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Thread: For you DOWN bag users:

  1. #1
    Member Marc Taylor's Avatar
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    Default For you DOWN bag users:

    How would you have time to hunt? Your entire trip should be spent caring for your sleeping bag?

    I don't know about you guys, but by the time the sun breaks in the mountains, I'm out hunting, not deciding whether to "air-out my bag" or not... The only thing I may dry on a hunt will be my socks.


    http://www.rei.com/expertadvice/arti...eping+bag.html

    The difference between your down bag and the bag I'll be using; approximately two cups of coffee. If you can tell you are heavy on your feet due to the two cups of coffee you've had since you last relieved yourself, then YOU GOT ME.

    Leave the down bag at home and HUNT.

    Taylor

  2. #2
    Member martentrapper's Avatar
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    But any bag can get wet, Mark! Tho if a bag gets wet the down sure is a downer!!
    I prefer synthetics also.
    I can't help being a lazy, dumb, weekend warrior.......I have a JOB!
    I have less friends now!!

  3. #3

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    REI does not support hunting in any fashion officially. When they write the reviews, or articles for that matter, hunting is never the objective (Atleast that I've seen)... search their site for "Hunting" anything... you'll see what I mean...lol

    REI spent a fair amount of money supporting the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act (1980.)
    That piece of legislation, when passed into law, closed MILLIONS of acres of Alaska to hunting and trapping.


    I agree though, down bags are not only really expensive (For a good one), they are a PITA to maintain properly... I would never take one hunting...

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    I've hunted a down bag in four damp-ish hunts lasting a week or longer. I've not noticed any accumulation of moisture or loss of loft, and have taken no special precautions to dry/fluff the bag other than leave it in a folded but uncompressed place in the tent. Nighttime temps ranging from 15F to 40F, daytime freezing to 60F. I've oft gone to bed with slightly damp socks and undergarments (intentionally in order to dry them) and woke up dry.

    That said, I do understand the bag's limitations. It's going to get wet from either a transportation mistake or a unique weather event. Such things happen.

    On the other hand, I can generally count on pulling a dry fluffy down bag out of the UL drybag after a rainy hike. Not so much pulling a syn bag stuffed into the bottom compartment of a pack where water/blood may accumulate. One is decidedly more pleasant than the other.

    I'll go further out on a limb and suggest that stuff gets wetter in a tent with a floor than without. That's a separate thread.

    So, the internal debate continues. Whether I resolve it in time for this year's late sheep hunt or not, I don't know. I'm not too worried either way. Taylor will probably see me down at his shop in the next couple weeks, yet again asking to lay in a long/broad glacier hunter. Maybe the third time is a charm. I've been very close to tripping the trigger in the past.

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    As martentrapper mentioned "all bags get wet". So Mark, I'm curious what the difference is between wet down bags and wet synthetic? Would you still have insulation and a decent sleep with a wet synthetic or are you screwed either way? I've always assumed a wet bag is a wet bag, period. Thanks for the link!

  6. #6
    Member dkwarthog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marc Taylor View Post
    http://www.rei.com/expertadvice/arti...eping+bag.html

    Leave the down bag at home and HUNT.

    Taylor



    Is REI selling Wiggy bags now?







    I jokes......

    Seriously though, I have slept in wet sythetic and wet down. Wet sythetic is not fun, but 1000% better than wet down.

  7. #7
    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    I have both. Both will make the trip to my camp this year. I actually like having a good bag at base camp. In my 2009 goat hunt one of the guys got hurt on a meat haul and we were able to leave him at base camp since there was a bag there. I don't know that he could have made it back up the hill and it would have been a rough Oct night with no bag!

  8. #8
    Member Erik in AK's Avatar
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    I have been using the same -20 Slumberjack down/goretex bag for going on 20 years. It's still snuggly and warm. Of course, I never store it compressed and it has never been washed. Granted, after several days in the mountains it gets a bit funky but it gets fully aired out, along with my tent when I get home.

    Something else I try and remember to do every summer is lay all my sleeping bags out for a few hours in the sun. I turn them inside out and let the UV do it's thing. Best funk killer there is, sunlight.

    Once upon a time I had 60 Wiggy's Ultima Thule bags under my control and I "field tested" them quite a bit and they are amazing. I would not hesitate to get into one fully clothed and soaking wet in an emergency because I would wake up dry. I would never try that with a down bag. I don't own one yet and havent bought a bag in over 12 years but my next one will be a Wiggy's.
    If cave men had been trophy hunters the Wooly Mammoth would be alive today

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    Member northernalberta's Avatar
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    I started out with a synthetic bag then switched to down and never looked back; it packs down to half the size of my old synthetic bag and unless you're sleeping under the stars of have a really leaky tent, how's it going to get wet? If I were rafting or something, I would have it in a dry bag.

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    IMHO, down bags are a fool's choice for anything but high altitude mountaineering. Both down and synthetic bags may get wet, however, down bags will not dry, and synthetic ones will dry.

    I've carried a custom down bag on 4 Iditarods and numerous races. Only once was there a problem. On a -30 race through the Gates of the Arctic, I got into waist deep overflow. I was wearing modern synthetic gear and could keep moving while the water drained to the bottom of my legs and out ... but when I had to rest for 2 hours, in big winds, and severe cold, I had to crawl into my bag. The bag absorbed much of the water, and was useless for the duration of the 350 mi. race. At Anaktuvuk Pass, I even put the bag in a dryer for 1.5 hours, which did little or nothing to get it dry. Ever since, I've depended on synthetic sleeping bags. A synthetic bag will be warm when it's wet, down won't.

    Sleeping bags are survival equipment. If they are prone to failure, they can be fatally useless. Every one has their own opinion. I carried a down bag until I experienced a serious failure. I won't make the same error in judgement twice.

    I agree with Marc.

  11. #11
    Member Akgramps's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marc Taylor View Post
    How would you have time to hunt? Your entire trip should be spent caring for your sleeping bag?

    I don't know about you guys, but by the time the sun breaks in the mountains, I'm out hunting, not deciding whether to "air-out my bag" or not... The only thing I may dry on a hunt will be my socks.


    http://www.rei.com/expertadvice/arti...eping+bag.html

    The difference between your down bag and the bag I'll be using; approximately two cups of coffee. If you can tell you are heavy on your feet due to the two cups of coffee you've had since you last relieved yourself, then YOU GOT ME.

    Leave the down bag at home and HUNT.

    Taylor
    Odd post, Marc, if you dont like down then I recommend you get something else................?
    And do you really wait for the sun to break to go hunting?.............LOL
    “Nothing worth doing is easy”
    TR

  12. #12
    Member hodgeman's Avatar
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    Northernalberta brings up a great point...one of the things I like about down is how compressible it is. I love my Wiggy's bag but I'd never take it sheep hunting. Even in the compression sack its just huge for its amount of warmth. My down bag packs way tighter and is way warmer.

    Sometimes its not just weight but volume that works against you...

    I did try one of the MH ultralaminas that packs pretty small for a synthetic- it packs small but is a lot colder than down.

  13. #13
    Member Marc Taylor's Avatar
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    Here's a chewed cud for you:

    http://forums.outdoorsdirectory.com/...old?highlight=

    Beyond that; Pictures:

    My Mountain Hunter bag (still is after 6 years) that I tried to FAIL at 10 degrees in the dead of winter by pouring water into it. Couldn't do it. Slept 8 hours. It was 82-degrees in the bag and I woke up dry and the bag was dry.

    If I don't have this kind of confidence in my sleeping bag, I won't watch a plane fly away. Foolish when you think of how weathered in one can be. And THIS year we have RAIN, fellas. Look at the forecast for Coldfoot, Arctic Village.

    Don't be foolish. MOST of you know better.

    Taylor
    Attached Images Attached Images

  14. #14
    Member Marc Taylor's Avatar
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    The thermometer in my bag after 30 minutes or so and the bags the following morning.
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    More SPAM!

  16. #16
    Member Marc Taylor's Avatar
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    Gramps, in case you've never hunted the mountains in Alaska, sunrise is not when the sun comes out. The sun comes out when the fog lifts, which is about 11 am. I'm not going back to my tent to put my bag out to dry, sorry.

    My point is; if you're still around camp when the sun breaks, you're behind me in the hunt, bud.

    Been here. Still doing this.

    Taylor

  17. #17
    Member Marc Taylor's Avatar
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    BRAVO, Rick. Don't know who you are, but REP to you, Bud.

    Exclamation Point!!!!

    Taylor

  18. #18
    Member Marc Taylor's Avatar
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    With respect to REI:

    Mountain Hunting and Mountain Backpacking are synonymous. REI has a wonderful inventory I don't care who you are. But they don't sell Wiggy bags, no.

    Taylor

  19. #19
    Moderator bkmail's Avatar
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    Been a Wiggys fan long before Marc's store was here. Glad you opened one in Anchorage. I'll need another bag in a few years, mine's going on 10-12 yrs old. I have lots of bags that I bought over the years, but only 1 goes into the field and it's a Wiggys bag.
    Good post Marc.
    BK

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    Well Marc, gotta dissagree with ya on this one. In fact I bought my down bag from REI 18 years ago and I love it so much I want to take it the grave with me. I have been in ALL conditions with it and more then once. LOVE IT! It compresses nicely, VERY light and rarely do I ever have to zip her up to get warm. In fact I use it more as a blanket then anything. It will be a sad day for me when she finally wears out...

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