Almost Ultralight Suisse

I love a bargain, and the Suisse Sport Adventure Mummy Bag dropped from a very reasonable $100 to just under $40 on Amazon (click picture for details).  The weight of this bag is almost three pounds — Micro Tekk insulation isn’t the lightest around, but it’s good enough to keep you warm down to 30 degrees F even if you sleep in the skinny. Put on some long johns and you’re good for some degrees below that. Get a blanket style bag liner if you don’t like the sticky feel of nylon against your skin. Most summer nights in my thirty degree bag it’s too hot anyway. A liner wicks away perspiration and usually is all you need as you lie on top of the bag. Hey, sometimes I wonder why I even take the bag, then I wake up at four in the morning and it’s cold and damp even in the middle of August. I can’t recall a trip when a thirty degree bag didn’t come in handy even in the summer.

Sleeping bags can be one of the heaviest things you carry. Buy the very best and you could spend five or six hundred dollars to save a pound of weight.  Save a pound of weight somewhere else and you can get the same deal for forty bucks. I think it’s a good trade.

Suisse Sport’s Alpine Bag, weighing in at almost five pounds, gives comfort from the cold down to -15 degrees F. Not recommended for a warm night over 5 degrees. Five pounds could be a lot to carry–winter packs always get heavy for me, because I usually carry a set of warm dry clothes just in case. If there’s a way to save weight on the heavy bags, you should. Or if you’re me, leave the nearly mandatory copy of Moby Dick at home.

One more cautionary note–the light Adventure bag is an extra small size. Big people don’t easily fit into small bags, so be sure it’s enough for your needs. Tight fits reduce loft, which is where the real warmth comes from.

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