View Full Version : Sleeping bag

02-05-2013, 19:39
I am having a hard time deciding on which bag to use on the CDT. I have a marmot hydrogen, a marmot helium, a golite ultra 20, and a golite ultralight 3 season. I know, I know, I have a down fetish and the differences are not all that great. I don't sleep cold, and usually carry a down sweater and have been comfortable in the hydrogen and the ultra 20 to the mid twenties. But then again I would rather be a little warm than a little cold. Hydrogen and ultra 20 are lighter by 6-8 oz and have been my go to bags, but I see many using warmer bags on the CDT. Any wisdom?

02-05-2013, 21:48
Assuming you're thru-hiking, you might sleep on snow but it's not that common that you have to; I think I did only a handful of times. I think a decent 20F bag is a good choice throughout. 2011 was a moderately high snow year, I believe, when I SOBO'd and a WM 20F bag and a Montbell EX Light jacket as insulation layer did me fine. I think I did also have a Montbell thermawrap vest to wear in colder times when hiking.

02-08-2013, 13:22
Probably depends if you are NOBO or SOBO and when you finish, but I agree with Gadget that a 20 degree should do you for the whole trip. I sleep cold and can't remember a day that I wasn't happy to have a 20 bag (and in Colorado to the end, 20 bag+all my clothes). It's been a low snow year in the Rockies, so you probably won't have to worry too much about sleeping on the snow.

02-08-2013, 14:35
Each the 20F comment. It is a good baseline for most people and the Rockies in general.

Spirit Walker
02-08-2013, 22:26
If you're a slower hiker, and are likely to be out after mid-September, either NOBO or SOBO, having a 5 or 10 deg. bag can be a good idea. We changed our bags around the 12th of September - on our SOBO hike we were a few days late (big blizzard), but on our NOBO we got them just before it got really cold and snowy.

02-08-2013, 23:50
Going NOBO. I could use any one of the above mentioned bags and be fine, but am having a tough time deciding. I have used the hydrogen and the ultra 20 and been warm in the mid twenties with a down sweater. Have not used the other two. I also have some super light down pants that I could use, but then you run into the dilemma of more clothes vs more bag. :) I always wear a thin merino pant and thin silk turtleneck.

02-16-2013, 13:18
I tested the choices over the last couple of nights. Both nights were exactly the same, which is weird around here for this time of year. The conditions were clear skies and 16 F. Starting out at 23F at 11 pm and cooing to 16 by about 3 am. I was using a gatewood cape with the serenity net tent and for a pad I had a 1/8" gossamer gear pad under a neoair short. Both the Golite Ultra 20 and Marmot Hydrogen performed well. With the Ultra 20 I woke up about every hour having to re tuck the quilt to stop drafts, then all would be fine. I did not need to do this with the Hydrogen as I was all zipped up. So it looks like for me I will use the Hydrogen for the benefit of a better rest, but at the expense of about 3.5 oz. I could definitely take the Hydrogen to a lower temp. The Ultra 20 was pretty well limited out. Her is a pic of the conditions.

02-16-2013, 13:42
I didn't have any nights that cold on the CDT, I think you're all set.