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  1. #1
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    Default Quilt vs Mummy Bag

    So I am looking for a new sleeping bag or quilt. I do not like the confining restrictions of a mummy bag so I am thinking going with a semi-rectangular bag or perhaps a quilt. Thinking of something 20 degree rated for Spring hiking in the Southern Appalachians. I want to keep the weight at a pound to 1.5 pounds. Not sure if i like not having any down underneath like in the quilt. Will be using a Neo Air 3.7 R value, 72″ length. For those of you that have switched to a quilt, do you still prefer the quilt, advantages, disadvantages? I realize the quilts are cheaper and less confining. Do you miss the mummy bag and the hood that they come with? Any input appreciated. Thanks.

  2. #2

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    Based on your parameters, youíre probably only going to find a quilt that will hit the 24 ounce weight range. A semi-rectangular 20 degree sleeping bag will be quite a bit heavier. As far as quilts versus bags, I much prefer a quilt and donít even notice that there is no insulation underneath, as long as you have a good pad with an r value to match your conditions. Also, if you prefer a wide bag your probably gonna want a wide pad if you use a quilt. I can tolerate a 20 inch pad with a bag but find that I do much better in a quilt with a wider pad. As far as wether a quilt will work for you, the only way to tell is buy one and take the plunge. What I recommend is going with the REI Magma 30 degree quilt. With REIís liberal return policy, you can use it a few times and, if it doesnít work for you,return it. Just make sure you keep it in new condition and save the tags.


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  3. #3
    Registered User Turtle-2013's Avatar
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    I've been using quilts for years ... have three in various temp ranges. However I use them for better temperature control rather that the reasons you outlined. I use a neo-air pad with a neo-air fitted sheet, so it is a system much more like sleeping at home. I SWEAT in a mummy bag, then get cold, with the quilt, I can do a better job of staying the right temp. I do occasionally use a thin liner bag to extend the temp range of the quilt. I would never go back to a sleeping bag .. but that is me, and might not work for you.

  4. #4

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    You can use the mummy like a quilt. I usually don't zip up my #3 down hugger until it gets to about 40 or less.

  5. #5
    Garlic
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    My 30F quilt is perhaps the best outdoor gear purchase I've ever made. Mine is just long enough to pull over my head to use as a hood when needed. An unanticipated bonus is how clean it stays.

    I do like my 15F bag on longer winter nights though.
    "Throw a loaf of bread and a pound of tea in an old sack and jump over the back fence." John Muir on expedition planning

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by martinb View Post
    You can use the mummy like a quilt. I usually don't zip up my #3 down hugger until it gets to about 40 or less.
    This is exactly my situation---My down bag BECOMES a quilt on most occasions. It can perform two functions---one as a quilt when I toss and turn all night---and one as a zipped up mummy bag when temps go south. In a way a quilt is a sleeping bag with a broken zipper, i.e. no zipper---which means when temps drop beyond expectations you don't have the option of getting warm by zipping up in mummification mode.

    A couple years I was on a trip in the Southern Apps when it got in the 20Fs in early May and dumped a couple inches of snow---so you never know when you'll need more than a quilt.

  7. #7
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    I switched to get a wider range of comfort in varying temps. Quilts will never be as warm as a comparable mummy bag. Enlightened Equipment makes a dual strap that allows you to build a quilt sandwich. It lets you build a version for deep winter to summer.

  8. #8

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    I definitely don't miss the hood...only used it to keep my pillow in place anyway. I wear a wool hat.

    I have EE's Convert which is basically a quilt with a full zipper...or a mummy bag without a hood. I like that it is so versatile...use as a quilt in warmer temps and make use of the zipper to turn it into a mummy bag when temps drop. Might be just the thing you are looking for.

  9. #9

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    I made the switch from mummy to quilt. I carry a light weight down hood to use in conjunction with the quilt for colder temps. For me, the quilt is more comfortable and flexible.

  10. #10
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    Why not buy a Feathered Friends Flicker and have a quilt and bag in one

  11. #11

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    Ratings are tricky things; would not trust a rating that seems too good to be true for the weight. I love quilts. What I would bring for the time/temps you are expecting would be a Jacks or Better Sierra Sniveller quilt. If it were really in the 20's, would be wearing my camp clothes and jacket and add the quilt as my last layer at night. I think your goal of a 1 to 1.5 pound weight is unrealistic for actual temps in mid-low 20's, whether for a quilt or a bag. With no hood, you need a good sleep hat.
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  12. #12
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    I started out with a 20 degree sleeping bag with a self inflating sleeping pad. I froze my ass off numerous times on the AT during April/May in the South. I experimented with a hammock and the bag and found the bag restricting. i now have a 10 degree down quilt with a neo air inflatable. Works great. I am 5' 9" 144 lbs. At the time i was not smart enough to use a down jacket, etc. etc. as a sleep aid.

  13. #13
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    I would say it depends on the mummy. I’ve tried a few mummy bags that were a little restrictive, but the one I use now is great. It just depends whether you are willing to try some out before you purchase, that could mean actually going in a store and rolling around in a bag. With quilts you don’t have to worry about the restrictive part, but they aren’t for everyone either. Each has its advantages and limitations, and depending on your time frame and patience, you should try a few out before committing to anything substantial.

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by garlic08 View Post
    My 30F quilt is perhaps the best outdoor gear purchase I've ever made. Mine is just long enough to pull over my head to use as a hood when needed. An unanticipated bonus is how clean it stays.

    I do like my 15F bag on longer winter nights though.
    Everybody has their own way of doing things and itís best to go with what works for you, but when I hear people say they pull their quilt up over their head it makes me cringe. The way a quilt should fit is to be a little bit snug around your shoulders while not having your feet pressed against the foot box. The way to properly fit a quilt is to get in sitting up, pull the quilt up until your feet hit the end of the foot box, cinch the quilt up around your neck and lay down. If the quilt is properly sized, two things will happen, your feet will move away from the end of the foot box and the sides of the quilt will tuck in against your body sealing you in. In most cases, I donít need to tuck the quilt in or make any adjustments and can do without a pad attachment system. By having a quilt that extends over your head means your quilt is too long.


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  15. #15

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    I just don't see the point of a quilt. You give up a bit of convenience for not much weight savings and that's really the bottom line right? I don't know what I'd do without a hood to hold my pillow in place

    I'd rather a snug bag then a loose one. I have one of both. The loose bag has a 20 degree rating, but doesn't seem that warm and I finally figure out it was all the extra space inside the bag. It was definitely sized for someone with a much larger girth then I have. Oh well, it was on sale.
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  16. #16

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    A quilt also needs a hood for your head in some fashion.

    There's really not that much weight savings, especially for the folks that insist on having a wide and long quilt. When quilt started being popular it's because they were narrow and used by hammock sleepers, they were only 50 inch wide. there was weight savings. The average person today adds 6oz to their quilt by making it longer and wider until it almost equals a bag in weight, but not in warmth.

    Plan on a quilt in 10 degrees colder rated then you want, imo.

    The best things about quilts are you don't get tangled up in them. People that toss and turn that's really important. And the hood on your head turns with you instead of being attached to the bag.

    The only time I miss a mummy bag is when I'm cold in my quilts..... By pushing them beyond where I should. Under 20 I prefer my wm versalite. For 30 and up, I haven't used the bag in years now. The 20 to 30 range, is where I have to make sure I've got enough supplemental clothing to be comfortable in a 20 quilt. And that all depends on how long it's cold and how cold it is. There's a difference between going to bed at 8 p.m. with it 25 degrees and it's 50 degrees, even if the overnight low is same temperature.
    Last edited by MuddyWaters; 02-18-2019 at 22:36.

  17. #17
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    Default

    Thanks for all the great responses. Kind of leaning toward a bag over a quilt due to handling colder temps. and having a hood. I did find a Western Mountaineering bag at 1lb 13 ounces rated at 25 degrees that is semi-rectangular, lots of room. Anyone have experience with the Western Mountaineering "Terralite"?

  18. #18
    Registered User Venchka's Avatar
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    I put 3 WM bags side by side.
    Ultralite. Slim fit like the ancient REI bag that I was replacing. I was frankly tired of being cramped in a sleeping bag.
    Terralite. Not quite the 20 degree rating I was looking for. Too roomy.
    Alpinlite. Roomier than the Antelope that I already owned. Conservatively rated at 20 degrees. When I found one on sale I ran with it. Totally pleased and accurate thermometer verified comfy at 15 degrees. A great cowboy camping bag in September in the Wind River Range.
    Good luck!
    Wayne

  19. #19
    Registered User Venchka's Avatar
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    PS: I bought my Alpinlite in Charlotte, NC.
    Wayne

  20. #20
    Registered User JPritch's Avatar
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    Have a 20 degree REI mummy that I bought when I started out, and a 40 degree EE long/Xwide quilt. I love the quilt for summer use. However, as much as I toss and turn at night, I could never see myself using a quilt on colder shoulder season nights. Too much fuss keeping it wrapped around you and not allowing drafts.

    My trials and research have led me to WM bags. Now it's just a tossup between the Alpinlite or Terralite....and if I can find some sort of a discount on either.
    While searching for that unknown edge in life, never forget to look home. For the greatest edge you can find in life is to stand in the protective shadow of those who love you.

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