Sleeping bags

Bushwalking gear and paraphernalia. Electronic gadget topics (inc. GPS, PLB, chargers) belong in the 'Techno Babble' sub-forum.
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Sleeping bags

Postby sa_cooke » Tue 11 Oct, 2016 1:35 pm

My next walk is into the Central Plateau following Higgs Track to Lake Nameless and Ironstone hut, then I'll be trying to follow Ritters Track to Walls of Jerusalem. This is next week.

In looking at the gear I'll need for the walk, I am reviewing the sleeping bag I'll take. I realised that the recent weather we've been experiencing in SE Australia, and particularly Tasmania, may extend into next week, so I'd better be prepared with a winter weight sleeping bag.

I generally use my OP Cocoon 500 for 3-season walking. I really like the weight for warmth factor of that bag. I'm thinking that it may not be suitable for where I'm going though. So I turned my mind to other sleeping bags I have. My One Planet Winterlite is brilliant, but at just over 2kg can hardly be accused of ultralight status. My Fairydown Scorpion is also great, but at a tad over 1.6kg (mainly due to the Pertex cover and very snug fit) is still quite heavy. I also have a ridiculous Mountain Designs bag from the era when they actually made great sleeping bags. I've never been able to zip it up because it's too hot.

So that got me thinking about newer, lighter bags. I've not looked around for a while, and I was wondering whether anyone here could share some of their recent wisdom regarding warm (-10 to -15) bags that are also light please.

I have looked around a bit -- Mont Helium 600 (-10) looks pretty good, and weighs in at 950gms according to Mont. Anyone had experience with these please?
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Re: Sleeping bags

Postby Moondog55 » Tue 11 Oct, 2016 2:20 pm

Personally I'd be taking the OP and just wearing extra clothing at need
Interested in which particular MD sleeping bag you are referring to tho
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Re: Sleeping bags

Postby sa_cooke » Tue 11 Oct, 2016 2:24 pm

I love One Planet. I called them and spoke with a really helpful guy there about my options, and he helped out hugely. So, please disregard my query if you want to. It might still be interesting to hear of the experience of others though.

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Re: Sleeping bags

Postby DaveNoble » Tue 11 Oct, 2016 4:54 pm

sa_cooke wrote:My next walk is into the Central Plateau following Higgs Track to Lake Nameless and Ironstone hut, then I'll be trying to follow Ritters Track to Walls of Jerusalem. This is next week.



I don't know if Ritters Track exists. I have walked a number of times from Higgs Track to Lake Nameless (good track) - and then gone cross country to the Walls of J. From Lake Nameless there does not seem to be a track. I have seen the odd cairn here and there - but the time spent trying to locate the next one (if they do mark a route) is not worth it. It is not hard to find your own route. You can generally walk around any thicket of scrub you encounter. It is good to have the 1:25,000 maps handy and it is easy to navigate with them (and a compass) - you can generally work out where you are from the shapes of the lakes and their islands. Or you can use a GPS for assistance. Its good to work out a rough route on the map - and then when you get there use that as a guide - you may have to walk slightly off it due to scrubby patches. But on the whole the country is delightful - wild and beautiful. Lake Gwendy and Pencil Pine Tarn are nice (and both have good campsites), you can cross the Long Tarns at several places - see the map. You can walk either way around the Daisy Lakes, and then head left of Lake Tyre (stay high up will you get to the end of the Lake), then easy leads down to the Vales.

I would take the Cocoon and a down jacket.

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Re: Sleeping bags

Postby sa_cooke » Tue 11 Oct, 2016 9:07 pm

DaveNoble wrote:
sa_cooke wrote:My next walk is into the Central Plateau following Higgs Track to Lake Nameless and Ironstone hut, then I'll be trying to follow Ritters Track to Walls of Jerusalem. This is next week.



I don't know if Ritters Track exists. I have walked a number of times from Higgs Track to Lake Nameless (good track) - and then gone cross country to the Walls of J. From Lake Nameless there does not seem to be a track. I have seen the odd cairn here and there - but the time spent trying to locate the next one (if they do mark a route) is not worth it. It is not hard to find your own route. You can generally walk around any thicket of scrub you encounter. It is good to have the 1:25,000 maps handy and it is easy to navigate with them (and a compass) - you can generally work out where you are from the shapes of the lakes and their islands. Or you can use a GPS for assistance. Its good to work out a rough route on the map - and then when you get there use that as a guide - you may have to walk slightly off it due to scrubby patches. But on the whole the country is delightful - wild and beautiful. Lake Gwendy and Pencil Pine Tarn are nice (and both have good campsites), you can cross the Long Tarns at several places - see the map. You can walk either way around the Daisy Lakes, and then head left of Lake Tyre (stay high up will you get to the end of the Lake), then easy leads down to the Vales.

I would take the Cocoon and a down jacket.

Dave


Thanks Dave. That information is very helpful. On another thread in this place I have mentioned that I've already marked a rough route on a map -- so, good to hear that I'm at least on the right "track" (no pun intended). I've been to WoJ many, many times, but I've only ever gazed in awe at the area east of Mt Jerusalem. I've never ventured into the area. So, having the information at hand from you is very reassuring. I'm actually very excited!

And, yes, I'll be taking the Cocoon. And my down jacket. You know, I bought the down jacket two years ago, and I've only ever worn it once. It simply has not been cold enough in Tassie to use it regularly.

On the matter of Ritter's Track, Simon Cubit tells the story of 220 cairns marking out the route. In the story he mentions Ken Felton as having been in the area back in 2001 to find and record the position of as many of the cairns as possible. I've been in touch with Simon recently to ask whether the information Ken had is publicly available. Seems it's not -- Simon suggested I do as Ken did. I really wanted to follow the route, marking each cairn I find on the map. It seems if I do that I'm going to miss some of the places you mention. I guess it depends on why I want to be in the area. Oh well, whatever I choose, I can always go back into the area!
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Re: Sleeping bags

Postby Strider » Wed 12 Oct, 2016 7:28 am

Are you looking to buy a new bag? If you want lightweight you can't beat a quilt. Underclingmike and Tier Gear are two fantastic local quilt manufacturers.

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Re: Sleeping bags

Postby DanShell » Wed 12 Oct, 2016 10:25 am

sa_cooke wrote:My next walk is into the Central Plateau following Higgs Track to Lake Nameless and Ironstone hut, then I'll be trying to follow Ritters Track to Walls of Jerusalem. This is next week.



I have walked from Lake Nameless to Middle Lake and on a separate walk I have walked from Middle Lake to WOJ. I know you will stay well south of Fisher River but there can be quite a few smaller inlets to the mirad of lakes and tarns that will be flowing well at the moment.
I took a risk in one a while ago and managed to get swept in and drowned a brand new iphone 6 at the time :(
Where is the other thread you speak of, perhaps we can have a look at your proposed route in that thread to not take this one too far off topic??

Strider wrote:Are you looking to buy a new bag? If you want lightweight you can't beat a quilt. Underclingmike and Tier Gear are two fantastic local quilt manufacturers.


I agree with this. I use one of Mikes quilts and love it and I can also concur to the quality of Tier Gear.
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Re: Sleeping bags

Postby sa_cooke » Wed 12 Oct, 2016 12:51 pm

Strider wrote:Are you looking to buy a new bag?


Well, the advice I received from One Planet when I spoke with them yesterday was that there was little point in buying a new bag. I was told that, for $140 or so, I could send my old Cocoon 500 to OP and it would be cleaned and brought up to Cocoon -11 spec with 591gms of new down, replacing the 500gms of the original down. So, I'd be getting a refurbished bag at current spec for $140. This seems a lot better value than paying $530 for a new One Planet Cocoon, or more for the Mont bag I mentioned in my original post (actually, Mountain Creek here in Hobart currently have 20% off all down bags, for anyone interested). I've not considered quilts before. I really don't know how a quilt would perform here in Tassie.
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Re: Sleeping bags

Postby paul_gee » Fri 14 Oct, 2016 9:14 am

sa_cooke wrote: I was told that, for $140 or so, I could send my old Cocoon 500 to OP and it would be cleaned and brought up to Cocoon -11 spec with 591gms of new down, replacing the 500gms of the original down.


OP's service never ceases to amaze me. I bought a Sac 1 years ago and found a dodgy stitch on it. They took it, had it repaired and returned in a week.
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Re: Sleeping bags

Postby Walk_fat boy_walk » Fri 14 Oct, 2016 11:09 am

paul_gee wrote:
sa_cooke wrote: I was told that, for $140 or so, I could send my old Cocoon 500 to OP and it would be cleaned and brought up to Cocoon -11 spec with 591gms of new down, replacing the 500gms of the original down.


OP's service never ceases to amaze me. I bought a Sac 1 years ago and found a dodgy stitch on it. They took it, had it repaired and returned in a week.


Yep they're fantastic. I mentioned in a conversation at their Melbourne shop a while back that I'd holed my OP pack (through budawangs bauera bashing belligerence - try saying that 3 times - of my own volition), not expecting anything from them, and within a week a piece of colour-matched canvass turned up in the post (at their own cost) to repair it with. Little things that make a big difference in a brand loyalty sense.
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Re: Sleeping bags

Postby nq111 » Fri 14 Oct, 2016 7:27 pm

If you take the lighter weight bag get one of these http://www.surviveoutdoorslonger.com/survival/shelter/survive-outdoors-longer-emergency-bivvy.html to use as a vapour barrier - will add a fair bit of warmth, ensure the down stays fluffy and good for an emergency bivy or space blanket as well.
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Re: Sleeping bags

Postby SergeantMcFly » Fri 14 Oct, 2016 10:31 pm

If you're still browsing and like some comparison, this guy put together an amazing list (also downloadable in Excel). Prices are in USD and weights in Imperial but its easy conversion https://nozipp.com/blogs/education/comparisonmatrix
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Re: Sleeping bags

Postby Fishy3095 » Mon 09 Jan, 2017 8:13 pm

paul_gee wrote:
sa_cooke wrote: I was told that, for $140 or so, I could send my old Cocoon 500 to OP and it would be cleaned and brought up to Cocoon -11 spec with 591gms of new down, replacing the 500gms of the original down.


OP's service never ceases to amaze me. I bought a Sac 1 years ago and found a dodgy stitch on it. They took it, had it repaired and returned in a week.



Hi Paul,
I was wondering what your thoughts were on the OP sac? Was just looking at it for myself? Have you been happy with it?
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