Tensor 20R is an ultra lightweight and compact airbed that provides comfort and stability for a restful night's sleep.

    Nemo says:

    Tensor features NEMO'S lightest weight fabrics and cutting edge insulation. Constructed with low stretch fabric baffles to eliminate elasticity, Tensor's height, stability, quiet fabrics, paltry weight and pack size make it the ultimate in ultralight pad design.

    3 In Stock   |   Usually dispatched within 24 hours
    £94.99
  • Inertia O Zone Regular Sleeping Mat
    R-Value: Not Quoted / Dimensions: 183 x 54.6 x 4.4cm / Packed Size: 8.9 x 15.2cm
    Weighs 374g
    Reference: SS14487

    Klymit's Inertia O-Zone mat puts inflatable support where you need it combined with very low weight and pack size, especially considering it has an integrated pillow.

    Klymit says: Combining the comfort of the Static line with the weight savings and warmth from the Inertia series, the Inertia O Zone sets a new standard.. With an integrated 4-inch tall pillow, ample tossing room, and a loft pocket profile that fits every adventurer, you will find it difficult to find a reason not to switch to this pad.

    Body Mapping: Comfortably supports all the places your body touches a sleeping pad.

    Self Centered Pillow: The built in X Shaped pillow centers the head for increased comfort

    Loft Pocket Technology: The loft pockets allow the insulation of your sleeping bag to loft beneath you.

    1 In Stock   |   Usually dispatched within 24 hours
    Now £77.99 RRP £79.95 | Save: £1.96
  • NeoAir Trekker Large Torso (LT) Mat
    R-Value: 0.53 / Dimensions: 119 x 63 x 6.3cm / Packed Size: 9 x 28cm
    Weighs 376g
    Reference: SS14572

    Thermarest's NeoAir Trekker mats are rectangular with strong face fabrics and offer exceptional comfort with 3 season insulation & long term durability.

    Thermarest says:

    Now 50% Warmer! The all-new NeoAir Trekker air mattress now features our reflective ThermaCapture Radiant Heat Technology, doubling the warmth of the mattress, and pushing its comfort range well into spring and fall backpacking trips. You’ll also appreciate a weight-savings of 2 oz., thanks to some lighter fabrics – not exactly what you’d expect from something that just got 50% warmer! Stuff sack and repair kit included.

    2 In Stock   |   Usually dispatched within 24 hours
    Now £75.99 RRP £94.99 | Save: £19.00
  • Tensor Insulated 20R Regular Mummy Airbed
    R-Value: Not Quoted / Dimensions: 183 x 51 x 7.5cm / Packed Size: 20 x 9cm
    Weighs 398g (excluding bag)
    Reference: SS16246

    The Nemo Tensor Insulated 20R is an ultra lightweight and compact airbed that provides comfort and stability for a restful night's sleep.

    Nemo says:

    Tensor features NEMO'S lightest weight fabrics and cutting edge insulation. Constructed with low stretch fabric baffles to eliminate elasticity, Tensor's height, stability, quiet fabrics, paltry weight and pack size make it the ultimate in ultralight pad design.

    Item out of Stock
    £114.99
  • Synmat WinterLite M Regular Sleeping Mat
    R-Value: 0.86 / Dimensions: 183 x 52 x 9cm / Packed Size: 21 x 11cm
    Weighs 408g
    Reference: SS15457

    Exped's Winterlite mats offer a high level of insulation and the comfort of a 9cm thick mat at a very low weight, the only compromise is one the shape - which is mummy rather than rectangular.

    Exped says: SynMat WinterLite is designed to be the lightest 4-season sleeping mat on the planet.

    Tapered design, 20 denier fabric, microfiber insulation and 9cm thickness create a balance of features that respect the most weight and bulk conscious winter campers. This mat also offers the warmth needed for cold sleepers in spring and summer conditions. It packs to an extremely small size and it's tapered profile fits into the smallest tents.

    10+ In Stock   |   Usually dispatched within 24 hours
    Now £94.99 RRP £99.99 | Save: £5.00
  • Tensor Insulated 20R Regular Rectangular Airbed
    R-Value: Not Quoted / Dimensions: 183 x 51 x 7.5cm / Packed Size: 20 x 8cm
    Weighs 424g (excluding bag)
    Reference: SS16245

    The Nemo Tensor Insulated 20R is an ultra lightweight and compact airbed that provides comfort and stability for a restful night's sleep. 

    Nemo says:

    Tensor features NEMO'S lightest weight fabrics and cutting edge insulation. Constructed with low stretch fabric baffles to eliminate elasticity, Tensor's height, stability, quiet fabrics, paltry weight and pack size make it the ultimate in ultralight pad design.

    6 In Stock   |   Usually dispatched within 24 hours
    £114.99
  • NeoAir Xtherm Regular Sleeping Mat
    R-Value: 1.00 / Dimensions: 183 x 51 x 6.3cm / Packed Size: 23 x 10cm
    Weighs 430g
    Reference: SS15105

    Thermarest's NeoAir XTherm mats combine the comfort of an airbed with the insulation value required for sleeping in the coldest conditions and on snow.

    Thermarest says: The XTherm air mattress delivers the greatest warmth-to-weight ratio available in any air mattress by far, with a new, softer, textured no-slip fabric for better next-to-skin comfort and a quieter rest.

    Multiple, reflective ThermaCapture layers give the XTherm air mattress true four-season warmth without the weight or bulk usually found in a winter-worthy mattress.

    Stuff sack and repair kit included.

    2 In Stock   |   Usually dispatched within 24 hours
    Now £154.99 RRP £164.99 | Save: £10.00
  • Adventure Air Blow-up Airbed Regular
    R-Value: 0.17 / Dimensions: 183 x 49 x 7cm / Packed Size: 24 x 8cm
    Weighs 440g
    Reference: 594

    Multimat's Adventure Air Blow-up Airbed Regular provides an affordable way of reducing the weight of your gear. The adventure air is a highly packable, lightweight air bed that offers great comfort levels for it's weight. The six tube design gives you a large area to sleep on and the vertical tubes stop you from slipping sideways on this mat.

    Multimat says:

    The Adventure Air is a light inflatable sleeping mat that equips you for outdoor adventures in spring, summer and autumn.

    This full-sized mat weighs in at only 430g and rolls up to the size of a packet of biscuits and comes with a stuff sack, making it effortless to carry.

    Yet it is made from strong 75 denier rip-stop polyester which gives it durability in the great outdoors and inflates quickly to provide a much-needed 70mm cushion of air. It also has two valves for quick deflation when you break camp. And it comes with a repair kit, just in case ...

    The mat caused quite a stir when we launched it - this Adventure Air continues to be one of our best-sellers.

    If you are looking for a light inflatable sleeping mat, you’ll find this mat hard to beat.

    10+ In Stock   |   Usually dispatched within 24 hours
    Now £35.99 RRP £39.99 | Save: £4.00
  • Synmat Hyperlite LW Large Sleeping Mat
    R-Value: 0.58 / Dimensions: 197 x 65 x 7cm / Packed Size: 20 x 9cm
    Weighs 444g
    Reference: SS15518

    Exped's Synmat 7 Hyperlite mats minimise weight by being mummy shaped yet still offer excellent comfort levels and good insulation.

    Exped says: The SynMat Hyperlite is the world’s lightest mat at its warmth and comfort levels!

    It packs to an extremely small size and it's tapered profile fits into the smallest tents.Tapered design and 20 denier fabric for weight reduction, microfiber insulation for 3-season warmth and 7cm thickness for comfort.

    This mat proves that comfort and warmth need not be sacrifice in pursuit of super light packing.

    9 In Stock   |   Usually dispatched within 24 hours
    Now £104.99 RRP £114.99 | Save: £10.00
  • Static V2 Regular Inflatable Sleeping Mat
    Weighs 458g
    Reference: SS15A446

    The Static V2 is a comfortable, lightweight and super compact sleeping mat with a unique V shaped centre that hugs the body like no other camping mat. 

    Klymit says:

    The most comfortable camping pad on the market just got lighter and more backpacker friendly…

    The new Klymit Static V2 uses new high end fabrics to lighten the load, while keeping all of the creature comforts that adventurers the world over have come to love.

    Modeled after its namesake it features dynamic side rails, unmatched stability, and a body mapped V shape that hugs the body like no other camping pad.

    At one pound, a tiny pack size, and an oversized sleeping area, the Static V2 is truly an evolved camping pad with unmatched comfort, size, weight, and ease of use.

    1 In Stock   |   Usually dispatched within 24 hours
    Now £63.99 RRP £64.95 | Save: £0.96
  • Synmat 7 Ultralight Airbed M Regular Top
    Pick
    R-Value: 0.55 / Dimensions: 183 x 52 x 7cm / Packed Size: 24 x 9.5cm
    Weighs 460g
    Reference: 2273

    UOG TOP PICK - Exped Synmat 7 Series Sleeping Mats - Best for Comfort with Low Weight and Packsize - We've singled out Exped's Synmat 7 series of Sleeping Mats as one of our top recommendations because the rectangular shape (rather than mummy) and larger tubes on the outer edges make the Synmats one of the most comfortable mats available despite a low weight and packsize.

    Exped says: These airmats filled with syntectic fiber are comfortable, warm and lightweight. The mats pack down small thanks to exeedingly compressible microfiber.

    The synthetic microfiber filling is laminated to both upper and lower sides of the mat which eliminates the loss of loft common to synthetic filled sleeping bags. As with the DownMats, lab testing was done at EMPA.

    The SynMat 7 UL offers unmatched comfort and warmth at a minimal weight and packed size. Size M weighs only 470 g at size 183 x 52 cm and sumptuous 7 cm thickness and an excellent R-Value of 3.1. All this at the size of a ½ liter bottle.

    3 In Stock   |   Usually dispatched within 24 hours
    Now £89.99 RRP £94.99 | Save: £5.00
  • NeoAir XLite Large Sleeping Mat Top
    Pick
    R-Value: 0.56 / Dimensions: 196 x 63 x 6.3cm / Packed Size: 28 x 11cm
    Weighs 460g
    Reference: SS15112

    UOG TOP PICK - Thermarest's Xlite Series Sleeping Mats - Best for low weight and packsize without compromising comfort - We've singled out Thermarest's Xlite series of Sleeping Mats as one of our top recommendations because they deliver the lightest weight and smallest packsize yet are among the most comfortable mats available.

    Thermarest says: The NeoAir XLite mattress delivers more warmth and comfort per ounce than any other three-season air mattress available. Our patent-pending technologies deliver that performance with minimal weight and less bulk than a one-liter water bottle.

    This year, new softer fabrics bring better next-to-skin comfort and a boost in durability, all with no added weight. For the discerning alpinist, thru-hiker or backcountry minimalist who’s counting every ounce, there is simply no better choice to assure the kind of rest you need to get done what you’ve got planned for tomorrow.

    8 In Stock   |   Usually dispatched within 24 hours
    Now £144.99 RRP £154.99 | Save: £10.00
  • 2017 NeoAir Trekker Regular New
    R-Value: 0.56 / Dimensions: 183 x 51 x 6.3cm / Packed Size: 11 x 28cm
    Weighs 486g (excluding bag)
    Reference: SS17152

    We're working out what we think - we'll add our view here!

    Thermarest says:

    Lightweight, go-anywhere mattress for three-season backpacking.

    The NeoAir Trekker mattress is our lightweight jack-of-all-trades air mattress for backpacking, travel, car camping and just about everything else. Featuring a new Regular Wide size this year, the Trekker uses our reflective ThermaCapture™ technology, pushing its comfort range well into spring and fall backcountry trips. Light yet durable fabrics, combined with exceptional comfort and compactness offers go-anywhere versatility. Stuff sack and repair kit included.

    1 In Stock   |   Usually dispatched within 24 hours
    Now £104.99 RRP £114.99 | Save: £10.00
  • UltraLight Insulated Sleeping Mat - Regular Free Air
    Chair Kit
    R-Value: 0.58 / Dimensions: 183 x 55 x 5cm / Packed Size: 10 x 23cm
    Weighs 488g (excluding bag)
    Reference: SS16621

    Ultralight and compact, this exceptionally comfortable mat is ideal when light and fast is your aim and getting a great night's sleep is essential for the next day's adventure.

    Sea to Summit says:

    The Ultralight sleeping mat range has a single layer of medium resolution Air Sprung Cells™ to give you the lightest and smallest packed-volume mat without compromising comfort. To add warmth, we use Exkin® Platinum, a quiet non-woven fabric that reflects radiant heat loss back to the user and Thermolite® insulation to prevent convective heat loss between your body and the ground.

    All Sea to Summit sleeping mats come with a quality stuff sack, a repair kit containing six self adhesive patches for repairing punctures in the field, and a spare silicone one-way valve flap.

    Item out of Stock
    Now £99.99 RRP £109.99 | Save: £10.00
  • Inertia XLarge Inflatable Sleeping Mat
    R-Value: Not Quoted / Dimensions: 200 x 63 x 3.81cm / Packed Size: 22.8 x 10cm
    Weighs 492g
    Reference: 3166

    Like its nimble little brother the Inertia X Frame this Inertia XL is the lightest most compact and technically advanced camping pad in its category of oversized camping pads. The Inertia XL (IXL) offers increased support body mapping coverage area tossing room and even an integrated head cradle pillow.  

    The Inertia XL accommodates more body shapes and sizes with its more neutral body map design.

    The Inertia XL offers the same technologies as the Inertia X Frame such as loft pocket technology customizable pressurized comfort and support ultralight and compact and low volume for inflation. This is the ultimate pad for those looking for a little more comfort and support but still want the smallest lightest thing out there.  

    1 In Stock   |   Usually dispatched within 24 hours
    Now £107.49 RRP £114.99 | Save: £7.50
  • NeoAir XthermMax Regular Sleeping Mat
    R-Value: 1.00 / Dimensions: 183 x 51 x 6.3cm / Packed Size: 23 x 10cm
    Weighs 510g
    Reference: SS15107

    Thermarest's NeoAir XTherm mats combine the comfort of an airbed with the insulation value required for sleeping in the coldest conditions and on snow.

    Thermarest says: The XTherm air mattress delivers the greatest warmth-to-weight ratio available in any air mattress by far, with a new, softer, textured no-slip fabric for better next-to-skin comfort and a quieter rest.

    Multiple, reflective ThermaCapture layers give the XTherm air mattress true four-season warmth without the weight or bulk usually found in a winter-worthy mattress. And now, the all new XTherm MAX delivers all the great features and benefits of the original XTherm in a full rectangular shape, providing added coverage and warmth for extreme temps and wider torsos.

    Stuff sack and repair kit included.

    6 In Stock   |   Usually dispatched within 24 hours
    Now £154.99 RRP £164.99 | Save: £10.00

Ultralight Airbeds

Introduction: Airbeds used to be very heavy and were cold to sleep on because the air moved around taking heat from the body. Modern airbeds are extremely lightweight and most models offer some insulation, most of all though they are the most comfortable mat because they are thicker than other mat types so the body can sink into them and get good support. Some are thicker than others, so check this out when choosing a bed, the thicker they are the more comfortable they will be.

Insulation: Some airbeds do not offer any insulation at all, they are very comfortable but the movement of air inside the chambers sucks heat from the body, making them colder to sleep on than other mats. This is not necessarily a problem for summer or three season use, remember you will still have some insulation from your sleeping bag under you. The more expensive airbeds are insulated - there are a number of ways to do this - you can glue an insulator to the inside for the baffles, you can add a layer of down to the inside of the mat, you can add reflective layers to reflect heat back to the body and you can make the air chambers small enough to prevent air movement. Some mats use a combination of these techniques to produce a mat that has a high insulation value - this can be measured and is called the 'R-Value'. A full explanation of 'R-Value' can be found HERE.

Disadvantages: So, their pack size and weight are generally smaller and lighter than self inflating mats so they are offering a much better nights sleep than any other type of mat, what is there not to like? One disadvantage is that if your airbed gets a puncture you lose both comfort and insulation - at least with a self inflating mat you still have some foam to lie on, and a closed cell foam mat can't get a puncture - so for longer trips some people may prefer closed cell foam because nothing can go wrong. Another disadvantage is price, insulated airbeds are the most expensive type of sleeping mat. The smallest and lightest is the Thermarest NeoAir, which crinkles a bit when you move around on it - some people find the sound distracting when trying to sleep. You also have to blow airbeds up - which can be a bit of a chore at the end of a long day on the mountain, though you can get very lightweight devices to pump them up.

What to look out for:

  • The lightest airbeds use very lightweight fabrics, not as durable as the heavier versions. Its not about puncture resistance - its the life of the product. 
  • Slightly bigger tubes on the outside edges of an airbed reduces the likelihood of you rolling off - useful if you have trouble staying on an airbed.
  • All sleeping mats tend to slip around the groundsheet during the night - some manufacturers put silicon patterns on the mats to reduce this.
  • Finally, because airbeds are quite thick you need a good sized pillow - if your head will be off the end of the mat your pillow will need to make up the thickness of the mat plus the desired height of the pillow.

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