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hailstreak
05-18-2014, 10:16
I am currently preparing for an August 1 SOBO hike that I plan to finish by mid December and I am looking for a sleeping bag that would be suitable for Nov/Dec in the South. I have an older 15 degree Slumberjack Aurora bag that I have successfully used at 20 degrees before, but the bag is mammoth in size, heavy, and very difficult to pack, so it's not an option for anything more than a weekend trip. My usual strategy in cold weather is to carry a lighter bag and wear warmer clothes, but I am thinking that I should play it safe and go for a 0-10 degree bag. Could anyone recommend a particular bag? I really don't want to spend more than $150-$200, but I know that this rules out a lot of ultralight bags, and I would really like to keep the weight down. Complicating matters is the fact that I am 6'5" and need a long bag. I will use the bag with a Thermarest. I see a Kelty Cosmic synthetic 0 degree bag for $120 on Campmor that weighs 5 lbs. The down version costs $150 more, but weighs a pound less and stuffs smaller. Any thoughts?

Nick P
05-18-2014, 11:22
I hope to finish my SOBO by Thanksgiving, so this may not apply to you, but I am using a Marmot Hydrogen 30f down to start with, which weighs only 1lb 9ozs, and if the Smokies' weather gods require it, will have my old Kelty 20f synthetic mailed to me; it weighs close to 5 lbs. The marmot inside the kelty should be plenty warm. I am too cheap to buy a large down winter bag, though it's probably the smart thing to do. I bought both used (here and on e-bay) for under $200.

Good luck to you!

bigcranky
05-18-2014, 12:56
I hike a lot in the Southern Appalachians. Early November I can use my ~20F bag and it's great, but by Thanksgiving I need my 5-F rated bag (a Western Mountaineering Antelope.) I'd get a good zero-F rated down bag for late Nov/Dec. It can get pretty cold.

HooKooDooKu
05-18-2014, 14:57
I don't know what is currently available, but my 15 bag is a Mountain Hardware Ultralamnina large synthetic bag weighing just a hair over 3lbs. It packs very small... especially for a synthetic (as it can pack smaller than some similar down bags). I picked mine up on clearance for $135 (regular about $270). But I've purchased other Ultralaminas on sale in the $150-$170 range as well.

Here's a quick example: http://www.campmor.com/outdoor/gear/Product___41180 Size large, 3lbs even (newer model than mine) stuff size is 7x16, current sale price of $220 (it's a sales price, not a clearance price... just yet).

terryg49
05-18-2014, 16:40
I am currently preparing for an August 1 SOBO hike that I plan to finish by mid December and I am looking for a sleeping bag that would be suitable for Nov/Dec in the South. I have an older 15 degree Slumberjack Aurora bag that I have successfully used at 20 degrees before, but the bag is mammoth in size, heavy, and very difficult to pack, so it's not an option for anything more than a weekend trip. My usual strategy in cold weather is to carry a lighter bag and wear warmer clothes, but I am thinking that I should play it safe and go for a 0-10 degree bag. Could anyone recommend a particular bag? I really don't want to spend more than $150-$200, but I know that this rules out a lot of ultralight bags, and I would really like to keep the weight down. Complicating matters is the fact that I am 6'5" and need a long bag. I will use the bag with a Thermarest. I see a Kelty Cosmic synthetic 0 degree bag for $120 on Campmor that weighs 5 lbs. The down version costs $150 more, but weighs a pound less and stuffs smaller. Any thoughts?

check ebay for a used Big Agnes Mistic 15 deg bag. Very roomy for your size and very comfortable. I love the one I bought used on ebay. It packs very small in a compression bag. The best thing about it is that a blow up pad like a neolight slides into a sleeve on the bottom of the bag. This keeps the pad in place and provides great insolation.

VTATHiker
05-18-2014, 17:02
Hi hailstreak - I finished a sobo in 2012 on December 19th, and I used a Cat's Meow (20 deg synthetic, North Face) from Vermont to Georgia. It was too warm for me until the middle of Virginia, but it was perfect from there through Georgia - even in temps well below 20. If I had the money to buy a 20 deg down bag I would have, but I already had this bag and at 2lb 10 oz it's not excessively heavy. Looks like it goes for $160 retail, but I'm sure you can find it cheaper if you look around. I was very happy with mine and still plan to use it in the Alps later this year. Enjoy your journey!!

Gambit McCrae
05-19-2014, 09:05
Buy one of these (http://www.ebay.com/sch/Sleeping-Bags-/87100/i.html?_from=R40&_nkw=MONTBELL&_udlo&_udhi=225)

Tron-Life
05-19-2014, 14:55
I was in VA in April and I saw people with 20 degree bags sleeping pretty cold. You could bring clothes, but if your carrying a lighter bag just to bring more clothes it might not be worth it; better to bring heavier bag and just hiking clothes and light thermals. I have a MH Phantom 0 that I've used in the Adirondacks in the winter in around 10 degree weather and on the AT in New Jersey during late October when it hoovers around freezing at night. You could start with a 35 degree bag then change out to a 0 or -10 sometime around late September though, if your starting mid august you might be able to use a 0 bag by the time you get to NH and the whites.

HooKooDooKu
05-19-2014, 15:40
I was in VA in April and I saw people with 20 degree bags sleeping pretty cold.
Once you get down into TN/NC area, you're going to be walking mountains that are at an elevation of 5,000+'. The AVERAGE night time lows for that part of the country for that time of the year at elevation is going to be in the 20's. It is not unreasonable to expect that you might encounter a cold spell with night time lows falling into the teens or even single digits.

In October, I'm using a 15 bag for camping at upper elevations in GSMNP. So there is definitely an argument to be made for the need to have a 0 bag along that section of the AT in Nov/Dec.

Venchka
05-19-2014, 22:54
Once you get down into TN/NC area, you're going to be walking mountains that are at an elevation of 5,000+'. The AVERAGE night time lows for that part of the country for that time of the year at elevation is going to be in the 20's. It is not unreasonable to expect that you might encounter a cold spell with night time lows falling into the teens or even single digits.

In October, I'm using a 15 bag for camping at upper elevations in GSMNP. So there is definitely an argument to be made for the need to have a 0 bag along that section of the AT in Nov/Dec.

Right on! The low tomorrow morning in Boone, NC at 3,000 feet is going to be 49. In late May. You can easily see 10-20 degrees lower up high along the trail. Then you have to factor in the wind. And precipitation.
No, you can't add a liner to get a 35 degree bag down to the teens. Don't waste your money.
What will work is a nice light 40 degree quilt opened flat and placed on your good quality 15-20 degree mummy bag.
Be safe. Be warm.

Wayne


Sent from somewhere around here.

hailstreak
05-20-2014, 08:03
Thanks for the suggestions. When I used my 15 degree bag at 20 degrees with a sleeping pad, it was just enough, so I definitely think I need to go for a 0 degree bag. I found a Mountain Hardwear 0 degree bag for $240 that weighs 3 lb 14 oz. Not sure it will get any better than that below $250.

perrito
05-21-2014, 15:58
I have a Northface Hightail 15 degree, 900 fill, long, used maybe 6 times.
I'd take $250 for it (currently going for $429) plus shipping. PM me if you're interested. I can take some pics.