When I first started camping I bought a $25 Coleman sleeping bag and I used 2 yoga mats to elevate me off the ground. It wasn’t the most comfortable way to sleep, but it was cheap and it got the job done. Over time, I knew I needed to upgrade my sleep system first. It was paramount to everything else. As you know I go in to my local REI and pick the brains of these geniuses for a while before I make my decision. Here are a few key points that I’ve learned looking into sleep systems.
- Women’s sleeping bags are wider in the hips and men’s are wider in the shoulders. I though if I got a man’s bag it would fit me better, but that definitely wasn’t the case.
- Down bags are ok getting a little wet, synthetic bags aren’t. You need them in water proof compression bags when your traveling.
- If you need more wiggle room in your mummy bags you can buy something from the manufacturer called a ‘wedgie’.
- Hang your sleeping bag up when you aren’t using it. Don’t keep it inside a compression sack.
- When you aren’t using your mattress pad, keep it inflated. It will be easier to re-inflate next time you need it.
I ended up going with a Big Agnes synthetic bag (the bag I got was on sale! YEY!). Which is toasty down to 15 degrees. I also bought a wedgie from Big Agnes and that was a great decision. I am a side sleeper and this wedgie helps give you more space without losing any warmth. The back of the sleeping bag has a slot and I matched it with an REI self inflating mattress pad. The only thing left for me to get is a comfortable camping pillow. Which I think is actually an oxymoron. I have yet to find a camping pillow that doesn’t feel like its a giant packing peanut wrapped in fleece.