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Camping Tips - Sleeping Bag

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Buying a Sleeping Bag

Buying sleeping bags can be a difficult task, with prices ranging from a few pounds to a few hundred. Ultimately you have to ask what you want to use it for. The sleeping bag is an important part of the kit. If you are hiking then you ideally want something that will pack tightly and is quite lightweight, such as a compact sleeping bag, although you have to be careful as these sometimes don't provide the best insulation. Temperatures drop at night more than most people expect, even in the middle of summer so you should make sure you're prepared. A sleeping bag traps the warm air around your body which provides the best insulation possible. The best sleeping bag is one which allows moisture to escape while keeping warm air trapped. If you are in a couple, you might prefer a double sleeping bag (there is no better central heating than the body heat of someone else.

Sleeping bags are given temperature rating based upon their intended use. One season sleeping bags are designed for use in the summer months only and aren't suitable for camping in the winner (they just won't keep you warm). Two season sleeping bags are suitable for the extended summer months (from early spring to late autumn, but aren't suitable for sub zero temperatures. Three season sleeping bags will provide warmth in temperatures which are slightly sub zero and four season bags are designed to be used all year round and will be the most expensive type of sleeping bag.

Sleeping bagsTemperature ratings should be taken as a general rule, remember, temperatures can drop below zero in spring, particularly at higher altitudes so you should follow specific directions of the manufacturer. The amount of heating that different people will need can vary widely, with some people requiring more warmth than others.

What you sleep on is also very important, a good ground mat provides great insulation and is very important when camping.

If you are just planning on camping in the summer, you probably don't need to spend too much, if you are looking at trecking, climbing, mountaineering etc then you really want to look at the top end, as the cheaper models simply won't keep you warm enough. You might also want to consider a "bivvy bag", as this can be useful in emergencies, or if temperatures drop lower than expected.

The fill in sleeping bags can be made of a wide range of things, most commonly goose, duck or down. Down is the warmest and often most expensive but not very good if it gets wet.

You may also want to look out for a bag with a 2 way zip so you can stick your feet out the bottom. Double sleeping bags are also available and singles that join together to form a double. Insulated zips are also important if it gets very cold. A good ground mat is also an essential. They are only cheap and provide excellent insulation.

About the Author Camping Now have great deals on Sleeping Bags from suppliers across the UK .