The Kelty Waypoint Si Sleeping pad is designed to be a mid-point between a camping mat and your actual bed. It's the biggest, thickest and softest sleep pad in Kelty's range, and when inflated, you've got 3 inches (8cm) of cushiony, air / foam padding underneath you, covered with a soft, stretchy upper fabric. There's currently only one size in the range: a wide single, with a sticker price of US$164.95 (last time we checked, it was only available to buy in the US).
Is this comfy enough to rank amongst the best camping beds around? I put one to the test to find out. Read on for my full Kelty Waypoint Si Sleeping pad review.
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Kelty Waypoint Si review: inflation and packing up
The Kelty Waypoint Si's cleverly designed valve has a central disc that flips round depending on what you need it to do. Turn it sideways to open the valve fully, or one side for inflation and the other for deflation. This mat does a fair amount of self-inflating if left to its own devices, but if you want to speed up the process or make the sleep surface nice and firm, Kelty has helpfully made it so that you can use the stuff sack as an inflation tool. Attach the bottom of the sack to valve on the mat (set to inflate, so it'll let air in but not out again), blow up the sack and roll down to push the air from the stuff sack into the sleep mat. In short, getting set up is very straightforward, however you decide to do it.
Packing up, as you'd expect, requires a little bit of elbow grease, but the special valve helps matters. Flip it to the deflate side and it'll let air out but not in, which means you don't need to work against the mat trying to blow itself back up while you're trying frantically to pack it away. This makes the task of rolling it up less strenuous than it might have been.
This is very much not a backpacking sleep mat (those looking for a lightweight option should consult T3's best camping mat guide instead). When rolled, it remains pretty bulky and heavy, and the fact that it's wide for a single doesn't help matters – it's not quite wide enough to be folded lengthways, and the supplied bag isn't sized for that either. On the subject of the supplied bag, some kind of handle might have been helpful, although I appreciate perhaps this isn't possible if you're wanting it to double as an inflation tool.
Kelty Waypoint Si review: design and comfort
The inside is filled with a mix of air channels and foam, to sleep on it feels more like the latter, and there's none of the lumpy-bumpiness of a traditional air mattress.
Kelty Waypoint Si Sleeping pad specs
Weight: 5lb 6oz / 2.44kg
Dimensions (inflated): 77.95 x 29.92 x 3" / 198 x 76 x 8cm
Dimensions (packed): 31.5 x 7 x 7" / 80 x 18 x 18cm
Fabric: 30D stretch polyester (top), 75D polyester (bottom)
A soft stretch fabric topper means it won't get sweaty and you won't end up sliding around on it, and the flat sleep surface (the sides are also squared off, so you're not wasting any room) gives it the feel of a traditional mattress.
On the underside, you'll find a non-brushed polyester. I assume this is probably slightly more sturdy and robust than the upper, and it offers enough grip that it'll keep the mat in place pretty well on a slippery groundsheet. There's only one size at the moment, which is a wide single – I'd imagine if it's successful, Kelty might add a double option into the mix.
This is one of comfiest camping mats I've ever slept on. It's three inches thick but feels thicker, thanks, possibly, to the ability to manually pump in air so it's nice and firm (if that's what you want). It feels luxurious, cushioned and high quality. Two thumbs up for comfort.
A real test for any air mattress is how long it lasts. While this is difficult to comment on from my initial tests, it certainly feels luxurious and well made, with no obvious points of weakness that I'd be concerned about.
Kelty Waypoint Si review: alternatives to consider
There are a few similar kinds of sleeping mats on the market. At time of writing the Waypoint is only available in the US, but if you're reading from the UK then definitely check out our Vango Shangri-La II camping bed review. This mat is very similar to the Waypoint, although has the benefit of being available in a double as well as a wide single, and also in a few different depths – 7cm, 10cm and a luxurious 15cm thick, if you really want to push the boat out. That one isn't designed to be manually inflated, which means it can be difficult to get it to feel firm, which isn't an issue with the Kelty option on review here.
For another similar mat, head to our Robens Polarshield 120 review. If you're not quite sure what kind of sleeping equipment you need, our airbeds vs camp beds vs sleep mats explainer lays out the differences between the main three options, and for more recommendations, check out our best camping bed ranking.
Kelty Waypoint Si sleep pad review: verdict
The Kelty Waypoint Si sleep pad is a supremely comfortable bed option for a night under canvas. While it's not compact or lightweight when packed, if you're car camping and want something that'll deliver a dreamy night's sleep, this is about as close to the feel of an actual mattress as you'll find. It feels robust and high quality, and thoughtful design details such as the flippable valve and stuff sack that doubles as an inflation tool help elevate it from the competition, too.
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