Forum Index » General Lightweight Backpacking Discussion » Layering while sleeping in a down bag


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Buck Nelson
(Colter) - MLife

Locale: Alaska
Proper layering in a bag works great on 12/12/2012 07:54:57 MST Print View

I am totally with Greg on this one. I usually layer in a bag when it's cold. Typically, when it's really cold (during 3-season backpacking) that includes long underwear, warm and dry and clean sleeping socks, the clothes I've hiked in, a down jacket and a balaclava. Sometimes my breathable rain jacket, too. Inside a down bag. And I've often worn synthetics inside a down bag. If it's a problem, I've failed to notice it. I HAVE noticed that I find layering is warmer.

Like layering clothing alone, it might take a little practice to figure out what works best. A good fit between all layers is important. I prefer to wear my insulation rather than lay it on top of my bag, because I move when I sleep. I don't wear soaked clothing in a down bag. I avoid getting sweated up just before or during bedtime.

Edited by Colter on 12/12/2012 15:34:01 MST.

Kevin Burton
(burtonator) - M

Locale: norcal
loft on 12/19/2012 19:07:18 MST Print View

They key here is insulation - and indirectly loft.

What I do is if the clothing isn't compressible, I wear it. My smart wool long underwear is a good example.

If I have down pants or a down jacket. I usually lay it on top of my sleeping bag which holds in additional heat.

I use a hammock so I have an under quilt/top quilt combo.

The other thing I need is some sort of wind shell for my under quilt ... the tarp doesn't TOTALLY work out for me.

Susan Papuga
(veganaloha) - M

Locale: USA
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: nekkid on 12/23/2012 19:22:12 MST Print View

So what is the answer to Eric's question #1?
Inquiring nekked spooners want to know?

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: west coast best coast
Re: Proper layering in a bag works great on 12/23/2012 19:39:25 MST Print View

I always wear clothing in my sleeping bag. This is an ultralight backpacking forum. If you want to be as light as possible, you should wear every single piece of dry clothing you have to bed. If it gets too warm for that, then you are carrying more weight in your sleeping bag than you need. Obviously that's hard to get perfect and temperatures can vary unexpectedly.

eric chan
(bearbreeder) - F - M
Re: Re: Proper layering in a bag works great on 12/23/2012 19:55:54 MST Print View

ahhh ..... but what if it gets colder than expected ... just suffer ?

;)

there people yakking about carrying UL camp chairs around here, no "true" UL BPLer needs a chair ... i doubt an extra few oz to stay a bit warmer is gonna kill you ... not having that extra bit can be quite detrimental to your happiness though =P

susan ... hint ... if you want to maximize warmth, be the spoonee and not the spooner ... dont ask me how i know that =P

there are several threads if you look around where people put down over synth and ended up with wet/damp bags ... it depends on the conditions, but if you do find yourself with a damp outer bag thats one of the possible culprits ...

Edited by bearbreeder on 12/23/2012 20:00:28 MST.

Jeffs Eleven
(WoodenWizard) - F

Locale: Greater Mt Tabor
Re: Re: Re: Proper layering in a bag works great on 12/23/2012 20:06:59 MST Print View

dont ask me how i know that =P

Bearhugging? ;)


You guys are talking two different things. Cold vs wet and cold.

the wetter it is the more important synth on the outside is. If its dry and cold it doesnt matter as much- unless you are sweating then it turns back to wet and cold. (and drop a layer and it wont matter anymore)

eric is from PNW- always wet so he defaults to thinking that way. (me too)


That being said i sleep in synth clothing in my down bag.

(Do as I say, not as I do) :P

eric chan
(bearbreeder) - F - M
Re: Re: Re: Re: Proper layering in a bag works great on 12/23/2012 20:12:58 MST Print View

mmmm ... bears are sooo warm ;)

i think its better to say that i default to absolutely and utterly keeping your down sleeping bag dry .... i use more a synth bag these days so its not a concern as much ... but IMO down must be kept dry no matter what, especially any bags ... everything else can be a sacrifice to the BPL gods ...

Eric Blumensaadt
(Danepacker) - MLife

Locale: Mojave Desert
Inside and Outside layering on 12/30/2012 13:07:35 MST Print View

INSIDE LAYERING:
> polyester long john tops & bottoms (thin or expedition wt., depending on temps)
> insulated jacket & pants (down or synthetic fill, like Climashield)
> heavy "sleep socks"
> balaclava (THE most important part of inside layering)
> thin glove liners (you learn this really helps)
> Hobbit "Second Dinner" before bed to fuel the furnace (& "layer" on more fat ;o)

OUTSIDE LAYERING:
> "bag topper" down mummy shaped that covers the top & sides and attatches with Velcro or summer quilt over yer bag
> Rain parka zipped up and put over the foot of the bag (keeps bag exterior dry too)
> thick layer of dry leaves under your tent floor or groundcloth. (works very well)
> bivy sack
> tent or fairly closed down tarp

NOTE: For very cold winter camping you may need a face mask too. Noses can get uncomfortably cold.

Edited by Danepacker on 12/30/2012 13:10:33 MST.