Image of the November 2019 Wilderness Magazine Cover Read more from the
November 2019 Issue
Home / Articles / Broken in

Long term review: Therm-A-Rest Prolite

Therm-A-Rest Prolite, $249.99

Used by: Women’s gear reviewer Penzy Dinsdale
Used for: 8.5 years
Cost: $249.99

I’ve always been a big fan of gear you buy just once. An inflatable mat, perhaps, is not something I would normally consider in this category because they’re easily punctured.

But in all the time and extreme conditions I’ve been sleeping on my Prolite, I have not yet managed to puncture it and have never had an uncomfortable night’s sleep.

It is neither the lightest nor the warmest option on the market, but I’ve stuck with it because, with the right sleeping bag, it’s always been warm enough even on the coldest mid-winter snow camping nights. At times, its bulk and weight has been an annoyance, but I’m always glad to comfortably stretch out on it at the end of the day’s slog. And I’ve seen too many people suffer miserably when their lighter mats have punctured and they’ve had nothing to sleep on. Because the Prolite has a foam filling, there would still be some padding and insulation even if it did deflate.

Verdict: A durable, reliable and comfortable sleeping mat.