Alpkit Wee Airic
Just bought 2 Wee Airics from Alpkit for the unbelievable price of £30 for them both delivered. Went for the Chilli and Kelp colours.
My thinking was for wild camping and also a mat for Thomas. The only down side is the size but this can easily be solved by putting my usual clothes dry bag at my feet end to keep everything nice and warm. Check the weight out, amazing
Weight (gr): 495
Dimensions (cm): 126 x 51.5 x 2.5
Factory Packed size (cm): 53 x 7
Realistic Rolled size (cm): 53 x 8.5 or 28 x 10
Mini Diamond Ripstop
What Alpkit say….
Airics work the night shift to make sure you are warm and comfy. Airic self-inflating sleeping mats are the perfect partner for Alpine Dreamin’ at under-inflated prices. The Airic family is a range of self-inflating sleeping mattresses. There are 4 members in the Airic family and their use ranges from car camping to alpine climbing. Inside each Airic is a layer of die cut open cell foam. This foam is what makes a self-inflating mattress different and superior to an airbed. When you open a small valve the foam is able to expand and sucks air into the mat, after a couple of minutes the mat will be semi-firm. A few breaths of air is all it takes to make the mat firm enough to sleep on. Close the valve and catch your z’s.
Wee Airic is the specialist, great when you want to lighten your load, go Alpine and all that.
Initial thoughts(just delivered)
No weight to them at all, easy to inflate and very comfy to lie on, perfect size for a child. I am 6ft 3 and quite broad shouldered, the mat lets me lie on it on my back with my shoulders on the mat although you better not roll over, length wise anything below my knee is not on the mat.
Comes with a repair kit, bag and compression straps. Very very easy to deflate and pack away – i am talking 30 seconds. In its bag it is too big to fit in a normal day pack (too long) the other option is to fold pack it, the mat then fits into a rucksack easily.
I am planning on using this for wild camps, i can increase the warmth capability by putting my adventure medical survival bag around it to reflect the heat. To increase the length i always carry a dry bag for clothes, this is going to be my foot rest.
Very impressed. If it stands up on the trail i will be investing in the fat airic for tent camping. But the proof is in the pudding as they say, more to come on this….!!
Update July 2009
Well one broke as it did not hold its air fill, however Alpkit replaced this at no extra cost and postage was free. I still think these mats are great, however i would recommend if you are going for a lightweight pack for overnights then fold them don’t roll them to fit it in your pack. I plan on using these for the Hadrian’s Wall trip and reckon if i am still liking this mat at the end of a weeks thru-hiking then its the mat for me.
Update October 2009
Two wee airics were taken on the Hadrians Wall and my airic died on the first night, leaving me with 5 nights of restless sleep. Basically the inner air chambers came away from the mat causing it to turn into a giant balloon. If i can dig out the photo i will post it up. Once again Aplkit replaced the mat (thanks) but my mind is made up on this mat now.
Update May 2010
Myself and Peter Crawford both carried a wee-airic on the 2010 TGO Challenge. Both mats failed after 8-10 days with small bubbles appearing inside the mats and my air valve had a small annoying leak. To be fair before the problems we both slept like logs on these cheap little mats but eventually they gave out. No love lost for Alpkit though, they agreed a full refund for both mats.