- Better Living
A Sleeping Bag Can Make Or Break An Adventure. Choose Yours Wisely
You must consider these five factors before purchasing one
Whether you are camping in the hills or in the wild or you are going to a friend’s place for an overnight stay, a sleeping bag can keep you warm and cosy and help you get a good night’s sleep. After a long trek, there’s nothing like curling up in your sleeping bag. Here are five things you should look for in a sleeping bag:
1. Weight: When you are backpacking, every gram counts. You can go for the warmest and the coziest sleeping bag, but if it is too heavy, you may regret buying it. So you have to strike a balance between weight and comfort level. Remember, your sleeping bag is one of the many things you will carry in your backpack. You want it to be light and comfortable.
2. Temperature: Which time of the year you are going backpacking and trekking is important when you choose a sleeping bag. The aim is to go for a bag that will keep you cosy and maintain optimum temperature. All good sleeping bags come with a temperature rating, which tells you the minimum temperature they can function at. Men and women feel cosy at different temperatures; keep that aspect in mind when choosing a sleeping bag. If you are camping in winters, choose a bag that can handle low temperatures.
3. Insulation: To keep the bags warm, they are filled with synthetic fibre or under feathers from ducks or geese. Bags with synthetic insulation are the common variety. They are affordable, waterproof, non-allergenic and dry fast. On the other hand, down-insulated bags are easy to compress, lightweight and are better at heat retention. They cost more than synthetic bags. You can also go for a bag that combines down and synthetic fibre.
4. Bag size: While the regular size works for most men, if you are taller than average, check the height specifications before you purchase a sleeping bag. Some bags are specially designed for women, and these are shorter and narrower. If you are travelling with children, it is better to carry separate sleeping bags for them.
5. Shape of the bag: The shape of a bag plays a key role in determining how you feel inside it. For instance, a sleek bag will make you feel snug and will be lighter too. Broadly speaking, there are three basic shapes—mummy, semi-rectangular and rectangular. While the mummy shape, as the name suggests, is slim and contoured, the semi-rectangular ones have more room. Rectangular bags may not be very cosy, but they give you more legroom. In addition to these factors, cost and durability are things you must consider when choosing a sleeping bag.