The Sea to Summit Ultralight Insulated Mat has been my personal favorite sleeping pad for several years now. It’s not too thick, which makes it quick to inflate and deflate. But it’s still very comfy (even for a side-sleeper), supportive, and possibly the most durable inflatable sleeping pad on the market. We liked it so much that it won a Gear of The Year award in 2016.
Unfortunately, the pair Gin and I had got destroyed. After being injured and stretchered out of the mountains in the Republic of Georgia, Gin used them to pad our bikes on the jeep’s roof rack… the jeep that would evacuate us out of the Caucasus over some of the roughest roads in the world. Needless to say, the UL Mats were torn beyond repair. We just got two more for an upcoming trip. After unboxing, them I noticed a new feature. They now have a slightly different stuff sack with an integrated air pump.
The Airstream Pumpsack is Sea to Summit’s high-volume mattress pump, and it’s now integrated into the stuff sack of every Air Sprung Cell mat they produce. The clever design opens at one end to stow the rolled air mat, and the other end unfolds the built-in pump. Once the valve is fitted to the mat, the pump is inflated with a single breath. Then it’s rolled to compress air into the Mat. It takes just two cycles to fill the UL Insulated Mat. Normally, us minimalists might find this to be a bit “excess” for an ultralight bikepacking setup, but it weighs just 26 grams more than the regular stuff sack, and it only adds about a centimeter to the length of the roll (see comparison photo above right; pad on the left is the original stuff sack, the one on the right is the Pumpsack). Plus, it’s super easy to use and keeps breath condensation from gumming up the inside of the mat.
You can find Cass’ original review of the UL Mat here.
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