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#100219 - 07/29/08 06:38 AM Re: Debating on Western Mountaineering bag [Re: NitroSteel]
Berserker Offline
member

Registered: 05/10/04
Posts: 493
Loc: Lynchburg, VA
The difference in the fabrics the shells are made out of has been discussed in past threads in great detail, so I would recommend trying to dig some of those up. In a nutshell, the MF fabric is much more water resistant, and the Extremelite fabric seems to get damp a lot easier. I personally like the MF fabric better, however 2 of my 3 WM bags are made of the Extremelite fabric…go figure.

As for the Alpinlite, I do not have direct experience with it but my good hiking bud has one. He loves his. He’s a warm sleeper, and doesn’t seem to have issues with taking it down to it’s rating. As Ken said though, it all depends on how comfortable you are in different temperatures.

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#100220 - 09/01/08 11:06 AM Re: Debating on Western Mountaineering bag [Re: Berserker]
NitroSteel Offline
member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 61
I made my WM order today. I broke down and ordered a Western Mountaineering Right zip (I'm left handed) 6'0" VERSALITE. After much studying and going back and forth I'd almost decided on the Badger, then the Alpinelite. Wasn't sure if the Alpinelite was warm enough. Wasn't sure if I needed all the room in a Badger or if I wanted to carry that much weight.

In the end I found this bag brand new 20% off and it is this years model, so I had to buy it, it was a pretty easy decision at $328 with no tax or shipping....

After getting into my ol' freeze to deather (Slumberjack Ultimate 20 - 68" girth) this morning and then having my 3 year old pile in there with me I decided that 62" of girth should be plenty for just me. I think the temperature rating of the VERSALITE will be perfect, I hope I like the durability and water repellancy of the fabric... I could've got an Antelope MF for 20% off too, but there was the weight issue and the fact that it would probably be too warm.

I'm hope I'm as happy about it this time next week when it arrives. Thank ya'll for your help.

Any thoughts?

Nitrosteel

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#100221 - 09/03/08 05:32 PM Re: Debating on Western Mountaineering bag [Re: NitroSteel]
kutenay Offline
member

Registered: 10/12/04
Posts: 102
Loc: B.C. Canada
I am about your size and have a WM Alpinlite Super plus several other highend bags. I WOULD definitely get the Badger and go with the microfiber as you always sleep in a tent. I have found Gore-Tex and Endurance shells to be a bit clammy inside my tents and I have had an original Marmot Mtn, 1978, a Feathered Friends, 1989 and an Integral Designs, 2003 shelled bags.

I now am using a Valandre Shocking Blue with "Polynamide" microfiber shell and an Integral Designs North Twin/Andromeda Overbag combo with a Pertex microfiber shell more than my other bags, have had them wetted and they performed VERY well. I use GT and eVENT bivies with them, when I feel it necessary.

The WM bags are a bit "tight" in cut relative to the stated dimensions, so, a Badger would work very well for you. I have a 48" chest and my WM-AS is just a tad tighter than I really like, HTH, your choice of a WM is an excellent one.

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#100222 - 09/08/08 11:43 AM Re: Debating on Western Mountaineering bag [Re: NitroSteel]
ndsol Offline
member

Registered: 04/16/02
Posts: 673
Loc: Houston, Texas
You may have already received your bag by now and hope that you will enjoy it. I used my Versalite Wednesday night with an eVent overbag and a tarp in the Boulderfield at 12,760 prior to summit day on Longs Peak. Very nice and toasty.

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#100223 - 09/08/08 06:11 PM Re: Debating on Western Mountaineering bag [Re: ndsol]
NitroSteel Offline
member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 61
My bag came today to the office today (said my assistant), but I had to go to a meeting out of town.

One more day without trying it out for size won't kill me I guess... I'm sure it will be fine though. I'll let ya'll know how it works out.

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#100224 - 09/08/08 06:24 PM Re: Debating on Western Mountaineering bag [Re: NitroSteel]
VikingMD Offline
newbie

Registered: 08/08/08
Posts: 3
Quote:
My bag came today to the office today (said my assistant), but I had to go to a meeting out of town.

One more day without trying it out for size won't kill me I guess... I'm sure it will be fine though. I'll let ya'll know how it works out.


Where'd you get it for 20% off?

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#100225 - 09/08/08 06:42 PM Re: Debating on Western Mountaineering bag [Re: VikingMD]
NitroSteel Offline
member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 61
Mammothgear.com

I think the sale lasted only a day or maybe two. The guy I spoke with on the phone said that in the 4 years he'd been there, they'd never put WM on sale. I'd been shopping around for a couple of months and decided if I found anything better than 10% off I'd jump on it. A few places will do 10% off. E-OMC.com for one (several others price match). I felt really good about it, particularly since the sale ended so quickly. Seems like I never get a deal...

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#100226 - 09/09/08 04:41 PM Re: Debating on Western Mountaineering bag [Re: NitroSteel]
NitroSteel Offline
member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 61
I opened up the bag today and messed around with it quite a bit. 6' right zip Versalite, it is the new color as shown on the WM website. I'm 5-10ish and 190ish. I couldn't believe how fast and BIG it fluffed up. The 62" girth, to me was perfect. Enough room to move around in and to zip and unzip with no problem. I can cross my arms comfortably and not feel restricted. The hood cinches down perfect and the zipper refuses to snag. I've tried to lay in it everywhich way I could and don't feel uncomfortable (other than hot in my living room) at all. I can sit up in the bag with the hood on with no problems. It fit into the stuff sack fairly easily and could be compressed a good bit more if necessary (I have no need to though).

Like I said earlier, I'd never even had a chance to look at a WM bag. The "lite" shell on this bag seems to be as thick as the flooring on my Big Agnes Seedhouse SL3 tent. I'm not worried at all about tearing it with normal use in a tent or shelter. I can't wait to try the thing out on the trail. I must say that I am very satisfied right now.

The two concerns I had (girth and fragile shell material) are no longer concerns for me. Maybe I'd be happier with a wider girth, but I think it would probably work against me in the end - - I get no "bellows" effect at all with this bag.

Thank all of ya'll for your help.

NitroSteel <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />

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#100227 - 09/09/08 04:49 PM Re: Debating on Western Mountaineering bag [Re: NitroSteel]
bash Offline
member

Registered: 01/27/05
Posts: 146
Loc: Scotts Valley,CA
Once you get a WM bag it is all over. I own three and I love them!!!!!!!

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#100228 - 09/09/08 04:50 PM Re: Debating on Western Mountaineering bag [Re: NitroSteel]
hikerduane Offline
member

Registered: 02/23/03
Posts: 2123
Loc: Meadow Valley, CA
My WM Caribou zipper snags more than I like. Sounds like the material on your "lite" is more robust then they advertise for that line. Congrats on joining the WM club.

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#100229 - 09/09/08 10:17 PM Re: Debating on Western Mountaineering bag [Re: hikerduane]
OregonMouse Offline
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6372
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
I've been amazed since I got my WM Ultralight Super at how the thing puffs up and puffs up and puffs up when it comes out of its stuff sack!

One one trip I got it rather damp and was really concerned about packing it up (i.e. compressing it) when damp. I need not have worried. Once I got it out in the sun, it quickly puffed up again to its original volume.

Just be sure to store it in its large cloth bag, and don't leave it in its stuff sack for several days after you return from a trip. In other words, preserve your investment and it will last for years.
_________________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

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#100230 - 09/10/08 05:54 AM Re: Debating on Western Mountaineering bag [Re: OregonMouse]
hikerduane Offline
member

Registered: 02/23/03
Posts: 2123
Loc: Meadow Valley, CA
I don't stuff my bag until at the TH and unstuff it when back at my truck/car when heading home. Same with down/synthetic clothes.

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#100231 - 09/10/08 11:36 AM Re: Debating on Western Mountaineering bag [Re: OregonMouse]
Keith Offline
member

Registered: 01/04/02
Posts: 1664
Loc: Michigan's Upper Peninsula
Quote:
I've been amazed since I got my WM Ultralight Super at how the thing puffs up and puffs up and puffs up when it comes out of its stuff sack!


If I recall an old Backpacker review the quote was something like "puffs up like a blowfish". People can argue specs from their armchairs until the cows come home but the conclusion from actual experience is swift and definite -- "Hmm, never seen anything like this before".

I've found that I can pick out a WM bag with my eyes closed in a mass of hanging sleeping bags at a gear store. And it isn't even hard to do. It's not just the quality of the fabric but also the way the down "pushes back" at you. It really wants to get big. By comparison, other bags feel like they are filled either with "weak squshy down" or cottage cheese.

Not trying to persuade anyone who has tried a WM bag and decided something else is better for them -- but if you haven't seen one in the flesh, you really have no clue . . .


Edited by Keith (09/10/08 11:39 AM)

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#100232 - 10/09/08 05:22 PM Re: Debating on Western Mountaineering bag [Re: NitroSteel]
NitroSteel Offline
member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 61
Me and my external frame pack, Cabelas 4 season tent and WM Versalite are headed to Gillette, WY for the next week (leaving for there tomorrow) to antelope hunt. I think the average low is around 17-22 and the average high is around 34-38. I feel like I sleep cold and am a little concerned about how warm I'll be, but from everything I've read, I should be fine. I'm only planning on sleeping in a base layer, but I'll have more ready to put on if necessary. I've never slept outside in temps this cold before. I sold my Slumberjack Ultimate 20 to a friend who will be on a Thermarest right next to me (bundled up like an Eskimo) - - he's been warned...

It will be interesting to see how warm I am able to stay in this tiny little bag, as compared to some of my buddies in their big heavy bags.

I'll give a report when I get back.

NitroSteel

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#100233 - 10/10/08 02:37 AM Re: Debating on Western Mountaineering bag [Re: NitroSteel]
leadfoot Offline
member

Registered: 07/16/03
Posts: 954
Loc: Virginia
put a closed cell foam pad underneath your sleeping pad to keep the cold out from under you. You will be amazed how well that works.

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#100234 - 10/12/08 05:24 PM Re: Debating on Western Mountaineering bag [Re: NitroSteel]
canyonS Offline
member

Registered: 08/08/03
Posts: 601
HI, I think this is my safe true opinion DESPITE the fact that I have a badger for sale!
I would never want a wp/b on a sleeping bag. If I think it is going to get wet, I avoid that or have a cover. Microfiber is lighter, more compact, durable, breathable comfortable. The Badger is the best bag I have ever had and I have had everything from Marmot Lithium, Helium eq, several ff, Santa Cruz Down Works, Mountainsmith Vision, Propel, Beeline. The Badger is the most comfortable, warmest, best made bag I have used. I am only 160 and I still love that extra room. I think it is close to as warm as the old Lithium,

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#100235 - 10/14/08 02:23 PM Re: Debating on Western Mountaineering bag [Re: canyonS]
NitroSteel Offline
member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 61
First night we came in during a snow flurry at 10:00 p.m. The tent was setup on top of about 6 inches of snow. Bag really didn't get to fluff up before I got into it. Slept on top of only a Big Agnes Insulated Air Core pad. Got down to about 18 degrees outside and about 22 degrees inside. Went to sleep in t-shirt and regular underwear (no socks). Could feel cool air on my back as soon as I laid down. Woke up cool (not really cold) at about 5:00 a.m. and put on thermal underwear and long sleeve shirt and socks. Got very warm, very quickly...

Second night, went to sleep in thermal long underwear, long sleeve shirt and socks. Slept on same pad, plus cheap closed cell foam pad from Wal-Mart. Slept like a baby, couldn't zip up for about 3 hours. Checked the temperature at dawn outside the tent: 12 degrees, inside the tent: 20 degrees.

Last night, slept the same way, on the same pads. Temp got down to 21 outside and about 23 inside. Didn't zip up all night, ended up taking off long sleeve shirt before I could fall asleep.

In a nutshell, the bag did exactly what I wanted it to do. Each night the tent had frost on the interior roof and interior walls. There was about a foot of snow on top of the tent the first 2 nights. At least one night there was frost on the shell of my sleeping bag. The shell did get damp once, but it never got wet or lost any loft.

It was VERY, VERY nasty cold weather. I probably will never duplicate a seemingly misable trip like this (It wasn't miserable at all). We all got our antelope and I got my sleep....

Very satisfied. In the end I threw my bag over to a friend of mine and he couldn't believe how light it was and that I was able to stay warm in something that light weight.

NitroSteel

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#100236 - 10/20/08 08:29 AM Re: Debating on Western Mountaineering bag [Re: NitroSteel]
kbennett Offline
member

Registered: 10/27/03
Posts: 820
Loc: north carolina
Glad to hear your report, Nitro.
_________________________
--Ken B

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#100237 - 10/20/08 10:20 AM Re: Debating on Western Mountaineering bag [Re: NitroSteel]
Glenn Offline
member

Registered: 03/08/06
Posts: 2617
Loc: Ohio
Glad the bag worked so well. (Finally, a chance to say "We told you so" in a positive way!) <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />

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#100238 - 10/23/08 06:21 PM Re: Debating on Western Mountaineering bag [Re: Glenn]
NitroSteel Offline
member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 61
Do most people cut the tags (the one that says 6 foot left, versalite super) off of their bags. I don't ever plan on getting rid of the bag, but I don't want to hurt the value of it if I do. Will this hurt the value? Do most people cut their tags off? It just seems anoying and almost like it might get caught on something and cause the bag to be ripped.

I haven't cut it off yet, but I figure in a year or two if left on there it will be become illegible anyways. I notice that most of the bags for sale on ebay have the tags still there...

Thank ya'll

NitroSteel

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#100239 - 10/23/08 07:44 PM Re: Debating on Western Mountaineering bag [Re: NitroSteel]
Glenn Offline
member

Registered: 03/08/06
Posts: 2617
Loc: Ohio
I never bothered to cut the tag off, but it's from laziness, not from any desire to preserve the tag. I don't know anyone else who's ever really bothered or expressed any thoughts on it.

You got me to thinking, though; now, where are those scissors... <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />

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#100240 - 10/24/08 04:18 AM Re: Debating on Western Mountaineering bag [Re: NitroSteel]
deliriousNomad Offline
member

Registered: 04/13/06
Posts: 64
Loc: Matthews, NC
I don't like the annoying tags either - and I cut them off.
_________________________
- deliriousNomad

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#100241 - 10/24/08 02:07 PM Re: Debating on Western Mountaineering bag [Re: deliriousNomad]
Trout Offline
member

Registered: 01/09/02
Posts: 74
Loc: Bath, Maine USA
I agree-cut them off everything.

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#100242 - 10/25/08 09:41 AM Re: Debating on Western Mountaineering bag [Re: NitroSteel]
kutenay Offline
member

Registered: 10/12/04
Posts: 102
Loc: B.C. Canada
I usually leave the tags on my bags to remember whatever cleaning info. they may have. Sorry my original post on this came after your decision to by the Versalite, but, I WILL say that, this is maybe the BEST single backpacking, sleeping bag I know of, when quality and price are considered. I WOULD have one, but, they are a bit too narrow for my taste.

For a general purpose bag to last most people a lifetime, the microfiber shells from WM, ID and especially the Asahie fabric from Valandre, as on their Shocking Blue and newest Bloody Mary models, are, IMHO, the best option. However, for lightest weight and inside a tent, with care, the WM Ultralite series bags are just superb, glad you are happy!

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#100243 - 10/25/08 04:39 PM Re: Debating on Western Mountaineering bag [Re: kutenay]
NitroSteel Offline
member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 61
I cut the tags off my bag and put them in a ziplock bag "pinned" to the inside of my gunsafe door along with the other hanging tags that were on the bag when I bought it, and the receipt. I figured as long as I had the tags and other information I'd be good to go in the event of a warranty repair or something else...

When I need to refer back to the directions on how to wash it, I'll just go there or to the WM website. It seems like the general consensus was to remove the tags.

NitroSteel

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