Sleeping Pads » Big Agnes Air Core Pads

* Light and compact three season pad, with 2.5″ of comfort
* PrimaLoftTM eco: synthetic insulation made from 50% recycled materials used in all 20″ wide pads
* I-beam construction eliminates welded seams to reduce cold spots and ensures quick inflation/deflation, consistent air flow and stability
* 20″ pads: Durable, lightweight 50D nylon diamond rip-stop top and bottom
* Internal polyurethane coating
* Non-breakable brass valve with plastic coated EZ-FlateTM mouthpiece

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Big Agnes pads come in several variations.

Insulated Air Core (rated to 15 degrees):

Air Core (rated to 35 degrees):

Clearview (rated to 35 degrees):

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Comments (12)

ScottMDecember 4th, 2008 at 7:16 pm

Switching to the Big Agnes air pads has been a recent revelation for me. I’ve used Z-rests, car visor type things and more recently the prolite 3.

For me, the Big Agnes pads are at least 3-4 times more comfortable than the prolite 3. YMMV — I am a ~big guy compared to some. For me the extra thickness means the difference of my hip being on the ground or not. Paula also loves them, she just uses a lot less air pressure.

I’ve only used the clearview when it’s relatively warm, and have the insulated one for colder trips. It weighs a bit more than a prolite but comfort is worth it, and it does pack a bit smaller.

The thing that kills me about the big agnes pads is that they are more comfortable than the “car camping” super thick thermarests we have. I was shocked to get some of the best camp sleep I’ve ever had while supposedly going “ultralight.”

YuriFebruary 6th, 2009 at 7:04 pm

I have to agree with Scott – using this pad was a revelation. I had previously been using an Ultralight Thermarest pad and the difference was night and day. I’ve never been so comfortable sleeping on the ground. my only note is that it takes some lungs to fill it up and at the end of the day and it can be a little tiring but well worth the effort.

JerryWJune 8th, 2009 at 6:40 pm

I have two of the insulated air core pads, one regular mummy and a long rectangular. Due to a trashed lower back, either of these pads make the difference between sleeping all night and tossing and turning, which I did with my thin self-inflater.

Do yourself a favor and get the Pumphouse inflator:
It’s only 1.5 oz. and doubles as a dry bag. No more huffing and puffing after a hard day of riding. It inflates your pad in a couple of minutes.

KeithhnJuly 18th, 2009 at 6:56 pm

If you sleep on your side, a 2.5″ thick pad is a must imo.

SteveoNovember 16th, 2009 at 1:39 pm

I bought one of these and WOW! its comfortable and light,compactable for bikepacking,ect.I would buy anotherone in a heartbeat!Be shure to get the insulated one.

mikeNovember 16th, 2009 at 7:13 pm

Same here… and I combined it with a bag – the whole system works well.

PhilAugust 24th, 2011 at 11:25 am

I bought the Clearview pad after reading ScottM’s review I haven’t regreted it. A very light and comfy pad; packs down to almost nothing. Queit too.

JayOctober 3rd, 2011 at 9:34 am

I’ve used the 20″x 66″ insulated air core for several years, but found that after about 30-40 + nites on them they start going soft overnite, with undefined leaks that cannot be found in a bathtub. Two of them were returned for this reason. The comfort was great on bikepacking, backpacking, and long sea kayak trips. The older Agnes pads seemed to hold up better. Reviews at seem to mirror this experience, and an honest gearhead working there pointed me to the Exped pad. I may now try an Exped Synmat Ul 7 M pad, which gets better reviews- 460 gm for 72″ size. They can be inflated with a slick pillow/pump that avoids moisture from your breath, perhaps increasing the effective R-value? A bit more pricey than Agnes Pads.

ascarFebruary 1st, 2013 at 3:57 pm

a comfy nights sleep is more important than riding and riding is what i live for. this pad is what i like to use most of the time. several ways of using it. i made a bivy that i stuff this pad into the bottom pocket to keep it under me(i toss and turn while i sleep). i use it as a minimal set up with just a bivy shell and no sleeping bag. i have even used it to float down a river to cool off on the hottest day of the year.

never had a flat, but i use a ground sheet or tent. i usually use a car shade(or two) to bring up the “R” value, as mine is the lower version.

Tman TorinFebruary 2nd, 2013 at 10:34 pm

I have used the Big Agnes Core pad as well with a Big Agnes down bag (borrowed from a friend of mine) Super comfortable and I have never used a warmer sleeping system. compacts and rolls up into one tight unit. Easy to find room on your bike when packing this system. You had better have a cold night to sleep well, because I over-heated in around 45 degree weather. Slept both nights with the bag unzipped. Crazy!
Sorry to hear that the pads get leaks in them that you can not find. Thanks for the insight Jay. Will take a look at the other options as well before buying one.

HarryFebruary 3rd, 2013 at 3:17 pm

One thing I found after tearing a one inch hole in mine, the glue dries up after a couple of years. Fortunately, I was near an outdoors store and was able to purchase some fix anything repair glue. Do not try tire patch glue as it peals right off. Otherwise an extremely comfortable sleeping pad

JayAugust 30th, 2013 at 9:53 pm

Update: Back to using an Agnes light weight Q Core 3.5″, R4.5, 16 oz. Earlier, an Exped UL turned into a friggin sausage when the baffles popped on an extended Baja sea kayak trip. Not a pretty sight! REI returned it -no problem- though now their return policy has changed.
I’m ~5-7 and can skimp by with a 66″ Q Core pad. Pretty plush. At age 30 we would winter camp on 1/4″ ensolite while ski-mountaineering. However, at 66, a good nite’s sleep makes it a lot easier to bounce back the next day for more riding. So far no problems like older ones had, with extended use. You’ll be Cadillac-ing with one of these things.

It is always a good idea to check the ground under pad for sharpies, with your hands, and even throw extra clothes/stuff sacks, etc under pad for added protection.

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