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Down Top Quilt

Does anyone here use a quilt instead of a sleeping bag? A friend swears by one and I just wanted to get other opinions before I spring for one, thanks!!

Comments

  • I have permanently switched to top quilts. I love them. No zippers to mess with. A lot easier to deal with for me with a gimpy knee that doesn't bend well anymore. Lighter weight and more packable with the same comfort and warmth. I have a summer weight and a zero degree for cold weather. I use an Exped sleeping pad.

  • Thanks, Rafter!! I was wondering about different pads with the quilt on top, currently I use a z-rest pad or a self inflating pad from Liberty Mtn. I've heard good things about Expeds!

  • The Exped is the only pad I've ever found that is comfy on the ground. When I'm rafting, I use a roll-a-cot with either the Exped or a thermarest partially inflated. I was worried about cold weather trips with the quilt, so I got a zero degree, wide width, and it rocks. I have always felt claustrophobic in sleeping bags, and I have found the quilts to be heavenly. My quilts have come from small cottage industry folks who make quality quilts.
    http://wildernesslogics.com/main.sc (having a sale right now, Marty makes great stuff)
    http://hammockgear.com

  • I'm a member of a hammock camping Facebook group and have been out on a few camping trips with them. The members almost exclusively use top quilts (along with bottom quilts on the hammocks). I don't use a true top quilt, but I find myself using my sleeping bag like a top quilt most of the time. I zip up the bag about two feet and sleep with the zipper side down and the bag over me. A top quilt genererally works the same way, just without the zippers.

    Before you splurge on a top quilt, try that with your sleeping bag. If it works for you then go ahead and splurge on a top quilt and save the weight of the zipper.

  • Thanks again Raftergirl, I wasn't aware of wildernesslogics but it looks like they offer good porducts at a great price!

  • edited July 2017

    @BrianSnat said:
    I'm a member of a hammock camping Facebook group and have been out on a few camping trips with them. The members almost exclusively use top quilts (along with bottom quilts on the hammocks). I don't use a true top quilt, but I find myself using my sleeping bag like a top quilt most of the time. I zip up the bag about two feet and sleep with the zipper side down and the bag over me. A top quilt genererally works the same way, just without the zippers.

    Before you splurge on a top quilt, try that with your sleeping bag. If it works for you then go ahead and splurge on a top quilt and save the weight of the zipper.

    HA!! That's exactly what I've been doing, Brian!! Of course, it is summer and the unzipped sleeping bag seems to work quite well.

  • @BrianSnat said:
    I'm a member of a hammock camping Facebook group and have been out on a few camping trips with them. The members almost exclusively use top quilts (along with bottom quilts on the hammocks). I don't use a true top quilt, but I find myself using my sleeping bag like a top quilt most of the time. I zip up the bag about two feet and sleep with the zipper side down and the bag over me. A top quilt genererally works the same way, just without the zippers.

    Before you splurge on a top quilt, try that with your sleeping bag. If it works for you then go ahead and splurge on a top quilt and save the weight of the zipper.

    That's what I do when the bag is too warm for the conditions. No law requires zipping bags up all the way.

  • Because I was using my regular bag as a blanket most the time I picked up a quilt. Takes some practice when the temp drops, but practice means you are getting out. NOTE that if you are sleeping on the ground, you will likely need either a fitted sheet for your pad, or sleep in silk weight long underwear, sleeping with skin directly on your pad is not great.

  • edited January 27

    I too prefer quilts, unless it's real cold. Make sure you pack in a waterproof bag. Down is not great wet. Sleeping bags are overkill in summer or early fall. Quilts are lighter and smaller to pack. And there is a law about zipping bags. A friend of a friend's cousin's daughter was ticketed in Canada. It's been a law there since Fear of Flying.

  • @Loon_Watcher said:
    I too prefer quilts, unless it's real cold. Make sure you pack in a waterproof bag. Down is not great wet. Sleeping bags are overkill in summer or early fall. Quilts are lighter and smaller to pack. And there is a law about zipping bags. A friend of a friend's cousin's daughter was ticketed in Canada. It's been a law there since Fear of Flying.

    Where? I call you on this.. faux news.

  • I use an X-ped & sheet over a foam pad (to prevent punctures) over an aluminum sheet to reflect heat back up. The sheet keeps me from slipping off the x-ped and is easier to wash.
    I went from down sleeping bag to down quilt for a number of reasons.
    1- when you sleep inside a bag, you are compressing the down under you and losing that insulation. As the reflective blanket, foam and x-ped insulate me from the ground, I don't need that compressed down under but enjoy it on top.
    2- If I am hot, a quilt is easier to shift around than is unzipping a bag. If it is cold, I can bundle up.
    3- If I am with someone, it is easier to cuddle under a quilt than from bags.

  • I picked up an Exped Synmat Mega 12 Medium/Wide before Christmas with an REI gift card & 20% coupon. It's the same length & width as my Synmat 7 MW, but 4.7 inches thick instead of 2.8 inches. Packed size it minimally bigger and 6 oz. heavier. Pure decadence. Can't wait to try it out.

  • I prefer quilts to sleeping bags for most applications in moderate weather. They are roomy and light, no zipper to fuss with, and easy to ventilate. The negative is that they can be drafty in cold weather, but mine has a foot box and closes around my neck, so as long as I wrap the quilt under me, wear a warm hat, and don't thrash around too much, I'm OK. People who toss and turn constantly might have a problem with a quilt.

    I'm a fan of the Enlightened Equipment quilts ( https://enlightenedequipment.com/quilts-on-the-shelf/ ) and use the synthetic fill (required for safety for Watertribe events). I cut off the "strings" that allow the bag to be fastened-up like a sleeping bag, as they only get in the way, IMO, and have not needed them.

    For pads (since you need insulation below you), I go with anything from a closed-cell pad (Thermarest Z-lite -- great during races when you don't want to fuss with inflation) to an incredibly comfy and thick Thermarest NeoAir Xlite (most comfortable thing I have ever slept on in the backcountry and better than many hotel mattresses).

    Greg

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