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The Mighty Sleeping Bag

Discussion in 'Equipment' started by Northern Dancer, Jul 3, 2017.

  1. Northern Dancer

    Northern Dancer Survivalist

    They are every where and come in different sizes,
    designs, shapes, material, purposes, and styles.

    Pryce-Jones, a Montgomeryshire Welsh entrepreneur,
    developed the bag and exported around the world in the late 19th century.

    So...with the history dealt with let's look at the modern day sleeping bag.

    Next to the careful selection of the tent your next essential piece of equipment is the sleeping bag. It is part of your shelter and an important one at that. But...looking around and listening to the conversations I don't think a lot of people take it all that seriously. Cost seems to be the underlying factor when purchasing a bag. True, a good bag costs a bit more but you shouldn't have to mortgage the house. :)

    A couple of things to keep in mind when you look for a bag. ONE - remember in the final analysis it will be your body heat that keeps you warm. It will be the bag that traps the heat in. TWO - the size. A lot of people will miss this and purchase "an on sale bag" only to discover when they get it home that it was designed for a child. Not good for a guy who is six - five. THREE - most people forget that you need a pad or ground cover to ward off the penetrating ground cold. Sometimes it is more important what's on the bottom than the top.

    Here are a few other things -

    What are the conditions you are planning to use this bag? Four, three, two or only one season? Is it for tent, cabin or trailer?
    What's it made of? Can it be easily cleaned or does it require special treatment?

    What shape is best for you? Mummy sounds good - but they don't call it a mummy without a reason.

    What does the tag say about the temperature rating. If it is not on the label by pass the product. Remember the temperature guide is the best condition and does not take into account variables.

    Here is a mistake a lot of people make. They roll the sleeping bag up and put it away for the next trip. If possible hang your sleeping bag up and out. I personally recommend that you stuff the sleeping bag into the container to maintain the durability and integrity of the material if you can't hang it.

    Use an inexpensive insert that will provided extra warmth AND help keep your sleeping bag clean longer.

    These are a few suggestions. I'm open to questions and discussion.

    You get a good sleep now.

    killeroy154 likes this.
  2. killeroy154

    killeroy154 Survivalist

    Very well put, and great advice. I have 3 sleeping bags. My wife bought me a 40 and a 0 degree bag, and the 3rd bag I bought was a mummy bag. The ones that my wife got me are rectangular with plenty enough room to move around, but on the bulky side. I purchased a military mummy bag last year, got it for 35 bucks on ebay, it's rated for 20 degrees and I didn't want to invest a lot in one because I didn't know if I'd like them. It's very warm, but I like getting in a bag not putting one on. I can't move around in it. I have to unzip it to think or make a decision. There are some excellent bags on the market, and they are improving yearly.
  3. Northern Dancer

    Northern Dancer Survivalist

    Very true @killeroy154. I drool when I'm in that part of the store. Rows of them - every size shape and oh ya, big buck items. Sure beats the ol' blanket roll of years gone by. Though, they still sell them but not with the material of that day.
  4. Alexandoy

    Alexandoy Pathfinder

    When I was younger, sleeping bags are unheard of. We use pup tents that are made of sturdy canvas that has no flooring. Our usual flooring is the empty sack of rice made of jute (like cloth, not nylon). And our bed is a soft blanket. When the weather is cold, it gets really cold although we have the jacket for that purpose. But now, it is not a good idea to go on campout without a sleeping bag. It is comfortable and safe too against ants and other crawling insect. And it’s cozy when 2 people are in one tent having their own sleeping bags.
  5. rz3300

    rz3300 Explorer

    This is definitely one of the most crucial and critical things to make sure that you pack and pick a good one. I cannot tell you how many I have been through, and that might give you an indication of the frustration I get when the one I think is good just cannot cut it.
  6. Northern Dancer

    Northern Dancer Survivalist



    Stuff Sack -----> To keep the warmth of an air trapping fibre sleeping bag it should be stored at home outside of its compression stuff sack. A stuff sack is for transporting purposes only; whenever your bag doesn’t have to be in it, let it breathe and unfurl. When on a trip, after arriving at a campsite, take the sleeping bag out of the stuff bag and let its fibres loft inside the tent, ready for bed later that night. Like a pillow I will take a moment to fluff it up before retiring.
    Storage Bag -----> A storage bag is a loose, breathable sack that makes storing a sleeping bag between trips easy. It won’t compress or deform the insulating fibres. You can purchase large net type laundry bags for this at any Dollar Store or similar store. If possible hang your sleeping bag in full and on occasion turn the top and put at the bottom. Take a moment to fluff it up. To revive your camping enthusiasm hang it outside on occasion.

    Air it Out -----> While on a trip take time on a beautiful sunny day to hang the sleeping bag on a cloths line. This helps to remove *moisture that has collected from your body the night before. Do the same when you get home after your trip. I recommend a whole day.
    Keep It Clean -----> Before storing the bag, make sure it’s clean and dry. And yes if it is necessary get it professionally cleaned. MAKE SURE THAT YOUR LOCAL CLEANERS ARE ABLE TO FOLLOW THE MANUFACTURERS INSTRUCTIONS. When you are out avoid getting into your sleeping bag sweaty and dirty. Use an insert that is easily washed. There are cleaning products that you can purchase at your local outdoor store - make sure you follow the manufacture's recommendations.
    Wearing Clothing to Bed or Loaning Your Sleeping Bag to Another -----> It is a debate I know - but I don't wear day time clothing in my sleeping bag. For one thing - you don't know who will be sleeping with you that night. What I mean to say is did you bring spiders in with you? Or some other creepy crawlers? It would never occur to me to wear another guy's underwear so why would I use another guy's sleeping bag? It's your preference, but there are some things I don't loan.

    *I have a thread posted about tent moisture.


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