Anyone who has spent any amount of time sleeping outdoors – whether they were deliberately camping or had to bunker down unexpectedly when they didn’t make enough progress hiking for the day – knows that a good backpacking sleeping bag can mean the difference between being warm and comfortable and being cold and miserable. In some instances, it may even mean the difference between life and death.
Which is why choosing the best backpacking sleeping bag currently available, a task that isn’t as easy as it sounds. After all, there are not only a wide variety of different models on the market but each backpacker has their own definition of what constitutes the best bag. Some backpackers would say a traditional sleep sack is the best type, while others would say that a mummy sleeping bag is the best type of bag to have, especially on colder nights. With those considerations kept in mind, below are the top ten sleeping sack available.
Best Backpacking Sleeping Bags – Reviews
10TNH Outdoors Adult Camping Bag
This backpack is designed for individuals who are not only tired of being cold and wet while sleeping outdoors but are also tired of hauling a heavy bag or dealing with stuck zippers. That’s because this bag not only does a good job at keeping the camper safely encapsulated within it warm and dry and it does so without having to add a whole lot of extra material to the design of the bag. It only weighs approximately 3.6-pounds and has zippers that are designed to never get snagged. Another great thing about this bag is that it offers 6-feet of comfort, yet compresses down to a manageable size for carrying.
9Kelty Cosmic 20-Degree Bag
Manufactured to provide an increased level of warmth over previous versions of this bag, the Kelty Cosmic has been redesigned and now features 600-fill hydrophobic DriDown. What’s the difference between using this type of fill over previous fill types? It gives this bag a thermal rating of 20-degrees, which means that it will keep the sleeper warm in colder temperatures. Backpackers who love to travel through three of the four seasons will especially love this bag because it not only provides winter warmth but can also be used during fall and spring months as well. It may be a little warm for summer but should fit in nicely with just about any other season.
8Qeemlon All-Season Waterproof Bag With Compression Sack
Rated to be used in three of the four seasons, this mummy-style bedroll is sure to be what most backpackers need for sleeping in a variety of different weather conditions and climates. It’s designed to be used by just about anyone under the height of 6-foot 6-inches and can be used by both adults and children. It has an adjustable draw cord and an adjustable hood that allows it to hold in body heat during cold weather but it also has a two-way separating zipper system that allows the feet or torso sections to be opened to allow air flow in during warmer conditions. All in a bag that is made of 210T polyester with a waterproof outer shell.
7Teton Sports LEEF Ultralight Mummy Bag
Designed to keep the sleeper warm and comfy through even cold weather conditions, this mummy-style bag has all of the features to keep one dry and warm. It’s made with Polar Lite microfiber insulation that really holds in body heat and a full-length zipper tube that keeps warm air in and cold air out. This bag also has a comfortable foot box that keeps feet warm without making them feel constrained. And when the bag has served its purpose, it can be compressed down into its compression bag so that it’s easy to transport on the trail.
6Kelty Tuck 22-Degree Bag With Stuff Sack
Designed so that campers 6-foot or under can fit inside it, this bag is good for both men and women and is a bag that will keep the sleeper warm. It only weighs 3-pounds and is made with Therma Pro synthetic insulation, an insulation which is designed to hold in the sleeper’s natural body heat. Manufactured with a comfortable hoot and a foot box that naturally fits, the sleeper will sleep in comfort while using this bag. other features of it include a zipper draft tube that’s manufactured using an anti-snag design and a stuff sack in which the bag can be stuff into when not in use.
5Hyke & Byke Goose Down Bag For Sleeping
Made with goose down, so it’s light and warm, this bag is designed to keep campers and hikers warmer longer. Goose down is extremely light, which in turn makes this bag lighter than a traditionally stuffed sleep sack, but manages to hold in body heat better than synthetic insulators. This bag weighs under three pounds and has a 400T 20 D rip-stop nylon fiber that’s durable and waterproof. Other features of this bag include two YKK zippers, vertical baffles, a drawstring, wide shoulder area and a large foot box area. This means that this bag has all the features needed for the sleeper to bunk down for the night comfortably.
4Hyke & Byke Shavano 32F Ultralight
Made of 400R rip-stop nylon and insulated with high-quality goose down, this bag is designed to keep the sleeper warmer in colder conditions than many other leading bags available on the market today. Although it’s capable of holding on to a person’s body heat for long periods of time, it weighs under three pounds so it’s easy to pack up and take out on the trail. This bag also has a large foot-box, comes with Velcro and drawstring enclosures, horizontal baffles and wide shoulders. It also comes with YKK zippers that are designed to be snag free and a compression stuff sack to hold it when it’s not in use.
3Farland Waterproof Camping Bag
Thanks to its 400 GSM Polyester filling material, this camping bag has a 20-degree Fahrenheit rating that makes it suitable for use in very cold temperatures. In fact, it can be used in temperatures from 20-degrees up to 62-degrees Fahrenheit and will keep the sleeper quite comfortable in those conditions. This bag also has a durable outer shell that’s made from 290T nylon that makes it waterproof but ensures that it remains breathable, which ensures that even in wet conditions the sleeper will remain dry as well as warm. It’s designed to accommodate campers up to 5’11” and is 86.6-inches long by 29.5-inches wide.
2Hyke & Byke Quandary 15-Degree Down Bag
Designed to keep the sleeper warm in conditions from 30 to 50-degree Fahrenheit, this bag is made with a high-quality duck down filling that holds in body heat and is covered in a waterproof 400T 20 D rip-stop nylon outer shell with two YKK zippers. This bag has all of the features one would need for a comfortable night sleep. It has roomy foot box and shoulder areas, horizontal baffles and comes with both drawstring and Velcro closures. Manufactured not only to be warm and comfortable, but also for durability, this bag is sure to provide many nights of sleeping comfort.
1Winner Outfitters Portable Sleep Bag With Compression Sack
Manufactured from 350T polyester and filled with hollow fiberfill, this bag is designed to keep the sleeper warm and comfortable. It’s soft, made of rip-stop material and is also waterproof, which allows this bag to be used in a variety of different weather conditions. And since it weighs under 3-pounds, it’s also easy to pack into its included compression sack and taken out on the trail to the next camping site. This bag also has an SBS double-slider zipper that can be easily adjusted according to temperature so that it can be used in three out of four seasons a year.
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Searching for the Best Backpacking Sleeping Bag
When choosing a sleeping bag for backpacking, there are a number of factors to think about and these have to be weighed against how the bag is going to be used. Some backpackers will need a bag only for winter, while some people will need one that’s suitable for summer use or for use 3-seasons out of the year.
A backpacker also has to think about what type of insulation is used in the bag, just how heavy it is to carry, and its shape. Some people will need the best envelope shaped bag, while others will want the best mummy sleeping bag. It all depends on the user and how he or she intends on using the bag. Here are some of the factors that should be considered:
The Lining & Shell
A bed-rolls construction can be basically broken down into three main components—the outer shell, the lining, and the insulation of the bag. It’s important to consider how each part of the bag is constructed. Most backpackers are going to want an outer shell that’s made out of either polyester or rip-stop nylon. That will make it durable and water-resistant, especially if the shell has been treated with a water repellent that’s usually called DWR. The inside lining of the bag should be made out of either nylon taffeta or polyester and should not only be comfortable but should also breathe as well.
The Bag’s Insulation
How the bag is insulated is a big consideration to make because it determines just how warm the sleeper is going to be. Insulation keeps the sleeper warm by ensuring that a significant portion of their body heat is trapped in the bag and doesn’t escape. In the world of insulation, or fill as it’s usually called, there are really two types: synthetic fill and down fill. Synthetic Fill is non-allergenic, insulates even in wet conditions and is quick drying. Down Fill is lightweight and is one of the best insulators available. Here’s a closer examination of each type:
Synthetic Fill – This type of insulation is usually made out of polyester and is an inexpensive solution to down. They are also a good choice in wet conditions because they can insulate even when wet. However, they don’t offer the same quality of insulation as down either. When compared against down, materials made with this material are also harder to compress and carry.
Down Fill – Down fill is easy to compress, last a long time and provides tons of insulation ability. It’s good for bags that are going to be used in cold, dry conditions. In most sleeping bags, duck fill is used, although goose fill ones are also available. Duck down is less expensive than goose down, although goose down is considered the pinnacle of bird downs.
Sleeping Bag Shape
When it comes to the shape of the bag, it’s important to remember that the mummy sleeping bag is considered by many to be the standard by which all backpacking bags are judged. That’s because they weigh less than “envelope” or “peanut” bags and still retain a lot of warmth. These types of bags with wider shoulders areas are comfier but they offer less warmth than bags with tighter shoulder areas. So it’s important to decide whether you want warmth or room to move when choosing these bags.
Another thing to consider is the temperature rating of the bag. Temperature ratings give the consumer a good idea of whether the bag is suitable for summer use, for winter use or for 3-season use. Bags intended for summer use usually have a +32 or higher rating. Winter bags, on the other hand, have a rating of +10 or lower. 3-season bags have a rating of +10 to +32-degrees. When choosing the temperature rating, it’s important to note that a person’s particular metabolism, what they are wearing and whether they’re using a liner or not will all affect how well the bag performs.
Other Features to Consider
There are a number of additional features which may also be important. These include the following:
Draft Tube-A draft tube runs along a bag’s zipper and is designed to insulate it by keeping warm air from getting out through the zipper.
Hood-A hood is a great tool for a bag to have. It can be cinched with a draw-cord and prevents heat from escaping via the sleeper’s head.
Trapezoid Foot Box-A trapezoidal foot box lets the sleeper sleep with their feet in a more natural position and also gives them some extra space.