Advice - Sleeping bag

11:52 a.m. on August 21, 2012 (EDT)
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Hi,  I am going to be camping/hiking Grand canyon, Arches, Bryce and some other national parks in late Sept/early Oct.  I have done quite a lot of hiking/camping in the UK and Canada and knew exactly what gear to take but this trip has me confused as I am used to having to prepare for or deal with the cold/wet/unexpected snow but dont know what to expect on this trip!! 

What type of sleeping bag would people recommend taking at this time of year - I have the option of either a 1-2 season bag or a 3 season bag (both synthetic).  Regardless of what bag I take I will also take a silk liner.  I wont be carrying gear, so weight/space is only an issue in terms of baggage limits at the airport.

Any advice really apprecaited.  Thanks!

12:09 p.m. on August 21, 2012 (EDT)
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I used to have a contract with Peabody Coal on the Navajo Res and traveled thru sw UT twice a year for 6 years.  Bring a 3 season bag.  The weather is highly variable in UT and the dryness allows for rapid radiational cooling at night.  Your timing can make for some pleasant weather, but allow for variable conditions 90s or snow are both possible.

4:45 p.m. on August 21, 2012 (EDT)
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Bryce can be unexpectedly cold.  If I remember right you are up above 8000 feet in the park.  I would bring the three season bag.

4:39 a.m. on August 22, 2012 (EDT)
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Hi Both,  thanks so much for the advice!  I wasnt sure what weather to plan for/expect on this trip so the above is really helpful.  Thanks!

9:44 a.m. on August 22, 2012 (EDT)
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Pack the 3 season.  

9:50 a.m. on August 22, 2012 (EDT)
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Definitely take a bag that will see you below freezing. 

11:37 a.m. on August 22, 2012 (EDT)
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Thansk rob, thanks gonzan.  Sounds like this trip has the potential to end up like my last one where I seemed to experience all the seasons in the space of two weeks!

12:28 p.m. on August 31, 2012 (EDT)
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Hi, Klur:


I worked a season in the Maze District of Canyonlands National Park

(November to March) and experienced everything from high's in the

70's to lows in the 20's (degrees F).  Bring at least a three season

bag with long undies.  You might want to get a good knife or hatchet

to chop through ice on the few available water sources.


2:13 p.m. on August 31, 2012 (EDT)
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You might want to look into a 3 season rectangular bag that you can fully open up or close as needed.

The Mountain Hardwear Extralamina 20 degree is a very warm, hooded, comfortable, durable, affordable bag that can be fully opened. Compresses pretty small as well (maybe football size). It's the bag I use in spring/fall.

2:28 p.m. on August 31, 2012 (EDT)
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Maybe even consider a bag like the Mountain Hardwear Flip. They did at one time produce a 25/40 that to me would be a rather good setup for what you may encounter. 

I just looked on their site and they now offer a 35/50 in either synthetic or down fill. 

Synthetic(2lbs 15oz:),default,pd.html 

Down(1lbs 3oz:),default,pd.html 

You can always sleep in a base layer or add a liner like a Sea to Summit Reactor to extend the lower rating if needed. 

I would think that this would afford you a great deal of flexibility that should cover you in regards to the weather conditions that you may encounter. 

At the same time I do have to take into consideration that some folks sleep warmer or colder than others so I am not stating that this is the end all be all solution for you.

Just an option worthy of mention. 

Have a good trip Klur.

12:23 a.m. on September 1, 2012 (EDT)
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Three season bag for sure. I use a ems alpine 40 and with a thermolite liner and long johns ive been in the teens and reasonably comfortable. If your not carrying it def take the warmer, you can always unzip a little.

4:01 p.m. on September 2, 2012 (EDT)
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3 season

8:08 p.m. on September 26, 2012 (EDT)
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Hi All,

Just wanted to say thank you for all your advise.  I am off on my trip tomorrow with the 3 season+ bag!  Was very tempting to take the smaller bag but decided there is nothing worse than being cold!



2:13 p.m. on September 29, 2012 (EDT)
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Did you read the write up here on TS ?

7:49 a.m. on October 12, 2012 (EDT)
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So I am back from my trip and just wanted to say thank you again for the advise.  While for most nights of the trip my big sleeping bag was super overkill,  for the night in Bryce and the 2 nights in Grand Canyon I would not have been without it!  The thermals and woolly hat also made an appearance on these nights too so I think its safe to say I feel the cold!  Fantastic trip with some absolutely incredible scenery – cant wait to be able to go back and explore all of the parks properly!

May 27, 2018
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