Reviewed By: Darwin
Outdoorsman Lab’s UL Sleeping Pad is a noticeably light pad weighing in at 15oz and is very packable for being 21 inches wide and 6ft long (standard size). It comes with its own drawstring stuff sack and once removed is easily unrolled with out any static build up. The material the pad is made of is smooth and relatively soft to the touch.
The pad itself is made up of quilted air cells, which allows for easy airflow when inflating. The 2-way valve system used for inflation is easily located on the underside of pad. Once valve lid is pulled,any air blown into pad will not escape due to airlock design. This allows the user to inflate at a leisurely pace which is a very convenient feature. Once inflated to desired firmness, valve cap is easily pushed back in and the pad is ready for use. Deflation for the pad is simple as well having only to open valve lid and press on the trap door to start air release.
Due to the quilted design, I did not have any issues with the inner baffling becoming undone as I have had with other sleeping pads. When weight is shifted on the pad, the quilt design allows for air to fill another quilt pocket. Nothing is worse than a popped baffle leaving a large uneven lump to sleep on. While in a sitting a position on the pad I found even full inflation did not hold up to weight as I would sink to the ground surface.
The Outdoorsman Lab’s UL Sleeping Pad, unfortunately, has a low R-value of 1.3 and even though the pad is 2.2 inches thick when fully inflated I would only consider it a summer pad. It was not specifically tested in a colder environment because of this low rating. It seems that the pad would work best in environments no colder than 50 degrees.
The pad was used on a variety of different surfaces including pine needles, uneven ground, rocks, etc. and could occasionally feel ground surface. Occasionally while side sleeping the pad would sink underweight causing my hipbone to become flush with the ground surface. Although light, the Outdoorsman is very similar to other pads in durability. It can be used on bare ground but as with other inflatables, it is recommended that a ground tarp of some kind is laid down first for protection.
I found the Outdoorsman Lab’s UL Sleeping Pad to be a great option for the budget backpacker. The pad is light and well made and being priced at $47 USD is a cheaper alternative compared to other pads on the market. The only flaw I could find currently was the low R-rating again making this pad seemingly more reliable for summer use but no the less efficient.
Check it out on Amazon! – http://amzn.to/2pKRjvk
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