Camping Sleeping Bags for Adults and Kids

Camping Sleeping Bags for Adults and Kids

If you camp, you need a sleeping bag. Sleeping bags are one of the camping items that I always prioritize. Having a nice warm, comfortable sleeping bag means a nice warm, comfortable night’s sleep.

Much like any camping gear, there are loads of options and things to learn to get yourself up to speed with what you need to know to choose the best sleeping bag. The good news for you is I will be explaining everything you need to know in this article.

Things to Look for When Choosing a Sleeping Bag

There are five main things to consider when you’re looking for the best sleeping bag for your buck:

Temperature Rating – This is pretty important. You’re buying a sleeping bag to be warm and comfortable while sleeping, so most of your time should be spent making sure it’s the right temperature rating for the weather conditions.

Materials It’s Made From – The materials the sleeping bag is made from effect how the bag feels and performs. Some people prefer a waterproof outer layer, while some like a softer feel.

Weight – Every item you take with you camping has to be transported and carried by you at some point. Weight is always a factor if you’re camping in an RV maybe not, but it’s something to consider.

Size – This is another area that often comes down to personal preference. You need to think about how much legroom you have where you’re sleeping, as well as how much legroom you want inside the sleeping bag.

Value – Everyone likes value for money. Sleeping bags range in price but you can find an affordable option with a little searching. I’ll help you out by recommending some of the best in this article.

Coleman North Rim Extreme Weather Sleeping Bag

Coleman North Rim Extreme Weather Sleeping Bag

This is an extreme example of a winter sleeping bag that will keep you nice and warm in temperates down as low as 15 degrees.

It’s polyester, has storage, a hood, and will fit anyone up to 6’2″ comfortably.

Sleeping bags have come a long way in recent years. This is worth a closer look if you go cold weather camping.

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Understanding Sleeping Bag Temperature and Comfort Ratings

Sleeping bags are classified with comfort ratings and temperature guides to help you choose the right one to keep you warm enough. This is what you need to look out for:

Comfort Rating – This rating is given as the lowest temperature that the sleeping bag will keep the average female warm.

Lower-limit Rating – This rating is given as the lowest temperature that the sleeping bag will keep the average male warm.

You will also notice seasonal classifications, these are:

Winter Rating – This is a rating given to heavy duty sleeping bags designed for winter use. Look for this rating if you will be camping in temperatures of 10 degrees and lower.

3-Season Rating – This is an indication that the sleeping bag is suitable for 3-seasons. With the temperature range being 10 – 35 degrees.

Summer Rating – This rating is for lighter sleeping bags designed to be used in temperatures of 35 degrees and above.

What Type of Insulation Is Most Suitable for You?

It’s important to note that the insulation of a sleeping bag doesn’t generate heat, it’s designed to keep your body warmth in to help you stay warm. You should be looking for a bag that fits all of the criteria above, and the type of insulation will influence this.

There are a few types of insulation but it really comes down to two types, synthetic, and down, the pros and cons of each are as follows:

Synthetic Insulated Sleeping Bags

Sleeping bags made with synthetic insulation are typically a little less expensive than down, they dry very quickly when wet, and are designed to perform best in damp climates.

They usually take up a little more room than a down bag and are not expected to have as long of a life. I’d recommend them for light to medium use.

Down Insulated Sleeping Bags

Down is lovely and warm, you probably have down bedding and know how soft and warm it is. It’s breathable, compresses easily, lasts a long time, will keep you nice and snug in the cold weather, and feel nice to the touch.

So what are the downsides? It’s more expensive than synthetic materials.   So it’s not ideal for the casual camper or those on a tight budget.  The cost is by far the biggest downside of down bags vs synthetics.

If you can’t make your mind up between the two materials, there are some popular hybrid synthetic/down sleeping bags on the market that are the best of both worlds.

Other Sleeping Bag Features to Consider

There are some pretty cool and useful features on some sleeping bags, check for the following when you’re deciding on a bag you like:

Hood – Hoods are pretty standard on backpacking sleeping bags. Look for a nice big hood with a drawcord so you can pull it tight. Check for a nice padded hood too, you’re head is going to be in there so you want it to be comfy.

Strong Zipper – Most sleeping bags have zippers running down at least one side. You want a big strong zipper, having a faulty or broken zipper is a sure way to ruin your night.

Pocket – A lot of sleeping bags come with a pocket or two inside. This always turns out to be really handy for holding a mobile phone or something to snack on.

Carry Bag – They should always come with a handy carry bag but it’s worth checking before you buy. Carry bags will help you wrap up the sleeping bag to the smallest possible size for carrying.

Enkeeo Mummy Sleeping Bag – Cotton

Enkeeo Mummy Sleeping Bag

This is one of the better sleeping bags on the market. It has all the features I’ve mentioned above, such as a stash pocket, footbox, hood, and a mix of materials.

You can rest assured you will have an incredibly night’s sleep in this sleeping bag. If budget allows, this model should be a consideration.


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Choosing the Best Sleeping Bag for Kids

When looking for the best sleeping bag for children there are some different factors to consider than when you’re looking for yourself. For example, making sure younger children are warm and comfortable enough is the main consideration. While slightly older kids are going to be more interested in something that looks cool as well as doing its job as a sleeping bag!

Here are a couple of options that may be of interest;

Coleman Sleeping Bag For ChildrenColeman Sleeping Bag For Children

Coleman make some of the best camping gear on the market. From stoves to lanterns, and sleeping bags.

This sleeping bag is designed for children, you can see it has softer padding, it’s only 60 x 26″, and it’s  a fun color.

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Disney Sleeping Bag For Kids

Disney Sleeping Bag for Children

This is a perfect choice if you’re looking for a sleeping bag for a 2-year-old girl or younger.

It’s a polyester sleeping bag, so it’s durable, warm, and comes with a handy little carry bag.

It’s important to let your children take part and do as they see the adults doing if they are going to be comfortable camping. Giving them their own sleeping bag is the first step.

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I’ve answered some commonly asked questions about camping sleeping bags:

What Does ‘Mummy’ Sleeping Bag Mean?

You’ll notice some sleeping bags called ‘mummy bags’. This means they have insulated hoods to keep your head warm. These are typically the best style of sleeping bag as it’s nice to have the option to keep your head warm. They are also very good at regulating temperature and keeping the warmth in.

Which Material Is the Most Water-Resistant?

There are few things worse than trying to sleep in a damp or wet sleeping bag. Obviously, you should always avoid any damp, but sometimes it’s going to happen. Especially in moist climates, some materials are going to get damp.

Synthetic materials are much more water-resistant than down. There are some down sleeping bags with special water-resistant treatments that are really effective at resisting moisture, but if you’re camping in wet conditions I recommend a good quality synthetic bag.

What Is a Trapezoidal Footbox?

A trapezoid is a shape that widens out on the lower half. So having a trapezoidal footbox at the bottom of a sleeping bag basically means you have some extra wiggle room for your feet. Pretty handy if you like to stretch out or feel a little cramped in a normal size sleeping bag.

Do I Need a Sleeping Bag Liner?

Sleeping bag liners are optional extras. They are designed to help keep the inside of a sleeping bag clean and reduce the wear and tear. It’s up to you if you have one or not, some people find they get in the way, while others find they add a little extra padding.

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    • Dave

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