After last years less that ideal experience with the Kylmit Static V air mattress I decided to try to out the Alps Mountaineering “Swift Insulated” air mat. I have not been able to find much in the way of reviews for this pad online so I had to base my choice on just the product description. Luckily it ended up being a good buy.
Here’s the specs from the Alps website
|Dimensions||75″ x 22″ x 2″|
|Packed Size||10.5″ x 5″|
|Weight||1 lb. 5 oz.|
• Extremely lightweight
• Small pack size
• R-Value: 2
• Small, pillow-like air chambers provide extra support and comfort
• Flat valve allows easy inflation and deflation
• 40D nylon ripstop fabric
• Stuff sack and repair kit included specifications
• Antibacterial treatment prevents harmful bacterial growth
Let’s start off with the Pros.
The Swift packs down pretty small, not quite as small as the Kylmit but still pretty small. It inflate pretty easy too. at 9000′ is took 15-17 breaths to inflate it. 15 to fill it and then 2 more to tighten it up. That might sound like a lot but I lost count on the Kylmit. Down lower at home is was half that. It also deflates very fast. Now if you get a puncture that can be a problem but for packing it means it packs up a lot faster. A big part of this beside the baffle design it the simple valve. It’s basically a simple flap that pushed back when you blow in and to deflate you just push it in. I was skeptical when I saw it but it actually works really well.
Now the Cons
Since this is a common design trait in pads I guess it’s more of a preference that a problem, and that is the shape. The Swift is shaped like a mummy bag and I’m not a fan of that tapered shape. It leave not much room for your legs to move around. I prefer the rectangular shape myself. It is also a pretty noisy pad when combined with a sleeping bag. The polyester rubbing against itself is pretty loud. Not that the other ones I have used have been silent but it did seem more noticeable.
Over all I’m happy and would recommend it to anyone interested. Alps Mountaineering has the price listed as $89.99 but I don’t think I have ever seen one for sale for full price. I got this one for about $65 or so from the local outdoor store.
Good simple valve
Small packed size
The tapered shape