Gear Review: Sierra Designs Zissou 15 Sleeping Bag

A water-resistant down bag made with Sierra Designs' DriDown.


Fact: Backpackers in Scotland do not carry down sleeping bags. “It’s damp, dank, and humid here almost all year,” says our man in Scotland. “It’s practically suicide to carry a down bag. Until now.” Our tester and his friend took the Zissou, stuffed with 600-fill DriDown (SD’s proprietary version of water-resistant down) and a traditional down bag to Cairngorm National Park, and after just three days of relentlessly soggy weather, the traditional bag had gone limp, while the Zissou never lost its loft. “I was very impressed,” he reports. “And other than that huge benefit, there was literally no difference between the DriDown and traditional down in terms of packability, weight, or any other performance factor.”

The cut is a standard mummy shape, and the minimal draft collar worked well enough to keep testers comfortable into the teens. The shell is made from durable 30-denier, micro-ripstop polyester with DWR. The downside? The 600-fill down is less expensive than premier 800-fill, but it’s also heavier and bulkier to pack (the Zissou packs down to 8 by 16 inches in its included, noncompression stuffsack). $260; 2 lbs. 11 oz.; reg. and long;