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The Big Agnes TwisterCane BioFoam Sleeping Pad is Made of Plants!

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A sleeping pad made of plants?! You betcha! How? Why? Where? We’ll tell you. Because we recently tried out the Big Agnes TwisterCane BioFoam, the newest sleeping pad from Big Agnes, and it’s maybe the most sustainable, ultralight, closed-cell foam sleeping pad on the market.

Alisha Sitting on the Big Agnes TwisterCane BioFoam Sleeping Pad.
Alisha Sitting on the Big Agnes TwisterCane BioFoam Sleeping Pad.

Big Agnes TwisterCane: The Deets

What makes it such an eco-friendly sleeping pad? For starters, it’s made with 60% sugar cane resin. Why sugarcane? Because it’s awesome, that’s why. Because sugarcane removes C02 from the air as it grows, much like trees and other plants, and this stuff in particular is grown and harvested in a net carbon-negative process using pro forest standards. That means the air is actually cleaner after most of the materials that went into making this pad were produced. That’s a big deal. 

Because most closed-cell foam pads are made of petroleum-based materials. Meaning non-renewable resources that won’t ever break down after you throw them away. That’s no bueno.

But up until now there really hasn’t been a wildly available eco-friendly alternative. It’s a handy tool for any backpacker’s gear arsenal, too.

The Big Agnes TwisterCane BioFoam Sleeping Pad unrolled.

It’s a closed-cell foam pad, which means there’s no inflating necessary and no punctures or slow leaks to worry about, making it great for ultralight backpackers and long-distance hikers.

It’s lighter than we thought it would be–only 14 ounces–and feels much squishier than our old standard, the Therm-A-Rest closed-cell foam pads we’ve been carting around for years.

It has an R-value of 1.7, making it great for lightweight warm-weather trips or as an extra layer of insulation on cooler nights. And there are two sides: one that looks like tire tread with its heat trapping peaks and valleys, and a smooth side. Sleep on either one. Up to you.

Yes, it’s slightly bulkier than those compact accordion-fold foam pads, but it’s made of way better materials and is better for the planet. And yes, it’s even available in a small Hiking Seat size perfect for offering some squish under your tush.

A sleeping pad made of plants?! You The Big Agnes TwisterCane BioFoam all rolled up.
A sleeping pad made of plants?! You The Big Agnes TwisterCane BioFoam all rolled up.

Big Agnes TwisterCane: Bottom Line

Basically, the new Big Agnes TwisterCane BioFoam Sleeping Pad is a fantastic new piece of gear that does right by the planet. No, it’s not completely biodegradable or recyclable–yet–but we trust those brilliant gear scientists will get there soon. In the meantime, it’s leaps and bounds ahead of other foam pads in the sustainability department. So if it’s time to upgrade your sleeping pad, upgrade to something more eco-friendly. Find the Big Agnes TwisterCane BioFoam pad here.

Looking for more sustainable outdoor gear? Find it here.

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