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Eureka Rio Grande Queen Review

This air mattress is nicer than the average air mattress, but lacks comfort and warmth
Eureka Rio Grande Queen
Photo: Backcountry
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Price:  $180 List
Pros:  Durable, soft cover, easy to inflate and deflate
Cons:  Not warm, not comfortable, heavy
Manufacturer:   Eureka
By Laurel Hunter ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Apr 29, 2020
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49
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#14 of 15
  • Comfort - 40% 4
  • Ease of Use - 20% 10
  • Warmth - 20% 2
  • Versatility - 10% 3
  • Packed Size - 10% 6

Our Verdict

The Eureka Rio Grande is a durable and spacious 6-inch air mattress that is meant for two people and has a built-in pillow. The rechargeable pump allows for quick and easy inflation, and overall the mattress is easy to use. While the soft nylon material on the exterior won't leave you sticking to the mattress in summer weather, the lack of insulation means you can only use this mattress on the warmest nights. Perhaps most importantly, our testers found this mattress to be one of the least comfortable models in our test.

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Price $180 List$209.95 at Backcountry
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Pros Durable, soft cover, easy to inflate and deflateWarm, comfortable, easy to inflateBed-like comfort, easy inflation, great valueVery comfortable, very warm, easy to useVery comfortable, large
Cons Not warm, not comfortable, heavyLarge packed sizeToo big for some single person tentsLarge packed size, expensiveBig packed size, hard get in its stuff sack, heavy
Bottom Line This mattress is easy to use and durable, but isn't particularly comfortable or warmA high scorer in our tests, this pad is warm and comfy and easy to inflateThis plush pad is comfortable, warm, and affordable. It does take up a lot of space, even when packedWith four inches of foam you can't go wrong, unless you don't have space to store itThis mat takes up loads of space in the trunk, but if comfort is your top priority, this is a great choice
Rating Categories Eureka Rio Grande Queen Therm-a-Rest MondoKing 3D REI Co-op Camp Dreamer XL Exped MegaMat 10 ALPS Mountaineering Outback
Comfort (40%)
4
10
10
10
10
Ease Of Use (20%)
10
9
9
8
6
Warmth (20%)
2
9
9
10
10
Versatility (10%)
3
7
6
5
6
Packed Size (10%)
6
6
5
5
4
Specs Eureka Rio Grande... Therm-a-Rest... REI Co-op Camp... Exped MegaMat 10 ALPS...
Dimensions 79 x 55 x 6 in 80 x 30 x 4.25 in 78" x 32" x 4" 77.6" x 30.3" x 4" 80 X 32 X 4 in
R Value 1 7 6.6 8.1 8.5
Test Model 2 person XXL XL Green LXWide XL
Length 79 in 80 in 78 in 77.6 in 80 in
Width 55 in 30 in 32 in 30.3 in 32 in
Thickness 6 in 4.25 in 4 in 4 in 4 in
Weight 6.4 lbs 5.27 lbs 6.38 lbs 6.1 lbs 7.43 lbs
Type Pump inflation Pump inflation Self-Inflating Self-Inflating Self inflating
Packed Size (inches) 9 x 20 in 9 x 32 in 11 in x 30 in 9 in x 33 in 32 x 11.5 in
Storage Stuff sack Stuff sack Stuff Sack Stuff Sack Stuff sack
Bed Material Polyester Polyester Stretch Polyester 50D Polyester with TPU Polyether film laminate 150D
Valves Two way TwinLock 1 valve 2 valves One way
Accessories Stuff sack, pump, integrated pillow Stuff sack Air Pump/Pillow Mini Pump, Stuff Sack, Repair Kit and Manual Patch kit
Breaths to Inflate N/A N/A N/A N/A 30-35

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Eureka Rio Grande is a queen size air mattress that is quite easy to use and seems to be well-made and durable. It is not warm or particularly comfortable, however.

Performance Comparison


A queen sized mattress that is more comfortable with only one person.
A queen sized mattress that is more comfortable with only one person.
Photo: Laurel Hunter

Comfort


On the plus side, the Rio Grande is made of TPU, not PVC, so you won't be inhaling toxic fumes while you sleep. The surface of the fabric is soft "Stealth-Grip" and feels nice next to the skin, and is relatively quiet (though not as silent as the Eureka marketing materials might lead you to believe).

However, this mattress has a few challenges when it comes to comfort. If you inflate an air mattress to the point where it isn't bouncy, it feels quite hard. If you lower the level of air to make it softer, it becomes bouncy. This is magnified in a mattress that is large enough for two people. We understand the cuddle factor in having a two-person mattress, but having two people on an air mattress just increases the amount of movement felt throughout the night.

The built-in pillow is not particularly soft, and because it is part of the same air chamber as the bed, it moves up and down with any other movement on the mattress. Putting another pillow on top of it makes it awkwardly tall, and putting a normal pillow below the hump shortens the usable length overall.

In general, the Rio Grande was much more comfortable with one person than with two. The level of air can be fine-tuned to suit one person, and the bounce is more predictable. However, no tester preferred this mattress over any of the foam mattresses in our test, and many air mattresses were also found to be more comfortable.

The built-in pillow. If you like it, great. If not, it is hard to...
The built-in pillow. If you like it, great. If not, it is hard to get comfortable.
Photo: Laurel Hunter

Ease of Use


There is no denying how easy it is to inflate the Rio Grande. Using the included rechargeable pump (make sure you remember to charge it!), it blows up the mattress in under two minutes. You can also use the pump to deflate the mattress. The large two-way valve allows it to deflate quickly, but using the pump at the end does make it extra flat and easy to roll up, though we didn't find this to be necessary.

We do recommend that you inflate your mattress before dark, as the whining sound of the pump is just loud enough to annoy all your neighbors in the campground. Also worth mentioning is that the pump does not work when plugged in. If you didn't remember to charge it, you will have to wait for the charge or blow up the mattress with your mouth. Yikes.

Easy to inflate with the rechargeable pump.
Easy to inflate with the rechargeable pump.
Photo: Laurel Hunter


Warmth


R-value is how the insulating properties of a camping mattress are measured. Air mattresses that do not have any insulation in the mattress provide no insulation from the cold ground or the air and do not reflect your body heat back to you. Even if you have a warm sleeping bag, you may be cold on an air mattress. The Rio Grande has an R-value of 1, which means that it is appropriate for use on hot summer nights. If you sleep out in the mountains or desert, or anywhere that temperatures can dip significantly in the night, we suggest that you consider some other options.

Our testers slept on it when the night temperature dipped into the 50s (F) and felt quite chilled underneath. Considering that mountains often get much colder than this even in summer, we would prefer a more insulating mattress.

Versatility


At over six pounds, the Rio Grande is not a mattress you would want to take very far from the car. It is also not very warm, meaning that you are most likely only using it in the warmest days of the year. Without a pump, it would be a massive task to blow up, meaning you need to have your charger handy for longer trips. Its use is limited to car camping in warm locations, and as such, it did not rate very highly in the versatility metric.

Getting this mattress inflated requires massive lungs if your pump...
Getting this mattress inflated requires massive lungs if your pump isn't charged.
Photo: Laurel Hunter

Packed Size


Considering the Rio Grande is a mattress big enough for two people, the packed size is relatively respectable. Including the pump, it weighs about six and a half pounds and measures 9 by 20 inches. This is much smaller than a foam mattress for one person, let alone two. It is not the smallest air mattress in our test, and you won't want to carry it into the backcountry, but you can fit it in the back of the Subaru without any trouble.

We tested other double-size air mattresses that pack smaller and are more comfortable, however.

Two double-sized air mattresses. Bigger is not better.
Two double-sized air mattresses. Bigger is not better.
Photo: Laurel Hunter

Value


The Rio Grande feels like a high-quality mattress and appears to be durable. However, while it is large enough for two to sleep on, the bounciness only makes it appropriate for two very deep sleepers that don't mind if their mattress-mate moves in their sleep. It is also not warm enough to use in any weather but the warmest. This is not the most expensive double mat we tested, but it is rather pricey if you consider its limitations.

Sitting on the inflated air mattress causes the ends to curl up...
Sitting on the inflated air mattress causes the ends to curl up, showing you how bouncy it is.
Photo: Laurel Hunter

Conclusion


Even though the Rio Grande is a higher quality mattress that is easy to use, our testers did not find it to be comfortable, warm, or lightweight. It is nicer than the average air mattress, but for about the same amount of money, there are many options for a mattress that is warmer, more versatile, and more comfortable.

Laurel Hunter