on January 8, 2012
I feel badly when you pry out of a kid that they were cold last night. Sure, they might not complain much, but it doesn't seem quite fair when you were warm and they weren't. Back packing is supposed to be fun, and it's not fun when you're cold. When I saw these bags - even at full price, I figured they were worth a try.
I got two of them. A short, fishing-lure-looking thing for my eleven year old daughter, and a regular-size green one for my thirteen year old son. I couldn't be more pleased. They are well made, and appear durrable. My wife, at 5'6" fits in the short just fine. I, at 6'1'', am a rather snug fit in in the regular. So far the feathers don't leak. My kids give them a thumbs up. They slept in them at 20 degrees. The daughter said her bottom half was a little cold, but not bad. The son said he slept a little cool. One door and they could have been in their own warm beds. They slept soundly (I checked on them through the night). They looked quite comfortable. We had to wake the daughter up at 9:AM. FYI, 20 degrees bare foot, and in a bathrobe is COLD! These bags should be very comfortable at 30 degrees, their "comfort" rating. The bag compresses well. For the money, this is a super value.
In reading other reviews I note a complaint that you can see light through the bag, or hollow spots, without apparent feathers. This is not a flaw, it's a down bag. Shake the bag thourally to fluff it up and distribute the feathers. You will still see light through the bag - that's OK. Another complaint I see is that the bag smells - like duck feathers. It does; and says duck down right on the tag. This is NOT a $200 goose down bag. It's no big deal. It's a camping smell that says "You're going to be warm tonight". If that bothers you, spend more money, and don't go near the camp fire; by comparison, that really stinks.
on December 19, 2012
Yes, it's an entry level down bag (duck down, not goose, and it is packed accordingly), but a great bag. Like with most manufacturer's cold rating, it's best to figure at least a ten degree variance. Because most people do not adequately insulate themselves from the ground, consider adding another ten to the rating variance, and you shouldn't have any surprises. So purchase a bag that is rated twenty degrees colder than you ever expect to be in. Also, it's not a magic bag, and you aren't forking over hundreds of dollars, so use common sense in dressing for bed. You can always adjust as needed. However, do not make it your plan to sweat, either! Enough moisture, and the next time you wake up, it will be from the cold. Sleep warm, but not hot!
The little loops on the bag are to connect to your sleep pad if desired. One reviewer was unsure.
Not sure why someone would think the baffle is too small?
A couple of people said the zipper could be difficult to operate, but having a good zipper baffle, you just need to watch what you are doing. I have found nothing wrong with the zipper at all. (And it does have a double ended zipper.)
Yes, you can side sleep in it with your legs pulled up.
No, it is not water proof, nor are there claims that it is. Down + water = a very long and cold night! Dry it out thoroughly after a night's use. Hang it on a branch while eating breakfast. Twenty minutes should be long enough.
When you get your bag, take it out of the stuff sack, and shake it out. This will loft it up. While it seems to be thin when first out of the bag, prepare to be amazed at the power of down! (It's almost magic!)
Lastly, when you go to put your bag away, take the stuff sack, and stuff it in a drawer or tie it to one of the little loops on the bag, and put your sleeping bag in a large garbage bag and store it like that. Do not compress it! Only use the stuff sack to transport the bag.
Down is a great choice for pack-ability and a light weight bag! This bag will do you right on a chilly night!
on August 7, 2012
So I had previously ordered a synthetic bag. When that bag showed up it was GIANT, definitely for car camping. I ponied up a few extra bucks and found this down bag and when it showed up I was giddy. I believe on their site it lists its stuffed size as 8x13. Honestly, it might be smaller. You could certainly get a compression bag and make it smaller. I pulled the bag out and within minutes it had fluffed up to almost its maximum height. I got in and zipped it up to make sure I fit. I'm a little over 6-1 if I stand REALLY straight, and I definitely just barely fit in this bag (Regular sized). If I put the hoody on it can be a little straining on my neck if I don't push my feet all the way to the bottom of the bag. I'm really excited to try this bag out on a cold night, if it doesn't stand up to the test, I'll add to my review.
Here are some tips I have learned while researching this bag:
-Don't leave it in the stuff sack it comes in. If you store a down bag in a stuff sack, it will loose it's fluff much faster, thus loosing it's warmth. I put mine in a pillow case, but something a little larger than that and breathable would be recommended.
-The regular size is definitely made for people who are exactly 6 ft tall. If you are taller, strongly consider getting the larger bag.
-Don't get it wet. Down bags lose their heating properties when wet.
-Don't let your cats near it. Mine punched a whole in the stuff sack within 2 minutes of me opening the package :(
-Use a sleeping pad and wear long jons, socks, and a hat. Sleeping bags are rated for comfortability while using all of these, not while sleeping shirtless on the ground.
on September 8, 2011
When I first removed bag from manufacturer box, it looked really large in it's 8x13 stuff sack, as a previous bag I just tried was in a compression sack of 7x10! No compression sack or storage bag included, to keep price down probably. Anyway at first glance it's not very impressive, looks flat as well as very light weight and not like it would be warm enough. The other reviewer stated you can see thru bag at baffle seems, (true) which is a little dis-heartening at first. Bag did fluffy up nicely, especially outside in the chilly night air. This bag is very soft to the touch, I think outside of bag is softer than the inside! Outside bag colors vary but the backs are dark grey and inside light grey, great for critter checks! The manufacturer box holds a lot of great information that they should disclose in their ads, less returns & more informed customer purchasing! So here's Kelty's box info, pictures included. Kelty like most sellers only disclose their maximum temp. rating and not the comfort rating, 2 very different things. As well as basic, again basic assumption that women sleep colder than men. This bag is rated for the maximum temp of 20 degrees for a standard guy and 32 degrees for a standard woman as we are all different. These comfort and maximum ratings are based on wearing thermal underwear to bed. Not sure your picking the right bag? Contact the company who makes it and ask them what the comfort rating is before you buy the bag. This bag is DUCK DOWN, not goose, but still pretty warm for me. Pack ability a must for me! I am a 5'6" woman and purchased the regular size bag for more wiggle room. The women's specific bag is also roomy and cut wider, which was very appealing but the 5'6" height rating had me concerned about not enough room. I did not want to feel jamed into this bag from top to bottom either. Also think women's colors don't appeal to all of us & more color options would be great. I took the "fishing lure" Macaw color other reviewer spoke of, (too funny). The bag has sleeping pad security loops that I can't figure out how to use with my Cosmo Air mattress, no instructions included. There are liner loops on inside and hanging loops at bottom. Also a guy line and flat string line to close neck baffle and head pocket, the little cam that holds these lines together is very small and hard to use and I have small hands! Bad choice for this bag, but it works with a little concentration. There is also a Velcro zipper cover, which also folds into it's self when not in use so you don't get your hair caught in Velcro! The inside zipper can be a little sticky until you figure out your system for moving zipper baffle out of the way in a hurried bathroom break.
Testing ground- starting at 50 degree temp in Mountainsmith Morrison 2 tent (which is so funny as it's a weird green too!!). Dressed in sweats, T-shirt & lightweight fleece shirt and socks. Way too hot!! Had to remove socks right away, as there is no way to vent your feet, zipper is pretty high up from footbox to stick them out, but can be done. Zipper is 20" from bottom of footbox. Also had to leave bag open for air flow. At 50 degrees shorts and T-shirt only in my opinion! Temp dropped down to about 42 degrees in middle of night and back went socks and zipper came up to, but only to about top of belly. I was not even a little cold, so I could see a 32 degree use by women who dress properly and know if they sleep hot or cold and the limits of your bag. I had no problem turning inside this bag, from side to back to other side, (I toss & turn) bag did not suffocate me or trap me. I also did not have any cool spots in the bag despite the down not being right up against the seems. Maybe in future they could sew fabric or something into seem to help with that problem. Overall I really like this bag, it's a nice switch from my camping synthetic bag, not so heavy and bulky. The color choices are limited in this style bag, just deal with it, it good humor at the campfire!
Bag would have gotten 5 stars except, no instructions on using pad loops, cam for head/neck baffle too small, & either a compression sack or storage sack should have been included. Also this bag is not 2lb 3 oz, The Reg is 2 lb 10 oz/ 78"L & 62" shoulder- Short is 2 lb 5 oz/ 72"L & 58" shoulder and the Long is 3 lb 5 oz/ 84"L & 64" shoulder. These are off the box. I'm definitely keeping this bag, as I sleep cold & it kept me warm and I don't sleep out in 30 degree or less anyway!
on October 30, 2013
I've had this bag for about a year and finally got a chance to test it in the mountains of N.C. It got down to 25 degrees.... maybe lower and I was perfectly warm. I believe I would have stayed warm to 20 degrees. I was wearing cheap Walmart thermal pants and shirt, wool socks and a toboggan. No gloves. My pad was a Therm-a-Rest Neo, 2.5 inch thickness. I slept in a Big Agnes Copper Spur 1.... which is just about all mosquito netting. There was no wind that weekend. It's very light and compacts small, and I paid about $110 for it. I can't testify to the durability yet. So far, I am very pleased with my purchase.
on August 29, 2012
I got this sleeping bag for a 2 day backpacking trip in the back country of Yellowstone. The recorded temps for those nights were 37F & 24F. It did its job, and kept me warm. I get cold easily so I slept with long underwear and thermal shirt, so I don't know how it would have done with less on. I didn't experience the cold spot problem some people commented about. Also, I saw some people complaining about the duck smell. I didn't really know what they meant, having never been close enough to a duck to smell its down - but occasionally I would get a whiff of wet dog, so I'm guessing that's what they're talking about. Anyway, I got over that pretty quickly and passed out. The shell material is comfortable and cozy. I was pretty pleasantly surprised how warm it actually was crawling into it - I was kind of doubtful judging it by its weight and feel. Oh yah, also, I know I like to spread my feet out at night, so I ordered the long even though I'm only 5'5" and it was plenty roomy - i mean it's only $8 more for the extra space.
on July 24, 2011
So far I love this bag, I've used it down to about 30 degrees, and been comfortable. Yes, the green is kind of horrifying, I feel like a lure every time I zip in, but for down you can't beat the price.
I bought the size large because at the time it was 10 bucks cheaper than the regular, I'm six-foot one and 200 pounds, and I'm practically swimming in the large yet it weighs very little and packs up quite small.
Overall I'm very impressed, and am taking this giant, warm lure with me on the JMT this August.
EDIT: Back from my JMT (didn't finish, but got to get a good test on all my gear). Got to say, LOVE IT! Kept me warm and toasty even when there was ice on my tent, couldn't be happier with my purchase.
on February 6, 2013
Wonderful down bag for the price. From what I read before buying it's almost as good as bags at 2 or 3 times the price and although I've never owned a $300 sleeping bag I can't imagine it's a major improvement over this bag unless you are a hardcore trekker. If that was the case you would already be looking at other bags 3 or 4 times more expensive.
My kids and I are longtime car campers and big heavy sub $35 bags have always been just fine as camping in the Arizona high country in the summer is rarely very cold. Recently my teenage son has been doing a few overnight hiking trips though in AZ with his church group and carrying a +5lb bag on a pack is just not right so I bought this bag after much...much research and couldn't be happier with my purchase.
First impressions: May not be a 900 fill power but it's plenty for me. Bag is at least half the weight of my 'big' quilt type bags and packs down in a compression sack to 1/3rd the size...at least. After opening the bag it fluffed up very nicely in just a few minutes. The attention to detail on this bag is great....the area around the head cinches down nicely and it has a very nice neck baffle. It zips down to below the knees so you can stretch out or release heat if need. Has a Velcro attachment around the neck area. Simply a wonderful bag for the price. I hope to keep using this for the next decade or more. Keep it out of it's stuff sack while not using it and that should be no problem. I'd buy again...in fact I'm thinking of getting another.
Regarding fill power: Don't let it be the single determining factor in your purchase. What you need to know is that if two bags are rated at the same temps but one is 550 fill power and one is 900 fill power they will both insulate you the same. The difference is the 900 fill power bag will be lighter as it requires less down to achieve the same temp rating. Point being fill power may be very important to those trekking and having to carry a bag but that lighter bag comes at a price. 550 fill power is not less warm (for a given temp rating) it just weighs more...and by more I mean a 1/2 pound or so. This bag is still 3lbs lighter than my cheap quilt style Coleman bags. Just food for thought.
on February 10, 2014
I ordered the Kelty 20 down sleeping bag last minute and got it overnighted. It's light, compacts well, great starter bag. Easily handles 30s to 40s temps. It will handle 20s with long sleeve thermals, socks, cap, and good insulation from the ground.
I took it on a camp and run where it was drizzly and it got down to about 46 degrees (was supposed to be mid 30s) as soon as I got it. I slept in boxers and a t-shirt and was cozy all night. It worked great. I had a thick blanket on top of an older thermarest foam pad for ground insulation. The combo worked well but a thermarest air pad would be ideal. I have an old 25 degree synthetic and it is definitely not rated well but I strongly believe this Kelty will reach it's advertised limit.
If the sleeping bag is touching the ground the cold will seep right in, but it will on just about any bag that's why you need good insulation from the ground. Thermarest airpad is going to be my next purchase, the foam pads, even with a thick blanket on top of them just barely did the job in the low 40s.
I bought my girlfriend a Marmot 30 degree bag (rectangle) because she doesn't like the mummy style bags and she slept cozily. I also bought a Mr.Heater Portable Buddy just in case, because it was supposed to be in the mid 30s and it worked out really well.
on January 4, 2013
Got this bag for Christmas and immediately took it to a week-long Winter Scout Camp. True it was in SE Texas, but it was one of the coldest weeks we have had in several years with 3 out of the 5 nights at or below freezing. Two of the nights were in the mid-20s, and anyone that is familiar with SE Texas knows how cold it can get when combining cold temps with humidity. This bag was a solid performer - no cold spots, and with only a Thermarest between me and the ground and inside an REI half-dome tent. Lent my space blankets and extra blankets to other campers, but I never missed them. By the end of the week I had abandoned my thermal sleepwear and was wearing only gym shorts and t-shirt. The bag fluffed nicely right out of the box and I was impressed with the light weight and compressibility of the bag. I used an inexpensive poly/silk liner that probably added a few degrees protection, but that was mostly to keep the bag clean. I was especially impressed with the heat retention in the hood - never used a beanie all week and my head and ears stayed toasty. The drawcord for the hood took a bit of getting used to, but worked fine. The extra room in the shoulders made for a comfortable fit with no claustrophobic feeling. I did not notice any unusual smell or down leakage. I am looking forward to a January backpacking trip and all the extra room in my pack because this bag compresses so well. For the price and quality, I would highly recommend this bag.