Jun 7, 2011 at 10:24 pm #1275087
@andrew-fLocale: San Francisco Bay Area
Just got my new Katabatic Gear Alsek 22F quilt in the mail today and I am very pleased. I have been vacillating between my WM Summerlite and Ultralite.. the Summerlite (9oz of down) isn't quite warm enough for me and the Ultralite (16oz of down) is usually too warm. I think the Alsek (12.4oz of down) will be "just right."
This is my first quilt and I am pleased with the innovative system to attach the quilt to your pad- it basically feels like you are in a sleeping bag once you've clipped it in. I could easily get in and out just by undoing the neck snaps & 1 of the 4 pad clips so I hope it won't be a fuss in the middle of the night. The neck collar is great and once I had it & the pad straps cinched up, when I pushed down on the top of the quilt it stayed kind of "inflated" and air rushed out around my neck indicating that there was a good seal. At 5'10", there is enough room in the 6' length that I can cover up my head if I need to.
Here are some pics comparing it to my Summerlite and Ultralite. (Yes, I have too many expensive sleeping bags.) While it's not quite as lofty as the Ultralite it is darn close for having 4 oz less down in it. I think this quilt may just replace both of those bags… it seems like it is almost as warm as the Ultralite, but at the weight of the Summerlite. I think Aaron has a winner on his hands with a quilt that is the same weight and price as the Summerlite but significantly warmer. Look for my Summerlite in Gear Swap soon… :)
Advertised weight: 21 oz.
Weight on my scale: 21.6 oz.
Here are some pictures:
Clipped to pad
Alsek & Summerlite
Alsek & Ultralite
AndrewJun 7, 2011 at 11:09 pm #1746337
quite a sleeping bag p*rn there :pJun 7, 2011 at 11:44 pm #1746343
Very nice. I have been considering the Alsek with 1oz of overfill if I do the PCT sometime. Right now I have a WM Summerlite and Apache MF but think that a ~20*F quilt would be the perfect balance.
Let us know how it works out!Jun 8, 2011 at 6:59 am #1746381
I recently bought the Katabatic Chisos which is the 40 degree rated quilt. I was plenty warm without any extra worn insulation down into the 40s and that was without cinching anything tightly but simply letting the natural shaped feature of the quilt do it's job. Definitely loved the flexibility of the quilt concept. Much easier for me to manage my comfort since I tend to sleep warm.Jun 8, 2011 at 7:49 am #1746398
@servingkoLocale: Intermountain West
I am glad you like it. I currently have two, (Sawatch and Chiso),and continue to be impressed with the whole quilt concept and Aaron's design and workmanship. Having taken my Chisos with 2oz overfill into the 20's without a hood, I have no doubt that it will cover 90% of my needs at just a bit over 16.5oz. Once the hoods are back in stock, sometime this fall as I have been told, I will be all over one – I just don't know which one at this point.Jun 8, 2011 at 11:08 am #1746476
@forbesbLocale: Bay Area
Very Nice. I've been using a Palisade overstuffed by 3 oz since early last year. Guessing they're somewhat similar in the end. The Alsek is actually exactly what I wanted at that point.Jun 8, 2011 at 12:09 pm #1746498
@nickbLocale: Los Padres National Forest
+1 on the Katabatic Quilts.
I made the switch to a quilt last summer and have never looked back. I have both a Palisade and Sawatch and I'm really pleased with both! Excellent construction quality, conservative temp ratings (for me), lightweight, prompt service/shipment and a fair price.
I really like the pad attachment system too. It works great for me. If I wasn't already so happy with my current 2-quilt quiver, I'd be looking at the Alsek as a potential single do-it-all wonder quilt.Jun 16, 2011 at 9:57 am #1749977
@servingkoLocale: Intermountain West
Just an FYI – The lighter hood is back in stock, 6 are available less the one I ordered.Jun 16, 2011 at 10:53 am #1749995
@huskerhikerLocale: So Cal
Love my Sawatch. Have just started playing (at home- used it last year without them) with using the attachment system and can see that it'll be even that much better.
Question on the neck snap – what different techniques do people use for snapping it in place? Especially when you have already clipped the quilt to the pad? Even without it unclipped, and maybe i'm uncoordinated or don't think well in the cold/altitude, but I have problems working the snap behind my neck. You obviously have to have your arms out of the quilt to do that. Isn't that a bit difficult to that with it clipped down.
The easiest thing in the past has been to pre snap it and then pull it over my head essentially, but that too isn't always easy and requires there to be a little extra length in the bag for you to do it without too much stress on things.Jun 16, 2011 at 7:19 pm #1750187
looking at the pics the Alsek appears to be roomier than the Summerlite- is that accurate? I had a Summerlite and had to let it go as was too restrictive in the shoulders for me (went w/ a Hydrogen which has been a great fit)
the 6' "regular" in the Chisos, Palisade and Alsek are all out of stock it appearsJun 16, 2011 at 7:35 pm #1750197
@andrew-fLocale: San Francisco Bay Area
@Ryan: It took me a little while to figure out a system that works for the straps & neck snap. To get in/out of the quilt at night, I unsnap the neck and undo the top left pad attachment. That's all I need to get in/out easily. When I get back in, I turn over on my side, pull the snap that is behind me under my head, and snap it in front of my face where I can see it & deal with it easily. Then I rotate the neck back so that the snap is underneath me. I then reattach the 4th pad clip. Sounds complicated, but really takes all of 10 or 15 seconds and is about the same as futzing with a zipper. If it's warm, I do what you said and snap it then pull it over my head and don't worry about the pad clips.
@Mike: It is WAY roomier than the Summerlite. I fit in a Summerlite, but it was always a bit tight. The Alsek is roomier than my Ultralite which itself is significantly roomier than the Summerlite. The footbox is bigger, and I can easily put my hands on my chest in the Alsek with my elbows out to the sides without feeling constricted.
AndrewJun 17, 2011 at 6:53 am #1750303
thanks- that's very encouraging indeed :)Jun 17, 2011 at 10:51 am #1750376
My Palisades is due to be delivered today, but I will out of town. Can't wait to try it out next weekend.Jun 23, 2011 at 6:27 am #1752399
they got more regulars in the Palisade, so decided to pull the trigger on one- struggled between the Chisos and the Palisade as I tend to sleep warm and always have an insulating layer- for a 3 oz penalty w/ 2.5 of it being fill I went w/ the Palisade- should have a very comfy 30 degree bag that I can push into the 20's :)Jun 23, 2011 at 8:43 am #1752427
@chrisgoldbergLocale: Rocky Mountains
I was on the fence between the Alsek wide in 6' or 6'6" lengths. I'm a 6' toss-and-turn, side sleeper and wanted enough girth to accommodate my wide shoulders and enough length to be able to pull the quilt over my head.
I live just a few miles from the Katabatic shop – it's not set up for retail, but Aaron was accommodating and let me stop by to check out the two lengths. I decided to go with the 6'6".
As others have mentioned, the quality and workmanship are excellent – as good as it gets. No complaints with the service, either: Aaron is responsive, helpful, and friendly.
The pad attachment system is a great design – it allows for lots of flexibility to control temperature via venting or clipping down to the pad. I haven't had the chance to try it out in cold temps, yet, but suspect it will be very effective at eliminating drafts and keeping the quilt securely attached to a pad while allowing for unencumbered movement underneath the quilt.
I'll wait until I get some field experience with the quilt before posting a rated review, but my initial impressions are very favorable.Aug 13, 2014 at 9:54 am #2127273
I love my Alsek, and after using it for many trips over a period of a few years, I still think it's still the best sleeping system purchase I've ever made. I ordered the widest version and 2 oz. of overfill in the shoulder area.
Fairly recently I decided to loan my Alsek to a friend to see how it would work for a fairly large person (since it's a fairly pricey item, and I had purchased the widest possible option, it seemed like a good idea to know if it would fit someone who's a beefy 230 lbs. before placing an order). But I had misplaced the attachment pieces that came with the quilt (I'm relatively small, and I had never felt a need to use the attachment pieces, so I had long since put them away). I sent an email to Katabatic asking about replacement at my own cost. I had a bit of a time crunch, and Katabatic sent me another set right away at no charge.Aug 14, 2014 at 8:04 pm #2127735
I've had mine for over 2 years now and it has been a near perfect 3-season quilt. I can dress up or down for the conditions and vent easily if I get too warm. As others have commented, the workmanship is top notch. I even broke one the pad attachment points (must have been aggressively tossing and turning!), and Aaron replaced it for free and turned it around quickly! Recently, I've been using it in my hammock system and it's a great top quilt. Great product all around.
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