Current Retail: $49.95
6 oz / 170 g
FireLine MAX synthetic insulation
The Big Agnes Park Bag Wedgie is an optional accessory that works with both the Diamond Park and Echo Park series. It zips the opposite sides of a Park Series quilt component together, adding extra shoulder room, 9 inches at the top, to create a mummy bag effect for even broad shouldered folk.
- Really adds comfort
- No drafts or cold spots
- Weight-to-function ratio is high
Big Agnes puts a lot of effort into their designs and construction, but took the easy out when coming up with a name for the Wedgie. It is exactly as advertised, an insulated wedge with zippers running down the long edges. My review of the Diamond Park 15 has all the details on the base system. The quilt component from all of the Park Series bags, both the down and synthetic insulated lines, can be used with the Park Series Wedgie to create a mummy bag effect
Seen here with one side of the Wedgie fully zipped and the other side open it was easy to get in and out in this configuration. While the initial connections took a little more concentration and effort, once put together the two pieces functioned as one.
With both zippers up the draft collar of the quilt could be pulled over the head, creating a hood effect. The quilt component of the Park Series bags has an adjustable elastic on the inside of the draft collar. When used as a mummy bag that can be tightened to help keep it in place when used as a hood.
One nice feature that Big Agnes added to this accessory was a double-ended zipper. This lets you create a foot vent if desired by opening the bottom of the bag as you see fit. When closed there seemed to be no airflow or even cold spots related to these zippers. I believe the edges of the quilt created a baffle that covered them pretty well.
The Park Series Wedgie employs the FireLine MAX synthetic insulation that Big Agnes uses throughout its Echo Park Series, but when used along with the 600 fill DownTek of the Diamond Park Series I didn't notice any difference. There weren't any drafts or cold spots, just a continuous sense of warmth and being cocooned.
While it might not seem like much, 9 inches at the widest part of the wedge, the additional circumference created by adding the Wedgie to the quilt made a big difference in terms of comfort. Zipped directly to itself the quilt created a claustrophobic feeling most sleepers would not abide well, but with the Wedgie there was no sense of being trapped.
While I tested the Diamond Park 15 extensively over the last few months I only did limited testing in the mummy bag configuration. The Wedgie was used on four nights, three of which were spent in a tent and one in a hammock, just to see if it worked.
The Wedgie does exactly what it was designed to do. It lets you convert the quilt component of a Park Series bag into something that is not quite a mummy bag, but effectively pretty close. As someone who has never been a fan of the confining feeling of most mummy bags, I found the roominess of this configuration to be very appealing. I was also surprised that having the two zippers plus the synthetic insulated panel was unnoticeable in terms of temperature and comfort inside.
There are a couple of costs to note that come with this solution. The MSRP of $50USD for this accessory component is certainly something to consider. The 6oz/170g claimed weight is spot on according to my scale and another thing to take into consideration. For folks owning the heavier synthetic-insulated Echo Park Series bag, especially those not intending to carry it on their back, the extra weight is minor considering the comfort the Wedgie adds. For folks who own the DownTek-insulated Diamond Park 15 bag that comfort comes at the cost of taking the 2 lb 9 oz / 1.16 kg quilt up to a total weight of 2 lb 15 oz / 1.33 kg in order to enjoy that cozy, mummy bag feeling.
I think the final choice comes down to personal preference. For some folks the added comfort makes sense while others might choose to save money or weight. I won't tell you what to do, but I will say that in terms of performance the Big Agnes Wedgie did what it was supposed to do and did it well. If you own a Diamond Park or Echo Park series bag and would appreciate having the option to use it in a mummy style configuration the Wedgie will make you a happy camper.
I tested the Wedgie along with the entire Diamond Park 15 system over the course of the winter. The Wedgie was tested for a total of four nights. I am an experienced cold weather camper and try to get out for at least a few multi-night trips each winter.
Source: received for testing via the Trailspace Review Corps
(Sample for testing and review provided by Big Agnes)