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Backpacker Magazine – October 2010

Winter Warmth: Sleeping Bags and Sleeping Pads for Cold-weather Camping, Plus Tips for Easy Sleeping While Camping

Stay toasty in the deepest freeze with an overstuffed bag and cold-weather pad.

by: Kelly Bastone

Sierra Designs BTU -20 (Courtesy Photo)
Sierra Designs BTU -20 (Courtesy Photo)

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Steve Young
Oct 26, 2010

I am an extreme gear freek to start off However

For absolute comfort in extreme cold weather I use a Big Agnes Two track rectangular pad with a Battle Mountain -15 bag. The pad is rated down to -25 degree's. You can make it even more comfortable with a sleeping green giant memory foam pad cover that adds another 3.5 R factor with the pad's 6.5 R factor makes it even warmer than a down filled 8.0 R factor Exped downmatt 9. However the downmatt 9 is lighter weight that than the big agnes pad system. For 4th season cold weather base camping the big agnes system works better with Big Agnes bags as the exped is a little snug in the pad sleeve. Their pads are 3.5" vs 2.5" on the two track. The dual core only saves you about 6 oz vs the two track. Unfortuantely Big agnes quite making the Battle Mountain bags but still make the Hahns Peak -20 Mummy bag. I like the bag expanders to use with these bags when putting a extreme cold weather pad system so you don't feel like you are in a strait jacket due to the more than fully stuffed pad sleeve. Same would be true of mummy bags. I use the zirkel for 3 season mountain trips with insulated air core.

BP Web Producer
Oct 25, 2010

Jesubmar - You're right we overlooked the Tips link. I have added it now. You can always report any "issues" through our Contact Backpacker page ( and we will fix them promptly.

Oct 25, 2010

As of lately I have been finding "issues" on the Backpacker website, for example, on this page where are the tips (plural) for cold weather camping or the URLs to get you there? I see one tip in the first review about filling the Klean canteen with hot water before going to bed but that is one, as in tip not "tips". The other "tip" in the second review implies if you want to go lighter that you should buy the Mountain Hardwear Phantom 0 deg.
I am all for Backpacker reviewing and sponsoring products because that is how they stay in business but I would appreciate it if Backbacker would correctly name the title of the articles. In this instance it should read: "winter warmth: sleeping bags, sleeping pads, and a TIP for cold weather camping". I want to be able to find the information I am looking for in a clear and efficient manner and not by going through pages where there is little or no imformation on the subject.

Thank you


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