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First Ascent Karakoram bags... what's the good word?
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Jacob D
(JacobD) - F

Locale: North Bay
First Ascent Karakoram bags... what's the good word? on 06/10/2012 14:17:49 MDT Print View

Have any of you BPL'ers given one of these bags a shot? I noticed them in a catalog not too long ago and have been a little curious. Compared to, say a WM Ultralite, they are about 7 oz heavier and, if the specs are correct, 6 ounces of that is down fill. WM claims 16oz of 850 fill, FA claims 22oz of 850 fill... both are rated as 20* bags.

I happen to own one of the Ultralite bags (as well as Alpinlite) and the ratings are pretty true so logic would dictate that the FA bag could rate at a lower temp. Also worth noting is that none of the WM bags I've owned, or currently own hit the weight spec dead on, usually an ounce or two heavier. So the weight difference of the two bags may be more like 5-6 ounces. Some of that additional weight on the WM bags could be overage of down, so also the fill difference might be an ounce or two less than I'm figuring, but still in favor of the FA bag.

The FA also sports a Pertex shell and enlarged foot box, which are nice touches. The price is pretty good too.

I'm not ready to give up my WM down, I'm just curious at this point. I haven't heard much, if anything, about these bags.


edited to add links:
FA:
http://www.eddiebauer.com/catalog/product.jsp?ensembleId=42709&&categoryId=28802&categoryName=FIRST-ASCENT-SLEEPING-BAGS&pCategoryId=28482&pCategoryName=GEAR&gpCategoryId=28475&gpCategoryName=FIRST-ASCENT&ggpCategoryId=1&ggpCategoryName=EB&catPath=~~categoryId=28802~~categoryName=FIRST-ASCENT-SLEEPING-BAGS~~pCategoryId=28482~~pCategoryName=GEAR~~gpCategoryId=28475~~gpCategoryName=FIRST-ASCENT~~ggpCategoryId=1~~ggpCategoryName=EB&viewAll=n&pg=1

WM:
http://www.westernmountaineering.com/index.cfm?section=products&page=Sleeping%20Bags&cat=ExtremeLite%20Series&ContentId=17

Edited by JacobD on 06/10/2012 14:22:57 MDT.

Don Selesky
(backslacker) - M
Re: First Ascent Karakoram bags... what's the good word? on 06/10/2012 19:32:11 MDT Print View

I can't comment on their sleeping bags, but their clothing line has been excellent so far.

Jacob D
(JacobD) - F

Locale: North Bay
Re: Re: First Ascent Karakoram bags... what's the good word? on 06/11/2012 20:37:44 MDT Print View

Hey Don. I've had a FA down sweater for a couple of years and it's been great. I was kind of hoping someone here might have tried one of these and seen the thread, but maybe not yet.

If they go on crazy clearance at some point, I will probably grab one just to check it out.

Don Selesky
(backslacker) - M
Re: Re: Re: First Ascent Karakoram bags... what's the good word? on 06/12/2012 10:11:37 MDT Print View

I'm trying *not* to buy any more sleeping bags, as I'm already past my quota. :-)

Ed Hayes
(ejhayes) - F

Locale: Northwest
What are the deminsions? on 06/12/2012 11:41:47 MDT Print View

"Have any of you BPL'ers given one of these bags a shot? I noticed them in a catalog not too long ago and have been a little curious. Compared to, say a WM Ultralite, they are about 7 oz heavier and, if the specs are correct, 6 ounces of that is down fill. WM claims 16oz of 850 fill, FA claims 22oz of 850 fill... both are rated as 20* bags."

6 ounces of extra down would make sense if these FA bags were wider. The Ultralite is very narrow and I bet the EB FA bags are more 'accommodating' in their fit.

Edited by ejhayes on 06/12/2012 11:43:21 MDT.

Dan Johnson
(Seattle)

Locale: PNW
Bags on 06/12/2012 20:54:05 MDT Print View

Hey Jacob-

I use to work at EB for almost 4 years and recently left to go back to the engineering world so maybe I might be able to assist in some way. I first saw the blueprints for the bags over a couple years ago and from the early specs to production nothing has changed. I do know that EB won't be changing the design of it for two years. Unlike the regular FA items that get an update every year from feedback and then go on massive clearance to make way for the new models. I think I remeber that the bags will only available in some select stores (i.e. Bellevue, Park Meadows, Michigan Avenue) but they could have changed their selling strategy since I left. EB has also really started to limit being able to buy FA items with coupons and/or inconjuction with sales. They're trying to set it apart from their regular EB items. Your (and anyone else) best option is to try and qualify to be a Pro Member so you get a 40% discount.