When camping, a sleeping bag is one of the most important pieces of equipment that you will bring with you. The best camping sleeping bags both keep you warm and don’t add a lot of weight to your backpack, because if you have to carry that sleeping bag around with you to and from camp, you better hope that you got a lightweight camping sleeping bag, rather than a heavy one. Your sleeping bag is actually one item of the big three, which are the sleeping bag, tent and backpack, which are the three heaviest things most campers and backpackers take, and so one of the areas with the most potential weight savings.
Camping Sleeping BagsWhat to look for when you are looking at camping sleeping bags.
- Shape – One of the big contributing factors to the weight of a sleeping bag is its shape. A mummy shaped sleeping bag, which is tapered, uses a lot less fabric and insulation than a rectangular sleeping bag, and as a result, weighs less.
- Insulating Material – Another important choice when it comes to a camping sleeping bag is the insulating material you choose. Down is lighter than synthetic, when compared based on temperature rating, but then down performs far poorer when wet, so it’s a bit of a trade off in that regard.
Best Camping Sleeping BagsA few of the better camping sleeping bags out right now.
- Western Mountaineering HighLite - First, a rather excellent down sleeping bag designed for summer conditions, with a minimum temperature rating of 35 degrees. What really stands out about the HighLite is its weight, which is a mere 1 pound, or 453 grams. It gets there with a unique square baffle design and by using 850+ fill down. For camping in warm summer conditions, something like the HighLite is ideal.
- Mont Bell U.L. Super Spiral Down #1 - Another excellent down sleeping bag, this one more of a 3/4 season sleeping bag, with a temperature rating of 15 degrees. Mont Bell is a Japanese manufacturer well known for their down garments, but they do a lot of excellent down products, including sleeping bags like this one. This particular one uses 800+ fill down and has a water resistant nylon shell, so that the down doesn't get wet. It weighs a grand total of 2.25 pounds, or 1.02 kilograms, which is another excellent weight for the temperature rating.
- Marmot Lithium +0 - If you're looking for more of a 4 season camping sleeping bag that would be right at home in the snow, then the Lithium, which is good down to the 0 temperature mark, is an excellent choice. It uses 850+ fill down, which is a very high quality, and uses features like a down filled draft collar and a drawcord on the face opening to help keep the heat in. It also uses a water resistant finish on the outer shell, so that the down should stay dry, even when everything else gets a little wet. The bag weighs 2.75 pounds, or 1.24 pounds.