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#203974 - 01/08/20 04:16 AM Need advice on summer sleeping bag for backpacking
Daniel Phill Offline
newbie

Registered: 12/28/19
Posts: 5
Loc: Colorado
Hi, I am a newbie backpacker and would be happy to consider your personal opinion/advice before purchasing a warm weather sleeping bag.

Some review websites say that goose down sleeping bags are cozier and warmer than duck down and synthetics. I am not going for some hardcore winter adventures and I wont be using it in weather colder than about 50-60F

So I guess I am looking for a 3 season goose down US made sleeping bag.

Budget: no idea
Review website advice everything from 20 to 400$. As I learned, price mostly depends on a fill power of a sleeping bag.
Then the question is: What min fill power I need in case of backpacking in warm wather over 50F?

The price is not the most important feature but I am not ready to spend 380$ for smth like Western Mountneering Summerlite.

I also prefer a hooded sleeping bag laugh

Hope I described what I need cool
Thank you for tips https://www.backpacking.net/forum/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=173689#Post173689

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#203976 - 01/08/20 06:00 AM Re: Need advice on summer sleeping bag for backpacking [Re: Daniel Phill]
Bill Kennedy Offline
member

Registered: 02/27/18
Posts: 246
Loc: Portland, Oregon
I think US-made bags are all pretty expensive. The WM Summerlite you mention is a great lightweight bag (I have one) but it cost more than I can usually afford for a piece of backpacking gear.

I wonder, though, if you might be a bit optimistic about your temperature-range requirements. Since you live in Colorado, I imagine you'll be in the mountains, and temperatures could easily fall to freezing, even in mid-summer.

As far as goose vs. duck vs. synthetic...good duck down is fine, it's just slightly heavier per unit of volume than good goose down. And synthetic is a bit heavier yet. So, "what fill power do I need?" really isn't the question, since the fill power is just a measure of how light the bag can be for a given temperature rating.

It's worth noting that a good down bag can last many years if taken care of, but synthetic bags lose their loft within a few years even if you don't use them. So the down bags are probably a better value in the long run.
_________________________
Always remember that you are absolutely unique, just like everybody else. -Margaret Mead

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#203979 - 01/08/20 01:18 PM Re: Need advice on summer sleeping bag for backpacking [Re: Daniel Phill]
GWL Offline
newbie

Registered: 01/03/20
Posts: 6
I have rarely or never been where it is 50 deg. F in the mountains.
How sure are you about that. Maybe a really cheap bag that you could throw away later is worth a try. ???


Edited by GWL (01/08/20 10:06 PM)

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#203981 - 01/08/20 01:55 PM Re: Need advice on summer sleeping bag for backpacking [Re: Daniel Phill]
BZH Offline
member

Registered: 01/26/11
Posts: 1004
Loc: Torrance, CA
For night time temperatures 50-60°F you don't really need much, so my first thoughts are much like Bill's: are you sure that 50°F is really the worst-case nighttime low temperature you will see?

I usually tell people to invest in a good bag first and foremost when putting together a backpacking kit. Nothing else will last as long and get you so much more than a high quality sleeping bag. However, at that temperature rating shelling out big bucks is a bit of a waste. You could probably do this with a down blanket from Costco.

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#203983 - 01/08/20 03:09 PM Re: Need advice on summer sleeping bag for backpacking [Re: BZH]
4evrplan Offline
member

Registered: 01/16/13
Posts: 813
Loc: Nacogdoches, TX, USA
Agreed about the Costco down throw, BZH. And, if you're into DIY, there's a lot of info online about maximizing their loft (and warmth). There's even ways to close up an end to make a foot box. I probably wouldn't want to use one any colder than mid 50s F, but then, I sleep cold.
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The journey is more important than the destination.

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#203984 - 01/08/20 03:14 PM Re: Need advice on summer sleeping bag for backpacking [Re: Daniel Phill]
OregonMouse Online   content
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6714
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
If you will not be camping in temps lower than 50-60* F, you will not be camping in Colorado, and certainly not in the mountains. In the Colorado Rockies (say, above 9000 feet), you can expect frosty nights at any time. I would not venture out, even in midsummer, with less than a 20*F bag.

If you don't mind more weight, you can find sleeping bags with 500 or 600 fill down that will do the job. With the price of high quality down escalating rapidly (my beloved Western Mountaineering Ultralite bag, if bought new now, would be almost double the price I paid in 2007), most of us can't afford the high quality stuff. Better to put up with the heavier bag now.

Pay close attention to the EN13537 ratings and also to your sleeping pad rating (the 2020 standards for sleeping pads are being required by retailers REI and MEC, but watch out for sales on older, non standardized pads). New sleeping pad standards can be found here.





Edited by OregonMouse (01/08/20 03:22 PM)
_________________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

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#203988 - 01/09/20 08:53 AM Re: Need advice on summer sleeping bag for backpacking [Re: OregonMouse]
Daniel Phill Offline
newbie

Registered: 12/28/19
Posts: 5
Loc: Colorado
The thing is I've never been in the mountains at night.

I think of 800 fill Aegismax Ultralight will do the job there?
https://wildproofgear.com/best-ultralight-sleeping-bag/ it is three times cheaper than WM Summerlite.

Everyone is so positive about Summerlite but it is really out of budget frown

I am not the expert in backpacking gear, but it seems to me this formula works for any gear best quality = highest price


Edited by Daniel Phill (01/09/20 08:55 AM)

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#203989 - 01/09/20 10:51 AM Re: Need advice on summer sleeping bag for backpacking [Re: Daniel Phill]
4evrplan Offline
member

Registered: 01/16/13
Posts: 813
Loc: Nacogdoches, TX, USA
That article really isn't comparing apples to apples. The temp ratings of the different bags are all over the place. One thing to be aware of is EN rated bags have two temperature ratings, one for "comfort" and one for the lower limit. I recommend going by the comfort rating. Guess which one is used more prominently in advertising. If you said "lower limit", you're right. The one you linked has a lower limit of 30F, but the comfort rating is all the way up at 39F; plus, I don't even know if Aegismax has official EN ratings or they're using their own standard (?).

Until you're more experienced and know for sure you're a hot sleeper and can safely get away with a lighter bag, I would strongly second OM's good advice about getting a bag rated down to at least 20F. Aegismax has a bunch of different models; in fact, I was looking at their lineup just the day before yesterday. The G series and the M series both look intriguing. The number after the letter designates how warm they are, with higher numbers meaning more loft/warmer. If I were to try one of their bags, I'd probably go with the M3, but that's not an official recommendation as I don't have any experience with their products, nor do I know what kind of camping you'll be doing or how you sleep. It's just a fluke that I happened to be window shopping their sleeping bags at the same time as you. Someone who sleeps hot might be okay with the G1, as it's a bit lighter than the M3.
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The journey is more important than the destination.

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#203990 - 01/09/20 11:02 AM Re: Need advice on summer sleeping bag for backpacking [Re: Daniel Phill]
BZH Offline
member

Registered: 01/26/11
Posts: 1004
Loc: Torrance, CA
If you are planning to sleep at elevation, in Colorado, in the summer, then you need to prepare for temperatures much colder than 50°F. OM's advice is good. If you tend to sleep cold then you should be looking at a 20°F rate bag. If you tend to sleep warm you should be looking at a 30°F bag. ... and that is the rating from a high quality manufacturer. Certainly not somebody like Aegis. Some people do quite well with an Aegismax bag, but you have to know what you are getting into. The temperature rating does not mean anything. Look at how much down they are putting in the bag and compare it to the amount of similar quality down for a comparison of what it should be rated at. The other thing about Aegismax I have heard is that they are not designed for very big people. If you are more than like 5'8" and a 160 lbs you might find it a bit of a squeeze.

Have you considered a quilt? The last two sleeping bags I have bought were quilts from Enlightened Equipment. I've been very happy with the purchases. Lightweight and at a great price. The insulation underneath you in a sleeping bag gets compressed and doesn't keep you warm, so just get rid of it!

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#203991 - 01/09/20 12:29 PM Re: Need advice on summer sleeping bag for backpacking [Re: Daniel Phill]
JustWalking Offline
member

Registered: 01/12/16
Posts: 235
Loc: PNW
The Aegismax bag in that article is sewn-thru. I, personally, would never get a bag that is sewn-thru instead of baffled, especially for colder temps.

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#203992 - 01/09/20 02:20 PM Re: Need advice on summer sleeping bag for backpacking [Re: JustWalking]
OregonMouse Online   content
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6714
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
The Kelty Cosmic Down 20 seems to be most recommended for those worrying about budget. Its current retail price is $170.

It's recommended by highly experienced backpackers including Paul Magnati, who has backpacked in Colorado (and other Rocky Mountain states) for a number of years.

Please don't associate "fill power" with the temperature rating! The higher fill power only reflects the warmth per unit of weight. Down fill power. In this article the author compares the Kelty Cosmic with the Western Mountaineering Ultralite. The primary difference is the 12 ounces heavier weight for the Kelty (otherwise the two bags have similar features). It might also make a few years' difference in its useful life, assuming heavy use. Only you can decide whether the $300 price difference for the WM is worth it. Note that the current model Kelty Cosmic uses 600 fill Dri-Down.

Do note that even with Dri-Down, you need to make extra effort to protect down from moisture, although my bitter experience is that a soggy synthetic bag is no warmer than a soggy down bag!

If you haven't already read it, here's an outstanding tutorial for beginning backpackers: For beginners, by Andrew Skurka.
_________________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

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#203993 - 01/09/20 02:53 PM Re: Need advice on summer sleeping bag for backpacking [Re: OregonMouse]
Bill Kennedy Offline
member

Registered: 02/27/18
Posts: 246
Loc: Portland, Oregon
Looks like it's here at Backcountry Gear for $159.95:

https://www.backcountrygear.com/catalog/...-1/category/72/
_________________________
Always remember that you are absolutely unique, just like everybody else. -Margaret Mead

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#203998 - 01/10/20 06:46 AM Re: Need advice on summer sleeping bag for backpacking [Re: OregonMouse]
Daniel Phill Offline
newbie

Registered: 12/28/19
Posts: 5
Loc: Colorado
Many thanks, OM!
Guess this dri-down Kelty sleeping bag is smth that I need for my first experience

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#204002 - 01/10/20 05:58 PM Re: Need advice on summer sleeping bag for backpacking [Re: GWL]
bob13bob Offline
member

Registered: 12/17/09
Posts: 30
Loc: California, United States
Originally Posted By GWL
I have rarely or never been where it is 50 deg. F in the mountains.
How sure are you about that. Maybe a really cheap bag that you could throw away later is worth a try. ???


50 degree nights will be like 80 degree days in california sierra 8000ft elevation. Those are quite warm days at that elevation. too hot to enjoy the middle of the day moving around, but will be nice morning and evenings.

i aim my trips timing and elevation for 70 highs, 40 lows which is a nice tradeoff. i spec my gear to get me confortable to 32F since weather is unpredictable.

sometimes i have to put on all my layers + bag + beanie + balaclava with breathing hole to be warm and comfy through the night.

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#204012 - 01/13/20 01:35 PM Re: Need advice on summer sleeping bag for backpacking [Re: Daniel Phill]
OregonMouse Online   content
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6714
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
Your sleeping pad is equally important. I once went through a couple of very uncomfortable 15 degree nights with an inadequate sleeping pad--I was warm on top but freezing underneath!

Here are the new 2020 standards for sleeping pads.
_________________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

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#204014 - 01/16/20 02:01 PM Re: Need advice on summer sleeping bag for backpacking [Re: Daniel Phill]
GWL Offline
newbie

Registered: 01/03/20
Posts: 6
Daniel--
I really liked your link to the Aegismax Ultralite 800 down bag. It looks like a super bag at a good weight and price if it happens to fit your personal EN temp rating criteria. Here is one thing that mystifies me. That link lead me to another down bag at similar price but with different temp ratings. The lower limit (called "men" in some cases) was identical. However both the comfort ("Women") were higher (not as good). Is it possible somehow that the insulation value can be different at the extremes and the same in the center?
Shouldn't it be a linear function? Can one bag be warmer at the high and low but the same for the middle (men) rating????

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#204015 - 01/16/20 11:30 PM Re: Need advice on summer sleeping bag for backpacking [Re: Daniel Phill]
GWL Offline
newbie

Registered: 01/03/20
Posts: 6
A couple of comments:
Your lack of experience is a major problem. You got some good advice here, but you need to talk to people who hike in the area you will be camping in and ask their advice on the subject. I looked at the Aegismax 800. At 14 ounces I am very impressed. At the price and weight I might purchase one as a sleeping bag liner for winter! However, for a three season bag the ratings are not what I would ever consider as a main bag. The light weight is because it has less fill, therefore less loft. However, having said that: while there may well be a relationship between cost and quality generally speaking, some of the bags in this thread blow my mind in that they look pretty good and have good reviews for the cost. And...I don't think the curve I a straight line. At the high end I think you pay a lot more for just a little better quality. Two of my friends have the very best Feather friends and Western Mountaineering bags and paid more but don't sleep any warmer than I do in my North Face which is an excellent high end bag, but I didn't pay as much as them. I think North Face has some of the highest quality bags on the market at less $ than some others.

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