15 Highest Rated Backpacking Sleeping Bags in 2020

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Few experiences compare to the joy of witnessing nature first-hand. From breathtaking sunrises to crisp breezes and fresh vistas, backpacking has the power to take you out of your comfort zone and into new experiences. However, nothing can harsh that mellow as fast as freezing to death on the first night of your trip.

Backpackers burn lots of calories being out and about and they need their sleep to be able to make the most of their adventure. That’s why we put together this list of the highest rated sleeping bags for backpackers.

15 Top-Rated Backpacking Sleeping Bag Reviews

Kelty – Best Compressible

This synthetic product is made with the ThermaPro fiber blend, making it lightweight, but ultra-efficient at heat retention. Packing down to 9” x 15” dimensions, this product is EN certified to keep you safe in temps as low as 22°F but has an unzippable foot compartment for added ventilation in warmer weather.

The wide temperature range means this product is meant to function well during three seasons, making it a viable option for even the longer backpacking trips. As a bonus, the Kelty product is available in two sizes, weighing 31 and 33 ounces respectively. The sleeping bag is built to be multifunctional, as it features a crossbody zipper that allows it to unfold and work as a quilt for hammocking.

Kelty is one of the few brands that has managed to create a high-quality synthetic mummy sack for such an affordable price. Reviewers mentioned that this product held up well through cold nights and wet weather, both retaining heat and maintaining functionality. Additionally, it has straps to connect it to a sleeping pad or air mattress for those who tend to roll off their pad at night.

Tough Outdoors – Best Versatility

This water-resistant product is compressible down to 7” x 16” dimensions and weighs two pounds, but that’s not where the features end. The XL size means it fits most sizes but it can also be unzipped to work as an extra blanket or hammock quilt. Offering protection from the cold down to 40°F, this product is great for moderate climates where it may frequently rain.

Reviewers love this sleeping bag for its reasonable price and the extra space inside, allowing for movement and changing position. The material is made of an open-weave polyester, allowing it to breathe in warmer temps while keeping you warm during cooler evenings. Tough Outdoors even created an inside pocket for item storage so you can check your phone without getting unzipped, or so you can sleep with your valuables.

For those who find themselves needing more protection from the cold, the interior is spacious enough to insert additional liners or pads to increase support or insulation from the hard ground, as many reviewers discovered. Some parents even mentioned there was space for them and their toddlers who got scared during the night while camping.

Sleepingo – Best Size

This queen-size sleeping bag offers space for two adults or teens and compresses down to the surprising 12” x 15” dimensions. This product saves space while packing and by the campfire, as the two adult sleepers can share body heat, remaining safe down to 32°F. If you have smaller children, three could probably fit snugly and safely.

The 210 thread count material is higher than other options, and while it may not be equal to glamping in a yurt, it should add to your experience significantly. A bonus is that the outer polyester shell is waterproof, so if you haven’t quite got the hang of staying dry in the rain, this could be the choice for you.

If you’re not planning on always sleeping with a partner, the product can zip down to two individual sleeping bags as well, so if you part ways with your backpacking buddy, you won’t need to get a new bag. When split in two, the dimensions are much smaller, so two backpackers can distribute the weight evenly. The Sleepingo even comes with two travel pillows that can add to comfort if you have room to spare.

Winner Outfitters – Best Temperature Control

For those who like to both brave the cold in winter and sleep under the stars in the summer, this product could be a perfect choice. Safe down to 15°F, this compression sack was made to be optimal for four seasons. Winner Outfitters accomplishes this by using special draft collars and draft tube technology to regulate airflow depending on the season, meaning cold air stays out, and warm air can ventilate.

For a synthetic material which usually struggles in temperature regulation, this product performs surprisingly well, as reviewers will attest. Additionally, the material is made from a high 350T thread count, making it smooth and soft while retaining a high-density filler that works hard to keep you comfortable.

This bag is a light three-pounds and compresses down to 8.5” x 9.8” dimensions. Perhaps one of the best qualities, the sack has a double zipper design that is meant to cut down on zipper snagging, meaning you won’t be in the fight of your life for some ventilation on warmer nights. If you prefer to be toasty and end up sweating too much, don’t worry, the material is machine washable.

Ohuhu – Best Detachable

Ohuhu comes in a compressible double size and combines lightweight technology with convenient design to create the best detachable option we could find. This option is great for backpackers with small children or for those who travel in pairs but sometimes like their own space.

Some adults even used this as a single sleeping bag because they preferred the leg room it provided, unlike tight mummy styles. For those with claustrophobia or nightmares, this could be a good option.

Ohuhu is designed to be comfortable down to 35 degrees Fahrenheit in both forms and is made with a water-resistant polyester material that should keep campers warm and dry in a variety of climates. The product comes with two bonus pillows for added neck support and compresses down to a 13” height.

This brand uses 3D cotton to fill its lining, making it lightweight but also warm and heat retentive. This way the cotton will retain its loftiness when compressed, allowing it to effectively regulate temperature. Reviewers love this product for its added ventilation through the foot zone and said the plush feel of the fabric made it a comfier alternative to other thinner options when used on the hard ground.

Redcamp – Best Convenience

This ultra-lightweight product weighs in at less than two pounds, making it one of the lightest options on the market. Additionally, it packs down to 4.7” x 7.9” dimensions, meaning it’s also one of the most compressible, but that’s not the only reason Redcamp made the list.

This product has convenient pockets for storage inside if you want to protect valuables and has a two-way zipper so it can unzip to become a quilt if you prefer to sleep in a hammock. The product has an adjustable drawstring around the face for those extra cold nights or for when the mosquitos are buzzing, and the smaller option can condense down to about the size of a plastic water bottle.

For added convenience, the product can also be zipped together with a second bag to create a double size. This product is probably best used in the summer as it is only effective against the cold at temperatures above 59°F, but many reviewers felt it was perfect for hot nights or indoor camping. Reviewers love the velvety soft inner lining on the sleeping bag and the fact that the product can fit in tight spaces–a must for backpacking.

Venture 4th – Best Multi-season Use

This company uses a barrel shape to provide plenty of room in the shoulders while hugging the rest of the body to optimize temperature regulation. With anti-tear and waterproof material, the material is designed to withstand the elements while keeping you comfortable.

The product is meant to be comfortable from 30-70°F, so in moderate climates, this product should be a good option from spring to fall. At less than three pounds, the Venture 4th shouldn’t be a burden to pack, especially as it condenses to 9” x 16” dimensions. Further, the versatile zipper was made to unzip completely and allow it to be used as a quilt for hammock sleeping.

Reviewers are especially fond of the waterproof bottom lining that kept them dry and insulated from dew and rain in the spring but also keeps them warm on crisper nights in the fall. Many campers even said this product was so impressive that they chose to add it to their emergency kits as the product is so lightweight and warm. Some campers even enjoyed wearing the sleeping bag like a jacket while sitting around the campfire on chilly nights as the bottom unzips to allow walking.

Hyke and Byke – Best Lightweight

This extreme weather option is exceptionally light for the heat it provides. At 2.5 pounds, the mummy sack is advertised as one of the lightest ever, and reviewers love it. Though it’s light, Hyke and Byke did not skimp on the details.

This product is made with an impressive 400 thread count nylon ripstop fiber that makes some reviewers feel like they're sleeping on air. With three height options, shoppers should be able to choose the best fit for them and avoid most size-related user errors.

Hyke and Byke created the bag to be safe down to 15°F due to the Duck Down top insulation and the synthetic LofTech Summit bottom. This combo optimizes moisture resistance and durability under compression even better than down insulation. While this product does have down filling, it’s surprisingly affordable, unlike other brands which usually charge much more for the higher quality material.

Reviewers love that the material keeps them warm without any additional layers and seems to take no time at all to warm up chilled campers. The zippers are a crowd favorite as they don’t snag the precious soft fibers and the stuff sack should make compression quick and easy.

Reval Camp – Best Budget

This sleeping bag is one of the most affordable on the market, but reviewers were still happy with the quality. With a variety of colors and designs to choose from, this product could be a great choice for children on backpacking trips or even sleepovers, especially because it’s machine washable, making most accidents worry-free for parents.

Compressing down to 2 pounds, the material is lightweight enough for even children to carry and it doesn’t require any folding to put away. Backpackers can just stuff it into the convenient compression sack and be good to go. The product is also versatile as it can be unzipped for use as a quilt, or zipped together to make one larger sleeping bag for couples or even kids who get scared of the dark.

A favorite feature was the added straps on the compression sack that allow backpackers to cinch the sleeping bag extremely tight to make more space in their packs. A bonus is that the product is reversible, so even young children should be able to set it up themselves. This product is still engineered to be safe down to 20°F and many reviewers attested that it stood up to their expectations in that department.

Cmarte – Best Multi-function

Cmarte’s four-season backpacking sleeping bag was made with a variety of needs in mind. Whether you’re a single or double sleeper, have back problems, or like to sleep like a mummy, there is probably an option for you.

Cmarte’s product can be zipped together, used individually, unzipped for quilt use, doubled up to be used as a mat for added support, and cinched tight for an enclosed sleeping experience. If that wasn’t enough, reviewers especially love that the fabric keeps them warm in temps down to 14°F, but also has foot vents for comfortable summer sleeping.

With a two-tone pink design, this was a favorite among women but is large enough to fit a variety of body types. A bonus is that the material is machine washable, so whether you accidentally lay on an uneaten s’more or just slept a little too close to the smoky campfire, you can just throw it in the wash when you get back, just be sure to let it air dry before storing it again.

Reviewers said their favorite parts of this purchase were the surprising heat retention it offered, and how lightweight and easy it to tote on longer overnight hiking trips.

Farland – Best Design

Farland created this product to meet a wide variety of needs and help backpackers prepare for unexpected circumstances. This bag is safe down to 20°F degrees and is made with an especially dense polyester filler that retains heat while wicking away moisture. Its soft texture should also feel soothing and comfortable on the skin, according to reviewers.

These products come in four different colors and by purchasing both a right and left zip option, the two can zip together to create one two-person size, or function separately while still providing a hood for each sleeper, adding to comfort and warmth. The Farland is waterproof and was designed specifically to reduce moisture ingress of the fabric, meaning it is not only water-resistant and fast-drying, but it also shouldn’t be able to become saturated in the first place.

Reviewers love how lightweight and compressible the product is, especially when their kids carry them. This sleeping bag is available in a variety of colors and styles, both in mummy and rectangular shapes, and on average the products weigh about four pounds and can condense down to 9” x 14” dimensions.

Outdoorsman Lab – Best Durability

From slipping while crossing a stream to accidentally packing a knife without its case, backpackers are all too familiar with the hazards of being out on the trail for extended periods with suboptimal sleep. For those who can’t seem to make a sleeping bag last for more than a few months, the Outdoorsman Lab might be the product for you.

The product should not only help campers sleep dry and warm, but it is also made with a strong tear and water-resistant nylon shell. So whether you ‘re sleeping near sharp rocks and branches or you just struggle with zippers, this product should hold up better than the average sleeping bag against rips. Additionally, the product is remarkably compact, lightweight, and machine washable, making it one of the most durable options we could find.

Condensing down to 6.5” x 15” dimensions, the product should fit well in most spaces, and its carrying sack has straps as well as cinches to make sure you make the most of your carrying space. Reviewers say this product meets all their camping needs, and especially love the straps that secure the material to a sleeping pad, ensuring campers don’t slide off in the night.

Emonia – Best Waterproof

From a drooping tarp to a not-quite-closed hot Nalgene bottle, there are seemingly endless ways to get wet while backpacking and there is probably nothing that will ruin a trip faster than sleeping wet. If you can sympathize, this sleeping bag may be designed for you.

The fabric is made of 290 thread count Polyester Pongee, a material made to imitate raw silk that is often used in umbrellas. This tightly woven fabric should effectively keep water out from both the inside and outside of your sleeping bag, meaning you can lay it out completely like a mat without worrying about it getting saturated from dew.

Additionally, the inner layer is filled with a springy, high-density polyester that should offer more support than traditional options while providing a warming insulating layer against the cold at temps as low as 32°F. Some reviewers said they love Emonia even more than luxury brands due to both the budget-friendly cost and its performance on the trail. As the product comes in a variety of colors and sizes, they are great for parents who want their kids to look good without compromising quality.

Teton Sports – Best Comfort Features

Teton Sports is a favorite outdoors brand among avid campers in the western United States for good reason. This mummy sack was made to withstand cold temperatures down to 5°F safely, however for those who want a lighter choice, there are also two other temperature rating options.

Their secret? Microfiber insulation that can both compress for space optimization and fluff for ultimate insulation from the cold. With additional features to retain heat in the foot box and a three-piece hood for ultimate head insulation, backpackers should be able to say goodbye to frostbitten toes or cold spots in freezing temperatures. This product is made to regulate temps even in the outer edges of the bag, meaning moving around shouldn’t be a problem for comfort or heat retention.

As the product is available in four sizes, campers should be able to rest assured that they will fit without too much extra space or a tight squeeze. Backpackers said this product fits perfectly in the compartment at the bottom of their packs and makes packing up a snap as the product doesn’t require folding for quick storage.

Norsens – Different Fill Options

For those who want to customize the amount of fill in their sleeping bags, Norsens may be for you. This company offers two different fill weights in each color to allow shoppers to find the best option for them. If you don’t mind a little extra carry-weight in a colder environment, the 4.6 lbs option could be just the upgrade you are looking for.

This bag was a favorite among male backpackers who felt the size and comfort of the bag was just what they were looking for, especially as it is more roomy in the shoulder and leg areas than mummy bags. Additionally, the simplistic quilted design added to the comfort according to campers who said they didn’t have to worry about getting poked by hooks or zippers throughout the night.

Reviewers were most happy with the durability of this bag, as it seems to hold up well over the years through multiple camping trips. Thought this Norsens product was not meant to be a cold-weather bag, reviewers said that with a few warmer layers it held up well in the colder weather, especially when used with a sleeping pad to insulate from the ground.

Types Of Sleeping Bags for Backpacking

By Temperature/Season

  • Cold Weather Bags
    For those who crave snow-covered vistas and igloo camping, cold-weather materials are probably the best option. These are generally safe below 20°F and will properly insulate backpackers against the elements, but it’s important to trust the brand you choose, as this decision could affect more than comfort.For backpackers where weight and size are an important factor, there have been some remarkable advances in making lightweight, cold-weather products. To get the best of both worlds, look for dense filler fabrics that will more effectively retain heat, without causing moisture buildup. A good rule of thumb is that the higher the filler weight, the better the heat retention.
  • Summer and Two-Season Bags
    These types of bags will generally be lighter and easier to compress as heat retention won’t be as much of a factor. Summer or two-season products are generally safe down to 32°F and above. This brand is available in both down and synthetic fillers, and while down is much more packable, it also will likely double the price.A good summer bag will usually offer a few comfort features like unzippable toe boxes or a full unzip option, but it’s still a good idea to bring extra layers just in case temps drop lower than you expect in the evenings.
  • Three-Season Bags
    The wide majority of sleeping bags fall into this category as these options are great for long backpacking trips that will take the better part of a year to complete. They aren’t just for avid backpackers, however. Three-season products are common choices for those who only take their backpacks out a few times a year and want a product that will be good whenever they get the itch to head out into nature.
    These options are not as dense as cold weather bags but tend to do better than summer or two-season products in the heat retention arena.They are generally safe from 32°F to 20°F, though they are also good for higher temps. While cold-weather products are mainly produced in the mummy-style for optimal heat and space optimization, three-season bags are available in both mummy and rectangular options.

By Construction

  • Mummy Bags Or Quilts?

While Mummy bags are light enough for most backpackers, those who prefer to travel extra light often use a backpacking quilt paired with a sleeping pad as an alternative. While these quilts are certainly lighter and less expensive than Mummy bags, they likely won’t be able to keep sleepers as warm, as they don’t have a back.

Instead, backpacking quilts often have hooks or zippers that connect to a sleeping mat, saving space in a pack, but potentially sacrificing comfort. As long as the mat has insulation, this should work fine in warm climates, but probably shouldn’t be used in isolation in the cooler weather. These quilts are common among hammock sleepers or those who sleep hot.

  • Quilts Or Sleeping Bags?

The opportunity to cut corners to save on space can be tempting for backpackers but is it always worth it? When it comes to choosing a quilt over a sleeping bag, it depends on the person.

Quilts are generally better for warmer climates and with a variety of summer and three-season sleeping bags that compress down to comparable sizes and weights, the trade-off may not be worth a few inches in a pack, especially if a cold night were to take you by surprise.

Even if you occasionally sleep in a hammock, many products are made to unzip for use as a quilt but retain the option to zip up for safety from the elements. For a one-night backpacking trip where there is no chance of rain or cool weather, a quilt might cut it, but for most camping needs we would recommend going with a sleeping bag.

Additionally, many sleeping bags have options such as a ventilated foot box and waterproof measures that quilts just can’t measure up to.

photo of the hikers taken from their back with backpacks

How to Choose the Best on the Market

Price and Value

There are plenty of luxury sleeping bags on the market, but they don’t always deliver the value you might expect. Sometimes you may end up paying for the name more than the materials. It’s important to identify your needs, and then evaluate the materials to make sure you’re getting your needs met for the best price.

Compressibility

For backpackers, performance in this area is likely a top priority. While many packs will have a compartment in the bottom for easy storage, space in this pocket is limited, especially if the rest of the pack is filled to capacity.

While down feathers are the best material for compressibility, it’s not in everyone’s price range. If you plan on going synthetic, look for materials that will spring back when compressed, so you don’t have to shake out the fabric to loosen the fibers every ten minutes. When insulation gets smoothed down, it affects its ability to retain heat or insulate, so if the filling is constantly deflating, it may not be the best for colder climates.

Weight

For those who carry all their belongings on their backs, weight is an important consideration in a sleeping bag. While traveling in warmer seasons, backpackers can likely get away with using a one-season option, but when temps start to drop to near freezing at night, it’s better to be safe.

The lightest options are often mummy sacs or pillowless singles made of lightweight materials like nylon or polyester. For features such as waterproof shells or hoods, the weight may increase. For a double or queen-sized bag, the weight will increase significantly. We suggest opting for a single if you plan on doing any traveling alone.

Dimensions

For longer trips, every inch counts when you’re making packing decisions. That’s why all of the products we recommended compress significantly. Though they are all quite compressible, the sacks they come in do not always reach their full potential.

If you are serious about getting a few more inches of room, consider investing in an ultra-small sack with adjustable straps. Odds are that your sleeping bag will be able to go smaller with a little muscle. Be careful not to cram too much though, as the fibers will need to air out to be able to insulate against the cold.

When uncompressed, most products come in a variety of dimensions ranging from child size to extra large to accommodate for height and weight differences. Make sure you order the right size when buying online, as you wouldn’t be the first person to accidentally purchase an extra-large for your six-year-old.

Many adult bags are created to fit those on the taller end of the spectrum, but if you are worried we recommend comparing the unfolded sleeping bag dimensions to your height so you know you’ll have a good fit.

While mummy sacks are made to hug your figure, rectangular options provide more legroom which can help those who tend to toss and turn. If you need much more freedom in your sleep, many brands are available in double or queen sizes. While the extra space might be comforting on a warm night, keep in mind that in colder temperatures mummy styles are likely the best option.

beautiful sunset

Fill Power

With sleeping bag filling, less can sometimes mean more depending on the fill power. This measurement is an indication of how lofty the bag is, or how well it will insulate against the cold and trap heat. A material with higher fill power will be able to trap more heat within the fibers, meaning you would have better insulation against the cold and a lighter sleeping bag.

While it’s possible to just pile on the blankets to keep warm, for backpackers fill power is the key factor in finding a light-weight sleeping back that will beat the cold. Down feather is by far the best material for fill power, but it is also much more expensive.

For synthetic filler, look for companies that mention their specific springy material that increases heat-trapping, and then read the reviews to back up the claim. Our picks for heat retention should perform well in this area.

Durable Water Repellent (DWR)

Common in umbrellas and rain gear, DWR is the waterproof finish that keeps the rain from saturating the fabric. This coating keeps material light, quick-drying, and non-clingy in the rain. Many fabrics come equipped with this finish, and a simple regular washing should keep it active and useful.

Hydrophobic Down

This is a new type of technology that is often used in jackets and cold weather wear. Natural down feather excels in compressibility and heat retention in most conditions, however, in damp climates and rain, they tend to lose their loftiness like other materials.

That’s why scientists created a new material that can withstand the cold and moisture to provide the ideal cold-weather experience. Hydrophobic down has been shown to repel water longer, better, and even retains its structure in damp weather that would otherwise ruin the material. This is because the down feathers have been treated with a durable water repellent, allowing them to resist saturation and repel moisture, keeping their loftiness.

Loftiness is important because it’s what keeps the heat close to your body, rather than letting it escape into the cooler surrounding air. When the material is compressed, there is nothing trapping heat, and you likely won’t be able to stay warm.

In a sleeping bag, this is especially important as you are often lying close to the ground near dew, runoff from rain, and dripping trees. Even when the weather is clear, in a humid area normal down feathers would still compress. Hydrophobic down should be able to withstand humidity and moist conditions, meaning your sleeping bag should able to keep you warmer for longer.

Zipper

While a zipper might seem like the most insignificant part of a sleeping bag, don’t let the size fool you. A good zipper on a sleeping bag should be something you never have to think about. It shouldn’t stick, catch, or unzip while you’re trying to sleep.

Temperature and Insulation Considerations

What is EN/ISO Rating System?

As buying online has become more and more common, campers need to know how their products perform in a variety of situations before they can make a smart purchase. That’s where EN/ISO ratings can help.

These rating systems were developed in 2005 by a European council so sleeping bags could be compared across the world based on their performance in a controlled test. These ratings are now used as a standard in all sleeping bags.

To determine how low a temperature the bag can function in, the products are placed in a controlled temperature chamber with a heat-sensor mannequin inside wearing a standard base layer. As the temps drop, they monitor the heat retention of the bag and determine when it becomes ineffective, as well as where it is comfortable and maintains a stable temperature.

Once these measures are taken, the gear is given a comfort range, limit, and extreme range to help buyers know exactly where they can use each product. It’s important to note that while these ranges are standard for everyone, different body types and sizes may account for discrepancies in performance.

These ranges are meant to help buyers know what to expect from certain brands and materials, but they are by no means a guarantee, and we recommend reading reviews and taking the product out for a test run before using it in potentially dangerous situations.

Consider external factors such as humidity, rainfall, wind, and altitude. Each of these can affect the ability of a sleeping bag to keep you warm, and none are accounted for in the test. While the EN/ISO rating can be a good guide for baseline performance, it shouldn't be the only determining factor.

Warmth and Adding Layers

If you’re in love with a bag but you’re not sure it will keep you warm enough on a specific excursion, there are a few ways to increase the temperature rating and improve your comfort level and safety.

Layers are a great place to start for increased warmth. While it may be tempting to just grab your largest sweatshirt and call it good, the point is to create warm air pockets that will retain body heat. A tight long-sleeved thermal and a sweater or down jacket will help create that air pocket within your sleeping bag. A hat and mittens are never a bad idea as these are areas where heat can easily escape.

Other options include putting a hot water bottle inside your sleeping bag with you to create warmth, or layering natural insulation like pine needles underneath your sleeping bag to elevate you from the ground that can suck heat away.

a woman is sitting outdoors in the green sleeping bag

Down Or Synthetic Insulation?

When it comes to heat retention, down materials generally have the leg up on synthetic insulation because of their general loftiness which captures heat and creates a more luxurious feel. They also tend to have higher fill power, making them lighter and more compressible.
However, synthetic insulation has recently made some advances to be reckoned with.

Synthetic materials are by far the cheaper option, and even the premium synthetic options can cost hundreds less than lower-end down filling. Additionally, synthetics are naturally hydrophobic, meaning they won’t get saturated and will generally dry faster and provide better heat retention in damp climates than their down counterparts.

While Hydrophobic down can accomplish the same task, it is much more expensive and not always the realistic option for quick trips in a comfortable climate. When it comes to fill weight or the amount of insulation in a bag, it’s a close call between the two materials. Higher quality down bags often have a higher fill power, meaning they can provide the same insulation with less filling, sometimes accounting for up to a pound difference between the two materials.

However, in the affordable range, it’s generally a toss-up between the two and there isn’t a significant difference in the fill power or total weight of a bag. In situations where heat retention, carry weight, and compressibility are of the utmost importance, a down bag might be the way to go, but in most other circumstances, you can save a few hundred dollars with a synthetic option.

Additional Considerations

Where to Store Them

While compressible fabrics are made to safe space in your pack, they shouldn’t do so in your shed or garage. It’s important to never store compressible sleeping bags in their compression sacks as this can greatly affect their ability to retain heat once unpacked if the fibers can’t properly fluff.

Keep It Dry

Though many companies go to great lengths to keep you warm when you’re wet, it’s still a good idea to avoid the rain at all costs. Synthetic fibers and hydrophobic down will perform the best in damp or wet weather, but this isn’t to say that you won’t notice the water at all, it’s not magic.

While you may survive a cold wet night in your water-resistant sleeping bag, whether you sleep through it is not a guarantee. In order to have the best experience possible, use a sleeping pad, a tarp, or get shelter when you expect rain.

Purchasing Online

Buying online can provide a variety of benefits, from flash deals to finding the right size or brand that may not be physically available near you. However, there are also some dangers when you buy a product sight unseen.

We recommend carefully reviewing the dimensions, materials, safety ratings, and reading a variety of reviews before purchasing to make sure you don’t miss an important detail.

a man on the mountain is holding with his both hands a sleeping bag

Options for Women

There are plenty of women’s products that are thinly veiled marketing ploys consisting of no difference other than a pink color and exorbitant markup. However, sleeping bags are one area where a woman’s option may make a noticeable difference.

These products are often made more narrow in the shoulders and wider in the hips to accommodate women who want their bag to fit more like a blanket than a prom dress. While you could always buy the next size up, in a mummy bag where a close fit on the shoulders and hips could keep you a few degrees warmer, it could be worth the purchase.

Frequently Asked Questions

What's the best backpacking sleeping bags under $100?

Almost all of our sleeping bag picks are under $100, and they are some of the highest-rated on the market. We hope our list will help you learn more about what you’re looking for as well as what you may want to avoid. We recommend choosing one of the products on our list based on your temperature, comfort, and compressibility needs to find the best option for you.

These more affordable options are crowd favorites and are a good place to start for those who are just entering the world of backpacking but aren’t sure how it will suit them. You won’t spend too much money, but you should still get a bag that performs well for your needs. Like some reviewers, you may even find that some of these affordable choices outlast or outperform the pricier brands.

How can I determine the sleeping bag rating?

If you’re buying online, the EN/ISO rating should be listed in the product description with comfort and lower limit descriptions. We recommend buying a bag where the comfort temperature aligns with the lowest temperature you’re likely to experience while using the bag.

To find the temperature rating on a bag you already own, look for the temperature rating tag on the inside. In most cases there will be a temperature given that indicates the coldest possible temperature the bag will keep you alive in. We recommend using the product at a minimum of ten degrees higher than this number.

Additionally, men tend to sleep on average ten degrees warmer than women, if you’re not sure how a bag will perform, consider bringing additional layers and a backup just in case.

Which is the best?

The ideal sleeping bag will vary by user preference and backpacking needs but keep in mind there are a few factors that will likely elevate most camping experiences. Look for high fill power where possible, and either hydrophobic down or synthetic filler for damp climates.

Products that will compress to a smaller size will save space in your pack and likely make your experience easier when you pack up. Similarly, the difference of a few pounds in a lightweight bag can make a big difference.

Learn more: Our List of Highest Rated Sleeping Bags

Conclusion


This list should serve as a good starting point for those looking for the perfect & affordable backpacking sleeping bag on the market. While the best option will vary depending on your specific needs, we hope we have given you a good idea of what should work best for you.

Keep in mind that the ideal sleeping bag will also vary by user preference. While one bag may be the holy grail for one camper, another might need a few additional features. Our research should help you know where to begin.

Author: Sleep Advisor

Our team covers as many areas of expertise as we do time zones, but none of us started here as a so-called expert on sleep. What we do share is a willingness to ask questions (lots of them), seek experts, and dig deep into conventional wisdom to see if maybe there might be a better path towards healthy living. We apply what we learn not only to our company culture, but also how we deliver information to our over 12.7M readers.

Sleep research is changing all the time, and we are 100% dedicated to keeping up with breakthroughs and innovations. You live better if you sleep better. Whatever has brought you here, we wish you luck on your journey towards better rest.

The Sleep Advisor