We gave MontBell’s Spiral Down Hugger an Editors’ Choice Award back in 2009 for a novel design that added stretch to the bag shell for unparalleled comfort. The new Down Hugger 900 #2 takes everything we liked about the previous bag and adds a new level of stretch that elevates it a cut above anything else we’ve tested, including the original award winner.
Exhibit A: MontBell increased the stretch* from 1 to 3 inches to a whopping 18 to 22 inches. “It’s nothing short of brilliant,” says one 6-foot tester. “I can comfortably sit in full lotus position, but when I’m in repose, the bag snugs up around me to eliminate pockets of dead air.” Plus, by stretching only where you need it (let’s say you want to splay your lower legs a bit), the insulation stays close to your body in other places, which increases overall bag warmth. “I slept directly on a sheet of snow after my sleeping pad failed, and even with temps in the upper teens, I stayed warm enough to get a decent night’s sleep,” says one tester after a weekend in Colorado’s Sangre de Cristo range.
The icing on the cake? Thanks to 900-fill down and 8-denier nylon fabric, all of this comfort weighs less than a pound and a half and packs down to the size of a honeydew melon. Yes, we know it’s expensive, but the Hugger has everything you want in a bag: warmth, comfort, packability, and top-quality workmanship. $519; 1 lb. 8 oz.; 25°F; montbell.us