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      A few Gear Recommendations - PFD, Sleeping Bag     
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WinstonRumfoord
member (48)member
 
06/12/2018 10:37AM
Hello!

I have a trip upcoming and am hoping for help with a few gear recommendations.

PFD: I am going to start making more of an effort to wear my PFD whenever on the water, not just "dicy" conditions. As such, it's finally time to get a nice PFD. I currently use the regular red cheapo rental kind. Any insight for a nice, affordable vest? I'm hoping for something with a few pockets for fishing and personal effects, and to keep it under $100.

Sleeping Bag: I have a very heavy down bag and a very light Kelty 60 º+ bag, neither of which has ever seemed to work well for a tripping. I am hoping for a bag with a back sleeve to hold my big agnes sleep mat. I am 6'2" so small bags are out. I sleep very "hot" and don't mind bundling up to get in bed, so I'd err on the side of lighter weight than lower temp. Any recommendations? I have not bought a new bag in ages, and was a big sticker shocked when I saw how much nice bags are these days!

Thanks
 
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boondock
member (38)member
 
06/12/2018 12:05PM
If you can get somewhere to try them on (sitting down with a paddle preferably) I ended up with a Stohlquist, my wife liked an MTI.

For bags, Big Agnes has the sleeves I have a lost ranger its rated as a 15, but to me it's closer to a 30 maybe 25 with my Sea to Summit insulated mat. I'm not sure who else makes them with sleeves. You might look at quilts, people seem to like those and they have straps to attach them to your mat.
ozarkpaddler
distinguished member(5271)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
 
06/12/2018 12:17PM
Well, in 1976 I bought a North Face down bag. IT'S STILL IN USE. So I can't say enough about the quality of North Face down. That said, a few years ago I thought about a lighter weight bag with a pad sleeve and bought a NEMO Mezzo Loft. It's an older version of the NEMO Tango or this NEMO Symphony. It is soooo comfortable and the material sooooo soft and non-clammy. And for someone who's a "Mobile" sleeper, it's nice to not have to scoot back onto the pad. Here's one similar to mine, they make them in various sizes and fills.

Nemo Tango_
NEMO Symphony

As for PFD's the best advise I could give you is go to a shop that has several styles and try them on. Try it on, sit with it on, grab a paddle and "Paddle" with it on and see what feels good. I've had good luck with Stohlquist and Extrasport PFD's. Good luck!
OCDave
distinguished member (109)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/12/2018 12:26PM
WinstonRumfoord: "...

Sleeping Bag: I have a very heavy down bag and a very light Kelty 60 º+ bag, neither of which has ever seemed to work well for a tripping. I am hoping for a bag with a back sleeve to hold my big agnes sleep mat. I am 6'2" so small bags are out. I sleep very "hot" and don't mind bundling up to get in bed, so I'd err on the side of lighter weight than lower temp. Any recommendations? I have not bought a new bag in ages, and was a big sticker shocked when I saw how much nice bags are these days!
...
"


Have you considered a top quilt rather than a sleeping bag. I switched to quilts when I switched to hammock camping but, they are popular for ground campers as well.

Hammock Gear offers 2 lines,
the Econ line
and

the Premium line

I would recommend a 20* burrow for the widest range of use in Minnesota. For ground camping I suggest getting the wide option.

Good Luck
Othello
member (25)member
 
06/12/2018 02:05PM
I've enjoyed my Astral Ronny (thinner back works well with seat backs), and I can't say enough good things about my BA park series bags. They're the best of both bag and quilt worlds, and downright luxurious. The long-wide sizing would give you plenty of room, and compresses to the size of a volleyball. Deer Park 30* (<4 lbs) for summer, and Summit Park 15* (<4.5 lbs) for shoulder seasons. I've comfortably used the Summit Park in winter with supplemental pad and light quilt, as well.
I would agree with boondock's Lost Ranger temp assessment, but the 15* on the Summit Park is more legit, in my opinion.
Good luck!
Marten
distinguished member (288)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/12/2018 02:49PM
Some bags are are made with less insulation on the bottom to save weight. You would miss your sleeve but I like starting the night with thin side up and if needed rotate the thicker side up.
BuckFlicks
distinguished member(520)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/12/2018 02:51PM
At the risk of stating the obvious:

Take a look at the Big Agnes Lost Ranger. It has a pad sleeve that will most assuredly fit your sleeping pad. It's also large enough that I can sleep in it comfortably (6'1", over 300# and sleep hot as well - I think my needs are similar to yours, so my experience might serve you well) ... plenty of room for my chest and shoulders, and I can easily turn over without getting tangled up. I'm a side sleeper and previous bags usually resulted in me being tangled up to the point that I would have to completely extricate myself from the bag at least once a night to get it all straightened out again. With the Lost Ranger, I comfortably slept through the night for what seems like the first time ever in the outdoors. I got the long version, which has plenty of room for my feets, without being too cavernous in the foot area.

There is no padding on the bottom - just the bag fabric, then you're on the pad. But as you smash down any padding on the bottom to the point that it's useless anyway, you're not missing anything. Net result, you are paying for less stuffing, and your bag packs down smaller. I got the down option and I love it. I've found that it's warm to the point that I frequently open it up and kick a foot out in temps above 40. I'm not sure it would be comfortable down to 15, as others have said. I have a feeling I'd be fine down to at least 20 as long as I had some wool socks and thermals.
06/12/2018 02:57PM
I don't know how essential you consider the pad sleeve or what your budget is, but there are some good deals on Sierra Trading Post and Steep and Cheap now, such as a 30-degree Marmot Never Winter bag for way less than $200.
Rs130754
senior member (72)senior membersenior member
 
06/12/2018 02:58PM
+1 on the Park Series Bags by Big Agnes. They are roomy and I am a big fella about your height and about a 73" over the arms/chest measurement. I side sleep and have had zero problems feeling confined. I haven't used mine Deer Park 30º in cold weather but I am a warm sleeper and will only use it from about April to September. I like how you can zip down both sides to ventilate. I just need to find a compression dry sack to stuff it into before I leave in six days.
06/12/2018 03:56PM
As pointed out already the only sleeved bags makers I found are BA and Nemo. My try custom made but that kicks it into $$$. BA has released a full line update including new models and discontinued versions, shopping clearance stores my net some good deals, BAP items turn over fast so check often.
Quilts seem a great idea and I'm close to convinced to buy an Enlightened Equipment Enigma.

PFD's are too personal for others recommendations. Best go to a boating/canoeing shop and try as many as you can find. Comfort and fit are the most important deciders, pockets less important.

butthead
mschi772
distinguished member (158)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/12/2018 03:57PM
I'm an Astral guy. I really like their PFD's, and I LOOOOOVE their shoes. My daily wear shoes are Astral Loyaks, but that's not what you asked. If you want pockets and under $100, try the Astral Ronny.

I have a Big Agnes bag and really like it and its integration with the pad, but if I was doing sleeping gear all over again, I'd get a quilt. Probably from Enlightened Equipment, but definitely a quilt--it can do everything a sleeping bag does and more.
Othello
member (25)member
 
06/12/2018 03:59PM
Rs130754: "+1 on the Park Series Bags by Big Agnes. They are roomy and I am a big fella about your height and about a 73" over the arms/chest measurement. I side sleep and have had zero problems feeling confined. I haven't used mine Deer Park 30º in cold weather but I am a warm sleeper and will only use it from about April to September. I like how you can zip down both sides to ventilate. I just need to find a compression dry sack to stuff it into before I leave in six days."

This is the one I use for my BA park bags.

Granite Gear eVent® Sil Compression Dry Sack - 18L

They have worked very well for past four years, and you can't beat the price for the functionality. Shipping might be tight in the window before you leave, but the Eagan, MN store had some in stock if the timing of your passing through works out.

 
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