The best sleeping bag of 2020
Staying warm and comfy inside your tent on a camping trip isn't always easy -- and it certainly won't happen if you don't have the right sleeping bag.
A sleeping bag offers the insulation you need to brave the colder temperatures at night, and it provides some cushioning to make sleeping on the floor of your tent a little more comfortable. Make sure your sleeping bag is also easy to carry and pack, so you don't get weighed down when hiking to your campsite.
To help you find the best sleeping bag for your next camping trip, we've taken a fresh look at product trends and developments and found a new, highly durable sleeping bag for your consideration, as well as two classic picks that are still excellent options.
Best sleeping bags of 2020
1. Kelty's Cosmic 0-Degree Down Sleeping Bag: A popular sleeping bag from a trusted brand that offers outstanding insulation, plenty of room, and high-quality construction. This is a new addition to our short list, but it's earned a spot for its high level of insulation.
2. TETON Sports' Celsius XXL Sleeping Bag: An affordable bag that feels soft on the inside but features a rugged exterior that holds up well to regular use, this model has appeared on our short list before.
3. Coleman's North Rim Mummy Sleeping Bag: A three-season sleeping bag that's comfy and dependable for casual camping. We've highlighted this model on our short list previously.
For full reviews of these products, scroll to the bottom.
What you need to know before buying a sleeping bag
When you start looking at sleeping bags, pay attention to the materials. Many bags use Gore-Tex and/or nylon, so they're water-resistant and can keep you dry. Some bags are fully waterproof, but others won't keep water out completely. For insulation, most sleeping bags feature goose down, though you can find some with synthetic fill if you have allergies. You can also find bags that feature down insulation treated with hydrophobic polymers, so they dry more quickly.
The insulation a sleeping bag provides is especially crucial if you camp in cold weather. To give you an idea of how insulated they are, sleeping bags feature a temperature rating. Summer season bags are rated for 30°F and above, 3-season bags are typically rated for 15°F to 30°F and above, and winter bags are generally rated for 15°F and below. Choose a bag that corresponds to the type of weather you camp in.
It's important to consider what sleeping bag shape will be most comfortable for you, based on whether you prioritize warmth or freedom of movement. Rectangular bags allow you to stretch out your arms and legs and unzip for use as a comforter, while semi-rectangular or barrel sleeping bags provide an excellent middle ground between warmth and space. Mummy bags offer a snug shape that helps trap heat, but they don't allow you to move around much. If you want to sleep with another person, opt for a double bag, which offers twice the space of a standard sleeping bag.
You can expect to spend anywhere from $20 to $500 on a sleeping bag. Bags with an insulation rating for 30°F or above are the least expensive and cost between $20 and $60. Three-season bags can cost anywhere from $60 to $350, and you can pay between $90 and $500 for a winter sleeping bag.
Q. What kind of sleeping bag should I get for my child?
A. There are kid-sized bags that fit children well, so they can trap body heat and keep your little ones warm and toasty.
Q. How can I make my sleeping bag warmer?
A. You can always place extra blankets in your sleeping bag for a little more warmth in colder weather. If you don't want to add extra bulk to your pack, add a thin sleeping bag liner, which provides a bit of insulation to trap more warmth.
In-depth reviews for best sleeping bags
Best of the best: Kelty's Cosmic 0-Degree Down Sleeping Bag
What we like: Lightweight design makes packing easy. Features a durable, waterproof exterior suited for regular use. Offers plenty of room for comfort. Works well in temperatures as low as 0°F.
What we dislike: A pricier option than other bags on the market.
Best bang for your buck: TETON Sports' Celsius XXL Sleeping Bag
What we like: Provides plenty of warmth and features a drawstring to trap heat. Has enough room for tall campers or sleepers who toss and turn. Can handle temperatures 0°F and above.
What we dislike: Can't be washed in a machine without damaging the insulation.
Choice 3: Coleman's North Rim Mummy Sleeping Bag
What we like: Manufacturer is a trusted name in outdoor gear. Provides great comfort and significant loft with its insulation. Features a mummy shape but still provides comfortable space at the feet.
What we dislike: Isn't fully waterproof.
Jennifer Blair is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money. BestReviews never accepts free products from manufacturers and purchases every product it reviews with its own funds.
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