How to choose a sleeping bag

Sleeping bag (sleeping bag) is an integral and important part of Hiking equipment, it is the same as the backpack in contact with your body, therefore, his choice should be taken very seriously. A well chosen sleeping bag will ensure a comfortable rest and recuperation in the extreme conditions to which otnosyaschiesya Hiking, sports expeditions, and even simple trips from home overnight in the field.

Sleeping comfortably is a key factor for high quality outdoor recreation. Sleep in warmth and comfort provides restoration of forces, as well as a good mood and positive impressions of the event. Therefore, the ideal sleeping bag choice should be approached very seriously and responsibly.

Before you buy a sleeping bag, you need to understand for what purpose you need it. Only sleeping bags for all occasions does not exist! Depending on the properties they vary greatly in weight, size and cost. In the summer in a warm sleeping bag You will be hot and not comfortable. Also you should not rely on periotherapy winter sleeping bag - a sleepless night and cold You provided. Thus, for trips with overnight stays all year round, it is better to have a couple of sleeping bags - summer and mid-winter.

One of the key criteria for choosing a sleeping bag is its purpose. Their purpose differ extreme, travel and camping sleeping bags.

What to look for when choosing a sleeping bag?

When choosing a sleeping bag, observe these points:

  • the absence of "cold" end-to-end joints;
  • a device which does not allow the lock to "bite" the fabric of the sleeping bag;
  • the presence of the tightening straps on the hood;
  • loop to hang and dry the bag;
  • accessories from leading manufacturers (such as YKK);
  • the presence of the compression bag.

Design of a sleeping bag

The most common structural types of sleeping bags are bag-a cocoon pouch and a blanket. There is still a lesser-known option that is somewhere in the middle - sleeping bag-blanket with a hood.

The sleeping bag in the form of a blanket has a rectangular shape and a long, l-shaped snake. It can be completely unbutton and hide like a normal blanket. Sleeping bags of this type often tend to sostoyatsya in pairs. Sleeping bags-blankets are almost always heavier and large-sized cocoons. They are preferable for the conditions when there is no need far and long to carry it for their shoulders.

Sleeping bag-a cocoon or mummy, has a more anatomical cut. As a result, it is lighter, warmer and more comfortable. Most cocoons can also be costaguti in pairs, however this requires sleeping with the "right" and "left" snakes. Also in the sleeping bags of this type usually have insulating collar and internal pocket. One of the best demi cocoons is High Peak Redwood.

How much should weigh the sleeping bag?

To this question too difficult to answer unequivocally. Demi sleeping bags average price category basically weigh six to eight pounds. A little more expensive weigh from a kilogram to one and a half. Weight depends on various parameters - season sleeping bag, used materials and filler, its available sizes, etcD. Note that some irresponsible manufacturers reduce the weight of a sleeping bag by using less quality materials.

Temperature ranges sleeping bags

The temperature sleeping bags are divided into three categories:

  • summer;
  • demi;
  • winter.

All sleeping bags are marked, by which you can determine its temperature. Usually it looks like this:

  • the maximum temperature t° maximum. This is the temperature at which no hot to sleep, not sweating and not rasstegivat;
  • comfort temperature t° comfort. It is an optimum sleeping temperature. It is what the sleeping bag;
  • extreme temperature t° minimum. This is the temperature at which the sleeping bag can survive 6-8 hours without significant harm to the body. About a comfortable sleep here.

It should be noted that these temperature characteristics are quite conditional, as the comfortable temperature of the dream - concept of the individual. On whether You freeze in a sleeping bag, affected by humidity, fatigue, illness, hunger, dehydration and more.

What materials are used in sleeping bags?

The fabric of the outer layer of a sleeping bag needs to combine conflicting properties such as strength, durability, resistance to moisture and ultraviolet radiation, to be "breathable", but at the same time light and compact. The most common exterior materials are polyester and nylon. There are versions of sleeping bags with membrane outer layer. The membrane allows the bag to resist moisture and be breathable at the same time.
The inner layer should also be breathable, pleasant to the body and hypoallergenic. This is often also used nylon, polyester and combinations thereof. For sleeping bags with a down filler designed special fabric - Pertex, Ultrex, etcD. They combine high windproof, waterproof and breathable qualities.

Insulation for a sleeping bag

The composition of insulation, the sleeping bags are of two types - natural and synthetic duvets. Each has its advantages and disadvantages. At once we will specify: the heater is not warm! It only prevents the loss of heat holder sleeping bag.

Down sleeping bags

Sleeping bags natural feathers are light, compact, and at the same time very warm. Mainly used eider, duck and goose down. Down sleeping bags are much more durable than synthetic. But they have a major drawback: when wet, Pooh loses volume, while greatly decreasing its insulating properties, and, in addition, the sleeping bag much heavier. Dry down sleeping bag camping almost impossible. In addition, down sleeping bags are more expensive synthetic. However, for extreme low-temperature trips are often used.

Synthetic sleeping bags

The most common synthetic fillers are polyester, Hollowfiber, Thinsulate Lite Loft, Polarguard, Thermoloft, Micro-loft, Thermolite, QualloFIL Primaloft and. These materials are designed to take the best down-filled sleeping bags without their disadvantages. They differ in weight, density and degree of compressibility, poorly absorb moisture. Primaloft and Thinsulate are used in clothing for active recreation. The quality of the synthetic materials is highly dependent on the manufacturer. Their known disadvantages are increased weight and gradual damage to the filler when packing the sleeping bag in a compression bag.

How to choose a sleeping bag for growth?

As for the size of a sleeping bag, it is selected according to the generally accepted formula is Your height + 20-25 cm In the package usually comes with a compression bag that allows to significantly reduce the space occupied by the useful volume of sleeping bag in your backpack. To store a sleeping bag is recommended deployed.

The results

Thus, we examined the basic nuances of how to choose a sleeping bag. It is worth noting that choosing a sleeping bag, You pay for their comfort and convenience. It is believed that it is better to buy a sleeping bag from manufacturers such as Marmot, Mammut, The North Face, Deuter, Husky, Talberg. They carefully monitor their reputation, and consequently, the quality and use cutting-edge technologies in their products.

How to choose sleeping bag (sleeping bag)?

Choosing a sleeping bag, in the first place, it is necessary to consider the conditions in which it will be used. Universal sleeping bags don't exist! If you take the warmest, it will be not cheap and not easy, and in the summer it will be too hot. If you take the easiest, it will be cold. Therefore, the sleeping bag is adjusted depending on the anticipated conditions of operation.

One of the main criteria for choosing a sleeping bag is its purpose: extreme sleeping bag, sleeping bag for Hiking travel, sleeping bag for camping.

High-quality sleeping bag features:

  • the absence of "cold", E. quilted through and through stitches;
  • reinforced tape to prevent the fabric in the zipper;
  • drawstring cord lock in hood of the sleeping bag;
  • special loop for drying a sleeping bag;
  • quality and straight lines with no visible manufacturing defects on fabric;
  • good quality fittings.

For summer Hiking ideal less warm (+5°C to +25°C) and light weight sleeping bags, and for summer mountain trips, off-season and winter - bulkier and heavier, but warmer (+10°C to -35°C) models. Those who walk in Hiking all year round, it is best to have two sleeping bags - for summer and low season is winter.

Design and weight sleeping bags

Basic design types of sleeping bags:

  • a sleeping bag-blanket,
  • a sleeping bag-blanket with headrest,
  • a sleeping bag-cocoon.

the Sleeping bag-blanket - sleeping bag rectangular. This form is the most comfortable and familiar, K. resembles an ordinary blanket. Long zipper allows you to unzip and use it like a blanket. Sleeping bag this type can be headrest. The headrest can be collected around the head hooded. Two sleeping bags with the detachable zippers, can be connected into one large ("system"). A sleeping bag-blanket is usually designed for light hikes and for those who don't are puzzled by the volume of transported things. The design flaw of "blanket" - more weight in comparison with a sleeping bag cocoon.

Cocoon - is a sleeping bag on the figure (narrows at the bottom). Remember, as Shurik in "Caucasian captive" I was putting the sleeping bag and fell into the river? He floated in the cocoon. Tourist in the cocoon resembles in appearance the mummy - hence the second name of this type of sleeping bags. Some sleeping bags have an extension around the knees, which significantly increases their comfort. The cocoons have a rather complicated structure, which can not affect the price, and it is harder to sostenuti in the twin control airplane. In addition to saving space in your backpack cocoon provides a more tight fit of the body, so it is good to use in cooler weather conditions of the campaign. Usually the cocoon is equipped with a hood and bottom may be insulated collar around the shoulders and insulating the valve, along the entire length of the zipper. Model cocoon "selfish" is equipped with one (Central or lateral) side one-piece closure. Split the lightning allows to connect two sleeping bags of this type in one double (this will require left and right). The sleeping bag in the form of the cocoon is considered the most comfortable model.

Weight sleeping bag depends on the material of the sleeping bag. Simple inexpensive sleeping bags usually weigh 1.5 to 2 kg, ergonomically designed sleeping bags average price category - from 1 to 1.5 kg. Unscrupulous manufacturers sometimes deliberately lower the weight of a sleeping bag, use a weaker threads and accessories - save on quality in favor of reducing weight.

Temperature range

Sleeping bags are made with the expectation of specific thermal conditions (depending on season):

  • year, calculated at a sufficiently high night temperatures,
  • off-season, when comfortable temperatures fall below 0°C,
  • winter, ensuring sleep in subzero temperatures. In the warm you can sleep at temperatures down to -50°C.

All sleeping bags (except the cheapest) have a marking indicating the upper and lower limits of comfort temperature and extreme temperature at which a sleeping bag loses its thermal properties:

  • t° Maximum - the maximum temperature at which it is possible to sleep comfortably without increasing sweating and feeling of excessive heat (it is rather a relative value, because at high temperature you can open the sleeping bag).
  • t° Comfort - the minimum ambient temperature at which the sleeping bag provides 8 hours of comfortable and continuous sleep. That is, it is the minimum temperature at which a sleeping bag perfectly fulfills its function.
  • t° Extreme - extreme temperature - the minimum ambient temperature or the air in the tent in which the sleeping bag will provide 6-8 hours of uncomfortable sleep without much risk of hypothermia (hypothermia).

Typically, these values are specified in the calculation of the average man who is sleeping naked or in underwear on the Mat. These temperatures are determined by testing on people professionally using sleeping bags (military, mountaineering instructor and D.).

However, comfortable and extreme temperatures depend on many factors: humidity, water permeability material, the air in the surrounding space. And the shape of the body and its position during sleep, muscle tone during sleep, and individual temperature perception. Someone is freezing at +15°C, and someone feels comfortable in light clothing even at 0°C. Besides, men emit more heat than women, so women need warmer sleeping bags: minimum temperature for a woman at 5°C higher than for men.

It turns out that this criterion, albeit an important one, when buying a sleeping bag to evaluate properly will not work. The temperature values should be taken into account, but only as a guide.

Materials of a sleeping bag

Sleeping bags differ in the materials used: outer, inner and insulation.

Material outer layer

It is obvious that the material for sewing the outer part of the sleeping bag needs to be durable, durable, moderately breathable, and moisture-proof (especially if the filler is downy). Such requirements are met by the nylon and polyester, are used, and other materials. Nylon is often used as an external material. Various modifications are necessary for sewing a sleeping bag characteristics (permeability, strength, water resistance). Polyester is used less frequently, but has a higher abrasion resistance compared to nylon.

The production also used other materials. For example, down sleeping bags are often materials which can "hold" the Pooh: Ultrex, Pertex etc p. These fabrics are moisture resistant (important for fluff, as it perfectly absorbs it) and breathable. Sometimes the finest fabric is covered with a special membrane film. This allows the fine material to pass air and remove moisture at the same time preventing it from reaching outside.

Material the inner layer

The basic mandatory requirement to the inner material, is its high breathability of the material should be soft and pleasant to the touch. This is usually cotton, blended fabric, nylon or fleece. Cotton fabric more comfortable and hygienic, but heavy and absorbs moisture. Blended fabrics are lighter, more durable, but the moisture still absorb, for example, polycotton a blend of polyester and cotton.
Nylon is not so pleasant when in contact with the body, but dries very quickly and saves weight. Fleece creates an extra insulation layer, often pleasant to the touch, almost does not absorb moisture, but has a large amount of.


The principle of operation of any heater based on the isolation of the person from the cold. The insulator is the air enclosed in the insulation: than it is, the better the insulation properties.

There are two major classes of insulators: both natural and synthetic.

Natural insulation in sleeping bags at the present time is only used goose down. Best give Pooh a special white geese breeds - Italian, Rhenish, etc. At the quality of down is strongly influenced by the climate of growing birds. So, for example, fluff, assembled in a country with a cold climate has a better performance compared to the fluff collected in a warmer country. Of course, the huge role is played by the further processing of fluff, consisting of eighteen high-tech operations. After processing lint can be evaluated, where it is useful. The main parameter in this case is FP (fill power), a parameter reflecting the elastic properties of down. Quality Pooh FP is above 600 units. Best current fluff has FP equal to 800.

The main advantage of down is the best balance between insulation, weight and compressibility. Down sleeping bags are the warmest and almost the lightest, with a weight of 900 – 1200 g comfortable in them at temperatures below -30°C. However, Pooh is very afraid of water, wet down things you can't store compressed - they will rot, so you should not take this sleeping bag on a long hike with high moisture, for example, in the Carpathians. To dry a down sleeping bag in the campaign is a very difficult task, often impossible. So basically they are used in dry and cold environments - mountain climbing, Arctic expedition. The disadvantage is the high cost of down-filled sleeping bags.

Synthetic insulation is most popular due to its affordability and practicality. The most known among us: Polyester, hollofayber, Fiberteck, Thermofiber, Thinsulate, Quallofil, Polarguard, Hollofil, Thermolite, Warmloft and similar. In many relatively new materials widely used treatment fiber insulation with silicone. "Silicone" insulation is very practical, and perfectly restores the form after compression and have high heat-saving properties. The basis for almost all of them is polyester fiber, spirally twisted or straight grained, thermally bonded and treated with silicone.

Sintepon - high quality non-woven filler the traditional way of production. Made from polyester fibers. The bond between the fibers is carried out by thermal method. Sleeping bags batting most prevalent, K. they are the cheapest, designed for temperatures down to – 5...10°C, With a weight from 1,1 to 2.3 kg. Suitable for a wide climatic range. They are compact, lightweight, and, most importantly, dry quickly even in the cold. The latter property makes them indispensable in water hikes. The main disadvantage of batting is quite rapid "caking", resulting in the sleeping bag quickly loses its thermal characteristics. When choosing a sleeping bag made of this material should be aware that some manufacturers, in an effort to save money, use the cheapest raw materials: in this case fibers are not sufficiently elastic. And it is fraught with the fact that the material is easily broken, becomes flat and ceases to heat. Usually suffers from the batting of Russian or Belarusian origin, its life - approximately one season. At the moment the main advantage of even the highest quality of batting is only its relatively low price - this material is already obsolete.

Fiberteck is a non-woven material, which is a volumetric layer from a composition of thin hollow polyester fibers treated with silicone. To achieve the required strength and stability of the surface layer reinforced with polypropylene (spandbond). Fiberteck is the best heat-saving properties and the elastic properties than polyester.

hollofayber – thermobonded, nealley of polyester material with a high degree of recoverability. The uniqueness of hollofiber is a vertical arrangement of hollow fibers in the form of a helical spring that forms a strong springy structure. This material, in comparison with traditional synthetic padding, lighter, has a better insulating properties and less deformation. Products more expensive than similar polyester fiber in 1.5-3 times.

Thinsulate is made by 3M company. Is a non-woven insulation consisting of super thin fibers that look like feathers, composed of 75% Dacron and 25% polypropylene. The company manufactures a wide range of different versions of this material for different purposes. Thinsulate Lite Loft is the lightest and compressible material that is used for sewing sleeping-bags. Sleeping bag Thinsulate is expensive, but the ability to withstand plenty of washes and maintain their elastic properties and the initial level even after storage in a compressed form with constant thermal characteristics make the purchase of a sleeping bag made of this material is appropriate.

Polarguard 3D is produced by the Lessinger Group, Inc. Until recently, the top kind of insulation. Rugged, warm, durable. The shape of the opening in the triangular fibres, whereby they have a highly twisted structure, and thus quickly restores its shape under compression. The main drawback - a large amount.

Thermolite - development of DuPont. Almost close to Polarguard. Consists of three different fibres, each of which is responsible for strength, elasticity and heat preservation. A significant drawback - there are a large number of imitations of this material.

Dimensions and packing of a sleeping bag

Compact sleeping bag it is possible to estimate by eye: imagine Packed the sleeping bag in your backpack that you want to put a certain number of other things. Down sleeping bags are lighter and fold is the smallest size. Very compact sleeping bag with synthetic filling may not be enough warm, despite the assurances of the manufacturer.

When you select the size, apply this calculation: growth plus 20-25 cm

size sleeping bags are divided into:

  • standard - 73 x 190 cm - sleeping bags for people of average height;
  • children's - 71 x 145 cm and less. The total area is reduced, so that you can quickly warm up with minimum heat losses (corresponds to the size of baby stroller, allows to do without the swaddling of the infant);
  • teenage - 73 x 167 cm, which is narrower or shorter sleeping bags for Teens or shorter people (standard sleeping bags may be too large, and this extra bulk and weight, worse heat insulation);
  • increased - from 84 x 198 cm 96 x 205 cm longer than the standard - for tall people, or wider for a full or those who like to sleep freely.

Equipment cheap models - the usual nylon bag. To sleeping bags average price expensive and usually supplied compression bag.Compression bag is a cylindrical case with sewn loops on each side. After laying in his sleeping bag using the sling is dragged, acquiring the shape of a sphere and decreasing in volume in 1,5-2 times. Very saves space in your backpack, but is not suitable for long term storage of sleeping bags.

What to consider when choosing a sleeping bag

The main task of the sleeping bag to keep warm, and the main source of heat is the man. So, when choosing a sleeping bag you need to consider how much heat you produce, and this depends primarily on the characteristics of the organism. It is known that women, children and elderly people tend to get cold more adult men, people slender physique is inferior to that of "cold resistance" is more dense, and a professional seasoned travellers, the owners of good physical fitness to tolerate the cold much better than those who lead a sedentary lifestyle and rarely on the cold. Therefore, even in the same sleeping bag, ceteris paribus the subjective sensations of comfort and discomfort in different people may vary. If you are more heat-loving than others, we suggest that you select a sleeping bag which data correspond to the upper limit of your requirements.

In addition, the temperature of comfort is completely individual concept, it also depends on external conditions: humidity, thermal insulation capacity of the Mat, wind and soD.

whatever sleeping bag you choose, always remember that it needs to be dry, because moisture draws heat and reduces comfort. Packaging the backpack, put the sleeping bag in a polybag, then even caught in the rain, at the end of the day You will be able to sleep dry and warm.

To feel comfortable in a sleeping bag, consider its size: the length and width. In a narrow sleeping bag it is hard to turn, especially if you had to sleep in warm clothing. Very warm wide bad, it confused his feet. In a small sleeping bag impossible to put the shoulders and head. Therefore, choosing a sleeping bag, compare your own dimensions with the dimensions of the bag, decide what is important to you: the space or heat.

Try not to lie down in the sleeping bag cold and hungry. Jump, move, keep warm, eat a sandwich before you climb into a sleeping bag to sleep.

It should be remembered that from the body surface person per night up to 200 cm3 evaporates moisture, which partially or completely condenses within the sleeping bag. To dry sleeping bag is best in the sun and the wind, immediately after lifting or while relaxing during the day.

what clothes to sleep in a sleeping bag?

The ideal option is underwear. Most often, thermal underwear is made from polyester material with a honeycomb structure, the cells trap air for added insulation. In addition, the underwear has multiple layers, the inside layer which wicks away from the body moisture, leaving the skin dry, and the top works on evaporation. Thus, the underwear will neutralize the irritating effect of sweat on the skin, the body does not dampen and not overcool.

If no underwear, then you can sleep in knitted underwear, if cool, we can wear things made of natural cotton fabric. you should Not sleep in street clothes, e.g. jacket. the fact that a design of a sleeping bag designed to keep heat inside of a sleeping bag and if sleeping in a jacket, then, holds most of the heat jacket, so the sleeping bag at this time does not work.

Care sleeping bag

Storage. How do you keep your sleeping bag depends on its service life. After arriving home from a trip be sure to ventilate the sleeping bag outdoors for a few days, until it becomes dry. To store the sleeping bag have deployed, in a well ventilated area and preferably in suspended form, and in any case not compressed in a compression bag.

dry cleaning. The sleeping bag is not recommended to be dry-cleaned. It is difficult to predict how the fiber insulation, soaked with solvent vapours, it is unknown how long before the solvent evaporates, will enter the solvent in a chemical reaction with the fiber and what happens to the fiber coating.

wash. Wash the sleeping bag only if it's absolutely necessary. Filler, fluff, and synthetic, not resistant to washing. To prevent contamination, you can use thin and lightweight inner liner made of fleece, cotton or another material, in this case, you will hardly ever need to wash a sleeping bag. It is important to know that each wash degrades the quality of a sleeping bag. If you must wash the sleeping bag, it is better to do manually soaking it in water whose temperature does not exceed 35°C. Use a third of the normal dose of detergent (preferably liquid detergent, do not use fabric softener). During washing and then during the spin cycle - don't lift a sleeping bag at one point, for example the corner. Under the weight of the wet insulation will deform. After washing the sleeping bag should be wrung out, but in any case not to twist, and dry thoroughly.

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