Winter doesn’t have to mean the end of camping season. While can hope for warm weather, plan to protect yourself from bone-chilling overnight temps with new high-tech cold weather sleeping bags.
Shopping for Cold Weather Sleeping Bags
Traditionally, cold weather sleeping bags are rated for temps 20 degrees Fahrenheit and below. The “EN” (European Norm) and “ISO” (International Organization for Standardization) both offer standardized methods for rating the warmth of sleeping bags, but non-EN/ISO-rated bags can still be great options, albeit hit-or-miss with rating accuracy. Beyond the rating, most backpackers choose a mummy-style bag with a large hood, a draft tube, and a collar for trapping heat, along with extra insulation in the bottom of the bag to keep their feet warm.
Finding the right sleeping bag for you depends on several factors including your sleeping pad, base layers, and whether you naturally run warm or cold. However, a good rule of thumb is to take the lowest expected night temperature for your trip and subtract 10 degrees from that figure. To be on the safe side, look for a cold weather sleeping bag that can handle that level of cold. Remember, shedding a layer or unzipping the bag if you get too warm is a much better alternative to shivering through a cold night.
In this guide, we’ve rounded up 10 of the most versatile cold weather sleeping bags from top outdoor brands including Thermarest, Kelty, Sea to Summit, Kuiu, and more. These cozy sleeping bags will keep you warm, dry, and protected in frigid temps and prevent Jack Frost from ruining your wintertime adventures.