When venturing out into the open wild, it is crucial to make a list of all the equipment you will need. Two things that should always be on top of that list are a flashlight and a sleeping bag. Nights in the forest or woods can get very cold, especially during the winter.
While a sleeping bag isn’t guaranteed to stop the cold, it can indeed make a difference. And in the worst-case scenario, without a sleeping bag, you may even be at risk of getting hypothermia. In addition, a good sleeping bag should also provide you with comfort. Something that is warm but is uncomfortable can be bothersome to sleep in.
But the question that stands is: with so many sleeping bags available, which one should you go for? Well, the Summit line of sleeping bags from Outdoor Vitals is a fantastic choice for all types of campers. Continue reading to find out why it offers the best bang for your buck.
Outdoor Vitals Summit Sleeping Bag
- Provides comfort down to 10 degrees
- Robust yet lightweight construction
- Even distribution for optimum comfort
- Lightweight and portable
- It comes with a lifetime warranty
- Like most other bags, it’s not waterproof
Outdoor Vitals Summit Sleeping Bag in a Nutshell
The series of Outdoor Vitals Summit sleeping bags offer a range of temperature ratings, which means there is a Summit sleeping bag available for every camping condition. Therefore, this ultralight, down-filled, water-resistant, and incredibly soft-to-the-touch sleeping bag should be the first choice of every camper.
The products Outdoor Vitals has been putting out have become more expensive over the years. This is because they have shifted their focus from low-budget products to expensive, high-quality ones. If you have previously used their old models, then the difference in quality will be clear when you purchase this product.
It’s also important to mention that Outdoor Vitals offers a lifetime warranty for all of their sleeping bags, which covers defects as well as refurbished gear. However, the warranty for the refurbished gear is only valid for 90 days after the date of purchase.
Breakdown of Outdoor Vitals Summit Sleeping Bags
This sleeping bag offers four different temperature ratings, including -15°F, 0°, 15°, and 30°. The amount of fill is what differentiates these models. The rating of all the bags is in accordance with EN13537, which is a standard rating used for sleeping bags. This rating consists of three levels: survival range, lower comfort, and comfort.
Outdoor Vitals follows the standard rating, which is a low comfort range. This means that Outdoor Vitals products show the lowest recommended temperature rating at which a 25-year-old individual can sleep comfortably.
Furthermore, Outdoor Vitals has designed the bags in such a way that they have a different color of lining for each temperature. For instance, if you have a 15° bag and a -15° bag, you will not mix them up. That is due to the fact that one has a blue liner while the other has a black one, respectively. This is a much-appreciated feature since it makes things easier for beginners.
• Central Zipper
The Summit line of sleeping bags features a central zip. This makes getting in and out of the bag relatively convenient. It is a welcome upgrade from the previous models that featured a side zipper. Commonly, most sleeping bags feature a zipper on the side to prevent the loss of heat.
To avoid heat loss, Outdoor Vitals made an innovative choice. They added boxed baffles to the sides of the zipper. In this way, these baffles prevent any cold spots and keep the temperature constant throughout the bag.
One of the reasons a central zipper is a great choice is that you can sleep on either side without having to worry about finding the zipper late at night when you want to answer the call of nature. This not only makes it ideal for people who don’t sleep on one side but also adds to the convenience factor.
The zipper on this bag is double-sided. This means you can get out of the sleeping bag quickly, which is great. It also features a bottom zipper which can be unzipped from the outside. Moreover, this can act as a temperature regulation system if you’re feeling too warm.
However, another thing that should be mentioned is that the zipper does not open all the way. It opens to about knee level, which should be enough for you to get in and out easily. The reason for this is simple; a shorter zipper means less weight, which adds to the portability of the sleeping bag.
• The Mummy Shape
The Summit series of sleeping bags from Outdoor Vitals follows the classic mummy shape. This design is used to trap warmth, which is why this shape is best for cold temperatures. However, one of the drawbacks of this shape is that it does not allow much room for movement. If you tend to be a tosser and turner, then this sleeping position might be awkward and stiff for you.
Regardless, this sleeping bag gives you more shoulder room, which means it is not a typical mummy bag. The longer variation allows a shoulder girth of about 68 inches, while the regular version is 62 inches wide. This bag is not your standard straitjacket bag in which your arms are numb after you wake up. Instead, it provides a comfortable space for you to move around when you are asleep.
Although the mummy bag isn’t typically used with a camping hammock, there is a way to make good use of both when going to sleep. You simply need to get in the hammock while tucking your legs inside the sleeping bag. After this, you can crawl your way in, tuck the bag inside your hammock, and use the hood to cover your face. In addition, we suggest you use a sleeping pad since the mummy bag will be upside down.
• Hybrid Direction Baffles
The Summit sleeping bag series also features hybrid direction baffles. This means that the upper part of the bag comes with vertical baffles, while the lower part has horizontal baffles. With the older versions of this product, you would only have horizontal baffles. That means if you roll around in your sleep, the down fill would shift to your back.
However, with vertical baffles, this issue has been solved. The vertical baffles only go down to your knees. Horizontal baffles are featured around your feet and offer extra fill for maximum comfort. If warm feet are what you need for a good night’s sleep, then this bag will help you accomplish that.
In addition, the foot box is shaped like a square. Also, the stitches don’t allow the insulation to move too much. This means even if you move around, your feet will still stay warm.
The Outdoors Vitals Summit sleeping bag is made from 10D ripstop polyester. The fabric used here is both water-resistant and breathable. It’s also a great choice for a backpacking sleeping bag due to its ultralight weight. This might sound like a great combination. And you’d probably wonder why anyone would make a bag out of any other fabric? However, there is a good reason for that.
A fine material like 10D Ripstop is not as durable as other polyester materials. Still, this does not mean that it will tear easily, but it is not as forgiving as other fabrics that are used in sleeping bags. In simpler words, we wouldn’t suggest this bag for kids as their first sleeping bag. But if you’re a seasoned camper, then there is no reason not to buy this product. It will require some care, though.
There is one more thing you should keep in mind when buying this bag. The materials used here are great, but the water resistance will deteriorate over time. Therefore, you’ll need to use something like a spray-on DWR treatment after a while if you want to continue staying protected.
• Should Baffles
Commonly, a mummy sleeping bag offers a draft collar. This is to keep the warmth from escaping around your neck. However, the Summits series of sleeping bags don’t use this feature. Instead, they come with shoulder baffles on both sides. They have Velcro tape on each side that helps you attach both of them. This is done to prevent heat from escaping the bag. These shoulder baffles do a great job of keeping you warm. You can choose to have the sleeping bag open around your face for breathing, yet you will still not get cold.
However, it would have been a better choice to use buttons or snaps instead of Velcro tape. This is because the tape tends to get stuck on your clothes when you try to get in or out. This can be a bit annoying. It can be especially frustrating if the individual using the bag has long hair or a beard. But besides this, there is no complaint in regards to how the shoulder baffle functions. They keep you warm, which means they get the job done.
• Fill Power
Every baffle used in this product is filled with StormLoft 800+ IDFL certified down. Down is used for insulation in sleeping bags. It keeps the heat from escaping while also providing you with space to breathe inside the bag. However, it is a known fact that when down gets wet, it loses its insulating abilities. And for this reason, Outdoor Vitals down has been treated with DWR (Durable water repellent coating).
Regardless, this does not mean it is completely waterproof, but it does function better in moist conditions when compared to other downs. “800+ fill-power down” in simpler words means that one ounce of down can fill 800 cubic inches of an area. The IDFL certification implies that the fill power was tested and is as per the manufacturer’s claims.
If you research Outdoor Vitals as a company, you will find that they are quite environmentally friendly. The down used in their sleeping bags is sourced responsibly. This means instead of live-plucking, they acquire it from waterfowl, which is being used for meat already. It’s always a relief to know that the company you are purchasing from does not support animal cruelty.
If you want to go on a long-distance backpacking trip, the Summit sleeping bag is a fantastic choice. This is not only due to its lightweight but also because of the fact that it can be packed compactly. This can be said about almost all down sleeping bags.
With the purchase of this bag, you will also get a stuff sack that allows you to pack up your bag in a small space and carry it around with you. However, if you seek even more portability, you can get a compression bag that can shrink it down to an even smaller size.
When going on a camping trip, there are already several things you need to take with you. Therefore, the thought of a heavy sleeping bag weighing you down will not bother you if you choose this product.
However, there is something worth mentioning when it comes to the lifespan of a down sleeping bag. We suggest that you do not leave your bag in the stuff sack once you return home from your trip. This is because a down sleeping bag will lose its insulating properties if compressed for long periods. Instead of keeping it in your stuff sack, you can clean it up and hang it in your closet.
However, if you are short on space, you can just lay it flat under your bed.
Camping in cold weather conditions can be a pleasant experience, especially if you have the proper equipment with you. One of the main things you will need for this kind of camping trip is a sleeping bag that keeps you warm.
And we believe the Outdoors Vitals Summit Sleeping bag will offer you that experience. This is because it is ultralight, easy to carry, and provides a comfortable and warm experience even during bad weather conditions. It offers fantastic insulation and is a great bang for your buck as well!
Granted, it has some areas of improvement. However, all of that can be neglected by looking at its retail price. This is a great sleeping bag, and it will not disappoint you.