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Choosing The Best Sleeping Pad Made Easy

The Sleeping pad brands found here are the most popular available. You will find best sellers and others from these brands to help you make the right choice of pad.

Whether you are a weekend car camper or a true backpacking adventurer, one thing we can all agree on is getting a good night's sleep. A poor sleep system can mean the difference between a "happy camper" or a few more "grizzly bears" in the woods.

The reviews and information about various brands is for those seasoned campers who have decided on one brand of Sleeping Mat for life and for those who are new to the world of outdoor adventure.

Best Selling Brands

Based on the reports and reviews by consumers, here are the best sleeping bag pad brands available today.



The Z Lite is a popular foam pad that receives very positive consumer reports and gets the thumbs up by us.

Therm-a-rest is one of the brand names belonging to Cascade designs. Cascade has been in business for over thirty five years and is known for a variety of outdoor products that make your outdoor experience just a little more comfortable.

They are best known for their MSR tents, Stoves and of course for sleeping pads.

Therm-a-rest sleep pads are probably the most popular and well known internationally of any of the brands.

You can purchase Therm-a-rest sleeping pads around the world from Argentina to Zimbabwe. They are known mainly for their pads to be lightweight and well made with almost every pad they make scoring 4 out 5 stars or better on reviews across the board by consumers.

This company also offers the largest number and variety available.

Buying Themarest Pads

Due to Thermarest's huge popularity it is easy to find countless reviews for their products which makes it fairly simple to choose the right pad for all your camping needs. This is not true of all the brands as you will see. More information about the Thermarest Pad here.


The story behind REI is fairly interesting. It began as a co-op in 1938 with just 23 people and now is one of the oldest and largest co-ops today. Members of the co op get all sorts of perks including a yearly refund which amounts to about 10% of what you purchase from the company.

This company stands behind their products they sell 100% and sells their own gear as well as those of competitors.

REI does make a handful of sleeping pads although they aren't quite as popular as the Therm-a-rest brand although they do compare pretty favorably to Therm-a-rest. Most of their pads score 3.5 to 5 stars across the board in consumer reviews.

Buying REI's Pads

While there aren't as many reviews for the REI camp pads as there are for Thermarest, there are certainly enough reviews for you to get a clear indication of the quality and how they can meet your camping needs.



Manual inflatable pad. Cost's around $159.00 - $189.00. 700 fill down top quality all weather pad. Winter enthusiasts love em!

EXPED stands for expedition equipment and the companies headquarter office is in Zurich, Switzerland. It has been in business since 1983 and is known for designing equipment for hikers and climbers. While this is not an extremely well known company in the United States they do offer two series of Sleeping Pads that get great reviews on a few websites.

While these mats rate high at 4.5 out of 5 stars for most reviews that I found. The Down mat is great for winter camping but it's was quite heavy and would work better for car campers rather than hikers and climbers. Both Downmat pads are designed to be 4 season and perform best in winter camping situations.

Consumers who are considering one of Exped's sleep mats may find themselves somewhat uncomfortable with the lack of reviews. However, keep in mind that the shortage of reviews for these mats are because the company is not as well known in the United States and not because they make a poor product.

Big Agnes


The inflatable Air Core is a comfortable well designed pad for backpacking and camping.

Big Agnes is a company out of Steamboat Springs, Colorado. This company often names their products after local places so you may find a few unusual names for some of their products. This company manufactures a large range of camping equipment from tents, to sleeping bags and Sleeping Pads.

Many of their products are made from recycled material saving on our natural resources.

It should be noted that while a Big Agnes Pad can be used separately they were designed to be used with the companies own sleeping bags, which the pad fits in.

While reviews for these pads are easier to find than are those for the Exped Company there are still fewer of them than for Therm-a-rest or REI. Reviews run from just a little above average to excellent depending on which mat you are looking at.

Big Agnes does sell internationally but, not through their website.

Nemo Equipment

The Nemo equipment company has its headquarters in New Hampshire. This company began with the idea that they were going to bring high level technology and engineering to the world of the outdoor sportsman.

Best known for making high quality tents they do have a small line of Sleeping Pad models that do quite well in reviews, although there are few reviews to be found.

What makes this companies mats somewhat unique is that while they are inflatable they have two different chambers which not only helps you to make the top layer as firm or soft as you would like but, reduces the chances of you ending up on the ground if the mat springs a leak.

The company does sell internationally from Canada, to the United Kingdom, Nepal and Taiwan.

Reviews for Nemo camping pads are quite scarce and scattered although Trailspace does have one or two reviews for some of their mats.

One problem with this brand is that due to the lack of reviews to be found it is really impossible to get a good idea of just how good these sleep mats perform. Which may be a deciding factor in choosing a more popular brand over this one?

Alps Mountaineering

Unlike the name suggests Alps Mountaineering is not headquartered in Switzerland but in Missouri. The company was started by Dennis Brune who learned about camping equipment while working for Kelty.

In 1994, wanting to spend more time with his growing family Dennis left Kelty and formed Alps Mountaineering, which is mainly a family run business. This company's goal is to produce high quality camping gear at an affordable price.

Alps Mountaineering makes two types of Pads, foam and self inflating. The choice of mats from this company is quite limited, their best Sleeping Pads seem to be the Alp Mountaineering Comfort series self inflating air pods.

However, reviews state that these pads are extremely heavy and are really not useful for anything more than car camping. Here again reviews for this companies mats are pretty scarce and scattered and there really aren't enough reviews for most people to feel as though they can make an informed choice based on the reviews.

This companys products are only sold in the United States and Canada.

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