Today is day one of the Outdoor Retailer Winter Market, a gathering in Salt Lake City where all of the major outdoor gear manufacturers gather to showcase new products. This show happens twice a year, in summer and winter. During this show I will be looking at what’s new and innovative in the following categories:
- The big three: sleep system, shelters, and packs
- Clothing with a focus in women’s apparel
- winter specific gear
Today I’ve been looking at the big three. At the winter market, most manufacturers are showcasing products for cold weather camping and hiking. There are products that are great year round, but there are many expedition or winter packs, sleeping pads, and shelters.
Here’s a look at what’s new in the sleeping mats. Later I’ll have up shelters and sleeping bags.
During the summer OR show, Sea to Summit introduced a new line of sleeping mats. They are very different than traditional inflatable mats. They come in uninsulated and insulated versions for the UltraLight, Comfort Light, and Comfort Plus. The UL mat is 12.5 oz for the uninsulated version which has an R-Value of 0.7. The insulated version weighs a little more at 15.5 oz but has an R-Value of 3.3! The UL versions are pictured above in yellow (uninsulated) and orange (insulated). The Comfort Lite is blue (uninsulated) and green (insulated).
These mats all have Air Sprung Cells and an efficient multifunctional valve which makes it easy to inflate and deflate. The Sea to Summit sleeping mats are constructed using a dot-weld pattern to create a high surface-area matrix of interconnected chambers called Air Sprung Cells. They were designed like a pocket spring mattress for comfort and even dispersion of pressure.
These mats have been hugely popular already and have received five awards including the National Geographic Adventure Gear of the Year award for 2014.
Cascade Designs also has a booth with a variety of sleeping mat options. They had their popular Prolite Plus on display, but also have mat for 2015: a self-inflating Evo-Lite mat. It features an AirFrame™ construction that is comfortable but still relatively compact. It comes in sizes small, regular, and large. All three sizes have an R-Value of 2.1 and range from 11.5 oz (small) to 1 lb 7 oz (large).
Klymit came out with a new sleeping pad as well. The Klymit Static V-Lite is the lightest and warmest sleeping pad under $100. It weighs in at 19 oz and has an R-Value of 4.4. This pad will be available March 2015 and will cost $99.50. It has the same v-chamber design as their popular mats and body mapping technology for comfort. This is the best option for those looking for an economical option to go lightweight. I’ve used their mats in the past and their body mapping technology is pretty revolutionary.
Keep an eye out for what’s new for 2015 on Trail to Summit!
Last modified: September 2, 2017