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Gear Review: Therm-a-Rest NeoAir Trekker Pad

The Trekker is a more affordable descendant of the NeoAir, which won our Editors' Choice Award in 2009.
Therm-a-Rest NeoAir Trekker (BP Photo Department)

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Trickle-down technology comes to sleeping pads: The Trekker is a more affordable descendant of the NeoAir, which won our Editors’ Choice Award in 2009. The 2.5-inch-thick Trekker delivers the same plush comfort in a light and compressible package, but costs $50 less. Key similarities: Horizontal baffles provide a supremely stable sleeping platform—“I thrash a lot, and most thick pads give me the boot if I get too close to the edge. But not this one,” says one tester. And an internal matrix of triangular chambers traps air, boosting warmth without adding bulky insulation.

“I stayed plenty warm on frozen ground down to about 20°F, which is remarkable for an uninsulated pad,” he says. Key differences: The Trekker lacks the NeoAir’s heat-reflective internal barrier, which we found adds at least another five degrees of warmth, and it’s made with a more durable (and heavier) shell fabric. “I used this pad for sleeping and sitting (in a chair kit) for almost two weeks in rough canyon country in Utah and Arizona,” says another tester, “and it sailed through.” Bonus: It packs down to the size of a one-liter water bottle. $120; 1 lb. 4 oz.; 20”x72”x2.5”; thermarest.com

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