Gear Review: L.L.Bean Down Mummy with DownTek
Brand: L.L. Bean
Model: Down Mummy with DownTek
Tossing and turning your nighttime MO? Back, side, stomach, and all-of-the-above sleepers alike cheered the comfort of this roomy bed. “I’m a very fidgety sleeper, and when I twist, I usually wake myself up,” said an Olympic National Park tester. “But in this bag, I could roll over without having to do The Worm to get comfortable again.” The forgiving cut (68 inches at the shoulder, 64 inches at the hip, and 48 inches at the footbox) also left room for side sleepers to bring their knees all the way up without feeling squeezed. Warmth was similarly impressive, keeping a tester in Arizona’s Coconino National Forest snug all the way down to 10°F. The 650-fill DownTek Bean relies on a simple yet effective design: a fat draft tube, cradling hood, and ring-shaped draft collar that velcroes around the neck kept in body heat, and the horizontal baffles concentrate more feathers on the critical top and side areas (because the bottom is already insulated by your sleeping pad). And though the bag uses lower-quality feathers, it lofted high and quickly: “Puffy enough for a nap by the time we finished staking the fly,” said one tester. In warmer temps, testers could vent the two-way zipper enough to stay comfortable into the 40s. The combination of the tough, 33-denier, DWR-treated nylon shell and DownTek fill repelled everything from tent condensation up to several hours of light rain. “The down didn’t get soaked, so I stayed warm,” reports a Colorado Rockies tester who slept out without a shelter. Plus, it recovered from moisture quickly. “I spread it out in the sun one morning, and it dried so fast we were able to pack up early,” said one tester. Bonus: Sweet price. Downsides: You pay for the luxe feel, warmth, and bargain price tag in weight and bulk. It’s the heaviest and most cumbersome bag in the test (packed size: 8 by 13 inches). Testers also dinged it for breathability; several woke up clammy, even in the 20s. $229; 2 lbs. 12 oz.; 20°F; llbean.com
Dan Larson: The warmth was there, but you paid for it with the bulk factor. Good breathability, and comfortable to sleep in. The shell did absorb some condensation on a super-rainy night.
Laura Onstot: I’m a very fidgety sleeper and usually, when I twist, I wake myself up getting tangled. In this bag, I could roll over without having to do “the worm” just to get comfortable again. Yes, it’s a little on the bigger, heavier side, but it’s also incredibly comfortable.
Nick Sutton: Simple and effective design. Disappointment: I’m a warm sleeper, and I woke up sticky after a night hunkered down in the bag. Very durable.
Eli Zabielski: Kept me warm, and I’m a cold sleeper. I found the draft collar sort of awkward to use, but then again, what draft collar isn’t awkward? The down didn’t get soaked when I slept out in a light rain.