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lindylair
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02/22/2021 07:31PM  
Heading up late May again. In past years we have had temps to the mid 20s and I have stayed moderately comfortable in my BA 15 degree bags. Thing is these are cut a little snug for me and while doable, aren't the pinnacle of comfort. So I thought to bring my LL Bean 20 degree down bag this year but it hasn't really been field tested.

Since I have some Gift Cards lying around, and don't need much I thought I would get myself a compact down blanket for the trip(and multiple other uses in the future). But I don't want to spend a fortune, I have $50 in Gift Cards and willing to spend somewhat more than that.

My leading candidate at this point is this:
Down Blanket

I have searched quite a bit and read hundreds of reviews and this seems as good as any in that price range. Wondering if anyone has any experience with something like that and if it would add warmth to my sleeping setup? Planning on throwing it over the top of the bag or, if conditions merit, putting it inside the bag and wrapping it around me. Looks like it could have some good use in camp on a cool night as well. Thoughts or recommendations?
 
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OldScout48
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02/22/2021 08:02PM  
I'm have always been concerned about getting down anything wet in BWCA.

I have a Cats Meow 20 degree bag that has served me well, but I also bring a G. I. Poncho Liner and just toss it over my bag if it gets chilly.

It's also great for laying out on the rocks while watching the sky.
 
lindylair
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02/22/2021 08:20PM  
Thanks OS...been tripping to the BW for 49 years and I have yet to get my sleeping bag wet. So I guess I am not too worried about that, more about how much warmth it may provide (assuming it is dry)
 
dschult2
member (32)member
 
02/22/2021 08:48PM  
I don't have much experience with down blankets except I use one for my dog on backcountry trips. Not sure I would trust one to keep me warm in the backcountry. I think it would add a few degrees but all those individually sewn compartments are going to let in cold air through the stitching and I'm not sure if it would compromise the warmth in your sleeping bag by compressing the down in it if you threw it over the top. I would think for about the same price and a smaller and lighter package you would be better suited with a sleeping bag liner like a Sea to Summit Reactor.
 
OCDave
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02/22/2021 09:19PM  
Sorry,

Deleted lengthy original post.

I re-read the original post. If I get thet gist, the $69.99 quilt is supplemental to the 20* bag not in lieu of the 20* bag.

I wouldn't expect much from a $70 down quilt but, it sounds as if the quilt would fill other niches than just this trip. So, give a try and let us know what you think.

Good Luck
 
lindylair
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02/23/2021 05:12AM  
Thanks all, definitely not a standalone solution. Placed over or inside my 20 degree bag I am expecting, or hoping for 5-10 degrees in additional warmth. We shall see.

But also want the versatility of being able to wrap it around me for that crisp early morning cup of coffee or around the campfire on a chilly night.
 
HistoryDoc
member (44)member
 
02/23/2021 07:24AM  
Concur with Old Scout on the Poncho Liner. A great, versatile piece of gear.
 
02/23/2021 07:51AM  
Lindylair, the blanket you linked to looks exactly like the famous (in UL backpacking circles) $20 Costco down throw blankets. For years, some UL backpackers have been modding those to use as their only sleep insulation on warm summer trips, nights down to maybe 50-55F.

I would guess they would add +20 degrees at least if you use one over your current bag.

Like you I have zero concern about down because I absolutely ensure it stays dry.
 
mschi772
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02/23/2021 08:02AM  
I have a lot of questions about a $70 down blanket that would keep me away from them, personally. Is the down decent quality, or is it a bunch of feathers that will quickly escape? Most importantly, how was the down sourced--ethically and responsibly or not? How heavy is it? Will it get clumpy? Relating to the quality of the down, how well will it compress/pack? How warm will it be, and will there be gaps and breezes between the baffles?

I'm a buy once, cry once type of person who waits to pay what a good product is worth. If I were to pack a *blanket* as a supplement I'd bring a 100% wool blanket--more uses, and a quality one is easily an heirloom piece.
 
thew2
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02/23/2021 08:37AM  
I don't have specific experience with this product, but regularly layer quilts. Enlightened Equipment has a nice summary of layering insulation, including a table the estimates the combined warmth of various temperature ratings.

https://support.enlightenedequipment.com/hc/en-us/articles/115002770588-How-to-layer-quilts-for-sub-zero-camping

If you could estimate the temperature rating of the blanket it would give you an idea of what to expect.
 
Chuckles
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02/23/2021 09:09AM  
Like sns said, this is very similar to the Costco-style down blankets. They used to be ridiculously cheap (I think 2 for $20!) but the price has come up some and they are in and out of stock. I think I paid $25 each for the three I have. The Get Out Gear Down Camping Blanket you have is almost exactly like one I modified. When you consider labor, this one might actually be a better value.

Me and two of my kids regularly use these stand-alone as summer-only bags. Not sure how cold we've gotten but I'd guess 50s. I've also used them as supplemental to a sleeping bag. They are lighter, warmer and pack smaller than my army poncho liner. I love them. Half the weight and size of my smallest sleeping bag. The poncho liners are more durable and probably dry quicker, but after getting the down ones, the poncho liner has never made another trip.

My biggest problem with using these to throw over a bag is that they don't offer much warmth once they've slipped off and are laying next to you. Slippery blanket over slippery bag equals equals trouble.

To combat this, I sewed a sheet of thin nylon (old tent wall) under the bag to make it into a sleeping bag with insulation on top and sides. It is sewn all the way up on one side and 2/3 of the way up on the other. I'd say this alone added 10-15 degrees warmth as no cold air sneaks in from the sides. It does, however, make it less flexible. I don't have pictures here, but could take some if you would like to see. I feel like I posted about it here once, but can't find it.

I recently bought a snap pliers and snaps similar to the ones installed on the Get Out blanket. If I was doing it over, I'd make the nylon underlayer removable with snaps. That allows you to use the blanket around camp and then also use it over your bag. You'd have a blanket during the day and a tube at night.

Some people also sew a footbox similar to a hammock quilt. You could accomplish this with snaps or a bungee if you wanted to. I linked to one picture below, but a google search will turn up hundreds of pictures and videos.

DIY Costco Quilt

I share several of the other posters concern about wet down and I keep waiting for someone to produce a reasonably priced DWR or similarly treated blanket.
 
02/23/2021 09:53AM  
I've been looking into this same approach - ditching my 15º bag and going with a 40º bag and a 1 to 1.5 inch loft down quilt for some not quite summer trips. I was planning on making my quilt, but this one looks like adequate quality.

The sew-through construction does not provide as much warmth as a baffle, but it doesn't to mean its poor quality. My Pategonia down sweater is also sew-through and they are rarely accused of skimping or making cheap stuff. I didn't see what the loft was, but from the few comments I did see it looks like it would add probably 10-15º warmth or so. It does say that its 650 down which is not great but is at least measured. The comments say its 80% duck down and 20% feathers. The customer ratings are quite good and there are a lot of them. I'm guessing most people buying it are doing what you are doing or using straight up as a top quilt and seem happy with it. It seems to have a couple snaps (thus the poncho type enclosure), but it looks like these could work as a foot box to help it stay on top of you as Chuckles mentions.

I'd say it may not be a top quality top quilt, but it is going to probably do what you want it to do for a pretty fair price.
 
HayRiverDrifter
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02/23/2021 10:17AM  
I would consider a top quilt like people use in hammocks mostly because they have the ability to create a foot box. Some top quilts also come with straps that go under you and around your sleeping pad to help them stay in place.

If you go with the blanket you are looking at, it would not be that difficult to add the foot box by adding a short zipper and a channel for a draw sting in the foot end. That way, whether inside your bag or over your bag, the foot end of the
blanket stays put.

Example top quilt: Economy Burrow Top Quilt

Look down through the features. You can get different temp ratings. I would get the zipper in the foot box which also comes with a draw string to gather the end. That way you can open it up to a square quilt also.
 
Chuckles
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02/23/2021 10:42AM  
" HayRiverDrifter:

Example top quilt: Economy Burrow Top Quilt

Look down through the features. You can get different temp ratings. "


Looking at the temp ratings on this site, 3 oz of 800 fill down equates to 10 degrees of extra warmth. I'm sure this varies between quilts, but is a helpful metric to see how much warmth your down blanket would add.

One other note about these blankets is that they're so light and small that you can throw in an extra one until you tune in your system. The first outside night I spent in my down quilt/blanket/bag, I had two more in my pack, in case it was a total bust.
 
02/23/2021 12:05PM  
I'd pull the trigger.
4-5 years ago I did on a AEGISMAX supposed 800 fill goose down blanket/bag. Paid like $60 at the time I think. Looks like they've doubled in price. Apparently they hit the AT by storm for a bang/buck option. Had mixed reviews but I wasn't expecting the world....just a $60 bag. I've been pleased. It's nice for warm weather and super small and light when compressed for adding to the sleeping system if needed. I think it's around 1lb total.
I had it (Comfort:+52° F/ Lower Limit:43° F/ Extreme:15° F) and a 45° F bag down into the 20's on a BWCA trip.....by morning I was cold but survived :)
 
Chuckles
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02/23/2021 12:58PM  
Spoke with the mfgr; they have a synthetic version that is 0.4 oz heavier but more moisture resistant. It is also about $10 cheaper.

If you order from the mfgr, they offerred a 10% coupon code GETOUTSIDE.
 
dringge
member (14)member
 
02/23/2021 05:36PM  
Chuckles: "Spoke with the mfgr; they have a synthetic version that is 0.4 oz heavier but more moisture resistant. It is also about $10 cheaper.

If you order from the mfgr, they offerred a 10% coupon code GETOUTSIDE. "!$/i
 
lindylair
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02/23/2021 07:42PM  
Thanks for all the great responses and information! I am thinking i will probably order this and see how it works. I am not looking for a miracle but I have the feeling that if I wrap it around me inside my sleeping bag it is going to get me the 10 degrees I am looking for. Plus there are many other uses for BWCA and car camping that I think it will become a useful thing to have.

Any more thoughts or ideas, bring em on. Otherwise i will probably order it in a week or so. With that many positive reviews I have to believe it is a decent and quality product. We shall see.

Every year I like to go with one or two new pieces of equipment and it is part of the winter trip planning deciding what those items will be. Kind of fun. I research things a LOT and haven't been disappointed very often. Now to figure out what the other new piece of gear or clothing is...got my eyes on this(also have $50 in Cabelas gift cards):


Bug stopper Hoodie

Thoughts?

 
Mad_Angler
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02/24/2021 02:09PM  
thew2: "I don't have specific experience with this product, but regularly layer quilts. Enlightened Equipment has a nice summary of layering insulation, including a table the estimates the combined warmth of various temperature ratings.


https://support.enlightenedequipment.com/hc/en-us/articles/115002770588-How-to-layer-quilts-for-sub-zero-camping


If you could estimate the temperature rating of the blanket it would give you an idea of what to expect."


I highly recommend EE quilts. They are much more comfortable that traditional sleeping bags.

As for down, just keep the bag in its sil-nylon bag. It will be dry.
 
coffeetalk
member (16)member
 
02/25/2021 02:08PM  
I have that exact quilt. I brought it on all 6 of my trips last summer. On at least two of those trips in July/August it's all I brought to put over me, in addition to underquilt under me. That was pushing it I had just a couple of tolerable but could-have-been-more-comfortable nights. The rest of the time I was cozy. I can only guess but I would say anything below maybe 50 degrees was a bit much for me with this thing. Your results may vary. It's nice for putzing around camp on cold mornings and sitting around stargazing. The snap-in feature works well, but it makes doing anything with your hands clumsy. Even though it has worked for me, I wouldn't recommend this as an ultralight stand-alone sleeping solution, at least not in northern MN, unless you can be pretty certain of pretty warm weather. I've upgraded now to a proper top quilt that only weighs a few ounces more but is three-season appropriate, but I'll probably still bring the other quilt for lounging around camp in shoulder seasons. I wouldn't want to cozy up to a cedar campfire in my fancy new big-dollar quilt, but this thing is perfect for that.
 
lindylair
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02/25/2021 05:46PM  
Not to beat a dead horse but there is another brand of blanket that seems very similar, same specs, size and price. But they offer another option that weights 5 oz. more, so in theory there is 5 more ounces of down in the blanket spread over 80" x 50". For those of you in the know, is this amount of extra down significant to make a difference in loft and warmth or not? On the down side it is $18 more expensive which is no big deal if it works better, but also a little bulkier and , well, 5 oz heavier.

Just curious if this would be worth the extra money and if that seemingly small amount of extra down is enough to be noticeably better?

Down blanket, 1lb 6 oz option

Thanks for your patience:)
 
mgraber
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02/25/2021 10:16PM  
5 oz of down is quite a bit of down, I would think 10 degrees or so on that size quilt. The down quality would have to be equal, though. Comparing weights of 650 down to 850 down is not an apples to apples comparison.
 
Chuckles
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02/26/2021 12:34AM  
lindylair: "Not to beat a dead horse but there is another brand of blanket that seems very similar, same specs, size and price. But they offer another option that weights 5 oz. more, so in theory there is 5 more ounces of down in the blanket spread over 80" x 50". For those of you in the know, is this amount of extra down significant to make a difference in loft and warmth or not? On the down side it is $18 more expensive which is no big deal if it works better, but also a little bulkier and , well, 5 oz heavier.


Just curious if this would be worth the extra money and if that seemingly small amount of extra down is enough to be noticeably better?


Down blanket, 1lb 6 oz option


Thanks for your patience:)"


I'd agree that the 5 extra oz of down would be worth every penny.
 
02/26/2021 09:12AM  
The down rating is a reference to how many cubic inches of volume there is per ounce. So 650 rated down should fill 650 cubic inches. If a blanket has 5 more ounces of 650 down, it should fill 3,250 cubic inches.

The heavier quilt you referenced is 77x50 inches, or 3,850 square inches. An extra 5 ounces of 650 down should be able to give you 3,250, which would be a little less than an inch of loft. From what I remember about estimating warmth for down quilts, it seems like their stated temp improvement of 9° is in the ball park. Ideally they are adding a little extra material to allow for more loft, but even if they are just stuffing the a bit more down in the same space, it should help.
 
02/28/2021 09:13PM  
I did a winter trip a few weeks ago where the temp dipped to -19 overnight. I had a down blanket along to pull up around me and it worked good...except. Nylon on nylon slippery and when I would wake up, the down blanket had slipped off. Not sure the cure, but very frustrating!
 
Mad_Angler
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03/01/2021 09:41AM  
TRadam: "I did a winter trip a few weeks ago where the temp dipped to -19 overnight. I had a down blanket along to pull up around me and it worked good...except. Nylon on nylon slippery and when I would wake up, the down blanket had slipped off. Not sure the cure, but very frustrating!"

The Enlightened Equipment quilts have little straps and clips. They are normally used to keep the quilt on top of your mat. But you could just adjust them to hold the quilt in place over your sleeping bag.
 
03/01/2021 10:43AM  
end quote tag
 
03/01/2021 10:45AM  
sns: "Lindylair, the blanket you linked to looks exactly like the famous (in UL backpacking circles) $20 Costco down throw blankets. dry."

Are these Costco blankets a seasonal item? I have two of them but they are not on the Costco website at this time.

I used one inside my 20 degree down sleeping bag on a night when the temp was 34F and I was nice and toasty.
 
Chuckles
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03/01/2021 11:27AM  
rdgbwca: "sns: "Lindylair, the blanket you linked to looks exactly like the famous (in UL backpacking circles) $20 Costco down throw blankets. dry."


Are these Costco blankets a seasonal item? I have two of them but they are not on the Costco website at this time.


They seem to come and go from Costco. Not sure it is seasonal. They have also gone up in price some to like $30-35.
 
lindylair
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03/03/2021 07:57AM  
Scrolled down further on the webpage and found the information I was looking for. 80 x 50 blanket contains 482 grams of down at 1.1 lb while the 1.6 lb blanket, same size, contains 624 grams of down, so about 29% more. Have to believe that will make a difference and worth 20 bucks. I will let you know how it works.
 
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