Drip Tray Reviews

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Drip Tray Reviews

Postby firosiro » Thu Jul 20, 2017 1:01 am

Bag a good night's sleep: the right sleeping bag keeps you warm all night without weighing you down all day
The only time you really appreciate how to choose a sleeping bag is the night you spend huddled over a fire without one. You might survive a week of hunting on almost no sleep, but it won't be much fun. A bag that keeps you cozy lets you get enough rest to hunt at full mental and physical capacity. Personally, I would have more fun in camp without a rifle than without a sleeping bag. You can always borrow the guide's rifle for a shot, but try talking him into giving up his sleeping bag!

The need to reduce one's load led to the invention of the mummy bag. Curse its confining dimensions if yon must, but learn to tolerate it if you plan on doing much backcountry hunting. A well-designed mummy with the best polyester or natural down stuffing will keep you toasty to minus twenty degrees, yet it weighs no more than four pounds. A two-pound, high-quality down bag will suffice for most hunts where temperatures don't drop below twenty degrees. Add an insulating, 13-ounce air/foam pad, and you're sleeping light.

Sufficient room and sufficient insulation are the keys to a comfortable sleeping bag. Sadly, both are at cross purposes with today's need to pack light. Those old-fashioned, rectangular bags that are so roomy and comfortable weigh as much as an ottoman and take up almost as much room. That might be acceptable in the back of a pickup camper, but such extra weight and bulk will weary a horse, discourage a back-packer, and kick airline bags into the overweight/extra charge category.


The first step in choosing a bag is deciding how cold it'll be where you sleep. Most manufacturers give their bags a "comfort rating," the lowest external temperature at which you should remain comfortable in said bag. As we all know, one man's "toasty" is another woman's "freezing." Different metabolisms make comfort ratings something less than precise. Take this into consideration when buying. If you sleep cold, get a warmer bag and vice versa. It's better to err on the side of too much than too little, although sleeping in a too-hot bag isn't fun, either: Zip it open and you're too cold. Zip it shut and you sweat like a boxer after three rounds in Manila. Most campers own at least two bags, one rated to about thirty degrees, the other zero to minus-fifteen degrees. True Arctic adventurers might need a minus-forty-degree bag(Link: https://github.com/campinglife/Sleepingbag/wiki/How-To-Choose-The-Right-Sleeping-Bag-For-Camping.

Certain tricks can add several degrees of warmth to any bag, increasing its versatility while decreasing its size and weight. Sleep in long underwear, balaclava, stocking cap, wool socks, and gloves. That's worth another ten degrees or so. Drape your coat over the foot of your bag. Add a reflective space blanket over the bag for even more warmth.

The second step in bag selection is shape balanced against weight and bulk. As mentioned, mummy bags pack smallest and are lightest and warmest because they minimize the space your body must heat. But if you're so claustrophobic that a mummy is out of the question, look for the smallest, lightest semirectangular or rectangular bag you can find. Get one with a draw-closure hood or internal neck muffler to prevent cold air from sifting in through that huge opening. You'll need significantly more insulation/bulk to offset the inefficiency of the design. Stay away from cotton shells, which add weight. Strive for the lightest nylons available. Currently Pertex microfiber nylon seems to be the ultralight bag shell of choice among most manufacturers. Many are treated with a Durable Water Repellent coating (usually silicone), making them highly water resistant.

Third, choose your insulation. Synthetics (plastic microfilaments often with internal holes to maximize air space, kinks to increase loft and air space, and coatings to improve compression by making fibers slippery) are cheaper than down feathers but not as efficient or durable. They don't compress as tightly as down and they weigh roughly a pound more per bag for the same comfort rating. Repeated crushing gradually breaks down synthetic microfibers sooner than down, but a bag should easily last a decade or more if used but a few weeks a year. On the plus side, synthetics are less expensive, continue to insulate when wet, and dry quickly. The most effective synthetics these days are Polarguard 3D, Polarguard Delta, and PrimaLoft.
Goose down remains the lightest-per-volume insulator on the market. Eider down is even better, but you don't see it in many over the-counter bags. These days goose down is rated numerically based on its quality. A 600-fill rating means an ounce of down expands to fill 600 cubic inches, a 900-fill expands to 900 cubic inches. The higher the fill number, the lighter and more expensive the bag. Figure on spending $180 and up for a down bag rated at thirty degrees, $230 and up for a zero-degree bag. Regardless of the quality of the down, it suffers from two critical shortcomings it is useless when wet and slow to dry. For this reason, experienced campers reserve down for below-freezing camping or desert camping, when they're confident rain isn't going to dampen their night's sleep. Those who do risk down in soggy country must take extra precautions to keep it dry, such as packing it in double layers of waterproof material while hiking, making sure the tent doesn't leak, keeping water bottles out of the tent, and airing the bag regularly to remove body vapor. Many down bags are built from breathable/ waterproof materials like DryLoft or Gore-Tex, which increases the price but also the margin of safety. For a backpack hunt, the increased price is worth it, considering that you get a bag that weighs less than two pounds and stuffs into a bread bag.

Because down is a loose fill, meaning the individual Feathers are free to migrate, bags must be sewn with baffles or tubes that limit travel to prevent empty, cold spots, yet don't pinch inner and exterior shell materials themselves, which also creates cold spots. This increases the asking price, too. If you find a down bag priced ridiculously low, check for sewn-through seams as well as low-quality down. To create adequate foot room and prevent a cold spot, bags should feature a boxed toe--a down pillow that fills the end of the bag with no sewn-through seams. Special women's bags are built with extra insulation around the foot area to compensate for women's tendency to "sleep cold." Some are also cut wider through the hip area.
All quality bags include a draft tube running the length of the zipper. This down-filled tube covers the air leaks along the zipper. An internal neck or shoulder muffler that can be cinched around your shoulders reduces cold air infiltration. A mummy-style hood does much the same thing.

No bag will insulate you adequately against conduction heat loss if you lie on cold ground. Add a closed-cell foam pad or combination foam/ air mattress under your bag. A three-quarter length pad (48 inches long by 20 inches wide by 1 inch thick - Link: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/what-types-sleeping-bags-dave-stenie) does nicely and weighs less than a pound. Lay clothing under the foot area for insulation there.
All bags should be stored loosely, not compressed. Keep them in a dry location to prevent mildew. Clean surfaces to remove dirt and body oils that attract bacteria, which will eventually "eat" fibers. Keep bags out of direct sunlight, which degrades synthetics. Follow the manufacturer's instructions for washing--most bags should not be dry cleaned.
Where to Get a Good Bag

Cabelas 800/237-4444
Northern Outfitters 800/944-9276
Big Agnes 877/554-8975
Golite 888/546-5483
REI 800/426-4840
Slumberjack 800/233-6283
Spomer, Ron
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