Sleeping bags. More often than not they seem like a one way ticket to insomnia. When it comes to weight-shaving mountaineering or backpacking sleeping bags, you can add to that the constricting straight-jacket style of the ever-narrow mummy bag. Just the name “mummy bag” has me thinking it’s not intended for “live” human use.
In the realm of winter camping and mountaineering sleeping bags, the range spans from the second mortgage required for purchase types to the downright heavy and bulky flavor. In wading through the masses I was drawn to the Kelty Foraker sleeping bag which stands above so many bags in the category. Especially when you start to compare features to the cost – the Foraker keeps pace with other bags in it’s class without keeping pace with their price tags.
- 750 Fill Goose Down
- DWR treated microfiber shell comprised of two different textures
- Full draft collar
- Available in 0 degree and negative 15 degree ratings
- 3 lb 7 oz of the Foraker Zero Regular
- Piping in a piece of fabric on both sides of the zipper keep it from catching the bag
The Kelty Foraker comes in either 15 degree or 0 degree rating and since I have an older North Face bag in the 15 degree range, I opted to increase the range of bags in my gear closet by getting a zero degree that I could comfortably take on winter and cold fall/spring outings.
Just getting inside the bag at home had me itching to try it. In fact I opted to sleep in it twice at home because of how comfortable it was.
Kelty Foraker Sleeping Bag Review
My first experience with the Kelty Foraker came early this winter when camping with my son. It had snowed about 8″ and the temps were near 5 degrees overnight as we settled in for a winter camp. When I pulled it out of the stuff sack and set it up in my Marmot Swallow I of course noticed how full it looked.
Typically when winter camping I sleep in a base layer bottom/top and quite possibly a down vest or jacket if it’s ultra cold, but in order to test the full effect and test the bag’s true rating I opted for just the undies, no socks. To my surprise I was totally warm all night long. The soft microfiber fabric around the baffle added to the comfort of the bag resulting in one of the best nights sleep I’ve ever had in a sleeping bag. And this wasn’t the only time that this happened.
The thick diagonal baffles are designed to lock in the warmed air and that it did. I was amazed when waking up that first morning to frost inside the tent and I was toasty warm in my bag.
Another chance to sleep in the Foraker found me winter camping in a snow cave, a great test for the toughness of the DWR finish and the welded seams of the foot and head areas. Again I found myself toasty warm and despite my feet slipping out from the tarp and coming in contact with the walls of the cave I didn’t get wet nor did the cold seep in to cool me off.
How’s the fit? I’m 6’4″ with somewhat broad shoulders and I didn’t feel constricted in the Large Foraker. In fact, getting in and out of the bag was a breeze compared to other bags that constrict and make bending your knees near impossible. A cool feature is the piping on the fabric adjacent to the zipper which keeps the facbric from catching in the zipper. This is best performing zipper-non-catching approach I’ve seen that actually works Combinethe wide shoulders area and I was in and out of the bag without a hitch. I can’t remember the last winter camp where come morning I felt refreshed and was perfectly content to hang out in my cozy and comfortable bag.
- Soft material – the material that is in contact with your skin around the baffle and the neck is the softest performance sleeping bag I’ve ever slept in
- Quality compression sack included
- Welded waterproof construction in the hood and feet areas
- Generous collar baffle with 750 down fill throughout the bag
- Deep 3D hood is actually built for your noggin to fit inside.
- So far there isn’t anything to nit pick about, seriously.
Bottom Line: Kelty Foraker 0-degree Sleeping Bag
Comfort, affordability, solid construction, and one of the best night sleeps ever – the Kelty Foraker is upstaging the “big name” brands and will be my go to bag for winter and cold fall/spring camping.