Traditional mummy sleeping bags have been the go to bag for many people. They are small, lightweight and compact. I myself have never been a fan of them because of how I sleep. I don’t like to feel restrained, so when it came time to sleep on any of our camping adventures, I always had a hard time. Sierra Designs came to the rescue with their Backcountry Bed sleeping bag that was developed to feel like the comforter on your bed at home and still maintain that lightweight compact design. This bag is for those who still want a full sleeping bag but with the added feature of the comforter style.
Sierra Designs has been a part of the outdoor industry for more than 40 years. Winning numerous awards for their gear, it’s clear that they are a company that strives to make outdoor adventures as enjoyable as possible. They listen to what the people want and work hard to deliver top performance gear. Knowing that I might actually be able to sleep comfortably out on the trails, I couldn’t resist the opportunity to review the Backcountry Bed 600 3-season. Here’s the details on what I learned…
- Zipperless design
- Catenary shaped opening
- Versatile integrated comforter
- Self-sealing foot vent
- Insulated hand/arm pockets
- Sleeping pad sleeve
- EN Comfort Limit:28oF / -2oC
- EN Lower Limit:17oF / -8oC
- Fits To: Men’s Regular: 6 ft / 182 cm
- Fill Weight: Men’s Regular: 24 oz. / 0.68 kg
- Trail Weight: Men’s Regular: 3 lbs 1 oz. / 1.39 kg
- Length: Men’s Regular: 80 in. / 203 cm
- Sleeping Pad Sleeve Width: Men’s Regular: 20 in. / 51 cm
- Stuff Sack Length: Men’s Regular: 16 in. / 40 cm
- Stuff Sack Width: Men’s Regular: 8.5 in. / 22 cm
- Shell Material: 30D Polyester Ripstop
- Liner Material: 30D Polyester Taffetta
- Insulation: 600 Fill Duck DriDown
There are no zippers! Say it with me now….NO ZIPPERS! This 3-season sleeping bag means no more worrying about getting the zipper stuck or having it break when you’re in the middle of nowhere. The comforter layer, to put it simply, is cozy. I was able to move around and flip over easily without taking the whole bag with me. For warmer nights you can keep the comforter untucked and if you have sweaty feet or want to cool down a bit more, you can utilize the self sealing foot vent. It’s easy to slide your feet under the flap, sometimes a little too easy though. You might accidentally slip them out while you are sleeping (which I did once), but it’s simple to slide them back into the bag. If you are a stomach sleeper like me, you may enjoy the hand and arm pockets to keep your limbs warm. The opening in the bag is smaller than the width of the bag so that when you happen to push out towards the side of the bag, the top walls push in to seal in the heat. This design is also what keeps the comforter layer tucked in. I never had an issue with the comforter coming untucked on it’s own. A pillow fits nicely in the head space and stays put; another great thing about this design. With the Backcountry Bed there is a sleeping pad sleeve on the bottom so the bag stays put on top of the pad. They say it can hold up to a 20″ wide sleeping pad. I used my 20″ wide pad and it was a very tight fit. It would have been a better design if the sleeping pad sleeve was made with a bit of elastic so it can properly stretch to fit a pad of various sizes.
Made using a 600 fill duck dridown, this bag should stay drier 10 times longer than traditional down filled bags and dry faster. It can keep you warm in temps down to 28 degrees Fahrenheit. DriDown is made using a special coating that covers each of the individual fibers of the down that help make it hydrophobic, which means it repels the water. It was a damp night the first time I tried the bag out. The outer layer gathered a bit of condensation during the night, but I never felt the dampness on the inside. It didn’t take long for the bag to dry out in the sun. The exterior is made with a Ripstop Polyester so it’s tough enough to handle a good beating with frequent outdoor use.
Comfort is so important in a sleeping bag. It’s your bed while you are away from home. I sometimes like to sleep with my arms over the top of my head and had no problem at all doing that with the Backcountry Bed. There was enough room for my arms in the head space while remaining covered and cozy. The interior lining is made with a Polyester Taffeta and is actually softer against the skin compared to other lightweight bags. The only issue I had was the usual narrow design from the thigh area down through the legs. This is standard for most mummy style bags. I was still able to roll over, but when I sleep on my stomach I like to bend my leg to the side. I couldn’t do that with this bag like you can with other non-mummy bags. Not a major flaw but it’s something I would have liked.
While it may not be an 800+ fill down sleeping bag, the 600 fill 3-season held up just fine in the chilly damp spring nights in Michigan. The slightly lower fill amount will save you a few bucks, but this bag still carries a decent price tag of $330. It’s well worth it for the comfortable blanket style zero zipper design. Besides the slim leg space, it was pretty darn close to feeling like I took my comforter right off my bed from home.
- Blanket style is very comfortable
- No zippers
- Stays drier than traditional down fill
- Narrow leg room
- Tight sleeping pad sleeve