Sleeping Bag

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Sleeping Bag

Postby lilbitmo » Sun Dec 29, 2013 7:40 pm

Looking to get a new sleeping bag, have a credit at Cabela's of all places so I'm trying to use that up before the holidays are over, I'll get extra discounts.

Any way they are limited to some Kelty Dri-down bags and some other limited selections.

Can anyone tell me about the fit I'm 6" and weight in at 215 lbs and I roll during the night so I need a little extra room so sleep well.

Right now I'm looking at:

Kelty Ignite Dri-down 20
Kelty Cosmic Down - one review on this said it's very tight fit but I trust the group here to tell me more if possible.
Marmot Sawtooth

Thanks in advance if you can shed light on this subject
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Postby Ulysses » Tue Dec 31, 2013 8:58 am

I bought the Western Mountaineering "Alpinlite" 4 years ago and love it. Best bag I've ever owned. 20F down bag that weighs 2 lb. Incredibly warm and well made. Also expensive, but I'm in my 50's and figure it might be the last bag I'll buy so what the heck. I'm about your size and it fits great. Because I want to go lightweight I did a lot of my research on what the thru-hikers were using at the time and that bag was very popular. The other bag that was popular at the time was the Marmot Helium. Also a 20F down bag in the 2lb. range. I think they still make the Helium.
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Postby Hikin_Jim » Tue Dec 31, 2013 12:42 pm

+1 on Western Mountaineering although I don't think Cabela's carries them. I have a Summerlite which is a tight fit on me (I'm 6'0", ~220#), but I'm a side sleeper, so it works. I don't think it would work for a back sleeper.

A couple of general points re sleeping bags:
-- A full length zipper although a bit heavier than a half zip makes for a much more versatile bag.  In the summer, I open my bag fully and lay it over me like a blanket.  In warm, "middle of the road" temps, I half zip it.  In cold, I fully zip and pull on the hood.
-- The "conventional wisdom" is that one should get a 20F/-7C rated bag for all around, three season type use.  While that may be true in the Pac NW, I've found that a lighter bag is good for California.  My bag is rated at 32F/0C, and I've gotten a lot of use out of it.  If it's a bit colder, I wear a down sweater or down vest to bed along with a beanie, gloves, long johns, and socks.  I've been down to the mid 20's and been quite comfortable.  A lot depends on you and what you want to do, but if it were me, I'd get a lighter bag, something around 30F/-1C, and then get a second bag for colder weather.  Two bags is a pricey way to go, but man is it nice to go light in the summer.  I had my pack down to about 25 lbs including water for a three day trip last July.
-- Volume is a mixed bag.  The more volume inside a bag, the more space your body has to keep warm.  Generally, people sleep warmer with a closer fitting bag (and of course a closer fitting bag will generally weigh less). On the other hand, it's really nice to be able to wear a down sweater or vest to bed on really chilly nights.  In winter, you may want room enough for a fuel canister and water bottle.  Some people even sleep with their boots in a plastic bag inside their sleeping bag so they won't freeze overnight.  You kind of have to think about what the bag is for and what you want to do with it and then strike a balance.

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Postby climbant » Tue Dec 31, 2013 10:26 pm

I agree with Jim, I have a golite 1 season bag that was very comfy in the mid to upper 20's with the clothing Jim mentioned. Also a bag liner can increase the rating for minimal weight.
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Postby Screerider » Wed Jan 01, 2014 7:00 pm

Consider a quilt.
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Kelty Cosmic

Postby Catalyst81 » Fri Jan 03, 2014 12:28 pm

I agree with above that a lighter weight bag would be a good move. I've owned a Kelty Cosmic and it did seem to be a tighter fit to me. Check out the Marmot Hydrogen. It's a great lightweight 30 degree bag with a little extra room. Cabelas didn't look like they had it on the website but they carry other Marmot sleeping bags so I bet they could get it for you.
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Postby zippetydude » Fri Jan 03, 2014 3:04 pm

Hi Patrick. I agree with HJ in that I have not found the need to have a real warm bag here in California. When I was in my teens I bought a Snow Lion bag with 800 goose down rated to zero. I've never zipped it up for more than 3 minutes. I use it almost entirely as a blanket, even on High Sierra trips. I've had it for almost 40 years and it's still in almost new condition, so as was mentioned this purchase may last you a lifetime.

Weight is not generally an issue when I backpack (I don't go for extended periods which necessitate weight economization) so I actually have mostly used a $20.00 Walmart bag when backpacking locally and it's been plenty warm. Unless you generally get cold when you sleep or you're looking for a quality winter bag, your real danger here may be accidental overkill. I hate sleeping and waking up sweaty.

No recommendations, just some thoughts.

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Postby Hikin_Jim » Fri Jan 03, 2014 4:56 pm

zippetydude wrote:When I was in my teens I bought a Snow Lion bag with 800 goose down rated to zero... I've had it for almost 40 years and it's still in almost new condition, so as was mentioned this purchase may last you a lifetime.
You're already looking at down anyway, but Zip raises a good general point: Down outlasts synthetic by a wide margin. Synthetic just starts breaking down after being compressed and uncompressed dozens of times. Maybe no big deal for a casual user, but for someone who's out frequently, it adds up.

On the other hand, my dad's old down bag, purchased around 1963, still is a pretty decent bag. Needs a good cleaning though.

Which brings up another good general point: oils from one's skin degrade the loft (and therefore the warmth) of down. I always sleep with a beanie and in my base layers with socks on to minimize skin contact. Even with wearing something between me and the bag, I still need to clean the bag once in a while. NEVER DRY CLEAN DOWN. Dry cleaning will work in terms of getting things clean but will degrade the loft (and therefore warmth) of the bag. There are various products specifically for laundering a bag. I'm not sure they work better than generic laundry products. The trick is to rinse everything really well so no laundering agent is left in the bag. Anyway, laundering is a whole 'nother subject, one that I don't profess expertise in.

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Postby halhiker » Sat Jan 04, 2014 10:12 pm

My marmot plasma bag is wide enough for me and I weigh more than you. Just make sure you get a long. On cold nights it's good to out stuff in the bottom.
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