Mad Rock R3 Crash Pad: An Honest Review

What’s your favorite part of rock climbing?

I guess that it isn’t falling on your butt.

Fortunately, with the Mad Rock R3 crash pad, you won’t have to worry about those pesky falls anymore.

In this guide, I’ll examine every aspect of this popular pad and give you an honest review of its features and functionality. If you’re looking to purchase your next crash pad, make this your go-to resource!

Weight

How light (or how heavy) is this pad?

The R3 weighs in around fourteen pounds, which is the weight of a large newborn baby or small animal. While that may set off some alarm bells, don’t worry. That’s not a lot of weight for a full-size pad. If you’re healthy enough to enjoy rock climbing, chances are you’ll have no trouble carrying this pad with you to the crag.

What’s more, the product comes with durable support straps that help you balance the weight and carry it to your destination. This limits the duress you may feel as you make your way to and from your climbing location.

Size

As a full-size pad, the R3 impresses in terms of size. With 38”x14” dimensions, the pad covers enough ground to give you a safe landing—even from a distance.

I know what you’re thinking—with a size that big, won’t it be hard to carry?

While we’ll discuss this in more depth later, keep in mind for now that the R3 can be turned into a backpack of sorts for ease of carrying.

Thickness

I don’t know about you, but if I’m going to fall off a rock wall, I want my landing spot to be thick and foamy.

That’s why I like the fact that the R3 provides a full five inches of foam support. This makes it the perfect option for both beginning and experienced climbers.

The pad’s thickness position it as one of the leaders in the market. Simply put, customers want an option that will keep them safe in the event of a fall—and Mad Rock’s R3 does exactly that.

Affordability

With the pad’s size and thickness, you might expect that the R3 will run you a pretty penny.

To tell the truth, it’s not exactly cheap. Still, at its current price, the R3 functions as an affordable option for many climbers who are looking for adequate protection.

And let’s be real: with the value you get from this pad, you could be spending a whole lot more. Indeed, R3’s current price tag feels like a bargain—despite the fact that it’s not exactly cheap.

While it may be tempting to shell out less cash on another option, keep in mind that you may be sacrificing needed quality. For beginners, especially, the R3 crash pad facilitates safer climbing and a more enjoyable overall experience.

Pros

Like any pad, Mad Rock’s R3 offers its share of pros. Understanding these pros enables you to know the product’s upside and make the most informed decision at buying time.

  • Comfortable Falls—With the R3’s innovative fill system, this product molds to the environment to give you the most comfortable fall imaginable. While that may sound oxymoronic, the support this pad provides even from long distance falls is undeniable.
  • Eco-Friendly—Unlike other pads, the R3 contains material recycled from EVA/PU foam that would normally be disposed of. This makes it the superior eco-friendly option.
  • Rolling System—Other pads might ask you to fold them taco style in order to carry them. The R3 aims to make your life a little easier by allowing you to roll it up.

Cons

While it would be nice if the R3 were that perfect pad that put an end to the competition, a number of flaws manifest themselves in the product. Let’s take a look and find out what they are.

  • Portability—Sure, you can handle the weight. And you can handle the size. But many customers find it hard to handle the weight AND the size. In fact, customers complain that the R3 is simply hard to carry, even with its innovative rolling system.
  • Price—As mentioned, the R3 might not be the best pad for those on a budget. If you have the cash, though, I highly recommend investing in this option, simply for your own protection.

Should I Buy the R3?

With all this in mind, let’s answer the most important question: should you buy the R3?

Let’s recap: in the R3, Mad Rock has engineered the safest crash pad to date. With innovative fill system technology, the R3 conforms to the ground and covers even non-uniform surfaces with absurd efficiency.

Simply put, the R3 blows the competition out of the water when it comes to covering your falls. For this reason alone, I recommend this pad to beginners and anyone looking for a pad that can truly take some heat.

Still, I understand if the R3 isn’t exactly in your budget. Though it’s certainly not the most expensive option around, it will run you a few extra dollars. This, added with the pad’s notorious portability, make the R3 a question mark for some buyers.

So should you buy it?

Absolutely, unequivocally yes. As one of the most durable pads in the market, the R3 offers ultimate protection in case of a fall—and really, that’s what you’re going for.

If you’re unsure about whether or not to buy the R3, just think about this: why are you buying a pad in the first place? For comfort? Or to make sure you don’t bust your butt on some sharp rocks?

Obviously, you’re going for the second option. That means the R3 should dominate your list of potential pads. Keep in mind that purchasing this durable, innovative product doesn’t only help you—it also benefits the environment.

So don’t waste time. You won’t be able to climb until you’ve got that quality crash pad to keep you safe. With this in mind, choose the best the market has to offer: the Mad Rock R3 crash pad!

Climbing Blogger

Zealous boulderer, gear geek and editor. Typically has more flappers than fingers on his hands. Occasionally enjoys the feeling of being scared of heights. Mostly prevents looking down too much, though, and cheers at the invention of climbing chalk.

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