Thermarest NeoAir XLite low temps?

RCB

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I recently upgraded my sleeping bag from an old 20F Kelty to a lighter 10F Rab. I slept out in my backyard around 15F and was fairly comfortable with base layers, although my legs got a bit chilled as morning arrived. The weak link in my sleep system is now probably a my 3.3 R value REI stratus pad. I'm thinking of upgrading to a NeoAir XLite, which seems to be a well-reviewed and popular bag. Supposedly the R value is 4.2, and it's a good half pound lighter than my current pad. I'm curious how others have fared with this pad at lower temps - say, below 20 degrees. (From what I have read, the temp ratings on sleeping bags assume a pad R value of something like 4.7.) Should I spend the $ and extra ounces on an even warmer pad? All stories and advice appreciated.
 

sneaky

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The Xtherm would be a better choice for true cold temps. The Xlite being more of a 3 season pad you still won't be able to fully utilize that 10deg bag. If you can find a place that is closing out the Xtherms with the old style valve on them you can save a bunch of money on them.

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Middleofnowhere

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I second the recommendation for xtherm over the xlite.
FYI, they are “noisy” pads when new. I had a slow leak in mine and had to find it by inflating and using soapy water in a tub. After scrubbing down the pad, it softened quite a bit and is much quieter now.
 

Jdanderson19

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Feb 7, 2020
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Last year I went with the xlite mostly due to its weight and the higher r-value. It is noisy until broke in, I didn’t have a problem around 10-20 degrees but I sleep very hot. I think the Xtherm would be a better choice.
 

Desk Jockey

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+1 for a winter pad. I ran a NEOair for a while in the winter and finally sprang for an xtherm. Worth the weight and cost IMO. I am currently running a sea to summit insulated pad in cold weather and a big fan of insulation under you to stay warm.

A couple of other thoughts. I have been running a Borah bivy with the pad on the inside. I need a few more nights in it but my prelim view is it might let me get away with a lighter, less insulated pad because (I think) it is inside the bivy and losing less heat to surround air. I also like to use a closed cell foam pad as well. That gives me extra r value along with a sit pad for camp and glassing. I had favored a zrest But have become a big fan of the matty mcmatt face by seek outside. It is a super thin pad that can double as a ground cloth of sorts. Double it over and it is an ultralight sleeping pad. Not too plush but enough to keep you going and warm. Under an inflator it adds some r value and comfort but also protects from punctures. It makes a good glassing and sit pad too.

I am running one cut to 80x25. It weighs ~5oz and rolls to the size of a Nalgene bottle.
 

MTElkChaser

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I’ve been using the NeoAir Xlite Ultralight for a couple of years now. It’s pretty much the gold standard with ultralight backpackers out there. I’ve taken mine down in the single digits, but I’m a warm sleeper. I’ve never had a leak in mine either ... knock on wood. Like others have said, it’s pretty “noisy” when brand new, but gets quieter with use. I’ll continue to use this pad until I find something better. They sell a ton of these and you rarely read a bad review on them. Buy with confidence!
 

Desk Jockey

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I’ve been using the NeoAir Xlite Ultralight for a couple of years now. It’s pretty much the gold standard with ultralight backpackers out there. I’ve taken mine down in the single digits, but I’m a warm sleeper. I’ve never had a leak in mine either ... knock on wood. Like others have said, it’s pretty “noisy” when brand new, but gets quieter with use. I’ll continue to use this pad until I find something better. They sell a ton of these and you rarely read a bad review on them. Buy with confidence!

Hmmm. Not to disagree, but To add to your points above, my neoair is loud enough that my camp buddies commented about it last year on an AZ desert trip and they were 10-15 feet away. I also put a hole in mine in Yellowstone that had me sleeping on the ground for one cold night. I still use mine but not without something underneath.
 

Lawnboi

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Iv had an xlite for a few years. Alone it’s good to about freezing for me with a down bag. Below that I utilize a foam pad underneath it. The two pad system keeps me warm down to single digits and allows a little more durability and versatility to the system. My pad goes, and I’m not left without anything, the foam also protects the pad more as well. Foam pad doubles as a seat when not sleeping.

I do want an xtherm for times when it’s even colder, even for single digit temperatures I do find myself with cold spots occasionally. An xtherm with a zlite or similar under it would be a good do it all system.
 

MTElkChaser

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Hmmm. Not to disagree, but To add to your points above, my neoair is loud enough that my camp buddies commented about it last year on an AZ desert trip and they were 10-15 feet away. I also put a hole in mine in Yellowstone that had me sleeping on the ground for one cold night. I still use mine but not without something underneath.
Understood. I have over 80 nights on mine ... no problem with leaking. Mine was noisy when it was new, but it’s not anymore. Ymmv.
 
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