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Camping Comfort: DownMat 9 Deluxe Down Air Mattress

2011-02-02 updated 2012-07-14 - Send Feedback
Related: health, outdoors

When I was 14 years old, I could sleep soundly on frozen, bumpy, rocky ground in a lumpy crummy sleeping bag. I can’t do that anymore, not without a feeling of rigor mortis by morning.

My secret to an extraordinarily comfortable and warm night’s sleep is the down-filled Exped DownMat 9 Deluxe. Or when size is not an issue, the awesome Exped Megamat (names are slightly different with the improved 2016 models vs the 2012 model I use).

Whether it’s in a tent, a bivy sack, or my car, the DownMat 9 deluxe is leaps and bound more comfortable than the bevy of camping matts most people end up getting suckered into (my old collection of them is for my kids, heh heh).

DownMat 9 Pump DLX
Size: 197x65x9 cm / 77.5x26x3.5"
Weight: 1270 g / 44.8 oz
Packsack 24 g / 0.8 oz
Packed: 27x16 cm / 11x6"
Fill Weight**: 320 g / 11 oz
Temperature: -38°C / -36°F
R-value: 8

Fact is, the DownMat 9 Deluxe is more comfortable than most beds that I’ve slept in. At 3.5" thick, I never get cold from underneath, or have any discomfort with the DownMat. Anyone over 30 who likes the outdoors should get one of these and relax overnight.

Another huge plus is that I don’t have a tendency to roll off the DownMat or Megamat as happens with some matts. This seems to be due to the baffled tube design.

While I prefer the DownMat 9 Deluxe for its length and width, there are narrower and shorter versions for those who want to cut down the weight. But in my view, you’re better off saving most anywhere else— the mat is the most important thing for comfort.

Exped DownMat Pump, various sizes

From the Exped site describing the DownMat

Heat loss is dramatically reduced with down insulation inside the mat, as demonstrated by EMPA, the Swiss Federal Labaratories for Materials Testing and Research, and field tests by expeditions. The thick cushion of air also provides comfort and smooths out uneven ground. And as down compresses extremely well, Downmats packs smaller than other insulated mats.

DIGLLOYD: I can personally attest to the real-world performance. Many nights have been spent in warmth and comfort on the DownMat. I have an older version, the new one looks even better. R-value of the DownMat 9 Deluxe is 8, incredibly warm.

  • Both low profile valves (pat. pend) one for inflation and the other for deflation ensure ease of use. As the valves are flat and not on the mat's edge they do not protrude and are therefore protected and durable.
  • Light foam blocks at the mat's ends prevent down from escaping or migrating between chambers.
  • Laminated polyester fabric is both durable, airtight and humidity resistant. The shell's top surface is of brushed polyester fabric that provides excellent slip resistance and comfort next to the skin. Dark colors dry quickly. The seams are high frequency welded for durability.
  • Two loops at the head end can be used to secure the packsack to the mat when used as a pillow.
  • Light and warm: The DownMat 7 Pump has a R-Value of 5.9. At about the same weight a standard 2.5 cm selfinflating mat only has a R-Value of 2.5. Further EMPA tests demonstrated that regular mats lose 3x more heat to cold ground than to the air. The conclusion: use a lighter weight sleeping bag with a DownMat to achieve consistent overall comfort, and still reduce weight and bulk!
  • Exped only uses IDFL-certified goose down, specially treated to eliminate the effects of humidity that may reach the mat's interior.


The Megamat is 4" (10cm) thick and has an R value of 9.5! Even higher than the 8.0 of the Downmat 9 Deluxe. You will NOT be cold from sleeping on sub-zero ground through this mat! It’s bigger though, and not really suitable for space-constrained situations.

Exped Megamat — the very best in camping comfort

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