Our bags have travelled all around the world, here are just some of the most frequent places people take them..
This classic 4 day trek is usually undertaken in the Andean winter between May and September. Despite warm daytime temperatures you should take a good 3 season sleeping bag for the Inca Trail trek. The trek to Machu Picchu is a high altitude trek and the night time temperature can drop below zero degrees celsius.
Recommended sleeping bags: SH600 or SH800
When the Chunk went out to follow YAK Attack he was wearing shorts and a t-shirt most days, however you should never underestimate the Himalayas and allow for cold conditions. Night time temps will be around -5 to -10 C in season, colder out of season. We recommend our SH600 or SH800 sleeping bags.
Read the Chunk's gear advice..
During the 7 days you will spend climbing and descending Kili you will pass through extremes of climate. We would recommend taking a sleeping bag suitable for temperatures ranging between -10 and -20C. If you are camping up on the crater, and you are unlucky enough to get a cold night you are going to be at the end of that scale. Nicks cousin's boyfriend James took no chances by taking a PD800 and a Filo down jacket which can be used to boost a bags comfort. We recommend our PD600, SH800 or SH1000 sleeping bags, depending which time of year you go.
Read Jame's gear advice..
Everest Base Camp
Our mate Steve went to Island Peak and Everest Base Camp earlier this year. We sent him off with a prototype AD1000 which should have been more than enough for the expected night time temps of -5 to -15C, however cold sweats induced by fatigue and a delicate stomach have a way of upsetting what looks good on paper.
Recommended sleeping bags: PD800 or SH1000
Sleeping bags for four seasons of camping
There are no shortage of sleeping bag manufacturers so why might you consider an Alpkit bag over the others? Well one good reason is that we design our own bags, work closely with a factory to get them made and then sell them directly to you from this website. We do not have any distributors or retail staff to pay and pass these savings on to you. We may not have the track record of sleeping bags superbrands like RAB, The North Face or Marmot, but the feedback we are getting from our customers is favourable and getting better all the time.
Common barriers to down sleeping bags are initial cost of ownership, fear of getting the sleeping bag wet and washing your sleeping bag. Now you could go out and get a syntheticous fibourous pileous bag but then you need a Yak to carry it and you would lose out on all the advantages of a down bag, so keeping an open mind let's explore the three main concerns people have when considering a down sleeping bag..
Cost of ownership
Well we have probably already addressed this, the best way to save money is to buy direct from your favourite brand. Why not try giving TNF a ring and asking if you can buy your bag at trade price? Failing this just click through to the Alpkit shop and buy a sleeping bag direct from our website!
Keeping your bag dry
Ok so you have heard nightmare stories of people getting their bags wet and ending up with a sodden ball of feathers. Down acts like a sponge and readily soaks up water, unlike a sponge when you wring it out it does not spring back to life. There is no doubt you have to be more carefull than with a synthetic or fibre pile bag, but the same goes for the rest of your kit. In 20 years of camping none of the Alpkit team has got their bag so wet it has been unusable. Again common sense camp craft can prevent disasters, air your bag when the weather is nice, don't bivvy without a bivvy cover (such as the Hunka), don't stuff your sleeping bag inside your kayak unless it is in a dry bag, perhaps an Airlok. Another common misconception or should we say exageration is that a synthetic bag will keep you warm when wet. Make no mistake, synthetic fibres are not miracle fibres, if your bag is totally sodden you will have a very uncomfortable, cold and sleepless night. Synthetic or down.. do everything you can to keep your bag dry!
Man has yet to surpass mother nature and when looked after a down bag will perform longer than a synthetic bag. It's kind of like buying a Mac over a PC, initial outlay may be higher but it is more enjoyable to use and has a longer effective working life. Surprisingly a down bag can be washed in a washing machine, or in your bath but you do have to be carefull. Professional cleaning services do exist, but you can limit the number of times you send your bag in for a service by utilising a silk/cotton liner or wear your socks when you kip. We have published our own sleeping bag care guide.
Read what our customers have been saying about our sleeping bags
Is the PipeDream 200 likely to be available again? (i.e. the one which is filled only up to the waist) I'd like to buy one some day for my husband to use on Scottish summer walking trips in conjunction with his Filo jacket.
Elaine on 2009-06-22