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Matt DeWitt
(tritan) - F

Locale: Midwest
sleeping bags. on 02/10/2010 20:52:36 MST Print View

Looking for my first sleeping bag for backpacking.Don't want to spend more then 200 if I can help it. any suggestions? I am 5"8 looking for lightweight and MI 3 seasons only mainly summer backpacking and camping. I am thinking I can get away with a 30-40 degree bag.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: sleeping bags. on 02/10/2010 22:35:09 MST Print View

For under $200 you might look at the Marmot Atom. Rated at 40F and weighs around 20 oz. Wear insulated clothing if it gets colder.

Sam Farrington
(scfhome) - M

Locale: Chocorua NH, USA
sleeping bag on 02/10/2010 23:56:02 MST Print View


You don't mention your locale, or whether you are looking for down or synthetic fill.

If you are looking for down, read no further, except that you might take a look at the most recent issue of AMC's Appalachia Journal and the late Guy Waterman's chronicle of his winter hikes in New Hampshire's White Mountains, particularly with reference to his down sleeping bag.

If you are considering synthetic, take a look at the EMS Velocity 35 (degrees) for around $200, but it can often be found on sale. It has a Pertex Quantum shell, weighs under 2# (but not a full zipper), and is filled with Primaloft. But don't buy one of last year's. This year's version has much better loft than prior years'.

For less, there is the Montbell #4 Super Stretch Burrow Bag, around 2.3#, also rated by the Mfg. at 35 degrees,
for $135 from It also has a propietary insulation that works well and a longer zipper. Montbell had an Alpine Burrow Bag #3, that weighed less and had a lower temp. rating, but their web site is down, and I'm not sure if there are any still available.

Integral Designs also has some nice synthetic bags on their site.

If you are also really fussy like me, and want a center zip, you will have to endure the cost and hassles of ordering from Europe to get as good weight to clo ratios with synthetic fill as the above, or make your own with Momentum fabric from Thru-hiker and the insulation of your choice. Don't get too far researching into the posts about insulation - they will drive you mad, and at the end, you won't know much more than when you started.

Hope this is helpful.

Andy F
(AndyF) - M

Locale: Midwest/Midatlantic
Re: sleeping bags... consider a quilt :) on 02/11/2010 00:26:34 MST Print View


I use a synthetic (Climashield) quilt rated at 40 F. I may switch to down once it has lost enough of its loft, but there has been no noticeable loss after 2 years of very light use. Below 30 F, quilts are too drafty for me.

In the 30-45 range, be sure your pad has an R value of at least 5.0 if you're taking a 40 F-rated bag or quilt down to 30 F. I slept in it down to approximately 30 F with a fleece jacket, hat, silk-weight polypro balacava, and a too thin foam pad (1/4"). I was a little too cold to get much sleep. I'm confident that I would have been plenty warm enough if I had been sleeping on my Downmat 7 with an R value of 5.9.

Matt DeWitt
(tritan) - F

Locale: Midwest
thanks on 02/11/2010 20:38:57 MST Print View

I don't have a preference on down vs sync. I hear down gets wet is cold but its the lightest. I was leaning toward down for the weight reasons. I live in MI so warm weather in July 80's and humid nights. Working on planning a trip to South Manitou Island.

James Naphas
(naphas13) - MLife

Locale: SoCal
MH Phantom 32 at Campmor on 02/11/2010 21:42:05 MST Print View

Campmor has the Mountain Hardware Phantom 32 on sale for around $190, which is a super deal on a very nice down bag. Legit 32 degree bag, weighs 23 oz. according to the site. I think it's been reviewed here in the past.

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
MH Phantom 32 on 02/11/2010 21:53:07 MST Print View

I've had that bag for about three years, and it is my favorite, by far. I was lucky three years ago, MH was trying to get their foot in the door in that market, and they sold them through REI, so I got mine on a sale at the killer price of $125. Of course, you can't touch one for that price now. If I lost this one, I would immediately replace it with the same thing.

Raymond Estrella
(rayestrella) - MLife

Locale: Northern Minnesota
Phantom 32 on 02/11/2010 23:43:49 MST Print View

It is a great bag. Wait 'till you see how small it stuffs.

Being a side sleeper I found mine to really be good around 40 F, maybe mid 30's.

But I have spent many nights with it just spread over me as a quilt with a really long footbox.

Sam Farrington
(scfhome) - M

Locale: Chocorua NH, USA
Correction - EMS Velocity Bags on 04/07/2010 10:58:45 MDT Print View

In February, I posted about the EMS Velocity 35 bag, and stated that this year's version is improved, with more insulation.
Actually, EMS has put out a Velocity 30 bag, also with Primaloft insulation and a Pertex shell. The price is the same as the 35 degree bag, but the 30 has more insulation. The weight of the 30 is just under 2 lbs.
Mea culpa.

Alex Gilman
(Vertigo) - F

Locale: Washington
+1 MH Phantom 32 on 04/07/2010 13:40:39 MDT Print View

+1 MH Phantom 32 you can't go wrong with that bag.