Sep 24, 2009 at 1:57 pm #1239618
After sleeping in a tent with my girlfriend multiple times with separate sleeping bags, I think it's time we find something that we can both fit in. I have done some research, however most of the options I find are heavy. Any way to do this without zipping two bags together? Because I use a long sleeping bag and she has a regular.
Any couples out there that can help me out? Suggestions and/or advice?
JoshSep 24, 2009 at 2:14 pm #1530357
A semi-rectangular bag from Western Mountaineering… open it up flat and use it like a quilt. Works great! Maybe check out the Alder, hoodless design that weighs a hair under 2 pounds. Just get the long size. Use a strap (or maybe velcro) system to join your two pads together. Nunatak also has a couples quilt, or the backcountry blanket. I really like the versatility of the WM semi-rectangulars, though. Feathered Friends also makes some rectangular bags. Only need one.Sep 24, 2009 at 2:15 pm #1530359
@tallblokeLocale: DON'T LOOK DOWN!!
Hi Josh, Kath and I snuggle under a Western Mountaineering Ultralight. I'm long, she's not, we're both slim. An Alpinlite would be nice for the extra 6" width I have to admit, but we manage ok.
Try opening out your bag and see how close you are to fitting under it. In winter we zip two bags together, my WM, and her Marmot.Sep 24, 2009 at 2:25 pm #1530361
@sprucegooseLocale: New England
For 3 seasons, we use a quilt system. Just a normal BPL PRO 90 if it's warm. If it's colder, we open our SummerLite and place that over the top, overlapping the footboxes…and putting our feet in together. We lay directly on 3/4 length Ridgerests. We've slept down to about 30 degrees like that with no problems. Usually I have to vent a little, cause I sleep a lot warmer than she does.
I can't get her out once the snow flies and the temps dip below freezing, and I don't like sleeping that close to my guy friends, so I don't know how much lower that kinda system could go comfortably.Sep 24, 2009 at 2:48 pm #1530366
@derekoakLocale: North of England
We have made a double top bag out of one mummy bag unzipped full length,by zipping in a pertex base sheet with a down panel to complete the double footbox. She is taller than me so she gets the hood of the mummy bag. In the winter we sleep on 2 short expeds, you need warm hats, but it is a light and warm systemSep 24, 2009 at 4:11 pm #1530385
My wife and I use a Feathered Friends Penguin (20 degree) bag, which zips into a groundsheet. We went with the fleece groundsheet, even though it adds a few ounces over the nylon version. The weight of the groundsheet was less than that what the website specifies (I think it is 10 ounces, but I don't have my gear list handy). We both really like this system. It is very lightweight (lighter than two bags) and much roomier than our old sweetie-pie bag connector. The zipped ground sheet eliminates side drafts (I'm sure we could learn to use a quilt, but with this system there isn't much to learn).
The negatives with this system are minor, in my opinion. First, it could use a draft tube down the middle (it is easy to build one, or use extra clothing if you have it). Second, there is a little spot at the bottom, where you need to pull out a section to eliminate a draft spot (this is easy, but you might miss it). I think both of these little issues are the result of this being both a regular wide bag and a two person top bag. Personally, I wish they designed this from the beginning to be just a two person top bag.Sep 24, 2009 at 5:40 pm #1530410Sep 24, 2009 at 6:46 pm #1530416
Slightly off topic, but relevant –
@Ross – "..it could use a draft tube down the middle…"
We have a 18"x18" downfilled flap that we velcro along the top edge of the space between us. It is very effective at stopping drafts and the bellows effect induced by "other party rollovers".Sep 24, 2009 at 6:51 pm #1530418
You missed out on the recent Moosejaw sale, where you could have purchased a WM Ponderosa and Summer Coupler for a little over $300. The Alder and Mitylite also zip to the Coupler, and I think the Sycamore does. The semi-rectangular bags also zip bottom to top. A Ponderosa on top of a Mitylite allows enough room to do more than snuggle.Sep 24, 2009 at 7:26 pm #1530430
Jacci and I use her WM Ultralight unzipped and over us like a quilt. She gets the hood side and snuggles into it.Sep 24, 2009 at 7:57 pm #1530437
Definitely check out the JRB large quilts. My girlfriend and I have the Mt Rogers and the Katahdin. We carry one plus a silk liner in summer and both the quilts in winter. With both quilts we can velcro them together to make one big bag, or we can lay one or both loosely over us. They are a bit slippery so this can take some getting used to, but it does work.
Having the 2 quilts gives us a lot of flexibility and if either of us go solo, we just take one of the quilts and use it as a bag.Sep 24, 2009 at 11:35 pm #1530469
@biointegraLocale: Puget Sound
One challenge that we have come up against when using a single mummy type bag, is fitting both of our pairs of feet into the foot-box.Sep 25, 2009 at 4:09 am #1530486
@derekoakLocale: North of England
One challenge that we have come up against when using a single mummy type bag, is fitting both of our pairs of feet into the foot-box.
Our Rab 400 did not zip open across the footbox. We added a zip so it did, to make 2 half footboxes. We then added a triangular down panel to the basesheet to make a complete double top (and bit under) footbox.Sep 25, 2009 at 4:35 am #1530488
We have slept under a quilt type bag for many years. The mattresses provide the warmth underneath, and the quilt works on the top. The snag is when it gets colder. Then the drafts at the side make you loose rather a lot of heat. So when we needed something new, we had a dual top bag made for us by a small workshop here in Holland (www.tatteljee.nl). We deciced to go over to Neoairs and Exped 7 downmats for warmer and colder weather repectively. External measures of these mattresses are almost the same. We had a double ultralight nylon sleeve made for these. There is no cold spot in between because the matresses are pressed against each other. At the edges there are zippers to zip a double top bag onto the sleeve. The top bag is about 215 cm wide at shoulder height for an effective bag plus sleeve width of 160 cm (215+105=320). At the feet the bag is rather narrower, however. It is very important not to make the bag too narrow at the feet (not nearly as narrow as with a mummy), because it is of course zipped to the mattresses. I think our bag could be a bit narrower at the top, but a bit wider at the feet would have been nice. My advise is: almost rectangular.
My wife sleeps rather colder than I do, so her part of the top bag has more down than my part. And the weight? Ours is for freezing temperatures and weighs about 1600 grams, including a zipped in silk liner. For another customer the workshop has now also made a more basic model for just above freezing temperatures that weighs about 1200 grams.
So all in all there are indeed efficiency gains in weight (and cost) of about 25% compared to two similarly sized quality solo bags. You cannot really use that gain for a lighter sleep system, however, because the bag needs to be wider than the mattress. So what you gain is the pleasure of each other's company, and more space for the same weight.
From my analysis I also concluded that the gains of a topbag would be relatively smaller for a solo bag than for a dual bag. So for solo use I ordered a PHD Minimus. With a down vest that has a similar temperature rating as our dual topbag system, and it also weighs about half. It is a rather tighter fit, however.Sep 25, 2009 at 6:24 am #1530497
@peter_panLocale: Co-Owner Jacks 'R' Better, LLC, VA
For those of you following Stuart's or James' recommendations there is a free mod to the JRB Large Family quilts that adds omni tape across 2/3 of the top which then allows a JRB Hood, separate item, to funtion as a draft stopper between two sleepers or allows the hood to be attached to the quilt when used as a single "bag"…And, of course the hood is still usable on any jacket /vest (get the free collar mod kit)or use it separately, instead of a hat.
PanSep 25, 2009 at 6:34 am #1530498
@richardglyonLocale: Bridger Mountains
For years I used the WM Alder (formerly called Aspen) plus Summer Coupler. Since buying a Nunatak Back Country Blanket I've tried it with flannel sheet underneath, then a custom-sewn ground sheet with Velcro added at the edges to mate with the Velcro on the BCB. The principal problem is that the BCB is not quite wide enough at the shoulders. As I toss and turn often and my companion can be a blanket hog. I'd really like something bigger. Nunatak will make any size you need and I'm mulling a custom BCB with several inches extra width. With two BCBs each of the couple has his or her own bag for solo trips, and they can be mated for dual use or used with a specially sized ground sheet in warmer weather. Problem of course is that this is a very expensive solution. Richard
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