09 August, 2005

battle of the bags


Temperature rating: 46 deg F*
Size: 82” x 31.5”
Stuff sack size: 10" x 6"
Weight: 1 lb 7 oz
Construction: Layer 1 + 1
Insulation: Dupont Thermolite Extreme 100 g/m2
Shell: Polyamide Ripstop
Lining: Polyamide Ripstop
Colors: Storm/Anthracite
. Technical full wraparound hood with double closure
. Cold proof flap
. Full length auto lock YKK two way zip
. Left and right zip
. Box construction with offset stitching

I am pondering buying this sleeping bag to take on solo backpacking trips. My current bag, The North Face's Cat's Meow, is wonderful. I love this bag. I love it so much that when it was stolen a few years ago, I bought another one.


Zipper Location: Right Side or Left Side
Weight (Average Total): Reg: 2 lb 13 oz (1273 g)
Temperature Rating: 20F/-7C
Stuffsack Size: 8" x 17" (20 cm x 43 cm)
Sizes: Regular, Long, Women's
Shell Fabric: Firestorm™, BottomLine taffeta
Max User Height: Reg: 6'0" (183 cm)
Fill Weight: Reg: 1 lb 10 oz (730 g)
External Length: Reg: 84" (213 cm)
Circumference (shoulder): Reg: 62" (157 cm)
Circumference (hip): Reg: 58" (147 cm)

Notice anything important? Weight and bulk, kids.

800 Extreme
Stuff sack size: 10" x 6" Weight: 1 lb 7 oz

Cat's Meow
Stuffsack Size: 8" x 17" Weight: 2 lb 13 oz (website) 3lb (actual, I weighed it this weekend)

The downside? No extra features. No lipbalm pocket. No pillow pocket**.

The upside?

Look to the right. This is the upside. At the moment, my sleeping bag compeletly fills the bag compartment in my rucksack. With the Lafuma, I could also stash my Thermarest pad or possibly my solo tent. This would free up a great deal of space in the main compartment.

Another benefit would be that I don't need to carry a winter weight bag around all of the time. My solo trips are likely going to take place only in the summer. Winter is too dangerous alone, at least at this stage of my journey. So the fact that this is technically rated as a summer-only bag is actually a strength. Plus, the company has three ratings on the bags - comfortable, reasonable and minimal. I can't remember or find these ratings for this bag, but I am hot natured, so I should actually be comfortable to considerably lower than 46 degrees.

Also, this obviously ties in to my Great Lightening Up Project. More to come on that one.

Best of all, though, the lafuma bag costs only $59.95 at a local dealer. That means that with the $129 I spent on my Cat's Meow PLUS the lafuma, I've still spent less than down snobs would have on one bag.

*The lafuma website lists the temperature rating of this bag at 37 degrees F.
**A velco secured pocket that you can stuff with clothing to make a pillow.


drdougfir said...

that bag doesnt go cold enough. find a 0°c bag at least or else you're going to run into trouble if you do any higher elevation or colder climate work. ive always hiked with a 0° bag or lower. im going to buy a -14° bag in a few days for possible scandinavia coldness. its already snowing up there and getting colder donchaknow!


Corvo said...

But again, why should I carry a 0degree in summer?

Yah, I wanted to try blogger vs. lj and see how they compare. So far, they're still neck and neck. I don't know how to get friends on blogger, if they even have that feature. But formatting and inserting media is easier on blogger.

home equity loans said...