The sleeping bag is undeniably one of the most important pieces of gear in your kit, but if you’re anything like us, it hasn’t been upgraded in a while. While the best sleeping bags share plenty of features, the best bag for the person that wants something affordable and reliable for quick weekend jaunts is not the same as the best bag for someone looking to embark on an arctic expedition with a full pack of gear. We put together some of our favorite sleeping bags on the market to help you decide which one is the perfect fit for you when it comes to weight, warmth, construction and price.
For most of us, our sleeping bag requirements don’t include sub-zero temperatures, full cocooning and construction so lightweight you don’t even know it’s there. If you’re looking for the best affordable sleeping bag, stick with something you know like this Coleman Brazos Cold-Weather Sleeping Bag. It’s only rated for 20° – 40°F, but that’s plenty for a weekend of tent camping in a place where it’s not snowing. When you add-in the nostalgia factor of it being like the one you grew up with, the fact that you can zip two together and the downright cheap price tag, this sleeping bag is probably the best starter option out there.$26+
REI is a go-to name for many of you when it comes to outdoor gear, and the Lumen Sleeping Bag absolutely lives up to the maker’s name and pedigree. Rated to 20°F and built with shingle construction, the Lumen uses overlapping layers and distributed insulation to create the perfect three season bag for everyone who wants the comfort, security and protection of a mummy-like bag. It’s not the lightest bag out there, but if that isn’t a concern this is probably the best affordable sleeping bag out there.$159+
Rab has been making sleeping bags for four decades, and to this day, each is still hand-filled in their factory in Derbyshire to insure each compartment of every bag is properly packed with their authentic European Down. The Ascent 500 is a mid-weight, wide mummy sleeping bag specifically designed for regular outdoor use. It has a packed size of 22x39cm and a temperature rating of 24°F / -4.5°C due to the 500g 650FP hydrophobic European Duck Down fill. Whether you’re looking to experiment with a down bag, or you just want one of the best value sleeping bags around, the three season Rab Ascent 500 is a great choice.$250+
Getting naked and sharing body heat with another individual might not be survivalist recommended, but that shouldn’t stop you from cozying up to your special someone in the backcountry. With the Nemo Tango Duo Slim’s 700 Fill Power Down, 20D ripstop nylon shell and larger size, you’ll be sleeping comfortably in 30°F / -1°C conditions with your favorite special someone whether you’re in the backyard, the backcountry or just under the stars. The backless design makes it light and easy to pack, but it can also accommodate two 20″ sleeping pads for those of you looking for maximum comfort.$350
With a 10 denier Pertex Quantum shell that’s been treated with a durable water repellent (DWR) coating and ultra dry 850 fill down internals, you’d expect this 35°F / 2°C mummy bag to weigh a lot more than it does. At a little over a pound (16.4oz to be precise), the 1/3 zip Spark Sp II 35 mummy bag has one of the best weight-to-warmth ratings you’ll find, and the included compression sack allows you to squeeze it into any pack with enough room for a pigskin.$359+
Spending $1,000 on a sleeping bag might seem like a completely absurd idea, but when it’s rated for temperatures up to -40°F, it’s easier to see where the money’s going. With Q.Shield (their name for advanced treatment for moisture and damp conditions) 800-fill Down and the Dry.Q Elite shell, the Ghost is waterproof, breathable, windproof, durable and lightweight–while still protecting you on whatever Arctic expedition you’re planning.$1000+