Camping sleeping bags from Eastern Mountain Sports have the perfect combination of rugged durability and plush comfort for campers’ sleeping needs. Sleep over in an EMS sleeping bag today.MORE
Portable Camping Sleeping Bags
Don’t haul the wrong kinds of luggage all over the mountainside! Find a durable and easily portable camping sleeping bag from EMS. Our sleeping bags are lightweight and easily transportable between campgrounds. MORE
Keep out the damp!
EMS has a great selection of washable liners that keep your bag clean and dry. Don’t let a little wet weather get your sleeping bag soaked! Stay dry with sleeping bag liners.BACK
How to Choose Sleeping Bags
At the end of an action-packed day outside, there's nothing like crawling into a comfy sleeping bag to rest up for the next one. To help you narrow your selection and find the perfect sleeping bag for you, here are a few important things to consider and comfort-enhancing features to look for.
Sleeping Bags Temperature Ratings
All sleeping bags have a recommended temperature rating. It refers to the lowest temperature the bag is suitable for. However, because outside factors like your metabolic rate and the sleeping pad you use will also effect how warmly (or coldly) you sleep, it's probably best to mentally add about 10° when searching for the right bag. This means you should think of a 20° bag as really 30°'s, -20 as -10 and so on.
Down Sleeping Bags
Goose down is the lightest, most compressible insulator available, giving it an extraordinarily high warmth-to-weight ratio. That means that a 20° down sleeping bag will probably weigh less than a 20° synthetic sleeping bag. This is important for backpackers who can't afford to get weighed down. And because it retains its superior insulating qualities for years and years, down is a terrific investment. On the minus side, when down gets wet it stops insulating and becomes heavier
Down's insulating ability is measured in fill power. This refers to the number of cubic inches one ounce of down will displace when under controlled pressure. The higher the fill power, the less down the bag needs to keep you warm. This is why a sleeping bag insulated with 800-fill down will most likely weigh less than a sleeping bag using 600-fill.
All EMS Mountain Light bags are filled with Eastern European down insulation which has a very high ratio of down to feathers, translating to higher fill power.
Synthetic Insulated Sleeping Bags
As a rule, synthetic insulation performs better in wet weather than down; it dries faster and is usually less expensive. Remember, though, that compared to down, synthetic is bulkier and wears out sooner.
PrimaLoft® Insulation Sleeping Bags
Sometimes called "synthetic-down" for its compressibility and great warmth-to-weight ratio, PrimaLoft stands out from other synthetics. Its fibers are very hydrophobic, making it the best of all insulations at dealing with wet conditions. Thinking of a backpacking trip in the rain forests of Washington State? PrimaLoft sleeping bags are your best bet.
PrimaLoft Infinity is the latest generation of this insulation. It's a continuous filament synthetic, giving it a longer life-span when compared to other types of PrimaLoft and most other synthetics.
Ideally, shell fabric should be lightweight and at least somewhat water-resistant (especially if it covers down insulation). Pertex® nylon is a good example of an ultralight, weather-resistant shell material. Bear in mind, though, that water resistance refers to repelling spills and condensation, not sleeping in the rain without a tent.
Mummy Sleeping Bags
Narrower at the feet and head, mummy-shaped sleeping bags are more heat efficient than rectangular bags because there?s less unused space. And since less material has been used to make it, the mummy is also the lightest and most packable shape. If you?re backpacking are camping in cold weather, go with a mummy bag.
Semi-rectangular Sleeping Bags
Tapered from top to bottom to save weight and increase warmth, semi-rectangular bags are a good compromise between rectangulars and mummies. If a little wiggle room is more important to you than minimizing weight, this may be your bag shape.
Extremely ultralight bags sometimes shave ounces off by providing a very short main zipper, or even deleting it altogether. You will have to weigh the convenience of a full-length zipper against the savings in weight you get with a partial-length zipper.
Zippered Foot Box
The ability to zip open the very end of the bag can be nice for those with sweaty feet.
Insulated Collars and Draft Tubes
An insulated collar helps keep the warm air that your body has heated up from escaping through the head opening. Likewise, an insulated draft tube keeps heat from leaving through the main zipper.
Don't cut the user height too closely. If a bag is recommended for people up to six feet, and you are exactly six feet, try graduating up a size. Extra height also lets you store water bottles and clothing inside the bag when winter camping.
Women's Sleeping Bags
Women's bags are cut narrowly at the shoulders and widely at the hips, and the insulation is distributed in a way that's different from a men's. Women's sleeping bags are also shorter.
Instead of buying a winter bag that can be used only in cold weather, you could couple two three-season sleeping bags together instead. This economic option works best if one of the bags is mummy shaped and the other semi-rectangular. We also sell "overbags" which are specifically designed to be used as the exterior sleeping bag in a two-bag setup.
DON'T FORGET THE SLEEPING PAD!
As you lie in your bag, your body compresses the insulation underneath, greatly reducing its ability to trap air. A foam sleeping pad compensates by insulating you from the cold ground below.
Rectangular Sleeping Bags
Rectangular bags are the roomiest. Plus, they can be opened up and used as quilts or zipped together as a double bed. The trade-offs are warmth and weight. All that extra room means more air your body needs to heat up once you get in. It also means that more materials have gone into making it, translating to greater weight. These bags are great for car camping and sleepovers.