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Cold weather sleeping bag recommendations needed, please

Squatch

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My wife will be doing a camping/kayaking trip with her sister in mid-October, and I would like to find her a quality cold weather sleeping bag for the trip. I can get online and read any number of reviews, but I thought I would begin by reaching out to you folks and ask if there is anything that you would recommend.
Thanks in advance for any assistance you might be able to offer.
Regards,
Squatch
 
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Squatch

Squatch

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Packed size might be a consideration if travelling by kayak. A down bag packs small, is warm, and is useless if wet. There are many types of fill that handle moisture better. It may be wise to find out what other kayak travelers use. River, lake, saltwater trip ?
I believe they're just going to be kayaking on a lake, and sleeping at a camp already set-up. Therefore, the size and weight are not critical (As far as getting it into a kayak, I mean. I know it's important for other reasons). She might even be sleeping in her car, for all I know. Not sure just yet.
 
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Squatch

Squatch

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Four questions:

1) What are the expected low temperatures?
2) What accommodations/shelter will be present?
3) Is she a cold or warm sleeper?
4) What is your budget?
1) Mid-twenties at night. Where she got that information from, however, I am unsure.
2) There was some discussion about sleeping in the back of her CR-V. We have a small tent, so that is an option, as well.
3) She is definitely a cold sleeper. I'm on top of the blankets in the summer, and she's under them!
4) I'd put a cap at $400. I know the cold weather bags can go up to almost double that, so I hope I'm not being unrealistic in my expectations. She's my wife. I want her to be comfortable, but I also want to be able to pay the mortgage for the month! ;)

*Just took a quick look at what these things are going for. That $400 cap is likely a pipe dream. I may have to spend more, and just withhold that information from her! :sneaky:
 
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Squatch

Squatch

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How cold?
Calibrate for 10 degrees more.. so if your expecting 30 degree weather.. get a bag that runs down to 20.


I run a nemo backpacking bag... i got down to the 20s.. but that was coooooold.
Thanks for the tip, @Sancho! She's already a cold sleeper as it is. She would be miserable if the bag wasn't cutting it in mid-twenties temperatures...
 

Alex01

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I'm really happy with my REI branded 0 degree bag. I have done a 21day snow trip with it and also a 30 day trip in Utah. It packs super light. Make sure you get a bag made with synthetic material since it still has some warming properties even if you get it wet, unlike down.

If you have an REI near you I would highly recommend going and asking them some questions. The staff there is generally really knowledgeable and will steer you in the right direction.
 
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Squatch

Squatch

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I'm really happy with my REI branded 0 degree bag. I have done a 21day snow trip with it and also a 30 day trip in Utah. It packs super light. Make sure you get a bag made with synthetic material since it still has some warming properties even if you get it wet, unlike down.

If you have an REI near you I would highly recommend going and asking them some questions. The staff there is generally really knowledgeable and will steer you in the right direction.
Thanks for the advice, my friend. Fairly certain there is an REI around here. I never thought about the difference between the synthetic material and down. Looks like I should really be asking these questions before spending any serious coin on one. Thanks again, Chief!
 

jgaz

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There are lots of good bags in your price range. But I’m going to throw out an excellent, made in the USA option.

I have one of their 0 degree bags that is almost too warm. I’ve used it in a tent at about 15 degrees and it was overkill. Their quality is excellent. Only used it for truck camping.

I have a 20 degree mummy bag used for backpacking that LL Bean used to sell that is also excellent.
 
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Sancho

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There are pros and cons to synthetic and down... dont write one off right away.

Western mountaineering is probably the top notch choice, but expensive.

Guve them a look see

Oops.. missed the 400 dollar limit.

if light weight is important.. check out nemo rave and disco bags. I backpack.. and the bags are lightweight, and designed for people whontoss and turn or side sleepers.

 
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Squatch

Squatch

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There are lots of good bags in your price range. But I’m going to throw out an excellent, made in the USA option.

I have one of their 0 degree bags that is almost too warm. I’ve used it in a tent at about 15 degrees and it was overkill. Their quality is excellent. Only used it for truck camping.

I have a 20 degree mummy bag used for backpacking that LL Bean used to sell that is also excellent.
Wow! I think I will look further into this company. Loving their warranty and their pricing, as well as being made in the US. Thank you, @jgaz!
 
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Squatch

Squatch

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There are pros and cons to synthetic and down... dont write one off right away.

Western mountaineering is probably the top notch choice, but expensive.

Guve them a look see
I have actually seen some of their stuff, and you're right, both top notch and pricey. Folks sure do seem to like 'em, from what I've read, but I just don't think I can justify spending that much on one. (Famous last words, no?) ;)
 

Sundowner

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I just looked at a Western Mountaineering bag up in Intervale just last week; damned fine piece of work, I must admit.

For a one-time trip by a cold sleeper in 20° weather, you'll be okay with a 10° bag from any of the major brands. Personally, I'd focus more on staying dry than staying warm in that situation: achieve the former and the latter will follow.
 
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TreverStevens

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As stated, REI is a great resource for these things. They do a great job staffing with people that actually know what they're talking about and spend time in the outdoors, not like other sporting good stores that staff the camping and outdoors section with Grant the guy that is going to the local junior college but doesn't know what he actually wants to do and hasn't been camping since his 5th grade class campout. REI doesn't push the highest brands even if they can tell you are clueless to what you want or need. And if you keep an eye out on their used gear site (https://www.rei.com/used) you can find some great deals on things that have been returned. I buy a good amount of my gear from their used site and at the REI Garage sales. They do a good job disclosing any wear or damage on the item. I've bought tents, sleeping bags, shoes, stoves, and more from the used site. I picked up a G-Shock watch for about $50 off retail recently and it was still in the factory plastic wrap and box. A lot of it is gifts that get returned. So if you find the sleeping setup you want in store check the used gear site for until maybe a couple weeks before your trip to see if the bag you want ever shows up for a discounted price. If it never shows up then just go back to the store and pick it up.
 
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Squatch

Squatch

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Damn, guys...awesome advice across the board! Thank you very much. I've never dealt with REI before, and was only recently made aware of their used stuff. I will admit to trying to buy something made in the US whenever I can, but it's also critical that my little bride is comfortable, regardless of where it's made. I truly appreciate all the responses, each and every one. Guess I've got a lot of homework to do!