We used and tested this sleeping pad on an eleven-day, high-altitude, autonomous trip in February 2019. During this trip, we encountered temperatures ranging from 0 ° to -15 ° C.
We lived in a tent, on the snowy ground and stayed in a refuge. We always had an additional inflatable pad.
Also pulling sleds we had a real problem with bulkiness and weight. We really needed to be as lightweight as possible.
This Switchback sleeping pad is new from Nemo, who are known for their sleeping bags and inflatable sleeping pads.
To develop this product, innovate and lighten this pad as much as possible, the developers have searched hard and fast to find solutions to reduce its bulkiness. The engineers have thought about the ideal sequence of cavities, so that when you fold it you gain compactness (51x13x13cm), and also removing 50% of its thickness (51x183x 2,9cm). In the end, Nemo have a produced a product that is 50g lighter than their main competitor. The Nemo Switchback is the lightest of the light in this category.
Nothing new in its use: it unfolds, you lie down, and you sleep, making sure that the metallized film is on the ground.
It was also used as insulation to sit on the snow. Not too complicated either: it folds in 4, you sit, and you have a warm, dry bottom.
We also used the Nemo Switchback in the refuge, to avoid spending the night on a dodgy dirty looking communal mattress. It was very much appreciated.
The other advantage of this type of sleeping pad, especially when you are sleeping on snow, is its ability to insulate against the damp.
Unlike inflatable pads (from the same brand), for the cold weather too, this one is completely hydrophobic, so it does not soak up any moisture whatsoever.
Regarding the sleeping pad’s quality and durability, we didn’t notice any snags, tears, or even marks of premature wear, this would need to be checked in the long term.
Even if it is torn though, it still works, which is reassuring and is a good safety guarantee in the winter.
The Nemo Switchback sleeping pad is both extremely light and great protection against the cold. Not very fragile, great insulation against the ground in extreme conditions while providing minimum packability. Ultra-easy to use, well designed, it deserves the Test4outside.com FIRST Award.
We used this equipment over a long period of time
These are our thoughts after intensive use:
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