Let's talk sleeping bags

Discussion in 'Camping Toys' started by BaRRaCuda1974, Oct 10, 2018.

  1. shearboy2004

    shearboy2004 KIWIINUSA Supporter

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  2. FAW3

    FAW3 Old wanderer

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    I use a sleeping bag for my motorcycle camping (tent and hammock) as well as with a cot in my truck camping setup (in the truck bed with a Leer truck cap). I seem to cycle through sleeping bags...they tend to be used and not returned by my adult kids, or they get damaged, my needs change, whatever.

    I just got my birthday present and this new sleeping bag is going to be a game changer. I see so many new features built into this bag that I seriously think it will be "the one":

    I got a Exped Dreamwalker 650 Large. I wanted down for warmth and compressability. This bag has a water resistant covering also, another plus for use in the real world. The design of this bag offers a range of use that is amazing. It can unzip into a flat quilt. The foot box can be closed up tight for warmth, or left open for ventilation. The zipper is on top - I find this ideal for use in a hammock. At the shoulders there are zippers - you can have one or both arms "out" as desired, and still have your body fully enclosed - and there are pockets for your hands on the outside. You can "wear" the bag like a 3/4 length coat...say when sitting outside your tent or hammock. Has a head fitting hood. Rectangular cut...plenty of room.

    Sierra Designs also has similar offerings - the Mobile Mummy. I have a light one rated for 40F but found that for some of my hammock camping it was lacking in warmth. Doesn't have the same footbox design and overall, the Exped offers more features. But my experience with the MM sold me on the general features I want.

    A video on the Exped:
  3. Bones Over Metal

    Bones Over Metal Been here awhile

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    Check out the Klymit sleeping bags.
    Like many I have broad shoulders and either don't fit or very restricted in typical mummy style bags.
    They have mummy style bags but with elastic sections that expand and move with you. Very comfortable and as a bonus they have XL sized options.
    Also their Kymit sleeping pads are excellent and very comfortable.
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  4. Adrenolin

    Adrenolin Been here awhile

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    Number 1 thing for me was getting off the ground regardless of sleeping bag. I slept ON the ground until I was 40 before my back was killing me. I tried numerous pads which helped but was never comfortable. Then I splurged for the following setup and have been super comfortable.

    Nemo RIFF 15* and 30* Down Sleeping Bags as well as the Disco 15 and 30.
    Nemo Tensor Insulated 25 Sleeping Pad (Wide)
    Helinox Cot One
    Marmot LimeLight 2P Tent

    The Nemo Spoon Shaped Sleeping Bags are awesome for folks who move around or sleep in other positions aside from flat on your back. Here is a LINK to both for features. The Disco is 650 Down and the RIFF is 800 Down. The Tensor Sleeping Pad is soft, supportive, thick, extremely conformable, warm and quiet! It also packs very small. The Helinox Cot One is well.. it simply cant be beat for quality and comfort. We own a few other light cots and none compare. I like that all my riding gear (Klim Badlands, boots, braces) tucks under the cot when dry. The Marmot LimeLight 2P Tent with upright walls is fantastic for lots of headspace and lower vertical walls to expand useful floor space. Both panniers and top duffle can be placed inside beside the cot down at the foot with hydration pack and helmet up at the head.

    kip temp.jpg
  5. Rufjeep

    Rufjeep Been here awhile

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    Another bump for Underground Quilts (and down quilts in general). I picked up an 850 fill/ 20 degree top quilt from UGQ a few years ago and it's been superb (as are the quilts from EE, Jacks R Better, etc.). I don't remember the exact cost...between $250-$300.

    I've got several high end synthetic bags that have served us well for years, but the down quilt is far lighter, packs much smaller, and just feels amazing. To put it in perspective, when the entire family camps, everyone tries to steal my quilt. IMO, though, the higher end down stuff is definately a luxury item and not necessarily needed.

    I was skeptical about a quilt to begin with, having spent a lot of nights with only my nose sticking out of a mummy bag to stay warm. But, there is no loss of warmth with a quilt. The way they are cut, you tuck the sides underneath you like a bag. But, unlike a bag, you don't have the wasted material that's compressed by your body weight; the pad provides warmth on the bottom. Plus, it's much easier to vent with the quilt.

    Finally, I disagree with the idea of buying a bag for the lowest temp rating you think you will encounter. You'll end up carrying needless bulk most of the time. I wish I would have bought a 30 degree bag instead of 20. Even though we camp in temps down into the single digits, it's easy to clothing to bridge the temp gap left by the bag.
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  6. spartanman

    spartanman regret minimizer

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    Temperature ratings aren't consistent from manufacturer to manufacturer and people's tolerance for cold differs. I had a budget bag rated for 30 deg and froze at 50 deg. As you say, down is the best. You get what you pay for.
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  7. Rufjeep

    Rufjeep Been here awhile

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    True. Good point.
  8. 805gregg

    805gregg Long timer

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    https://enlightenedequipment.com/

    I went with the Revelation 20 and was not disappointed.


    I went with Enlightened Equipment Revelation 20 also, best nights sleep ever backpacking, and you get a choice of amazing colors, don't get black or green pick a color that will show up if you somehow need rescuing
  9. MATTY

    MATTY BORDER RAIDER

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    Man made insulation ok British summers, but cold, Duck/ Eider down for warmth. Just keep it dry.
  10. rd400racer

    rd400racer Long timer

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    My son is in the outdoor business and he's looking at the Revelation also. Me, I've always been a North Face Cat's Meow fan.
  11. Metalcarver

    Metalcarver Geezer Berserker Supporter

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    :hide My $.02...

    Two cheap sleeping bags together can be a lot warmer than one expensive bag.
  12. Bikerboy

    Bikerboy Been here awhile

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    Problem is pack size for synthetic bags.
    Down bags one inside the other is doable as long as you don’t compress the down.
    For me pack size is premium real estate
  13. Cam

    Cam Been here awhile

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    Sleeping quilts for most people are flat out better than a sleeping bag. In warm weather where it is moderately cool at night, I use a wool blanket. Wool blankets breath better, don't need a bunch of chemicals to keep them flame retardant, keep odors at bay, naturally wick sweat, work when wet. Wool blankets are typically heavier, generally don't pack down as well and can suck on windy nights if you don't use something to break the wind. I use one down to 45-50 degrees overnight. I have slept comfortably down to 30 but I don't get cold easily.

    The thing to remember about temp ratings is that they are set at a value designed to keep a person alive and their rating has nothing to do with comfort. Generally pick a bag at least 20 degrees or higher (f) than the temps a person will be sleeping at.
  14. markbvt

    markbvt Long timer

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    Since warmth yet packability was the original point of this thread, I'm surprised no one has mentioned the Snugpak Softie series of bags. I've got the Softie 6 Kestrel, which is rated at 32 degrees comfort/25 degrees low, and it packs down to about the size of a honeydew melon. I also have the Jungle Bag for warmer-weather camping, and it packs down about the size of a grapefruit. Adding a silk liner that takes up very little space extends either bag's cold-weather ability considerably.

    If Snugpak's bags are good enough for various militaries, they're good enough for me...

    --mark
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  15. appliance57

    appliance57 Long timer

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    I have a Mountain Hardware Lamina synthetic: They seem to pack down smaller than most synthetics, a last year's model can be had pretty cheap, and they're a good sturdy bag. I don't have to worry about wet, compressed/shifted insulation etc.. Store loose, pack and go.
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  16. Snake Oiler

    Snake Oiler If the world didn't suck, we would all fall off

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    I like my down. And I always anymore get 850 or higher. I've got a 20* 950 from hammock gear that's my go to. Warm and packs to a size that's not much bigger than a softball

    Actually it's a quilt