[pct-l] Sleeping bag help

mkwart at gci.net mkwart at gci.net
Tue May 29 14:13:40 CDT 2012


I am a cold sleeper and I use a Mountain Hardware Phantom 15 in a 
Woman's Regular size (I am 5 foot 4). It weighs 2 pounds. It has lasted 
for a couple years now and I hike about 3--4 months a year. I just 
recently took it on the Arizona Trail. When in the desert and it's warm, 
I just use it as a quilt and throw it on top of me. When I need to have 
maximum cold protection--like hunkering down and waiting out frigid 
snowstorms--I can zip it up and use the hood. I also carry some 
lightweight long underwear tops and bottoms that I sleep in at 
night--this precludes using a bag liner. They weigh about 11 oz total. 
The long underwear can also be used when you have to walk in the rain or 
colder temps and need an extra layer under rain gear. The take home 
message is to buy the best down bag you can afford--it will last for 
years of stuffing and unstuffing. I have also had no problems with it in 
rain--like the PCT in Washington. I am careful to keep it in a silnylon 
drybag in my pack, dry it out in the sun whenever possible and pack and 
unpack it  in a sheltered spot like my tent.

Condensation can be an added source of getting a sleeping bag wet--I use 
a tent with a fly, so have minimal condensation problems. I also choose 
to camp in areas away from streams, meadows and valleys/depressions 
which have higher probabilities of condensation.


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