Sleeping bags are one of the most used camping gear.
If you will be mountain climbing, a lightweight sleeping bag is easier and very much lighter to lug around than a regular dome tent.
The Best Backpacking Sleeping Bag could definitely give you and your back an easier time.
We have listed the BEST 6 backpacking sleeping bags you can get in 2018
But first, let’s take a quick look at what we recommend before we go into details:
Mike's Top Choice
(The one we like the best)
Lightweight Sleeping bag
Filled with down feathers
Both a bag and a hideaway costume
(Check current price down below)
Lightweight: 2 lbs 9 oz
Can be used in winter, spring or fall
Longer and wider than most mummy sleeping bags
Here are the FULL reviews:
6 Best Backpacking Sleeping Bags
First on our list is the Teton trailhead ultralight sleeping bag. . A sleeping bag which can be used in winter, spring or fall. This is a lightweight sleeping bag at just 2 lbs. 9 oz. A comfortable fit for the cold nights which will keep you feeling toasty.
The mummy design was able to deliver the right temperature for a relaxing sleep. A relatively new player in the outdoor gear arena, Teton sure has decked out their sleeping bag to compete with the big guns. “Compared to most mummy sleeping bags, the Teton Sports TrailHead 20° F is longer and wider. Designed for comfort and weight reduction, the bag has a soft, breathable liner along with an extended foot box that has enough space for your toes.” (Review)
It is a attractive to the lucrative yet practical buyer, perfect for someone like the “budget-arian” me and Mike’s gear reviews.
Next on our list is Mountaintop 32 F Ultralight Lightweight MummyDown Sleeping Bag. Another 3-season sleeping bag, it boasts a 500 fill duck down power and is a lightweight sleeping bag. This down sleeping bag has been receiving star reviews in Amazon as well as from other reviewers
Although closely similar to the TETON in terms of reviews, this is a down Sleeping Bag which is said to provide more comfort than the synthetically filled compact sleeping bags in the market
I think that the only thing pulling this down sleeping bag from TETON is its price. Other than that, it seems that this sleeping bag is scoring purchase points based on the raving reviews it is getting.
Our next pick is a product of Northface. A well known gear manufacturer, North face superlight 15 sleeping bag does not disappoint at all. A lightweight and compact sleeping bag, it sports the usual roomy comfort feeling than what you would expect in a mummy bag. The footbox resonates a rectangular sleeping bag feel.
At 1 lbs 12 oz., it gets the top for being a lightweight sleeping bag. Another mentionable for this product is that the zipper for this sleeping bag glows even in the dark, making it funky and functional as well.
Similar to our other choices, this mummy sleeping bag is also filled with down feathers, repels water for those relatively wet nights, and a lightweight sleeping bag. But what sets this apart from all our other choices for 3-season sleeping bags is that it is both a bag and a hideaway costume.
We all have to start somewhere. A lot of the reviews lists the Kelty Cosmic Down 20 as the starter 3-season sleeping bag. A very basic, compact sleeping bag with no frills.
Simply put, “But Kelty has a no-nonsense winner here with its updated Cosmic 20. The bag is pretty much your standard mummy bag when it comes to shape, hood, and draft collar, but a few nice features deserve applause. For one, it comes packed with 21 ounces of 600-fill DriDown, the same as the Mobile Mummy, which has just 0.2 ounces more of it” (Review).
This is a 2-season lightweight sleeping bag. It has a 30-degree temperature advise. Most reviewers of the Marmot states that keeping warm is very easy for as low as 20s but would not be advisable as the temperature rises. A goose down filled sleeping bag, fit for a perfect weather condition camping outdoors.
The pride of the Marmot is in it’s design. A compact sleeping bag, perfect for the ounce-conscious backpacker.
Being a member of Marmot’s Ultralight series of sleeping bags, this one really answers to the common question of weight. “When you’re bicycle-touring cross-country, paddling for a week in the Boundary Waters, or backpacking Isle Royale, space and weight are at a premium.l.”
Rounding up our list is the Aektiv Outdoor Down Sleeping Bag. Not as mentioned in other reviews as its contemporaries, the Aektiv down sleeping bag has a nice amount of wiggle room and foot box enough for a 6-ft tall hiker.
What is worth mentioning for this product is that, it is WATERPROOF, not just water resistant, WATERPROOF!
Since we have 3-season sleeping bags and also mentioned some cold weather sleeping bag options, let us add a relatively quirky but functional addition to our sleeping bag options – the innovative banana sleeping bag.
Best used indoors and in summer, but not in extremely warm conditions, the inflatable banana bed is both a camping gear and a quick answer to a need. They weighs next to nothing and is filled with ambient air. Since mostly made of nylon, the durability of the banana sleeping bag leaves some doubt. Since it costs less than a quarter of other sleeping bags, it has limited uses as a durable weather-resistant sleeping bag.
Relatively, the banana sleeping bag may just be the best backpacking sleeping bag of the millennial hash-tagging instagram feeding generations.
Being Safe, sane and in control, is not merely a tag line. As weird as the product may sound, the Sierra Designs Mobile Mummy 600 is a practical choice as best backpacking bag.
It gives you an option not found in other down sleeping bags at a price that is sane,
Sleeping bags may range from a $100 to almost $500, depending on the manufacturer and brand. They say that retail therapy is a great therapy for depression, but would bleed your wallet dry. The Sierra Designs Mobile Mummy 600 is priced in the mid-$200, relatively affordable when compared with other sleeping bags in its market range.
As a three-season lightweight sleeping bag, it can keep you safe from elements
Little explanation is needed for this. Mike’s gear reviews provides more than just gear reviews, tips on how to survive different situations and self defense strategies are also discussed, thus, keeping safe is an important factor. Having the option to use this sleeping bag in 3 outdoor activity seasons allows higher safety score.
With the movement-capable design, it allows for the person to be in control of the gear
Being in control means having the ability to direct what can happen. Being encased in a mummy shaped sleeping bag is similar to being tied down with little to no control unless you get out of your warm and cozy cocoon and expose yourself. The side slots and bottom footbox zipper openings for limb release allows you have control of your action but still feel the warm protection of your gear.
After all is said and done, our bodies needs to recharge to face the next day. We need sleep. In the outdoors, we do not have the warm cozy bed, five thousand pillows, a comforter, a duvet and a million layers of comfort, instead, we usually have, the best down sleeping bag for our sweetest dreams of tomorrow.
The bag tag : what to look for in a sleeping bag
We all have our standards for our office bag, hold all bags, backpacks, any type of bag, so why would a sleeping bag be any different. Here we have the punch list for the best backpacking sleeping bag for your next #wanderlust night. There are a lots of reviews on what to check for when looking for the best backpacking sleeping bag, but knowing what you really need is the key into deciding what you need.
Mike’s Gear Reviews gives great insights on what you need for what you want, consider the following when shopping for your next sleeping bag.
This is the first thing that most reviews mention to consider when choosing sleeping bags is the season and temperature of the place it will be used for.
Sure, the banana sleeping bag is the rave in beaches and sleepovers now but can you imagine bringing the same multicolored, lightweight sleeping bag to use on a rocky and windy terrain? You need to consider how comfortable a down sleeping bag would be when used outside. The weather is always a consideration when you are exposing yourself to the elements. You may wear the most weather-protective hiking pants in your trek but you will still need to sleep comfortably in all weather.
I honestly prefer the more practical way of looking at temperature and seasons.
Most sleeping bags already have the advisable temperature where it can be used and as a preparation, you should always check the average temperature of the place you will be at night. A cold weather sleeping bag would have the temperature it can withstand, then another lightweight sleeping bag would have the other end of the thermometer displayed on the tag.
In sleeping bag context, there are two common types fill, the down and synthetic fill, and a new emerging hybrid fill. Cheap sleeping bags are sometimes defined by their type of fill. Banana sleeping bags ultimately fail at this category.
The down fill
This is the most common fill for down sleeping bags for a number of reasons. Down fill has a proven track record for insulation and compressibility which makes packing and carrying a little easier. Down fill is found in most sleeping gear, from our pillows, blankets, to our comforters, and even our regular mattresses can be made of down fill.
The comfort of down fill used in our regular sleeping things is the same reason why there are a number of down sleeping bags in the market.
“There are a few major reasons for that, including the best warmth-to-weight ratio, far better packability (i.e. a smaller compressed size), and a more premium warmth. The last one is a bit subjective, but it’s a clear consensus from us that down’s lofty warmth feels more luxurious. Down does vary in quality, which is measured in fill power, but even a mid-grade down fill is the superior insulator”.
An increasing popular alternative to down fill is the synthetic fill. This does not require animals to produce. Like the innovation that the sleeping bag went through, synthetic fill is an innovation made to answer to the popularity of the down fill. It is best known for being able to keep warmer under wet conditions. Another well known factor for the fast popularity of the synthetic fill is that it costs much less, thus sleeping bags with this fill costs much less than the more popular down sleeping bag counterpart.
One surprising characteristic of synthetic fill is breathability advantage. This allows the more air to circulate within your sleeping bag making warm nights tolerable and cold weather sleeping bags comfortable.
There is a rise in hybrid fills, a merge between the down fill and and the synthetic fill which some of the best backpacking sleeping bag claims to have solved the question of which is which.
A connected factor for fill: To define Fill power, “Fill power is a measure of the loft or “fluffiness” of a down product that is loosely related to the insulating value of the down. The higher the fill power the more air an ounce of the down can trap, and thus the more insulating ability an ounce of the down will have”.
Without fill power, you might as well sleep on a bedrock.
Sleeping bags are there to make our sleeping arrangements comfortable to re- energize us for the next day which may involve the same energy draining activity as the day before, even more.
Shape / Dimension
Down sleeping bags comes in many shapes and sizes.
This allows a wide array of choices for the best backpacking sleeping bag to fit you. Cold weather sleeping bags are made to withstand cold nights and by keeping you warm and toasty.
Some down sleeping bags are also shaped to provide the maximum insulation and cover the person properly. Most men would typically be taller than a woman, thus they would need longer sleeping bags to accommodate their height. The most basic shapes of down sleeping bags are as follows:
A rectangular shaped bag resembles your bed, the comforter and the quilt all rolled in one. A versatile shape for sleeping bags, this is one of the best backpacking sleeping bag for those family trips because of the roominess of the rectangular sleeping bag.
Semi Rectangular (or barrel-shaped)
This is a cross between the rectangular shape and the mummy shaped sleeping bag.
This is the best option for those with wider shoulders but still affords the warmth of a cold weather sleeping bag with the warmer feet area like the mummy. This design for a down sleeping bag also provides insulation to the head with the hood option as needed. “They are popular with larger-frame backpackers or restless sleepers who don’t like the tight fit of a mummy bag.”
A shape for the warm sleeper.
A mummy shaped down sleeping bag would fit snuggly to the person, providing warm and tucked-in feeling. A lot of the down sleeping bag variants are shaped like a mummy are intended as cold weather sleeping bags. They tend to be bulky but keeps you warm and toasty.
“Designed to comfortably sleep 2 people, roomy double-wide bags can be combined with an air mattress (or foam sleeping pad) for a cozy night’s sleep. Most models zip apart to create 2 individual bags.”
Now this is a party. A sleeping bag that can fit two people comfortably would mean more room for one and increase warmth through body heat for two. Some relatively cheap sleeping bags are shaped as double wide since they are intended for a more comfortable sleeping setting like in a car’s bed.
Banana sleeping bag
A recent addition to the common shapes of a sleeping bag, the banana sleeping bag is a contender for the most lightweight sleeping bag there is. Designed more for lounging rather than sleeping, it is an inflatable sleeping bag shaped like 2 bananas with the person being tucked in the middle like a sandwich. Also a compact sleeping bag, since it needs to be inflated for use,
Weight and Compressibility
Any outdoor activity that requires carrying camping gear considers weight as a factor.
Aside from your camping tent and food, carrying a down sleeping bag can take up most of the packing space for your gear. Exactly the reason why lightweight sleeping bags should be checked for weight as well as compressibility as answer to the packing problem. For this concern, lightweight sleeping bags are available in the market which is also an enviable option for camping in warm climate camping.
Another concern is compressibility.
When engaging in extended walking or trekking, many adventurists require their own gear, making packing space at a premium. The answer of gear makers to this is the compact sleeping bag. Freeing packing space and lessening packing gear weight can make trekking much easier.
DWR (Durable Water Repellent) treatment
A lot of gears nowadays have options for waterproofing or water repellant, sleeping bags are no exception.
Down sleeping bags are usually filled with down goose feathers, although very comfortable, can weigh a ton when wet, not to mention, useless for insulation until dry again. Because of this concern, gear manufacturers came up with an available variant for DWR-treated down sleeping bag. With this variant, some down sleeping bags can retain warmth even when wet, much like the synthetically filled lightweight sleeping bag.
The following are additional considerations mainly for the less hardcore camper but equally practical, the but wait there’s more! part of shopping
Accessories and special features
The best backpacking sleeping bag is not a just a tube, manufacturers have added convenient features that makes sleeping bag more attractive not only for the campers and adventure enthusiasts, but also to the hyper dad and budget moms as well.
The improved lining, Baffles and side pockets, side and chest zippers as well as the hood, hooks and stuff sack are all additional features of a sleeping bag, be it pocket draining or a temporary cheap sleeping bag.
Having more for less is such a deal that is extremely hard to pass.
Always an added note to most reviews, we can consider this as a factor since space in general is always a premium. Sleeping bags are now offered with its dedicated stuff sack, thus, storing it until the next trip has become easier, but some
Gender and age use
Since adventure seekers are not limited to men, gender neutral or gender specific down sleeping bags fit for the intended person’s use is a consideration. Moreover, age appropriateness should also be considered. There are camping gear for kids and young adults, some compact sleeping bags are aimed for younger or shorter sleepers. Although it is best to get the sleeping bag for the long run, a comfortable age-appropriate bag is also a good choice.
Know who will use the sleeping bag.
Do as you would when getting a bed, look for what you need, test it out and get a feel of how you will be using the sleeping bag. A gear should benefit you, so you should not just settle with what is on trend. Another consideration is your budget, splurging on gear-branded and quality sleeping bags is only essential when it is exactly what you need. Getting cheap sleeping bags are also available in the market, without sacrificing the quality, they may be not be gear-branded but can be used as required,
The best consideration is to know yourself.
Sleeping bags – The basics
We are almost always tired; No doubt about it. With all the energy pumping #YOLO and #wanderlust moments that we have, we definitely need sleep. One of the most common activity that is both an exercise and an adventure is outdoor activities. Out in the woods, at the beach, mountain top, or simply just out of the house, we always make sure that we have somewhere to rest…
Being the sleepy wanderlust that we are, our camping gear has become our normal things:
- We use a down sleeping bag as pillow for long drives
- Our tent is an instant room when we stay with big family and friends
- The camping bag is used more our regular suitcases
- The junkie gets the sleeping bag when he’s on time out.
Who remembers building a fort inside their own bedrooms?
Flashlights and late nights?
We did not know it then but we were somehow preparing for the real thing of outdoor adventure. It is both an insatiable curiosity and the appeal of freedom that lures us into leaving our houses and enjoy the outdoors. We use sleeping bags not just for sleeping, we also use it when we go stargazing and would not want freeze and to keep the insects out. Modern version of sleeping bags are travel-ready, made as compact sleeping bags that lessens weight and space concerns.
The best backpacking sleeping bag gives the owner (or the borrower) all the comforts needed to feel well rested as you would in your own bed and bedroom.
Nobody wants to wake up cranky after an unwinding and stress-releasing night. Imagine trying to sleep through a cold windy night out, wishing all along that you are under the toasty warmth of your covers instead of trusty cold weather sleeping bags, you will shake so much you will compete with vibrating like the dishwasher on a holiday.
Where did sleeping bags come from?
I used to think a sleeping bag is made by recycled comforters that grandma sewed to keep us from falling out of the blanket and hitting each other when we just can’t be put down to sleep. I still think I am not far from the truth. A sleeping bag is aptly named; it resembles a blanket where you can sleep that can tuck, roll and fit into a bag. It is practically a baby swaddle for the big boys and girls.
Being able to sleep and be safe just about anywhere is both a need and a struggle.
According to accounts, sheepskin was used in place of the modern down sleeping bag, “These early bags were made of sheepskin, for the water resistant properties, and lined with wool. The bags had five buckles so that they could be rolled.”
Sheepskin is known to be comfortable sleeping material, they add the wool to make it more travel friendly. This account tells us that sleep is as important as food. Down time could mean the difference between being well and walking sick, and being far from conveniences, it is important to keep ourselves safe.
It is safe to say that available sleeping bags in the market are more comfortable now than the limited options before.