I am looking to upgrade my sleep system to be able to continue my trail running and wild camping adventures into the winter. It is a big investment for me so I really need to get it right first time.
I am currently using a Berghaus intrepid 1000 synthetic bag (Comfort 5deg, limit 0 deg) weight about 900g and Beghaus Peak Pro inflatable mat (insulated but without an R rating. Weight about 500g. For shelter I am using an Outdoor Research Helium Bivvy which I am sticking with as I am very happy with it.
I have found the bag and mat to have an excellent weight/price/warmth ratio. I can just get by to -2 deg by adding down socks and a down jacket. However, as they are the only ones I have ever used I do not know how much improvement I will get but y.
My questions are:
Mat – has anyone here used the Peak Pro and had the chance to compare it with a mat with an official R value. I am hoping to keep it but as I am looking to switch to a quilt it will become a more important part of my system. What I do not want to do is get a more expensive mat and find out that it is no better.
Quilt – I am currently looking at either a Cumulus 350 (comfort 2 limit -4 deg weight 600g) or 450 quilt (comfort -1 limit -7deg weight 710g). I am leaning towards the 350 as I think it would be more versatile (as well as a little lighter) I would use this for 3 seasons, supplementing with clothing as necessary and then buy an ultralight down bag for summer use.
I would really appreciate any comments, alternative suggestions or advice to help me make a decision. Thanks!
Have you considered a Thermarest Neoair Xlite mat? I use a short torso length one and put a pack etc under my legs and feet. Good R value, probably under half the weight of your current mat. There may be even lighter versions now.
Thanks for the suggestion Oldie. Those mats do look good but I would probably need a full length one if using with a quilt I imagine. Keen to hear if anyone has a comparison with the Berghaus mat I am currently using as I have no idea how much better a more expensive pad would be in reality.
> Thanks for the suggestion Oldie. Those mats do look good but I would probably need a full length one if using with a quilt I imagine.
Some quilts have a full foot-box (like Enlightened Equipment) so you can get away with a shorter mat.
Thanks wbo2 My logic was that the quilt option is up to 7 degrees warmer depending on which I get (and the accuracy of the ratings or course!) and also is lighter. I also find a sleeping bag very restrictive and don't sleep that well as a result, hence the thought about moving to a quilt. I was hoping to be a bit warmer and more comfortable. I push quite hard regularly doing 40 mile days (although less in the shorter winter days) and want to get the best possible rest, especially as I will be spending much longer nights in my shelter.
A Q and A on the Blacks website about the Peak Prosays: "This mat does not have an R-value but was designed to be used in a temperature no lower than 0c." As a mat is such an important part of a sleeping system you might get at least some idea of how good other mats are in comparison by looking at how low they are suggested to be useable. eg Outdoorgearlab says the Neoair Xlite goes down to minus 6.7C.
My current setup is the Thermarest Vesper 0 deg quilt and Exped synmat hl mat (moved from a Rab quantum 250 and Alpkit Cloudbase). Current weight is under 800 gms combined. The vesper has an enclosed footbox and retention straps so holds in place fine.
Do you not find the lack of a hood affects the overall warmth? Having done some unscientific tests over a few camping trips, with head out and in and hats etc, a hood on a sleeping bag made a massive difference and that's put me off quilts.
What do all you quilt users think?
(also, do you use a liner or just lie direct on your mat?)
I mainly overnight in late spring early summer so the hood isn't a necessity for me (have a synthetic MH Lamina bag for colder seasons). I found that I couldn't regulate temps with the Rab quantum as it only had a half zips so the quilt felt the way to go. A thin base layer if its colder, montane allez zip hoodie. The Vesper does have a popper on the neck collar to seal it down too.
Not thought of using a liner Tbh. Maybe I'll look into it but that would just add weight that clothing could cover maybe.....?
I use a balaclava with my quilt. Not quite as warm and cosy as a sleeping bag hood but more multi-functional. An important consideration when you're pairing down to the minimum.
> I use a balaclava with my quilt. Not quite as warm and cosy as a sleeping bag hood but more multi-functional. An important consideration when you're pairing down to the minimum.
If "pairing" down I think you might be better off with two sleeping bags both with full length zips......
Thanks for the replies everyone.
I have decided to order a Hammock Gear Economy Burrow 20 quilt from the US. Its a bit lighter than my current bag, a bit warmer but also relatively inexpensive. It will give me the chance to experiment without spending too much and I can then sell it to buy a better quilt or go back to a bag.
Keeping the Berghaus mat for now and will upgrade to an xtherm if it is not up to the job.
Bring on the winter!