ProLite 4


ProLite 4
Page Type Gear Review
Object Title ProLite 4
Manufacturer Cascade Designs
Page By pphlux
Page Type Mar 28, 2004 / Jan 17, 2007
Object ID 1054
Hits 6629
This is the most compact, four-season, full-length, self-inflating mattress Therm-a-Rest® makes.

* This mattress is engineered for extreme alpine climbing, adventure racing and long-distance backpacking when reducing weight and bulk are paramount
* Technically advanced fabric and foam make this pad 30% lighter than an UltraLite™ pad
* Low-volume, tapered design has the smallest rolled size ever!
* Bottom features an innovative, sticky-dot, non-slip surface
* Warm enough for four-season use
* Chair Kit (sold separately) adds backcountry comfort

From the Therm-a-Rest® Fast and Light Series. Made in USA.



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pphlux - Mar 28, 2004 6:27 pm - Voted 5/5

Untitled Review
I just picked one of these up at my local REI Garage Sale, where they sell their returned items.

This pad had been returned due to a slow leak, so I bought it for half price along with the $7.95 patch kit, which I should have along in my pack anyway. I dumped the pad in the tub, and had it patched up in a few minutes.

I also patched the very slow leak which had developed in my 'classic' pad. Now I've got two fully functioning pads, and a patch to spare to take along with me.

Anyway, as for the pad, it is an awesome upgrade from my 'classic' Therm-a-Rest pad. It rolls up about half the size, and is quite a bit lighter. The fancy looking dimples do not seem to hold me any tighter on the pad, but seem to work about the same. The bottom side grippers, however do seem to be an improvement.

This pad is very lightweight, and I found it to be quite warm, down to about zero degrees, which is the same rating as my sleeping bag.

This is an upgrade definetly worth making. Plus, for gearheads, the orange/dimpley look with make your tent innards look high-tech! (mostly joking on that one...)

Pawkala - Jul 1, 2004 9:57 pm - Voted 5/5

Untitled Review
Absolutley love this pad. No more packing a pad on the outside of my pack. It rolls up very small and you can get it in a breadloaf sized stuff sack or a longer thinner sack. I have used it on snow several times without any warmth issues. Great for the ultralight thinker. Well worth the money.

Moni - Jul 7, 2004 3:49 pm - Voted 5/5

Untitled Review
Just upgraded from our older, heavy thermarests. This pad is very light for the amount of insulation it provides. It folds up really flat (I don't roll mine, but fold it and use against my pack back. If I am not climbing, only backpacking, I will take the foam back pad out of my pack and use the thermarest to do double duty - saves weight and bulk!)

The only complaint is that I find it just a bit narrow - a problem when sleeping on snow.

vertx - Oct 29, 2004 11:57 am - Voted 5/5

Untitled Review
Extremely light and fits inside the pack. Great for the ultralight minimalist. The pad is very warm and has proven extremely durable over the last 18 months. 3 sizes to fit most people, small, regular and large.

I would highly recommend this sleeping pad to anyone from the casual overnight backpacker to the extreme alpine climber.

martin020 - Jun 30, 2005 2:01 pm - Voted 5/5

Untitled Review
Well, I love this pad. I have only had it for a short time, but it really is much more usable than any other sleeping pad I have encountered.

Pros: Te ProLite 4 is basically a great product, with great comfort, great packability, and is extremely light. I used this on a trip through Washington and into Canada, and most noticable to me was its packability. You fold it before rolling to save space. The stuff sack can be bought seperately. Also you dont sacrifice weight for comfort. I can safely say it gave me the best sleep I have ever had in the backcountry.

Cons: Not really any... Can take a while to inflate when cold, and you pay extra for the stuff sack. Yeah, that's all I can think of so I'll list a few more positive things. It is durable, with a tough underside to prevent tears or slippage while on a slope. It doesn't take up as much room as old pads. Oh, and its orange, I love orange...

All I can say is if you thought about getting this pad, just do it. It will be one of the best investments you will ever make, especially if you are a minimalist, ultralighter, like the Therm A Rest brand, or like the color orange.

mpbro - Aug 19, 2005 5:30 pm - Voted 4/5

Untitled Review
From the "classic" therm-a-rest to the "guidelite", the "ProLite" series continues to push the envelope with how little cushioning can possibly be used in a therm-a-rest.

Size and weight in a pack are astounding. Twice as compact (and as light) as a similarly-sized classic therm-a-rest. I took this pad on a 5-day JMT hike and have nothing but good to say in terms of packability.

You will feel rocks more than in the thicker mattresses, particularly if you are heavy and/or sleep on your side. I weigh 215 pounds, and I was surprisingly comfortable when sleeping on my back, and even on my side, provided that the ground was well-behaved.

I have insufficient data with respect to heat insulation. I certainly never felt cold, down to temperatures of 35 degrees F.

The pad was a bit flimsy for use as a therm-a-rest "chair".

csmcgranahan - Nov 19, 2005 4:55 pm - Voted 5/5

Untitled Review
I bought this one for my wife last year. I use a ProLite 3 and will admit that the ProLite 4 is a little more comfortable. To me the additional weight and packable size of the 4 offsets the additional comfort. On really cold nights I could see the 4 being a better pad. Overall this is a great pad and the choice of ProLite 3 or ProLite 4 is definitely personal preference.

Tecova - Mar 24, 2007 7:06 am - Voted 5/5

I enjoy mine
I also have an MSR MicroZoid tent, and it's like this pad was made for it. It's very light, and compresses down small, to about the size of a loaf of bread (as someone mentioned). It puffs up very nicely, and I've never had a problem with being cold.

My only issue is that I MUST sleep on my back, in order to distribute my weight evenly. Sleeping on my side is out of the question, as my hip and shoulder compress right through the pad to the cold ground. Despite this, I still rank this pad a 5 star.

rasgoat - May 19, 2007 7:22 pm - Voted 5/5

Expect the best from Thermarest!
I know it sounds like a commercial but these pads rock!

liquidlemer - Sep 10, 2007 1:54 pm - Voted 5/5

Compact, light, and totaly functional. Definitely a winner.

bigsky801 - Nov 12, 2007 3:10 pm - Voted 5/5

Great pad
I've owned this pad for about five months and it's been great for backpacking. It's incredibly compact and lightweight, while being very tough and resistant to losing air or getting punctured. I bought the Prolite 4, so that I have option of using it maybe with a Z-lite pad in the winter, for warmth. Thermarest has been in the business for awhile, and it shows.

AltitudeSickness - Dec 18, 2007 11:13 pm - Voted 4/5

High Tech Ultra Light
Having started with the green military pad and graduating to the heaviest, thickest thermorest available. I slept comfortably for several years. 14 months ago I bought the Pro-Lite 4 Large. I am happy to report I continued to sleep comfortably with less than half the weight. Not longer did I have to strap my sleeping pad onto my pack and no longer did I have to give up something I wanted to take because my pad was so heavy. The Pro-Lite 4 is the premier pad I have found. I have used it on snow, rock, and grass. It has been functional and warm. My favorite feature is it's weight and packability.

strat1080 - Dec 21, 2007 2:34 am - Voted 4/5

Awesome pad
I have the short 3/4 version that I use in combination with an ultralite inflatable sit pad for my feet. It weighs about 16oz yet is warm enough for camping on snow down to pretty cold temperatures. I can't believe how small this packs for the amount of warmth and comfort it provides. Lightyears ahead of other sleeping pads. I think this is worth getting over the Prolite 3 for the extra $10 and 4oz. It is warmer and more comfortable for not too much of a price or weight penalty.

asaking11 - Mar 27, 2010 12:39 am - Voted 5/5

Sweet pad
This sleeping pad is really great. Pretty comfortable, packs down small, and is lightweight.

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