We’ve read the reviews across the web for the Big Agnes Insulated Air Core Ultra Sleeping Pad and summarize the results below:
PeakScore: 83 (out of 100)
User Rating: 4.5 stars
Expert Rating: 3.5 stars
Number of Ratings Reviewed: 176
Pros & Cons
Reasons to buy:
- Comfortable and lightweight.
- Compact and easy to pack.
- 3-4″ thick mattress which provides good cushioning from the hard ground.
- Wide enough to support the whole back.
- Easy to inflate and deflate.
- Insulation provides some warmth on colder night down to approximately freezing temperatures.
- Sturdy and durable while laying on the pad.
- Features a one-way valve to control the firmness.
- The inflation works so that the pad keeps you in the center, instead of rolling you off to the side.
- The pad features ‘side rails’ which can help to keep the sleeper central during the night.
- If you’re sitting on the pad, you don’t touch the cold ground.
- There are six size combinations available, which include two wide options.
- Features I-Beam, which is designed to increase the stability of the pad.
- Compared to the previous model, the newer version has more precise lamination, aiding in durability.
- Since there are an even number of vertical baffles, your spine will align between two tubes, which can add to the comfort.
- Features double rip-stop fabric, which claims to have 25% greater strength.
- The holes that exist along the length allow air to move freely throughout the pad, aiding in quicker inflation and deflation.
- Small when packed, coming out to approximately 5×9 inches.
Reasons NOT to buy:
- Reports of starting to leak after a few months.
- Reports of tiny holes appearing near the bottom seam.
- If you sleep on your side, the mattress can sometimes slide you around.
- Vertical baffles take a little to get used to.
- Multiple reports of the material being noisy when sleeping.
- If inflating manually by mouth, the process can take a long time.
- The pad is vulnerable to sharp objects.
- Since the pad has two plugs instead of one, there are double the chances of getting a leak.
- Not very lightweight.
The Big Agnes Insulated Air Core Ultra Sleeping Pad is a basic pad that is best suited for those wanting to save money, and won’t be sleeping in much weather below freezing. The lack of insulation and potential for micro-holes leave the durability in question, but the pad is more comfortable than many pads, making this a good choice for a backpacker on a budget.