Review of the Kelty Recluse Inflatable Sleeping Pad

If space is an issue but comfort is not something you want to give up when camping? You’ll love how unbelieveably Compact and Comfy this Kelty Recluse inflatable sleeping pad is. When it comes to sleeping comfort while camping, I would be the first to sacrifice compactness for comfort.  I would never have imagined that I could have both, but that’s what the Kelty Recluse offers.  Once in a while, a product really jumps out as a brilliant.  I think this is certainly one.

Super compact and lightweight
Very comfy
Integrated pump is easy to use
None! – seriously

BUY KELTY RECLUSE – non insulated


The Kelty Recluse is a 2.5 inch pad, but you’d never guess it when you see the tiny 11×6” bag it packs into. It’s more compact that the thinnest ¾ sleeping pads I’ve seen on the market. It also weighs just under 2lbs.

To inflate this baby is so simple because there is a small, integrated air pump built into the sleeping pad.  It’s like nothing I’ve ever seen before.  Despite how small the pump was, we were able to inflate it effortlessly within a minute or two with a few pumps using our feet.

The real test of course was when we laid on the pad to check out if it was cushy enough to ensure a decent night’s sleep.  In fact, what we were happy to discover was that the inflated tubes that make up the Kelty Recluse were very sturdy and the 2.5 inch padding from the ground made for a comfy bed.  Deflating the pad was almost instantaneous, no squeezing and rolling required like I’ve been used to with other inflatable sleeping pads.
This version of the sleeping pad would probably do well for most of the year, except for the cold winter months.  There is an insulated version available as well.  I took the non-insulated version up to Mount Shasta in the snow, and while it was indeed comfortable, the spaces between the inflated sections got rather cold.  This isn’t at all a knock on the pad, as it’s not rated for winter use.  So, if you’re hardcore enough to take you kids snow camping, be sure to purchase the insulated version.
The insulated Kelty Recluse is $79.95 and the non-insulated is $69.95.  The pricing is totally on par with other sleeping pads on the market.  However, when you consider the ratio of comfyness to compactness,  the Kelty Recluse is a slam dunk winner.  We haven’t had the pad for long enough to comment on the durability of the Kelty Recluse, but the material and construction for this lightweight pad seems solid.  Nonethless,  it’s never advisable to let kids jump or bounce on an inflated sleeping pad of any kid if you want them to last.

BUY KELTY RECLUSE – non insulated



*Disclosure:  I recieve a sample of the Kelty Recluse to review, but no other compensation. The company did not request that I express any particular point of view, so always, these opinions are entirely my own.



 “Note: This article contains affiliate amazon links.”

updated: May 07 2012 by LiLing Pang

About the author

LiLing Pang is Co-founder and CEO of Trekaroo . She is a mom to two boys and a girl (13, 11, and 3) currently traveling through Central America. Together with her husband, Brennan Pang, they hatched the idea of Trekaroo one summer day along the California coast while searching for the best kid-friendly tide pool near La Jolla with their curious 2.5 year old.

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