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Down jacket in sleeping system
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Diplomatic Mike

Locale: Under a bush in Scotland
Down jacket in sleeping system on 06/24/2008 13:43:23 MDT Print View

I'm trying to put together my first quilt sleeping system for temps down to around -10C. I want to get as light as possible. I'm a warm sleeper. The quilt i'm using is a Nunatak Arc Specialist. I'm happy with my mat choice and legwear. I can't make up my mind for the torso and head.
One choice is the Nunatak Skaha plus. I already have a Montbell UL down inner jacket(old style with snaps). If i bought the Montbell UL down inner Parka and wore them both, i would have a similar amount of down to the Skaha, but slightly heavier. Which would be warmer? I would also have the versatility of two jackets. If i didn't have the UL inner, i would get the Skaha. Any thoughts?
My clothing for under the down is sorted.

Richard Lyon
(richardglyon) - MLife

Locale: Bridger Mountains
Down top for sleep system on 06/24/2008 16:58:41 MDT Print View

Mike, Any chance you can experiment before buying? For me it's easy - I'm a very cold sleeper and I need the Skaha Plus anytime it goes much below freezing, even with my overstuffed Back Country Blanket. If you sleep warm the MontBell UL Down Parka (I own one of these too) might suffice. Or you might get extra down in the Skaha; Tom is really good at customizing. Or try a Nunatak down balaclava with your UL Jacket and if needed add a layer underneath. The Skaha Plus is one of the best gear purchases I ever made but it might be overkill for you and as I'm sure you know it's a big investment. Good luck!

Pamela Wyant
(RiverRunner) - F - M
On using two jackets on 06/24/2008 19:09:18 MDT Print View

If you decide to go the route of using the Montbell Down Inner Parka and the UL Down Inner Jacket, one thing to keep in mind is that you will likely need to size the outer one up in order not to compress the down on the inner one.

I have the Inner Parka, and really love it, but if I expected temps significantly below freezing I would probably go with a heavier jacket. Even if you use the Inner Jacket with the Inner Parka, you are still going to have only moderate warmth in the hood area. Whereas the Shaka Plus should have a warmer hood.

Huzefa Siamwala
(huzefa) - M
Re: Down jacket in sleeping system on 06/24/2008 20:17:08 MDT Print View

Hi Mike. Are you willing to experiment?

Like a sleeping bag any part of down jacket under you will compress and offer no insulation value.

Checkout this thread:

for an idea for a half quilt which can also be worn as a vest. the idea is that sleeping pad, quilt and other stuff in the pack will offer insulation for the back. this is brilliant multi-use. If wearing around the camp you will have wear you backpack with insulating gear in it but thats a minor inconvenience - you can empty other stuff and unstuff your quilt in your pack.

I dont know of anything that can offer a better warmth/oz ratio.

Contact Aaron if you are interested. He may make one for you.

Brett .
(Brett1234) - F

Locale: CA
"Down jacket in sleeping system" on 06/24/2008 23:48:55 MDT Print View

Get the Montbell Light Alpine down jacket. It has about 2x the loft of the UL down.
Then you will have a 2-jacket system which gives you 3 combinations of warmth for year around use.
Getting the UL parka would only give you 2 combinations since the jacket and parka are essentialy the same Clo value.

I also use my L.A. jacket in my sleep system. My 2nd piece for the 3 combo set is the MB Thermawrap.

Aaron Sorensen
(awsorensen) - MLife

Locale: South of Forester Pass
Re: "Down jacket in sleeping system" on 06/25/2008 00:11:27 MDT Print View

I personally think that you should open up the quilt and put an extra 4 ounces of down into the quilt.

That will save you the most weight.

The company could probably do it for less than the cost of a new down jacket.

Diplomatic Mike

Locale: Under a bush in Scotland
Down jacket in sleeping system on 06/25/2008 02:55:49 MDT Print View

Thanks for the replies folks. Brett- The Alpine light jacket would be superb if they added a hood*. Aaron- I want to use the quilt year-round, so i don't want to add weight to it, though i appreciate that would be the lightest option. I'm planning for next winter and the reason i'm thinking about it now, is the delivery time on the Skaha, if i go that route.:)
I guess the reason i'm unsure is because i'm not used to a quilt in winter. I'm a fairly experienced winter camper though. I have a couple of Rab down jackets, but they're too heavy. I was also interested in a couple of PHD jacket/pullovers, but PHD wouldn't tell me the weight of down used in their clothing! The Skaha is looking like the choice up to now. Any other comments are welcome.
*I was getting confused with the Alpine Down jacket Brett. Good call:)

Edited by MikefaeDundee on 06/25/2008 03:18:01 MDT.

Diplomatic Mike

Locale: Under a bush in Scotland
Down jacket in sleeping system on 06/25/2008 03:06:28 MDT Print View

The Montbell Alpine jacket is a great price for a baffled jacket! Decicions, decicions!

Edited by MikefaeDundee on 06/25/2008 03:14:32 MDT.

Jonathan Duckett
(Thunderhead) - F

Locale: Great Smoky Mountains
Re: Down jacket in sleeping system on 06/25/2008 07:35:30 MDT Print View

The Alpine Light is an awesome jacket at a good price. I don't think you could go wrong with it. I've considered upgrading from my old one to the new parka with the hood.

Jaiden .
(jaiden) - F
Re: Re: Down jacket in sleeping system - quilt on 06/25/2008 19:23:11 MDT Print View

Huzefa, makes quilts with head holes which are wearable as a "serape"... bigger than a vest, but I find I typically don't need insulation during the day unless it's quite cold, at which point I add my thermawrap gear.

Diplomatic Mike

Locale: Under a bush in Scotland
Down jacket in sleeping system on 06/26/2008 02:32:43 MDT Print View

Thanks guys. I think i'll go for the Alpine Light Parka.
A question on sizing. My UL Down Inner jacket has a label that says its a Large Japan, and in smaller letters, a Medium US and Europe. I believe the sizing has been changed recently, so if i order a Large now, i should get a US Large?
The jacket isn't stocked here so i can't try one on.
Thanks again:)

Richard DeLong
(Legkohod) - MLife

Locale: Eastern Europe / Caucasus
How to sleep in a down jacket on 06/26/2008 03:55:55 MDT Print View

I have a Western Mountaineering Flight jacket that I have slept in, adding a huge amount of warmth to my sleeping system. What I do is put it on backwards, zip it up a few inches underneath my back so that it stays put, and push the arms inside out so that they are next to my body. this is far more effective than just wearing the jacket to bed.

Neil Johnstone
(nsjohnstone) - MLife
Down jacket in sleeping system on 06/26/2008 04:17:20 MDT Print View

Just after you've decided on the Alpine Light, I'd suggest that you reconsider the Skaha Plus!
I bought one this year (with some extra down added)and have been extremely impressed - one ounce more than my PHD Minimus, but with a hood and considerably warmer. The hood makes a very big difference.
Its only been cold enough once to use it with my Arc Alpinist, but the combination was excellent.

Diplomatic Mike

Locale: Under a bush in Scotland
Down jacket in sleeping system on 06/26/2008 04:33:19 MDT Print View

Thanks Neil. Just when i think i've decided, you get me thinking again:) The Alpine Light Parka does have a hood though. If it can keep me warm enough, do i need/want to spend an extra $200 on the Skaha for the extra warmth, and to save a couple of ounces? My heart says the Skaha, but my head can't decide!
I was considering PHD Neil, but they don't give out the weight of down in their clothes. I want to know what i'm buying.
Good tip with the sleeves Rick.

Diplomatic Mike

Locale: Under a bush in Scotland
Down jacket in sleeping system on 06/28/2008 04:24:23 MDT Print View

Thanks for the input guys. I've ordered the Skaha Plus as i'm pretty sure that will give me the warmth i want at the lightest weight:)

Frank Perkins

Locale: North East
Re: Down jacket in sleeping system on 06/29/2008 15:07:32 MDT Print View

I'm going to wait to see how the new cocoon line pans out. If it's not compareable to the Skah Plus, I'm going to order one too. I have a Nanatuk Arc Specialist bag that's great, but they are quite $$$.

Terry Morris
(TerryM) - F

Locale: Northern California
longer down jacket on 06/29/2008 18:14:35 MDT Print View

I'm looking for a very light weight, but warm down jacket that comes down further below my waist than most. I find that cold air gets in around my waist with most lite weight jackets made for women these days.

Any suggestions?

First Last
(snusmumriken) - F

Locale: SF Bay Area
Women's jackets on 06/29/2008 19:35:15 MDT Print View

This is so true. The fashion for women's jackets right now is very short. But I wish they wouldn't follow fashion for sports clothing - it just doesn't make sense.

The only solution I've found is to buy men's jackets. Size down one, meaning a Women's Medium is roughly equivalent to a Men's small. The fit will be a little boxy, but it's worth it because having a jacket that goes down to your butt is so much warmer.

Lynn Tramper
(retropump) - F

Locale: The Antipodes of La Coruna
Re: Women's jackets on 06/30/2008 00:28:47 MDT Print View

Amen Kristen

When it comes function, I'll go with the men's sizing every time. Short jackets make no sense except for the fashion effect!

mitchell stille
(sugarbear) - F

Locale: Upper Midwest
similar layering system on 07/11/2008 22:27:02 MDT Print View

I use a very close system to an above poster. BPL quilt, montbell thermawrap and a montbell alpine light down jacket with a fleece cap and a bpl balaclava. I've slept well down to 0* F and I actually took it lower (windchills -25*) with a hot water bottle and a vapor vest inside my bivy on a frigid nice this winter. The montbell alpine light down jacket is one of the absolute best values on the market.