This year, I went on my first backcountry hunt for cow elk and mule deer. Growing up in middle Tennessee, I knew this would be somewhat of a culture shock to my usual whitetail and turkey adventures. I had been out west the previous year for antelope, but it was with an outfitter as I had no clue what to expect. This year with a little bit of experience and LOTS of research, my buddy and I made the decision we were going to do a backcountry hunt in the Bighorn Mountains of Wyoming and try our hand at cow elk and mule deer.
The Importance of a High-Quality Sleeping Pad
The most important aspect of a backcountry hunt, in my opinion, is your gear. And since we had never done anything remotely similar to this, we both had to start from scratch. We had borrowed a lightweight tipi tent from a friend, and each got lightweight sleeping bags and pads and all the other pertinent gear associated with backcountry hunting. I knew a sleeping pad would be critical to me since I’m a side sleeper 100% of the time. I did my research and concluded that I would need a pad that could withstand points of pressure from my hips and shoulders. I had read plenty of horror stories from the backcountry about side sleepers, so needless to say, I was a bit worried.
First Impressions of the Klymit Static V
Enter the Klymit Static V Insulated Pad. When I first opened it, I thought there was no way this thing was going to work for me. I initially thought it was way too thin for my 215-pound carcass. But after about ten good breaths, it was fully inflated and ready for a trial. I laid it on my hardwood floor at home and was actually amazed at how it held me up. I laid on my side to simulate sleeping and did not feel even the slightest hint of touching the floor. I flopped around as I usually do to see how much I would come off during movement, and I stayed right on it. It was excellent, and I was actually excited to try it out in the field.
Klymit Pillow X First Impressions
Along with their Static V pad, Klymit sent the X Pillow as well. I almost missed it opening the package because it compacted down to the size of a credit card. With just a couple breaths, it was fully inflated. It provided excellent support, but I sleep with two pillows, so I had planned on using the Klymit pillow as a base and a bag of extra clothes as my top pillow in the field.
Klymit Static V Insulated Sleeping Pad
Klymalite™ lofted synthetic insulation creates additional warmth that lasts through the night. Take on cold conditions without sacrificing comfort or pack size. Klymalite™ lofted synthetic insulation in the pad offers exceptional warmth without the dreaded crinkle noise of other insulated pads.
|Weight||24 oz / 680 g|
|Dimensions||72″ x 23″ x 2.5″ / 182.9 cm x 58.4 cm x 6.4 cm|
|Pack Size||5″ x 8″ / 12.7 cm x 20.3 cm|
|Warranty||Klymit Lifetime Warranty|
Inflating the Klymit Pads
Some weeks later, I got my gear packed up and lit out for Wyoming. The pillow was small enough that I could keep it in the same bag as the pad, so the pad and pillow took up little room in my pack. We set up camp after hiking in, and I quickly blew up the Static V and X Pillow and placed my sleeping bag on top. With cold weather moving in, I was worried it would lose significant air, and I would spend a few breaths re-inflating this thing before bed every night. After hunting that afternoon and returning to camp at dark, I was pleased to find neither the pad nor pillow lost any air and were firm when I laid on them.
Klymit Static V in the Backcountry
That night, the real test would come. The pad was super comfy, and the pillow supported my bag of clothes perfectly. While I didn’t sleep well that night, it wasn’t the pad’s fault. My sleeping bag was a little to snug for me, and I was a bit cramped. The sleeping pad was probably the reason I got any sleep at all. I didn’t feel the cold come up from the ground, and it still didn’t lose air overnight.
The next morning we woke up to howling winds and snow stacking up around the tent. We decided to wait for the weather out and take a hike out to hunt when the weather broke. We spent the next several hours laying on our pads and bags. I figured this could risk the integrity of pad as I was constantly on my elbows and knees rummaging around the tent. But it never faltered.
After lunch, we caught a small break in the weather and made a quick dash out to get some kind of hunt in. But the weather picked back up again and drove us toward camp once more. I was greeted by the still fully inflated pad and pillow.
By this point, we were worried about getting off the mountain entirely. We had almost a foot of snow where we were camping and knew it was worse up on top where the truck was. We made the decision to stay one more night and make the hike out in the morning. This night was similar to the last one. Not much sleep, but the pad was still the most comfortable part of the night.
The next morning, we ate some breakfast and broke camp. The Klymit quickly deflated with the flick of an inflate/deflate valve in a corner. The pillow took no time to deflate either. I pushed the remaining air out of the pad, folded it over a couple times lengthwise, and quickly rolled it back up and put it in its sack. It compacted so well. We hiked back up the mountain, got to the truck, and slowly and carefully made our way through the snow and safely off the mountain.
Trip Conclusion and Klymit Sleeping Pad Results
We were sad we had to cut our planned four-night stay down to two but knew if we wanted to get out at all, we needed to do it quickly. We spent the remainder of our time at lower elevations close to town and ended up with a couple whitetail deer and some antelope. Plenty of meat to take home. I credit the Klymit pad for making an otherwise cold, miserable trip one of the most fun I had been on. Comfort is critical in the backcountry and had I not found the right pad to support my side sleeping habits, I fear it would have broken my spirits never to do a backcountry hunt again. I see myself utilizing this Klymit pad for all types of camping; truck camping, backcountry camping, or even yard camping when my wife sends me to the dog house…
Thanks to Joey for writing this unpaid gear review and to Klymit for providing product sampless at no charge for review. Hunting Gear Deals is funded by affiliate commissions. We may receive a small commission when you buy from our partners using the links provided. There is no additional cost to you. Thanks for supporting us by using our links when making your purchases.
Tennessee native with a passion for conservation and the future of the outdoor lifestyle. Tennessee State Chair for Backcountry Hunters and Anglers. First Lite Pro-Staff.