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Ryan Hart
(drmguy) - F

Locale: Orange County
Which Sleeping Pad for JMT on 03/29/2010 13:50:40 MDT Print View

Currently I own a Big Agnes insulated air core and a z-lite. I tried sleeping on the z-lite for the first time backpacking this weekend and did not find it to be the best experience as I am a side sleeper. The only reason I am even considering it over something like the neoair is that a z-lite would be far better than a popped neoair or anything else for that matter.

On a side note, after poking around a bit I think I will settle for the Ultra 20 quilt if that changes anything as far as functionality goes.

As always thanks for the help.

Brandon Sanchez
(dharmabumpkin) - F

Locale: San Gabriel Mtns
sleeping on 03/29/2010 13:58:24 MDT Print View

in my experience, the longer your trip (ie more nights in a row you sleep on any given pad), the more easy it is to sleep in that pad. i took a ridgerest on the jmt and was waking my only about once a night by the end compared to many times a night at the beginning of the trip. Also I found that I wanted to hit the passes earlier in the day so I had the tendency to sleep at about 10,000ft or higher, but I sleep MUCH better at lower elevations.

James Naphas
(naphas13) - MLife

Locale: SoCal
Re: Which Sleeping Pad for JMT on 03/29/2010 20:41:05 MDT Print View

Maybe try a gossamer gear nightlight. It's thicker and a little more comfy CCF pad than a z-rest; lighter, too. Big issue is that the full size rolls up to a cylinder about 9" around. You can cut one up into ten inch segments and join them with velcro to make a 3/4 length pad. The other option is to buy a neoair AND a repair kit.

Edited by naphas13 on 03/29/2010 20:51:01 MDT.

Jeff Jeff
(TwoFortyJeff) - F
Re: Which Sleeping Pad for JMT on 03/29/2010 20:42:36 MDT Print View

I took a ridge rest deluxe and would do so again.

Nate Meinzer
(Rezniem) - F

Locale: San Francisco
Side Sleepers on 03/29/2010 21:12:28 MDT Print View

Side sleepers do not do well with CCF pads, since all of your body weight is distributed on your hips and shoulders.

I'd highly recommend getting either a Neo-Air Short or a short Big agnes Air Core and placing a Gossamer Gear 1/8" pad beneath them to protect them from abrasion.

The Neo-Airs are VERY prone to springing holes. I've seen two do it already. The Big Agnes Air Core will last a long time without leaking. Take some Gorilla Tape (around your trekking pole) in either case. It will repair both pads effectively.

Eric Blumensaadt
(Danepacker) - MLife

Locale: Mojave Desert
OR, you could... on 03/29/2010 21:27:34 MDT Print View

...take the lightest standard Thermarest Prolite pad.

Works for me. :)

Jonathan Ryan
(Jkrew81) - F - M

Locale: White Mtns
Re: Which Sleeping Pad for JMT on 03/30/2010 05:56:55 MDT Print View

My wife and I each had Prolite pads (XS and 3/4 size) and Goss Gear Nightlight Torso pads. The logic was to use the Prolites for comfortable sleeping and the Nightlights were used as sitpads, emergency backup or extra insulation if we ended up on very cold ground. This system may be alittle much for some people but we like being comfortable so it works for us.

Lori Pontious
(lori999) - M

Locale: Central Valley
Re: Side Sleepers on 03/30/2010 09:02:03 MDT Print View

I like my NeoAir. Maybe it doesn't pop because I don't overinflate it? It seems easy to do.... It's less pressure on my hips to have it less full than would seem comfortable.

Edited by lori999 on 03/30/2010 09:03:58 MDT.

Scott Bentz
(scottbentz) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Neo Air, etc. on 03/30/2010 09:46:41 MDT Print View

My brother took a brand new Neo Air on our JMT hike. It had a slow leak. Hard to find on the trail. Fortunately, we were in Tuolomne on our second day and he picked a Ridgerest CCF I think. He later ditched the Neo Air at Red's when we met my wife there.

I used a TorsoLite and have never had problems. I also pair it with a 1/8" Gossamer Gear Thin Light that I use as a sit pad and to place under my legs.

Amy Lauterbach
(drongobird) - MLife

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
NeoAir + GG 1/8" on 03/30/2010 10:06:09 MDT Print View

I second this recommendation (the setup I currently use):
Neo-Air Short and place a Gossamer Gear 1/8" pad beneath it to protect them from abrasion.

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: Neo Air, etc. on 03/30/2010 10:33:39 MDT Print View

"My brother took a brand new Neo Air on our JMT hike. It had a slow leak... He later ditched the Neo Air at Red's"

Did he really just ditch the pad instead of returning it to where he bought it for a refund?

Travis Leanna
(T.L.) - MLife

Locale: Wisconsin
Kooka Bay on 03/30/2010 10:59:50 MDT Print View

I know I do this every time a sleeping pad thread pops up, but hey, why not promote the little guy?

Check out KookaBay sleeping pads. Bender is a member here, and does custom work as well. I was originally going to get a small Neoair for is light weight (9 oz), but after discovering KookaBay, I will be getting a 60x20x2.5 mummy down air mat with an r-value of at least twice that of a neoair. The weight penalty? Bender says mine will come in at just over 11 ounces.

My pad was made of a lighter 30D fabric not listed on his website. I expect to be able to use it in all 4 seasons without the need for an additional CCF pad. However, because of the lightweight fabric, I may take a thin CCF pad to prickly places such as the desert.

Travis Leanna
(T.L.) - MLife

Locale: Wisconsin
Re: Kooka Bay on 03/30/2010 11:02:53 MDT Print View

Nate,
Do we know yet why Neoairs are leak-prone? Is it the seams? Punctures from tiny pricklies on the ground? Abuse from their owners?

Derek Cox
(derekcox) - F

Locale: Southeast
neo airs leak prone on 03/30/2010 11:48:55 MDT Print View

i think there are just bad batches that were sent out and they will replace it for you if yours leaks. i havent ever had a problem with mine.

John Drollette
(tradja) - F

Locale: Central Oregon
Re: Neo Air, etc. on 03/31/2010 11:51:37 MDT Print View

Scott writes: "I used a TorsoLite and have never had problems. I also pair it with a 1/8" Gossamer Gear Thin Light that I use as a sit pad and to place under my legs"

That's the exact combo I'm going to use on the PCT this year (GG TorsoLite + 1/8" Nightlite). Not sure about it based on training hikes but reassuring that you like it. Seems great on paper and on my kitchen floor. After freezing on the CDT, I am way more concerned with insulation for the weight.

For that hike, I used a Z-Rest -- it was an upgrade from my previous pad and was a great packframe but I didn't like how it flattened out so fast, or how heavy it was for the limited warmth and longevity.

For the JMT, may I suggest a cut-down RidgeRest Deluxe? No worries about repairs and my torso length+ weighs 7oz. Duct tape sticks tenaciously to Ridge Rest foam, so I cut mine into 3 panels and hinged it into a tri-fold with good quality 3M "premium" duct tape.

Edited by tradja on 03/31/2010 16:04:02 MDT.

Russell Swanson
(rswanson) - F

Locale: Midatlantic
Re: Which Sleeping Pad for JMT on 03/31/2010 14:12:10 MDT Print View

After having three 2.5" thick inflatables (two Pacific Outdoor and one Big Agnes) develop leaks I've sworn this style of pad off for everything except overnighters. I know, I know- you haven't had a problem with yours. But I wouldn't feel very secure leaving for a 200 mile hike carrying one, even with a repair kit. And how do you find and repair leak in the field? Really tough to do, even in optimal conditions (my bathtub).

I'm using a Montbell UL 90 with the pillow. Just under 13 ounces and the pillow is niiiiiiice. I also use two sections of a GG Nightlight torso pad as the back panel in my pack so it's pretty cushy and warm. So far, so good with durability and I'd bet no where near as difficult to diagnose or repair a leak as one of the tubed pads. I can't even imagine trying to find out which tube on a Neo Air has a leak in a back country lake. And who wants to lose the hiking time pulling that chore?

Ryan Hart
(drmguy) - F

Locale: Orange County
Re: Re: Which Sleeping Pad for JMT on 03/31/2010 14:33:55 MDT Print View

After reading quite a few different posts I think the best solution would be a montbell pillow combo + some minimal ccf or a z-lite.

I'm not sure yet but I will do more research.

Russell Swanson
(rswanson) - F

Locale: Midatlantic
Re: Re: Re: Which Sleeping Pad for JMT on 03/31/2010 15:38:19 MDT Print View

Having owned and used both I'd definitely choose the Gossamer Gear CCF pads over the ZLite. It would be fairly easy to adapt a CCF pad to use the toggle on the Montbell Pillow.

John Drollette
(tradja) - F

Locale: Central Oregon
Re: Re: Re: Re: Which Sleeping Pad for JMT on 03/31/2010 16:07:16 MDT Print View

Russell writes: "Having owned and used both I'd definitely choose the Gossamer Gear CCF pads over the ZLite."

Russell, can you elaborate on this a bit? Do the GG CCF pads have better warmth? Longevity? What? I froze on my ZLite and want to justify switching to GG pads this year, even though I only have 1 night on the GGs.

Roleigh Martin
(marti124) - MLife

Locale: Moderator-JohnMuirTrail Yahoo Group
Re: Which Sleeping Pad for JMT on 03/31/2010 21:06:32 MDT Print View

I've spent the last 11 years in the High Sierra and the last 2 years on the JMT and will redo the JMT this summer. I've tried a bunch of things but for the last 3 years and for the future, I swear by the 5 foot Montbell Sleeping pad (1" inflatable) with the Montbell Pillow which toggle-attaches to the sleeping pad, making it about 5'9" long. It comes with a repair kit but never had a puncture yet. Far more comfortable in my opinion than the NeoAir which I took back to REI. The Montbell is about 17 oz weight but a weight I can live with for the sleep I get.