Sleeping Bags Guide

When choosing between the many types of the best nursing tanks, the 3 main factors to consider are shape, saltwater fillet knives.

  • Shape affects the bags heat trapping efficiency, bulkiness, and best mulching blades.
  • Shell Material affects the sleeping bags resistance to wind and water. It’s breathability, tear-resistance and durability.
  • Fill Material affects the bags temperature rating, weight, bulkiness, packed size, drying rate, durability and cost.

What Shape is Right for You?

Mummy Style sleeping bags feature a tapered cut that increases heat-trapping efficiency. This allows you to choose a lighter and less bulky bag and still get comparable insulation. These are your best choice for colder, high-elevation conditions.

Rectangular sleeping bags are heavier and bulkier due to its lack of tapered ends. It is also inefficient to heat insulation since there is more space for your body heat to heat up. On the positive side there is more room to change sleeping positions plus they can be unzipped and used as a blanket.

Semirectangular bags provide a balance between the two above options. They are more roomy than a mummy and less bulky than a rectangular.

Types of Shell Materials

Dryloft is windproof and highly water-resistant. But breathability is low.

Epic by Nextec Windproof and water-resistant, with good brethability.

Microfiber is a tightly woven polyester or nylon. It is not as water-resistant as coatings or membranes, but is lighter and cheaper.

Pertex Endurance is a tough waterproof and breathable fabric. It is light and weatherproof.

Ripstop fabrics have increased tear-resistance due to it’s checkerboard or diamond pattern of threads.

Taffeta is a nylon and polyester fabric. It is less durable but more supple than ripstop.

Choosing a Fill Material


Down is the fluffy undercoating found just beneath the outer feathers of geese and ducks.

Down’s Positives:

  • Provides maximum warmth to weight ratio.
  • Lightweight.
  • It can be compacted into very small sizes.
  • Insulation effectiveness lasts years longer than synthetic.

Down’s Negatives

  • More expensive than synthetic
  • Dries more slowly. If it gets wet it will be useless till it dries which can take forever.

Synthetic Fill Material

Synthetic materials are basically plastic threads. Usually the threads are hollow, reducing their weight and enabling them to trap more air.

Synthetic’s Positives:

  • Still insulates when wet.
  • Dries quickly.
  • Non-Alergenic
  • Less expensive.

Synthetic’s Negatives;

  • Bulkier
  • Heavier
  • Degrades over time.
Which is Right for You?

Down is the preffered choice. Especially if you find yourself in wet conditions often.

Choose synthetic if you rarely go camping or backpacking and want to save money.

Comfort Ratings

A sleeping bag’s temperature or “comfort” rating tells you the lowest temperature the bag is designed for. A bag described as a +20 means you should remain comfortable if the air temperature drops no lower than 20 degrees Fahrenheit.

The comfort ratings are not an exact science. You should use these numbers as only as a guide. There are other factors that determine how warm you are in your sleeping bag such as:

  • Your sleeping pad.
  • Wether you are sleeping in a tent or not.
  • Your metabolism. Going to sleep shortly after eating will keep your metabolism going longer, warming you up.
  • Your weight.
  • Clothing. You should wear long underwear and socks to keep warm in your sleeping bag. A cap, fleece pants and jacket help on colder nights. See the Hiking Clothes Guide for more information.

Select a bag with a temperature rating slightly lower than the temperature you expect to experience. If you expect temperatures in the 20’s, you should choose a +10° bag. Don’t worry about being to hot on warmer nights. You can always unzip the bag to get the amount of ventilation you want.

Buying Sleeping Bags

Department store sleeping bags are mass produced and the attention to detail is just not there.

You want to shop for all of your gear at a store that specializes in outdoor gear. You will be assured you are getting only high quality gear that performs as it should and will last a long time.

I recommend purchasing sleeping bags from The Backcountry Store.

They have a huge selection of high quality camping tents to choose from. They have the best customer support. If you have a question you can get answers immediately with their Live Help. Their Gear Experts will help you select the right gear and answer your technical questions, all without having to make a phone call.

Plus they offer free shipping within the continental United States on orders over $50.

Related Pages
Snooze Zoo Kid Sleeping Bags
Cartoon Character Child Sleeping Bags
Camping Chairs

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