/ Sleeping bag for winter (ski-)mountaineering

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setarkos on 18 Jun 2014
Hi everybody,

I am planning to get a winter sleeping bag. I want to use it mainly for base camp style ski mountaineering in the alps and in norway.
I am usually not very sensitive to cold. In spring I am the first in short sleeves and shorts on the bike. However I am quite slim, 70kg at 186cm, so don't have that many reserves insulation-wise.
I also sweat quite a lot, so condensation and getting the bag damp from the inside a major issues.
I always use a silk liner and I have a ME Ion bivy as well as an ultralight Pertex Endurance bivi.

Bags I am considering are:
- Rab Expedition 1000
- Western Mountaineering Lynx GWS (or even Puma GWS?)
- Mountain Equipment Iceline
- Mountain Hardwear Wraith (I have an offer for the 2011/12 model for 400)
Still wondering if I could get away with something lighter:
- ME Snowline SL
- Cumulus Teneqa 850
- PHD Hispar 800

Any experience you can share or advice you can offer is much appreciated :)


Not that important but noteworthy: I have a Cumulus Lite Line 300 (50g overfill) for summer alpine use. Ideally the winter bag should cover a temperature range such that there is no too big gap between the two.
Doug on 18 Jun 2014
In reply to setarkos:

Not sure quite what you have in mind, practically all ski touring/mountaineering in the Alpes is done from huts or the valley, even in a winter room most of those would be overkill

In Norway I've always used DNT huts, and a lightweight sleeping bag
The Ex-Engineer - on 18 Jun 2014
In reply to setarkos: I'd have thought a 600-650gramme down bag would have been the best option - e.g. http://www.rockrun.com/rab-neutrino-endurance-600-2013/
setarkos on 18 Jun 2014
In reply to setarkos:
This is not for sleeping in huts!
This is for winter camping in the Alps and Norway, so temperatures down to -25/-30C.
We will have a base camp from where we'll climb up peaks to ski down them again.
So we'll sleep in tents exclusively with no or very few changes in location (only initial approach and final departure), so weight is not first priority even though I don't mind carrying as little as possible.
Post edited at 18:58
In reply to setarkos:

> This is for winter camping in the Alps and Norway, so temperatures down to -25/-30C. We will have a base camp from where we'll climb up peaks to ski down them again.So we'll sleep in tents exclusively with no or very few changes in location (only initial approach and final departure), so weight is not first priority even though I don't mind carrying as little as possible.

Been there, done that - I'd say its bloody hard work and much more an 'expedition feeling' than staying in a house in the same area, and a good experience because of that. BUT you may well find you'll get considerably less skiing done just because the rest of just living takes effort - in particular snow melting is a big job. Have you tried trips like you're describing before?

In Lyngen we had temperatures down to -27 at night but I suspect -20 to -25 was more the norm. Camping at -30 is really hard work I find as lots of things stop working, but -20 is manageable. On that week long trip I borrowed a friends ME sleeping bag which I think was rated to -25 and it performed brilliantly. More recently I reviewed the ME Snowline and it kept me warm and sleeping well to -23 without a tent. If I was in a tent with other people I suspect it would see you ok to -25 and probably a bit lower than that. http://www.ukclimbing.com/gear/review.php?id=5328 It's a very impressive piece of kit.
setarkos on 20 Jun 2014
In reply to TobyA:

Hi Toby,

Thanks for your reply, I actually came across your review already, researching different bags.
We realise that something like this is not entirely about skiing but that's also the point. We love getting up mountains by any means just for sake of it. If there is an awesome Freeride to be earned it makes both ascent and descent even more epic.
We will nevertheless practice winter camping separately before we go full out. And we will also try to avoid extreme temperatures below -20 if possible but we ought to be prepared for them anyway.

Do you remember by any chance which model that ME bag was you borrowed? And if you had the choice would you take the Snowline SL again rather than a warmer bag despite needing considerably amount of clothing in certain temperatures?
The weight makes it certainly attractive but then again Rab Expedition 1000 or WM Lynx would only be ~300g heavier but considerably warmer.

Can you possibly compare the Driloft outer fabric with other fabrics used for winter sleeping bags? eg. Pertex Endurance, GWS, DryQ/eVent, ...
jamesfrome - on 20 Jun 2014
In reply to setarkos:

I have used the rab expedition 1000 bag and it is really very good. It is on ebay now for 374.99 if you are interested ...

around -25 would be ideal for it if a liner is used but extreme is -56 if necessary.

james.
setarkos on 21 Jun 2014
In reply to jamesfrome:

Thanks for the comment.
What was the highest temperature you used it in and still felt comfortable and not too hot?
ads.ukclimbing.com
In reply to setarkos:

> Do you remember by any chance which model that ME bag was you borrowed?

It was so long ago, I don't. Plus they've changed the weights with the names around, but whichever it was it was rated to -25 I think, although rating systems have changed a bit too since then.

> Can you possibly compare the Driloft outer fabric with other fabrics used for winter sleeping bags? eg. Pertex Endurance, GWS, DryQ/eVent,

At those kind of temperatures the outer doesn't seem so important because short of spilling tea there isn't much moisture around, so I've never been worried by whatever material bags I've used are made from in cold conditions. The Drilite on the ME bag is maybe a bit more resistant than Pertex Quantum that another bag I have is made from, but I guess its heavier too.


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