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  1. #1
    Registered User Bencape4's Avatar
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    Default what if I used two sleeping bags at once?

    I have a mountain hardwear ultralamina 45 and a north face 55 and a 3/4 length under quilt and pad for my hammock.
    Also a nice down jacket. What if I left in march and used all of this? What if I put one bag on over the other? Then sent one home later?

  2. #2
    Registered User LIhikers's Avatar
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    It would probably keep you warm enough but it would be heavier, and take up more room in your pack, than 1 warm bag.
    Try it over the winter and see how it works for you.

  3. #3

    Default

    It's how poor backpackers stayed warm in the winter all thru the '70s and '80s. Who could afford a $400 Marmot or a $600 Western Mountaineering bag? It comes at a cost---weight and bulk. One of my systems was a polarguard 5F bag (really only good to 20F) and an Army down/feather bag on top. Weight and bulk. With enough crap on top you will stay warm at -10F. It's just heavy to haul.

    Once you get some cash, well, one little lightweight down bag will solve this problem and you'll sleep warm at twenty below.

    If I were you I'd throw the system outside tonight (hope it's cold) and sleep out for a couple weeks. A taste-test.

  4. #4
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    Don't send one home. When it warms up, you can zip the opposite sides of the sleeping bags to each other and make one queen size warm-weather sleeping bag :yes:

  5. #5
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    This is literally the first message board I've ever posted on where :yes: didn't work

  6. #6
    Registered User Bencape4's Avatar
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    I will try it out when I get my quilt in the mail. Maybe tonight I'll try to same thing in my tent. We'll see!

  7. #7
    Registered User Bencape4's Avatar
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    What should that do?

  8. #8
    Registered User Bencape4's Avatar
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    Also what do you guys think about leaving in April with just the good 45 degree bag, the quilt (kaq with climashield), down jacket, and thermarest?

  9. #9
    Registered User johnnybgood's Avatar
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    What's the temp rating on the quilt ? Using both might work if you can get accustomed to sleeping somewhat confined ., I wouldn't leave Springer w/o testing out this system .
    Getting lost is a way to find yourself.

  10. #10
    Registered User middle to middle's Avatar
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    I had a 20 degree bag and shivered through many nights. I had never experienced that kind of cold before. I now have a zero degree bag and at times in early April I wish I had another. Better warm than cold.

  11. #11
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    From an insulation perspective, using both bags will provide more warmth only if one is large enough that no insulation is compressed. Same goes for wearing more clothing inside.... If compressed, you are losing insulating value. Not really a problem if you have the bags open in quilt-like fashion.

    That said, I wouldn't be willing to put up with the weight and bulk, and would opt for a 20F quilt instead.

  12. #12
    Section Hiker
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    It seems like a lot of bulk to me an I agree with whoever said confining. I would check out the after Christmas sales (REI having one) and see if you can find anything better that you can afford. Even if it is 20, might be more useful to carry that and an extra base layer.


    "Your comfort zone is a beautiful place, but nothing ever grows there.
    "


  13. #13
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    I did just that for years. As TW said back in the 70s you hiked with what you had. These days however there are some very good deals on pretty good sleeping bags.

    I would go another route these days unless I had no other choice.

  14. #14
    Hiker bigcranky's Avatar
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    Doubling bags is usually warmer, yes.

    However, using a single bag in a hammock is a PITA -- doubling them sounds like an even bigger pain. And the underquilt is where one really wants the insulation -- I'm not a fan of a 3/4 in colder weather.

    Might be ok, but my experience says you'll be cold, especially if you leave in early March.
    Ken B
    'Big Cranky'
    Our Long Trail journal

  15. #15
    Registered User Cadenza's Avatar
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    One of my favorite combinations in moderately cold weather is a three piece set:
    1. Underground Hammock's 0* underquilt
    2. Feathered Friends "Winter Wren" 25* bag
    3. Hammock Gear 20* top quilt.

    In a hammock the underquilt is a must.
    The "Winter Wren" is a cool piece of gear. It's a bag that works easily in a hammock because you put it on like a full length coat, then get in the hammock and cinch up the foot end draw string. It has zippered arm holes. When nature calls in the night, you can get out of the hammock and walk around while still wearing the bag. Just hike it up like a dress, water the base of a tree, then get back in the hammock and cinch your foot end up again. Wearing a 25* bag while taking a leak beats getting out in your long johns every time!
    But that bag is not quite warm enough when the temps drop down below freezing.
    That's where the HG 20* top quilt comes into play. It packs very small, is light as a bunch of feathers, and is easily maneuverable inside a hammock. It makes a big difference and in combination with the Winter Wren keeps me warm into the teens.

    ALL THREE PIECES PACK SMALLER AND LIGHTER than my overkill Western Mountaineering -40* Bison bag alone.

    From mid-December through February I would take the Bison. But if I'm not expecting temps below the teens I find the three piece combo very versatile. In the fall season I can push the top quilt off and most of the time the Winter Wren alone is enough, but if the temps drop in the night I can always reach down and pull that top quilt of downy goodness up around me.
    I'm not sure if I have clearly explained this, but the simple answer is:
    The 25* Winter Wren alone is good down to 32* freezing (despite the 25* rating)
    Once it gets below freezing the Winter Wren AND top quilt together take me on down into the teens.

    If I think its going to be near or below zero, I'll take the Bison, Exped down mat, and I switch from a hammock to a tent.

    And finally, all this rambling to say,.....I don't think you are crazy for considering a two bag combo (if you have the pack space). Versatility is not a bad thing.

  16. #16
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    I don't think the loss of insulation due to compression applies so much here as the inner bag would just fill up 'movement' space, so it still lofts, but inward and conforming to the body, and pushes out the outerbag to it's full capacity.

    But yes this does add to the 'confinement' issue.

  17. #17
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    I use a WM Ultralite 20 Large and a MYOG 30F Down Quilt. Better to have synthetic on the outside though.

    Added some straps and buckles to keep the quilt on top of the sleeping bag and made sure that it doesn't compress the bag.
    Works pretty well and keeps me warm to -5F.

    It weighs 3,4 lbs compared to 3,1 lbs of a Western Mountaineering Kodiak MF Large though.

  18. #18
    PCT, Sheltowee, Pinhoti, LT , BMT, AT, SHT, CDT 560 miles 10-K's Avatar
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    It works but it works best with high quality down bags else there's a weight penalty to deal with.

    Before I bought my WM 0* bag I used a Mont Bell Super-Stretch 55* bag inside a Mont Bell Super-Stretch 20* bag and it was good into the single digits.

    I asked this same question on here years ago.

    Oh and btw, the 2 bag setup above weighs less than the 0* WM bag and if temps moderate as they do in the southern Appalachians I can just use the 20* bag and leave the 55* bag in my pack.
    Last edited by 10-K; 12-27-2013 at 09:53.

  19. #19
    Registered User Bencape4's Avatar
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    I tried it in my tent in 20 degrees. Worked well actually. Quite warm and the weight was 2 pound 8 ounces total

  20. #20
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    I would suggest taking your lightest sleeping bag, long johns, down jacket and camping out in the yard on a few nights below freezing. I have a taken a 20 degree bag to - 5 by supplementing it w/ a fleece liner, fleece jacket, down jacket, long johns, hat, mittens, and wool socks.

    I guess the biggest point is to try a lot of different combinations before you add the extra weight and bulk to your pack.

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