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Dan Johnson
(Seattle)

Locale: PNW
Using sleeping bag as camp jacket to save weight? on 03/03/2011 12:57:39 MST Print View

So I was reading over Gossamer Gear's website and Glen says he uses his sleeping bag under his oversized Dri Duck jacket to make a down jacket so to speak of. It does seem like a easy way to shave weight but I was wondering if anyone has ever tried this with reasonable success? I tried using my bag like that and although I was able to stay really warm, when I tried to put on my jacket over it I couldn't get any insulation onto my arms.

Any thoughts?

Mary D
(hikinggranny) - MLife

Locale: Gateway to Columbia River Gorge
Using sleeping bag as camp jacket to save weight?" on 03/03/2011 13:07:56 MST Print View

Another version of the same idea: I've read that people who hike really long hours just crawl into their sleeping bags as soon as they get to camp, thus eliminating the insulating jacket.

For those of us who, during the day, like to stop and admire the view (aka rest stop), the thought of completely unpacking to get the sleeping bag out of the bottom of the pack at every stop doesn't sound enjoyable. I personally get cold enough that I need both a puffy jacket and a warm sleeping bag for really cold nights.

I got lots of excellent ideas from perusing Glen's gear list, but that wasn't one of them. On the other hand, I'm in the process of adapting his first-aid list to my own needs in hopes of achieving the same weight.

YMMV, of course!

Edited by hikinggranny on 03/03/2011 13:13:32 MST.

Theron Rohr
(theronr) - F

Locale: Los Angeles, California
Re: Using sleeping bag as camp jacket to save weight? on 03/03/2011 13:18:39 MST Print View

I do think sleeping bags are a glaring case of a single use gear item! I've wrapped up in my unzipped sleeping bag while hanging around camp. It was awkward but really warm. I think this would be an area where quilt might work well. I played around a little with using a wool blanket last year and one neat thing was that it can easily be used to wrap up in while making dinner. It's not trapped in one role for sleeping like a bag usually is.

eric chan
(bearbreeder) - F - M
wet on 03/03/2011 13:54:25 MST Print View

dont get it wet if its down !

if yr bag has a double zip, you can waddle in it like a penguin ...

todd harper
(funnymoney) - MLife

Locale: Sunshine State
Re: Using sleeping bag as camp jacket to save weight? on 03/03/2011 13:56:51 MST Print View

D,

I used my JRB No sniveller with much success under Driducks.

That said, the extra jacket sure is great. Not having one is a gamble if weather is unpredictable - which is often the case. Depending on where you hike, the gamble may be small and incovenient vs. big and disastrous.

Todd

Marco A. Sánchez
(marcoasn) - M

Locale: The fabulous Pyrenees
Re: Using sleeping bag as camp jacket to save weight?" on 03/03/2011 14:26:04 MST Print View

"Another version of the same idea: I've read that people who hike really long hours just crawl into their sleeping bags as soon as they get to camp, thus eliminating the insulating jacket."

+1

This way your remaining heat gets trapped inside the sleeping bag.

However, as noted, if you like rest stops or do many camp chores, an insulating jacket is a great investment. Also for winter camping, when it's "mandatory".

Cheers.

a b
(Ice-axe)
The Skurka Method on 03/03/2011 14:42:05 MST Print View

Of course you can use the "Skurka" method: Carry a lighter weight bag or quilt AND an insulating jacket to be used in conjunction for colder temps.
The downside I found was with my otherwise excellant WM Ultralight sleeping bag, the inner dimensions are narrow enough that if I add clothes it compresses the bags down from the inside out and does not add as much warmth.
I have to admit that fellow at the BPL Coe event sure looked snug in his JRB No Sniveller quilt/jacket. There was a fellow at ADZPCTKO in 2010 walking around in one of those too.
The more I see that JRB hybrid the more I like it.

Marco A. Sánchez
(marcoasn) - M

Locale: The fabulous Pyrenees
Re: The Skurka Method on 03/03/2011 14:49:15 MST Print View

"The downside I found was with my otherwise excellant WM Ultralight sleeping bag, the inner dimensions are narrow enough that if I add clothes it compresses the bags down from the inside out and does not add as much warmth."

Here is where a quilt excels!

Cheers.

Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Using sleeping bag as camp jacket to save weight? on 03/03/2011 15:15:46 MST Print View

Since Day 1 when camping, I've seen people sitting around camp with a sleeping bag wrapped around them. If you can keep it out of the mud, why sit around and be cold? There are the quilt designs that have a head hole for a serape style arrangement. You could use the footbox on a quilt like a hood and wrap the rest around you--- might be a little stinky in there :)

As to jackets and bags, I think any sleep system should incorporate wearing as much clothing as possible to use the lightest possible sleeping bag; otherwise, you are just carrying more insulation and not utilizing it fully.

I'm on the fence as to working the sleeping bag in as bivouac insulation. If it is cold and windy weather, it is nice to be able to yank a warm layer out for rest stops or open traverses where you aren't working hard going uphill, but there is cold wind ripping down the mountain.

Like this avalanche chute with the trail cutting across (froze my %^&* off):
Oh chute!

ROBERT TANGEN
(RobertM2S) - M

Locale: Lake Tahoe
Saving bag weight on 03/03/2011 16:00:27 MST Print View

Re: “As to jackets and bags, I think any sleep system should … use the lightest possible sleeping bag; otherwise, you are just carrying more insulation and not utilizing it fully.”
Question: Assuming that most of the weight of a bag is in the containing envelope, and that the additional down used to make the difference between a warm-weather bag and a cold-weather bag is negligible, does that argument really have much validity?

Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Saving bag weight on 03/03/2011 16:19:53 MST Print View

I'm sure you can do the math for that and see if it works for you. I don't use down much.

My point was that I can take a 32F bag (for example) and by using my clothing get to 20F with it. I would still have the jacket and other clothing available to use when not sleeping. There is a difference between a 32F and 20F bag, and I want the jacket with me anyway. The versatility is important to me as well as the total weight.

What I don't want to do is to haul a 20F bag AND a jacket still use it as a 20F sleeping system--- using the jacket for a pillow or leaving it in my pack-- bad management, IMHO.

T kawa
(kitsune) - F
Re: Saving bag weight on 03/03/2011 17:03:13 MST Print View

I see your point, but what happens when tempatures drop to 5 or 15 degrees in a freak storm? Wouldn't you want that extra jacket and warmth?

James Klein
(jnklein21) - M

Locale: Southeast
drop to 5 to 15 degree on 03/03/2011 18:40:42 MST Print View

He'd probably spend the night shivering and not sleeping well....

If he is comfortable with his setup at 20F -- 5F certainly wouldn't kill him (assuming he had no other issues going on).

James

Joseph Ainsworth
(jainsworth123) - F

Locale: Greater LA area
Re: Re: Saving bag weight on 03/03/2011 18:42:27 MST Print View

The general idea is to have your bags temp rating get you to the coldest expected temp, and have your clothing supplement to the coldest possible temp. That way no matter what you're safe, and not carrying anything extra

Mary D
(hikinggranny) - MLife

Locale: Gateway to Columbia River Gorge
Using sleeping bag as camp jacket to save weight? on 03/03/2011 21:08:08 MST Print View

"The downside I found was with my otherwise excellant WM Ultralight sleeping bag, the inner dimensions are narrow enough that if I add clothes it compresses the bags down from the inside out and does not add as much warmth."

This post demonstrates that it's a good idea to get a sleeping bag that is wide enough to fit over both you and your insulating clothing without compressing anything! When measuring your girth, measure over your shoulders while wearing all your insulating clothing. Fortunately, WM makes wider bags in each temperature range.

It's also probably not a good idea to buy a sleeping bag and then gain weight, as I personally can attest!
:-(

Mark Verber
(verber) - MLife

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: Using sleeping bag as camp jacket to save weight? on 03/03/2011 21:55:02 MST Print View

+1 "Skurka" method: Carry a lighter weight bag or quilt AND an insulating jacket to be used in conjunction for colder temps.

I have done the "use quilt as a jacket/wrap" or "don't stop and then get under quilt at the end of the day so no walk around insulation is needed" as experiments.

I typically bring an insulated vest and my quilt. That was I minimize the risk of getting my quilt wet, and I have an extra insulating piece which can be used to extend my sleeping comfort if it is extra cold, but otherwise makes a very comfy pillow. Also, I have two different insulation pieces which are typically separated, so if one gets well, I have the other as backup. The second might not be comfort in the coldest conditions, but should be enough to keep me alive.

--Mark