Forums The Gear Room New to winter camping – sleeping bag question
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  • #580115
    bcall8
    125 Posts

    I would like to do some winter camping this year with my splitboard. I have a 4 season tent and a sleeping pad suitable for winter temps but I need a sleeping bag. I was originally thinking of a 0 degree bag but I’m wondering if It would be better to get a bag with an EN rating of 5-15 degrees F. My trips would be mostly in southern Utah (brianhead and tushar range). I will probably get a trip or two in the wasatch. It looks like the average low temps in those areas are from 10-23. Would a 5-15 bag be sufficient with a liner for extra cold nights?

    Thanks

    #677366
    BobGnarly
    220 Posts

    This is how I do it.
    -15f 800 fill bag.
    800 fill hooded jacket.
    800 fill pants.
    Primaloft booties.

    With this combo you can mix and match depending on the temp, sleep in everything on cold nights or just thermals and the bag when its warmer.
    The whole lot packs into whatever gaps I have left in my pack.

    #677367
    nickstayner
    700 Posts

    That previous comment sounds like expedition status and definitely overkill for 90% of winter trips in the continental US IMO.

    You’ve got the right idea w/ the 0° bag. It will be way more versatile (you can use it well into the spring) for the area and temps you’re talking about.

    #677368
    THESYSTEMSPLIT
    88 Posts

    What up Brett :thatrocks:
    Had no idea you were a splitty….
    Good to know I now have a victim…errrr… I mean partner to drag along with me. :clap:

    As far as your ?’s^^^ go ….call me I’ll help you figure most of it out.
    From sleeping in Rock Creek(east side Sierra) one night at -22* below… to getting altitude sickness in the tushars at 12’000′ :rock:
    I’ll also be traveling to slc this winter a few times, maybe we can make a trip work.
    As far as the Tushars go…. they’re a pretty sketchy mtn range (snowpack, worse then the wasatch!) so heads up there.
    I plan on getting back to the eastside this spring for some fun…we’ll have to talk about some stuff.
    Bryan M.

    #677369
    96avs01
    874 Posts

    Which rated bag to purchase can strongly depend on the manufacturer. Especially Western Mountaineering and Feathered Friends bags.

    Agreed that a -15F bag + down/synthetic jacket & pants sounds like expedition type gear, unless you would be planning an open bivy.

    165 Venture Divide/Spark Frankenburners/La Sportiva Spantiks
    163W Jones Solution/Phantom Alphas/Dynafit TLT5s
    162 Furberg

    Chris

    #677370
    bcall8
    125 Posts

    Thanks for the replies. I think I’ve now figured out the appropriate temperature rating for my needs. The three bags I’m looking at are the marmot never summer, marmot gamma and Sierra designs zissou 6. I know that there are plenty of other brands and bags that are top notch but these seem to be in my price range. Also, I have a discount that I would like to use at an REI so I am limited in that regard. Any thoughts or comments on the these three bags?

    #677371
    Taylor
    786 Posts

    @bcall8 wrote:

    Thanks for the replies. I think I’ve now figured out the appropriate temperature rating for my needs. The three bags I’m looking at are the marmot never summer, marmot gamma and Sierra designs zissou 6. I know that there are plenty of other brands and bags that are top notch but these seem to be in my price range. Also, I have a discount that I would like to use at an REI so I am limited in that regard. Any thoughts or comments on the these three bags?

    I have been using a 0F Marmot Never Summer for about three years now. I primarily use it for bike-packing. I have had it in very cold conditions (nights dipping to -10F). I sleep in thermals and R1 hoody.

    I have found it to be:

    – durable and functional, no zipper problems, etc.
    – capable of holding loft despite repeated maximum compression
    – reasonably resistant to soaking by frost or dew
    – comfortable and roomy enough for broad shoulders
    – warm, with thermals and R1 hoody, to about 0F. After that, supplementary insulation is needed (for me).
    – reasonably compressible and compact, but of course not as compressible as 800 fill down
    – an excellent value given its price

    @sun_rocket

    #677372
    bcall8
    125 Posts

    @taylor wrote:

    @bcall8 wrote:

    Thanks for the replies. I think I’ve now figured out the appropriate temperature rating for my needs. The three bags I’m looking at are the marmot never summer, marmot gamma and Sierra designs zissou 6. I know that there are plenty of other brands and bags that are top notch but these seem to be in my price range. Also, I have a discount that I would like to use at an REI so I am limited in that regard. Any thoughts or comments on the these three bags?

    I have been using a 0F Marmot Never Summer for about three years now. I primarily use it for bike-packing. I have had it in very cold conditions (nights dipping to -10F). I sleep in thermals and R1 hoody.

    I have found it to be:

    – durable and functional, no zipper problems, etc.
    – capable of holding loft despite repeated maximum compression
    – reasonably resistant to soaking by frost or dew
    – comfortable and roomy enough for broad shoulders
    – warm, with thermals and R1 hoody, to about 0F. After that, supplementary insulation is needed (for me).
    – reasonably compressible and compact, but of course not as compressible as 800 fill down
    – an excellent value given its price

    Thanks… that’s great info. Do you find that bag to be a little heavy and bulky for bikepacking?

    #677373
    iriecoyote
    291 Posts

    Late to the party but I use a 10 degree Western Mountaineering Versalite and a Sea to Summit liner. I’ve slept ok to about 0 degrees but I was a bit cold.

    #677374
    nickstayner
    700 Posts

    @taylor wrote:

    I have been using a 0F Marmot Never Summer for about three years now.

    Me too. Best bag I’ve ever owned.

    I have also taken it a bit below 0 in a tent, Megamid, & back of a truck. After three years of fairly extensive (every weekend on spring & fall rock climbing trips) use it shows little signs of losing much of its loft, no leaks of any concern, etc…. fantastic bag and you can usually find pretty good deals on them online. Got mine from Sierra Trading Post for a heavy discount.

    Good luck!

    #677375
    Taylor
    786 Posts

    @bcall8 wrote:

    Thanks… that’s great info. Do you find that bag to be a little heavy and bulky for bikepacking?

    No, not for me, but I dirt tour with a front rack and strap it on top compressed. I’m not as space constrained as with just bags, and am less concerned about weight than are many.

    @sun_rocket

    #677376
    Scooby2
    608 Posts

    :twocents:
    a 0 degree bag is fine for the wasatch in winter, outside of the once or twice a year cold snaps. If you make a snow cave it’d be fine then as well. I’d go for a -10 if you are anticipating trips to the tetons or March/early April at lower elevations in Alaska.

    I read this book back in the 90s, had so much fun and stayed warmer and cozier than I imagined.
    http://www.amazon.com/Snow-Caves-Survival-Ernest-Wilkinson/dp/1555660959

    #677377
    Jefe009
    675 Posts

    With any 0degree bag you get, get a nice compression stuff sack too. I have a bag with 875-fill down, and I still need the compression straps to get it down to a manageable size. My :twocents:

    www.splitlife.net

    #677378
    powpowpow
    16 Posts

    I love hearing about other peoples set ups.

    my winter sleeping shelter set up is:
    -20c/-4f down/synthetic hybrid bag(wish it was full down)
    reactor liner
    thin fleece top and bottom sleeping layer
    primaloft booties
    xtherme sleeping pad
    black diamond tripod bivy ( wish it was a tent)

    I sleep warmer than normal I think, but this set up is very warm and cozy. ive done a few -30c/-22f nights in Canadian rookies split camping.

    #677379
    blacklabel28
    22 Posts

    I am shopping for the same thing and I think I’ve finally settled on the sierra designs zissou 6. for the price you can’t beat it. read nothing but good things about em.

    #677380
    NickDrake
    46 Posts

    @96avs01 wrote:

    Which rated bag to purchase can strongly depend on the manufacturer. Especially Western Mountaineering and Feathered Friends bags.

    Agree 100%, I find the ratings from FF and WM to be conservative while many of the “name brands” are terribly overly optimistic. There is a big difference between “well you won’t die at 0 degrees” and sleeping comfortably. Look at fillpower of down and then at the fill weight, multiplyin the fill weight in ounces by the fill power will give you an idea of the total volume of insulation. When comparing different model bags look at the circumference between the models though also, a small change in circumference or length will make a large change in insulation volume.

    I use a feathered friends vireo here in the PNW for climbing and riding. The legs are a tight cut and rated at 25 degrees, the top is cut wide to allow a parka to loft fully. When I’m hauling around a pound or more I certainly don’t want to just use it as a pillow and bring a bigger sleeping bag, so I really like the concept for weight and bulk. With a thin merino base layer my legs have been quite warm in that bag down at 20 degrees.
    Feathered Friends also does custom work, so you could have them add more down fill for use in colder temps.

    If you want to go light when it’s really cold and don’t mind forming a cuddle puddle with your partner I hear their spoonbill double bag is pretty amazing also.

    http://www.chair2boardsports.com/blog/puffy

    #677381
    Jason4
    443 Posts

    I highly recommend going with a double bag if your touring relationship permits. 😀

    Fortunately my favorite touring partner is my GF so the cuddle puddle is encouraged. We have a BA King Sol double bag that has been amazingly versatile and the most comfortable sleeping bag I have slept in from <15* winter temps on an exposed ridge to balmy summer nights. We cinch it tight on the cold nights and open the zippers up wide for the warmer nights. At just over 4lbs it is a good replacement for my 20*/2lb bag and my GF 15*/2.5lb bag.

    You just have to keep a few things in mind and be careful to not draw cold air in around the neck. If I had the money I’d replace it with a FF Spoonbill in a heartbeat. If I needed to replace my single bag I’d be looking at the FF Vireo too.

    BTW, I’m climbing/touring in the PNW only for the most part.

    #677382
    Powder_Rider
    498 Posts

    PSA:

    Just pull the trigger and got two Brooks-Range 0°F Alpini Down Sleeping Bag – 850 Fill Power, Mummy for about $286.00 each from Sierra Trading Post. That is 48% discount off the retail price of $550 dollars.

    2 pounds and 11 ounces for winter down bag is incredibly light!

    I have acquired other Brooks-Range Products (tent, down coats and elephants foot sleeping bag); so I expecting the same high quality.

    See http://www.sierratradingpost.com/brooks-range-0-f-alpini-down-sleeping-bag-850-fill-power-mummy~p~8085w/
    Specs are Fill weight: 20.5 oz.
    Sleeping bag shape: Mummy
    Sleeping bag style: Down
    Insulation: Goose down
    Insulation fill power: 850
    Temp rating: 0 degrees and below
    Shell material: Nylon
    Lining material: Nylon
    Girth (shoulder/hip/foot): 56/52/40″
    Fits to: 6′
    Length: 80″
    Stuff size: 20×8″
    Zipper: Left
    Storage sack: Yes
    Weight: 2 lb. 11 oz.

    #677383
    acopafeel
    134 Posts

    Damnit Powder_Rider! The last thing I needed was another sleeping bag… thats what i get for logging in last night after a fine beverage or two. Couldn’t pass up that deal! Thanks for the PSA

    #677384
    maniacdave
    564 Posts

    Good buy, that’s how I scored my Sierra Designs Nitro!

    That was Pontus

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