Sleeping Bag Recommendations

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24,200
Location
CA
I need a sleeping bag for this weekend's camping trip to Yosemite, which is in the 20s. What would you guys recommend?
 
Messages
13,613
Location
Frisco, TX
To be frank, for a casual user I've never seen much difference among the bags. Get one that's got the appropriate temperature rating and you're fine. I've been a longtime fan of Slumberjack. If you're going to be doing backpacking or things like that, the game changes. I was a Boy Scout for a long time (Eagle Scout, too) so I've had some experience. :-)
 
Messages
1,723
Location
Virginia
Originally Posted By: dparm
To be frank, for a casual user I've never seen much difference among the bags. Get one that's got the appropriate temperature rating and you're fine. I've been a longtime fan of Slumberjack. If you're going to be doing backpacking or things like that, the game changes. I was a Boy Scout for a long time (Eagle Scout, too) so I've had some experience. :-)
+1, though I was never an Eagle Scout
 
Messages
4,998
Location
Milwaukee, WI
20's is cold. Make sure you get a decent sleeping bag. I've had a few Kelty's that were fine. A SlumberJack would be nice. You don't need a north face bag, but something better than a coleman cotton bag. At the least get something rated to 20 degrees and bring a hat (like a winter stocking hat).
 

JOD

Messages
3,577
Location
PNW/WA
How many times are you gonna buy a sleeping bag? Get the best, you'll probably only buy it once. I'd go for a Feathered Friends 20 degree bag, either the Swift or the Swallow. One thing I'll say is that their bags are very conservatively rated. I 20 degree bag will be comfortable down to 0 degrees. I'd call the store and ask for a recommendation on size. These guys know there stuff, and are incredibly helpful: http://www.featheredfriends.com/picasso/bags/Product/20Degree.html I got a bag from the 20 years ago and it's seen a ton of use. It was well-worth the money.
 
Messages
3,742
Location
Northern California, USA
Are you back packing or car camping. It makes a difference. For car camping you can buy a cheap bulky bag. For back packing get a light weight synthetic fiber bag. Don't get down. When it gets wet, it doesn't keep you warm and it stinks. I have a Wiggy's bag. They have a cult following. http://www.wiggys.com/
 

The Critic

Thread starter
Messages
24,200
Location
CA
Originally Posted By: Loobed
Are you back packing or car camping. It makes a difference. For car camping you can buy a cheap bulky bag. For back packing get a light weight synthetic fiber bag. Don't get down. When it gets wet, it doesn't keep you warm and it stinks. I have a Wiggy's bag. They have a cult following. http://www.wiggys.com/
We're doing tents, no backpacking.
 

The Critic

Thread starter
Messages
24,200
Location
CA
Originally Posted By: dparm
To be frank, for a casual user I've never seen much difference among the bags. Get one that's got the appropriate temperature rating and you're fine. I've been a longtime fan of Slumberjack. If you're going to be doing backpacking or things like that, the game changes. I was a Boy Scout for a long time (Eagle Scout, too) so I've had some experience. :-)
Thanks, I went ahead and next-day air-ed two of these: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004GX5I0O/ref=ox_sc_act_title_1?ie=UTF8&m=ATVPDKIKX0DER
 
Messages
1,344
Location
Clinton Twp. MI
It says there out of stock on that bag? Anyway if you get a bag rated 20 and its 20 your going to get cold. Wear long underwear in bed and get a couple wool blankets from your surplus store just in case. One uder your bag and one over. also look into a pad for under your bag to insulate from the ground.
 
Messages
1,715
Location
VA
Sleeping pads will make a tremendous difference in comfort and warmth. I have spent plenty of cold nights on a Ridgerest foam pad, and I'm sure the heavier, more expensive self-inflating pads are even more comfortable. Socks and hats will help, too. This ought to be a great time for Yosemite--have fun.
 
Messages
4,021
Location
New England
A 20 degree bag means it might work for a hot sleeper if they're fully dressed and wearing a jacket and hat at 20 degrees. Just from experience. I use a 20 degree down bag when the temp is going to be in the 30's and 40's at night and don't want to sleep completely dressed up and a 0 degree bag when it's going to be 10-30 degrees. I spent one very cold night at -5 in a 0 degree bag wearing 2 pairs of mountaineering socks, winter jacket, and heavy gloves to know my own limitations on bags. Sleeping on snow with a thin sleeping pad probably didn't help. Unfortunately it was a 2 mile snowshoe trek on unpacked trails out.
 
Messages
1,344
Location
Clinton Twp. MI
Also just a reminder your tent is not vented enough for a combustion type heat source. Years ago my brother decided to bring the hibachi inside with the remaining hot coals for heat. Luckily his friend woke up later feeling sick and they got out to fresh air before expiring! Yes I am pretty sure alchohol was involved.
 
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NJC

Messages
3,021
Location
Vancouver BC
Originally Posted By: Drew99GT
Get one that's rated for lower temps than you anticipate. Ask me how I know...
I bought a 0C (32F) rated bag at the highly-esteemed Canadian chain MEC and not a chance I'd use in that temp. And they are supposed to do careful research into temp valuations. If you can't sleep because of the cold, you'll have quickly considered the extra $$$ worthwhile. Or borrow if you can.
 
Messages
13,613
Location
Frisco, TX
Unless you are sleeping naked, the 20 degree bag in 20 degree weather is fine. You should be layering your clothing anyways.
 

NJC

Messages
3,021
Location
Vancouver BC
Originally Posted By: dparm
Unless you are sleeping naked, the 20 degree bag in 20 degree weather is fine. You should be layering your clothing anyways.
Body temps are quite subjective - how much "insulation" The Critic brings to the equation, and his tolerance for cold too. I don't think Sacramento (going by memory here) is much of a training ground. cool
 
Messages
6,167
Location
Santa Barbara, CA
The rating doesn't mean you'll be comfortable - it means you'll survive! Best way to easily boost your rating 10* warmer - fleece sleeping bag/liner. Usually ~$10 on sale (walmart/big5/etc) - use it like a sheet or bag in a bag. Bonus that its easy to wash vs your full sleeping bag, which stays cleaner b/c of the liner. For backpacking I have a 35* down bag and a silk liner - warm and lightweight. Down to 30* no problem and I always feel warmer with just boxers on.
 
Messages
7,256
Location
USA
Honestly it depends if someone is sharing your sleeping bag or not. My experience was cold camping with cruddy equipment back in college days was crawling into close friends(opposite sex) junky sleeping bag and shared warmth. And no nothing happened... Great day of moose viewing in Pittsburg NH. It was topped off by nice Canadian beer we(under aged) brought back over the border which was closed and no gate! Enjoy your trip.
 
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