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Sleeping bag for a new camper

squeelersqueeler Posts: 144
edited April 2011 in Tour & expedition
I'm after a sleeping bag for UK use in the spring / summer. I've no camping experience but have a yearning to get into it and have started on-line research in ernest.

I obviously want it as small and light as possible so it fits easily on the bike with my other kit but realistically I'm 6"2 and 15 stone so I think most 210cm lightweight ones may be a bit small?

Does this look like a decent entry level bag that will do me a few years until I'm experienced enough to know exactly what I'm after?
Vango Ultralite 200 Sleeping Bag
http://www.simplyhike.co.uk/products/Vango/Ultralite200SleepingBag-Bluejay.aspx

Any recommendations will be welcome.

Is buying a sleeping bag something I should really not do online, Am I best trying them out in a camping shop, if so any reccomendations in Lancashire?

Posts

  • andymillerandymiller Posts: 2,856
    It seems reasonable to me - although slightly on the heavy side.I'd research other options as well eg Decathlon and SnugPak. Also might be worth checking ot what you might get if you spend a bit more.

    It be wary of phrases like '2-3 season' and look at the comfort rating. This one is comfortable down to 8 degrees. Which should be OK for say late-April through to mid- October - although youmay need to wear your clothes if it gets chilly.

    The only advantage I can see in not shopping online is if you are unsure what size to get. On the other hand if you have a decent shop near you ...
  • squeelersqueeler Posts: 144
    Thanks for the info, I'll check out Decathlon and Snugpak
  • al_yrpalal_yrpal Posts: 102
    I just got this one. http://www.decathlon.co.uk/EN/s5-ultral ... 118874592/ I think its just right for UK/normal European weather

    Al
  • squeelersqueeler Posts: 144
    I looked at the decathlon one too but it's nearly twice the weight of the Vango one in the XL size, so not what I want to be lugging about if I can help it.
    I think I've settled on the Snugpak softie 3 merlin sleeping bag. It's a bit more expensive at £60-ish off the internet but ticks all the other boxes
  • al_yrpalal_yrpal Posts: 102
    squeeler wrote:
    I looked at the decathlon one too but it's nearly twice the weight of the Vango one in the XL size, so not what I want to be lugging about if I can help it.
    I think I've settled on the Snugpak softie 3 merlin sleeping bag. It's a bit more expensive at £60-ish off the internet but ticks all the other boxes

    I actually went around all the shops and looked at many alternatives. IMO the Vango's would definately NOT keep you as warm as the Decathlon one. They were really thin. I agonised about the extra 1/2kg and decided it was one thing I would not compromise with. I couldnt find the Snugpaks anywhere local but I am told they are good only a bit more expensive. I save weight in my clothing NOT on tent or sleeping kit, I have seen too many shivering wet cycle tourists to make that mistake.

    Al
  • squeelersqueeler Posts: 144
    Thanks for the advice, I've pretty much decided to spend a bit more and get the Snugpak. Looking at the stats it should be warmer and lighter than the others I've looked at.
    However, I've got a really really newb question this time:

    When buying the sleeping bag I can choose Left Handed or Right Handed. I am right handed therefore want the zip on the left hand side so which option do I choose?
  • al_yrpalal_yrpal Posts: 102
    If you are right handed choose the left hand zip, then you reach over the bag to unzip it.

    Al
  • squeelersqueeler Posts: 144
    Ta!
    I thought it might be that way but no harm in checking.
  • andymillerandymiller Posts: 2,856
    squealer

    I'm glad you found the right bag for you. This is more for the benefit of anyone else thinking about buying a sleeping bag.

    It's important to try to compare like with like - eg the Decathlon bag has a comfort rating of 5 degrees C - so it should be a bit warmer than the Vango. Also the Vango XL is for people up to 190 cms tall while the Decathlon will fit people up to 200 cm - an important detail in comparing weights (and obviously crucial if you are 195 cm tall!).

    A good illustration of the difficulties of choosing sleeping bags.

    (for the record though the quoted weight of the Decathlon XL is 1420 gms while the weight quoted on the ultralight site is 925 gms (but it's not clear whether this is for an XL or a medium - as I suspect it is).

    I'm right-handed and the zip on my bag is on the right - but for some reason I find I usually need to use my left-hand to unzip it.
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