Rating: 5 / 5
Since I bought this bag in 2004 (I think), this has probably been one of my most used pieces of gear. Being someone that does sound engineering on the side (as a hobby of sorts), I always feel that I am doing a good job if no one notices me. It’s when one makes mistakes that suddenly everyone realizes there is a guy running the sound. This explains how I feel about the Caribou. It has silently done a great job for 6 years, and I hardly ever even think about it.
I have the long version as I am 6’-5”, and it weighs 22.8 oz by itself and right at 24 oz with the supplied XXS stuff sack. When not in use I store it in the supplied cloth storage bag in my closet.
Stuffing the bag in the stuff sack is a little tough as it is a very tight fit. Once in though, the thing is about the size of a loaf of bread. I’ve recently gone to a different philosophy where I just stuff the bag in my pack (which is lined with a trash compactor bag) without using the stuff sack, and it takes up minimal room that way. I am always amazed when I pull this thing out after setting up camp and it lofts up just like it did the first day I got it.
As far as warmth, I feel as though it is good to it’s rating or possibly below. I tend to sleep cold, so I can’t confirm this other than to make that statement based on comparison to other bags I have used. If it is warm out it works well fully unzipped and draped over as a quilt. It has a very good DWR finish on it that literally causes water to bead up and roll off. I almost exclusively use single wall shelters, and routinely get condensation inside that tends to get on the bag. I have never noticed water soaking into the bag except at the points where there are seams, which isn’t a big deal as it dries out quickly in the sun (the interior fabric is black, and the exterior is a dark maroon like color).
One other thing of note is the cut of the bag. It is quite roomy, and that is one of the things that attracted me to it. The extra girth allows for more room to stretch out, and to layer clothing for use in colder weather. As a matter of fact, I have used it in the winter before with my synthetic clothing (Patagonia Micropuff & BMW Cocoon pants) comfortably below its rating. As with all WM products I have seen or used the quality is second to none.
One complaint I have read about with this bag that may have been remedied in recent years is the size of the hood. It has a fairly minimal hood, but I found that it works fine. I tend not to use it though as I move around a lot when I sleep, so I find that wearing a stocking cap is easier.
I really don’t have much else to say other than this bag is pretty much perfect. It’s a good compromise between warmth, weight and functionality for 3 season use.