I dream of Sleeping Bags
Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 12:27PM
Last year, when purchasing our camping gear, we picked up a couple of low-spec sleeping bags from Blacks. We’d spent a fair bit of cash on the tent and felt that we’d spent enough for the time being. The plan was to upgrade the sleeping bags, if needed, at a later date.
They’re synthetic mummy-shaped bags. Two matching ones that can be zipped together. A bit like this one.
About 6 months on and I’m totally hankering for a new sleeping bag. We’ve been on a few trips in what I’d call ‘3 season weather’ where at nighttime temperatures have dropped to below freezing and the bags haven’t been warm enough. Early this year we were camping on the Gower Peninsular and woke up to frost on the tent and it’s likely, living in Britain, that this will be the norm for many of our adventures away from home.
So far we’ve coped by taking Thermarest tech blankets and putting them inside the sleeping bags, putting fleece and wool blankets on top, wearing a lot of clothes, and finally by taking our whole home duvet out with us!
I have Raynaud’s Syndrome and so it’s very important that I stay warm and that’s more of a challenge for me than for other folk. Hence I have a great affection for any clothing or kit that keeps me warm. With this in mind I’ve decided to save my pennies and get a bag that’s particularly good.
Lightweight & small pack size – with talk of a backpacking trip next year it needs to be easy to carry.
Warmth – Needs to cope with Spring/Autumn nighttime temps. My guess is a comfort rating of -5 but I’m focussing more on quality of down & reviews than ratings.
Snugglyness – Soft fabrics and a high mmmmmm snuggly factor required!
At the moment Mountain Equipment’s Xero 550 and Marmot’s Helium are looking great. The ME bag is slightly smaller & lighter but is more expensive & Web Togs say it’s quite narrow. The Marmot has a fantastic review here and has higher quality down (850+ versus 750+).
It’ll be a while before I choose so personal reviews, recommendations, and comments welcome!