Adventist Youth Honors Answer Book/Camping/Sleeping pads
Sleeping pads can perform two main functions:
- Provide cushioning
- Provide insulation between the sleeper and the ground.
- Air mattresses
Air mattresses are inflatable cushions that can provide a lot of comfort when it comes to sleeping on the ground. Unfortunately, they are not very warm as they provide next to no insulation beneath the sleeper. This may not be an issue, though it is well worth knowing.
- Open-cell foam pads
Open-cell foam is a type of foam padding that is sometimes found in furniture cushions or even in regular mattresses. It is lightweight - though somewhat bulky. Its chief disadvantage is that it soaks up water like a sponge.
- Closed-cell foam pads
Closed-cell foam makes the ideal sleeping pad. The closed cells do not soak up water. They are lightweight, comfortable, and compact. Often they are only half an inch (12 mm) thick, so they can be rolled into a small tube and strapped to a backpack. They also serve as an excellent thermal barrier between the sleeper and the ground.