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Will my sleeping bag be warm enough?


Q. I have a 45-degree mummy sleeping bag and a 15-degree liner to go with it, so it becomes a 30-degree bag. My dad says I’ll be fine in the cold, but I’m not so sure. It gets pretty cold in the tri-state area. What do you think I should do?
— Worried Russell, Randolph, N.J.

A. I think you should give it a shot. Sleep a couple nights out in your bag and find out if it keeps you warm enough. If you’re worried, pitch a tent in the backyard so you’ll be close to home if you do get totally chilled.

That said, here are some ways to stay warm inside your sleeping bag: (1) be sure to use a sleeping pad because that will help insulate you from the cold ground, which will quickly suck heat from your body; (2) consider sleeping in warm clothes, like a set of long underwear and wool socks. Also, wear an insulated stocking cap since you lose lots of body heat from the top of your head.

Lastly, keep in mind, the temperature ratings on sleeping bags and liners are just general guidelines. It’s up to you to determine at what temperature you can still sleep comfortably in your sleeping bag.

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10 Comments on Will my sleeping bag be warm enough?

  1. Troop 483 // June 5, 2016 at 7:39 am // Reply

    In our Troop here in NY we always recommend that new Scouts start with a sleeping bag rated for 0’F. That way no mater when we camp they will be comfortable. It’s easier to deal with a warm night than a cold night with the wrong bag

  2. Also keep in mind that the pad underneath is as important. The cold ground will pull more heat from you than cold air above. Close cell pads work well, adding a blanket between the pad and the bag helps. Even a some cardboard will help.

  3. prove it’s bad if you think it’s bad

  4. As you head would be more likely to be sticking outside of the sleeping bag – that’s why you would tend to lose heat lose heat thru it. But making sure to keep your feet warm is important to me

  5. the idea that you lose so much heat from your head is GREATLY exaggerated.

  6. When new, sleeping bag ratings indicate the temperature they will keep you alive at, not comfortable.

    Depending on how old it is, how you care for it, and store it, that temperature can change drastically in only a few years. Always bring extra warm clothes long johns, sweats Etc… just in case your bag isn’t up to snuff, or the temperature drops mire than expected.

  7. No!

    If you have any questions about staying warm at night, pack warmer than you other wise might. Nothing gets a scout to quit camping faster than a bad sleeping experiance like being cold every night.

  8. You could also put your sleeping bag, in another sleeping bag.

  9. maybe it looks comfortable

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