There are hundreds of potential sleeping bags out there to choose from, and many different variables to take in to consideration when choosing a sleeping bag. So it’s often a good idea to compare sleeping bags, as that’s often a good way to clearly illustrate the various strengths and weaknesses of sleeping bags. At the same time, it helps if you go in to that kind of comparison with at least a vague idea of what you want from a sleeping bag.
Compare Sleeping BagsWhat to look at when you want to compare sleeping bags.
- Insulation Material – One of the more obvious variables to consider when comparing sleeping bags is the material used for insulation. Briefly, synthetic insulation is heavier, but also cheaper and performs better when wet. Down, which is the other major choice, is more expensive, but also more compactable and lighter, relative to warmth.
- Shape – Another basic difference between many sleeping bags is the shape. A rectangular sleeping bag offers a little more room to spread out at night, but a mummy shaped bag is going to be smaller and lighter, and a much better choice for anyone looking to carry a sleeping bag in a backpack.
Best Sleeping BagsA few of the best sleeping bags across a range of options.
- Western Mountaineering Highlite - The Highlite is the perfect example of a lightweight and simple summer sleeping bag. With a minimum temperature of 35 degrees you might be able to use it in warmer spring and summer conditions, but summer will be the main season. And with features like 850 fill down and a zipper that only goes half the length of the sleeping bag, a very low weight like 1 pound, or 453 grams is not that surprising, though it is impressive. So if you want something for backpacking in the warmer months of the year, this is an excellent choice.
- Mountain Hardwear Ultralamina (Women's) - The Ultralamina has a minimum temperature of 32 degrees, making it a solid choice for three season camping. It's also a good blend of weight saving features, like a mummy shape, as well as cost saving features like synthetic insulation. It also helps that it won the Gear of the Year award back in 2007 from Outside Magazine. So a solid choice if you want something that will perform well in a wide variety of settings, but don't want to spend the big money on a down sleeping bag. It weighs in at 1 pound 16 ounces, or 898 grams.
- Sea to Summit Trek Tk1 - The Tk1 is an interesting blend of features. It has a fairly rectangular shape, with a slight taper. And while it's a down sleeping bag, it uses lower quality 650 fill duck down, which helps to keep the price down. It has a 32 degree temperature rating, making it another solid 3 season sleeping bag, and the weight, at 1 pound 13 ounces, or 800 grams is certainly nothing to look down on. So if you want something a little more roomy, then the Tk1 from Sea to Summit is an ideal choice.