Best Rated Cold Weather Sleeping Bags

Here you have a collection of best-rated cold weather sleeping bags from the best-known brands, in a variety of designs and with an impressive temperature rating for full protection no matter how cold it can be.


What is included in the list?

Obviously, all the sleeping bags here are with incredible temperature ratings, and this would make them suitable for the lowest possible temperatures. But there are big differences in the design and in materials. This affects their thermal efficiency, their weight, and their packed size.

So I would not always trust the official rating, it is best to test yourself if you can. Some of the bags do come with independent testing, but those are always done for some “typical” user, yet we are all built differently. The choice of materials is very much related to the weight and packed size, those with synthetic insulation are always bulky and very heavy. In other words, some of the sleeping bags here are only for car camping and for basecamps, but some are ultralight and they can be carried on the trail.

These are all solo sleeping bags, but you might want to check also my text with best double camping sleeping bags some of them are also for very cold weather.


My list of top cold weather sleeping bags

The sleeping bags in the list below are ordered by weight from heavier to lighter:

 

If you are new to this, you should know that the brands presented in the list above are the best known in this industry. This is reflected in the very high prices of some of the bags (but some are incredibly affordable), and also in very good warranty conditions. Note that I have a separate text with ultralight insulated sleeping pads for backpacking they will combine nicely with these sleeping bags.

The text contains affiliate links of Amazon and other sellers, this means we may earn some commission from qualifying purchases at no additional cost to you. Note that this is not a sponsored text.


1. ALPS OutdoorZ Redwood -25 Degree Flannel Sleeping Bag

ALPS OutdoorZ Redwood -25 Degree Flannel Sleeping Bag
ALPS OutdoorZ Redwood -25 Degree Flannel Sleeping Bag

From the picture and from the name of this ALPS OutdoorZ Redwood -25 Degree Flannel Sleeping Bag you realize what you have here. All that you see above is cotton and flannel, so this is a very pleasant sleeping bag. Though the bag is heavy and this is why it is in such a position here in the list, it weighs 13 lb (5.9 kg).

The temperature rating is -25 F (-32 C) and for this you have synthetic insulation. Such insulation works well even in wet conditions but this does not hold for the shell and the liner, it is, therefore, best to avoid places where it can become wet. The bag is rectangular and large, and it is without a hood, so these features are not very good for extreme cold, but there is a drawstring so you can cinch it under your neck.

You have a heavy-duty but plastic zipper that can be unzipped completely so you can use the bag as a warm blanket. It can also be zipped to another bag of this type and you can have a double size bag. Note that the bag is the same from both sides so you can have the zipper on both sides as well.

The dimensions are 80 x 38 inches (203 x 97 cm) and when rolled it is bulky, it measures (L x D) 19 x 16 inches (48 x 41 cm). You will want to know that they give a lifetime warranty against defects in materials or workmanship and that the bag is very affordable.

All in all, this is a versatile bag that can be used in several seasons, and in view of its weight and the packed size this is for places with a car access.

What I like:

  • Dimensions.
  • Warmth.
  • Comfort.
  • Price.

What I dislike:

  • Weight.
  • Packed size.


2. Browning Camping McKinley -30 Degree Sleeping Bag

Browning Camping McKinley -30 Degree Sleeping Bag
Browning Camping McKinley -30 Degree Sleeping Bag

This Browning Camping McKinley -30 Degree Sleeping Bag is a large rectangular structure, but as you realize from the picture, it comes with a hood. The first feature provides great comfort, and the second improves its thermal efficiency. The temperature rating is impressive -30 F (-34 C) so this should be your choice if you plan to sleep outdoors in extreme weather conditions.

The insulation is synthetic, they call it the Techloft Insulation, and you have 160 oz (4.54 kg) of the insulation material. The total weight is 12 lb 12 oz (5.78 kg). The shell fabric is a very durable 210T nylon diamond ripstop while inside you have a pleasant brushed polyester liner. You might want to compare such a durable fabric with some ultralight bags below in the list that are very thin.

This is a 2-layer offset construction that eliminates cold spots. The zippers are #10, very strong and durable. The packed size is (L x D) 27 x 17 inches (68 x 43 cm) and the overall dimensions of the bag are 90 x 36 inches (229 x 91 cm).

What I like:

  • Size.
  • Protection.
  • Comfort.
  • Price.

What I dislike:

  • Weight.
  • Packed size.


3. Browning Camping Denali -30 Degree Mummy Sleeping Bag

Browning Camping Denali -30 Degree Mummy Sleeping Bag.
Browning Camping Denali -30 Degree Mummy Sleeping Bag.

When you see how this Browning Camping Denali -30 Degree Mummy Sleeping Bag is built, you realize it has great thermal efficiency. So it is very narrow in the feet area but you have lots of space in the shoulder area with 38 inches (97 cm) width, and it has a warm adjustable hood. It has been around for many years already so there is plenty of information about it and you know what you are buying.

They have two bags with different temperature ratings, and the focus here is on the warmer one with a -30 F (-34 C) rating. But note that they do not provide an independent EN rating for the bag. The insulation is synthetic TechLoft Silver insulation and there is 122 oz (3.46 kg) of it. The total weight of the bag is 6 lb 15 oz (3.1 kg), so I would say it is moderate here in the list.

The shell is a very durable 210T nylon diamond ripstop, and the inner liner is a 210T polyester. The zipper is a strong and durable #10. The packed size (L x D) 24 x 15 inches (61 x 38 cm), and its overall dimensions are great, it measures 86 x 38 in (218 x 97 cm). Yet another great detail here is that it comes with a price that is hard to match.

What I like:

  • Warmth.
  • Shoulder width.
  • Price.

What I dislike:

  • Packed size.
  • Overall mummy shape.


4. ALPS Mountaineering Blaze -20 Degree Mummy Sleeping Bag

ALPS Mountaineering Blaze -20 Degree Mummy Sleeping Bag.
ALPS Mountaineering Blaze -20 Degree Mummy Sleeping Bag.

This ALPS Mountaineering Blaze -20 Degree Mummy Sleeping Bag is again a mummy-style bag with an impressive rating of -20 F (-29 C). This is a basecamp or car camping bag which they build in two sizes, XL and R, and their weight is 8 lb 6 oz (3.8 kg) and 6 lb 12 oz (3.06), respectively.

The insulation here is what they call TechLoft Silver insulation so this is synthetic with multiple denier staple-length fibers that have a siliconized finish synthetic, and the shell fabric is a ripstop polyester. They give a limited lifetime warranty, and they claim that it will be free of any defects.

What I like:

  • Warmth.
  • Craftsmanship.
  • Price.

What I dislike:

  • Packed size.
  • Shape.


5. Marmot CWM -40 Degree Sleeping Bag

Marmot CWM -40 Degree Sleeping Bag.
Marmot CWM -40 Degree Sleeping Bag.

Here you have a truly backpack-portable sleeping bag for extreme weather conditions. They build it in two sizes and the weight is 4 lb 9 oz (2066 g) for the size R and 5 lb (2268 g) for the size L. The packed dimensions are (L x D) 19 x 9.5 inches (48 x 24 cm). The two sizes are for users up to 6 ft (183 cm) and up to 6 ft 6 in (198 cm) respectively.

Now see its official temperature rating which is -40 F (-40 C) and you realize what nice numbers you have here. it is important to stress that this bag is EN tested. The testing implies “standard” man and woman, and for men this means 25 years old, 1.73 m tall, and weighing 73 kg (160 lb). So as usual, test it yourself before going outdoor.

The shell is waterproof, you have their PertexShield 30D 100% nylon 2 layer 2.3 oz/yd, and the bag includes a warm hood with a 6-baffle construction here. The rest of the bag is with a stretchy cross-baffle construction that prevents movement of the down inside the baffles and eliminates cold spots.

Yet another detail is that side seams are moved to ground level and they claim this increases the temperature efficiency. A part of this efficiency is its overall shape which is a narrow cut mummy-style. The lining is Pertex Microlight 30D 100% ripstop nylon 1.3 oz/yd.

What I like:

  • Warmth.
  • Materials.
  • The fact that they build it in two sizes.

What I dislike:

  • Price.
  • Narrow shape.


6. Marmot Col -20 Degree Sleeping Bag

Marmot Col -20 Degree Sleeping Bag.
Marmot Col -20 Degree Sleeping Bag.

This Marmot Col -20 Degree bag comes with a premium down insulation and with a waterproof yet breathable shell. So the insulation is a certified 800+ Power Goose Down which is among the best materials regarding thermal efficiency. It is highly compressible, very soft, and comfortable, and it provides a perfect warmth-to-weight ratio. The official temperature rating is -20° F (-29° C).

The bag weighs 4 lb 6 oz (1990 g). Such a great weight is also due to its light Pertex Shield fabric which is 30D 100% nylon, and it is completely waterproof. So if you need something for damp and wet conditions, yet filled with a natural down, this is it. The liner is a Pertex Microlight 30D 100% nylon. With such materials, the bag is ideal for mountaineers and for cold-weather in general, and in particular for hikers and backpackers.

To eliminate cold spots, they applied here a sewn-through cross baffle construction, so the down is distributed evenly. You have a baffled hood for increased thermal efficiency, plus an insulated draft tube sewn behind the full-length zipper. The foot box is relatively narrow as you would expect from a mummy-style bag. A stuff sack and storage sack are included.

Here are a few more numbers you might want to know: Shoulder girth is 63 inches (160 cm), hip girth is 61 inches (155 cm), and foot box size is 45 inches (114.3 cm). The stuff sack measures (L x D) 19 x 9.5 inches (48 x 24 cm). The packed volume is around 16 liters. This bag is filled and finished in the USA

What I like:

  • Weight.
  • Packed size.
  • Craftsmanship & fill.

What I dislike:

  • Price


7. Therm-a-Rest Polar Ranger Minus 20 Degree Expedition Sleeping Bag

Therm-a-Rest Polar Ranger Minus 20 Degree Expedition Sleeping Bag.
Therm-a-Rest Polar Ranger Minus 20 Degree Expedition Sleeping Bag.

Here you have a true expedition technical sleeping bag designed for extreme conditions and tested by Eric Larsen who is an Arctic explorer. So you have a snorkel hood introduced to control frost created by breath. This is supposed to eliminate warmth-sapping cross drafts, and because of its position where moisture and vapor get accumulated, they have introduced a synthetic fill in this part. This opening also has a drawcord here so you can reduce the gap and the heat loss.

But the rest of the bag is with down insulation. This is a quality 800 fill goose Nikwax hydrophobic down, and it comes with the RDS certificate. In the specifications, they write that it dries three times faster than an untreated down, and it is also without dangerous PFCs.

Other features include a foot warmer pocket, this is an additional insulated pocket within the foot box. You can keep feet inside such a smaller and more enclosed area. There are also side vents that allow for arm use and customizable temperature control. You also have overlapping draft tubes to prevent cold spots when zippers are closed.

The bag comes with what they call the SynergyLink Connectors, the straps under the bag that keep the sleeping pad in place. They build the bag in two sizes and this is also an ultralight sleeping bag. The R size weighs 3 lb 4 oz (1.47 kg), and the L size weighs 3 lb 7 oz (1.56 kg). Clearly, this is something you can carry on the trail.

I asked them about independent testing and got a reply that the new ISO standard testing protocol is applied to all their bags. The fabric is a 20D polyester ripstop shell fabric with a DWR, and the lining is a 20D polyester taffeta. The bag is very compressible and the storage and compression sack are included. The packed size (L x D) is 20 x 11 inches (51 x 28 cm).

The dimensions are 80 x 31 inches (203 x 79 cm) for the R size, and 85 x 32.5 inches (216 x 83 cm) for the L size. Officially the R size is for users up to 72 inches (183 cm), and the L size for users up to 78 inches (198 cm).

What I like:

  • Incredible weight.
  • Packed size.
  • Materials.
  • Warmth.

What I dislike:

  • Price.

Final thoughts

So this was my list of best rated cold weather sleeping bags, a collection of very different designs, and for various activities in a cold environment. Now, how to choose?

It is best to start from the fact that there are two main groups here that are defined by the insulation materials, and those are:

  • Bags with synthetic fill.
  • Bags with down fill.

All other features and best use of a bag are more or less affected by the fill type. This includes weight, packed size, ease of use and maintenance, price. So the first group includes car camping or basecamp-type cold weather sleeping bags, bags for hunting, etc., with durable yet heavy and bulky materials. If you follow the links you will realize that these are incredibly affordable bags.

The second group includes backpack-portable ultralight, packable, and ultra-expensive technical bags suitable for expeditions, mountaineering, cold-weather backpacking, etc.

Editor’s Choice

There is no way to make a proper choice with sleeping bags that are so different. Nevertheless, I put forward this expensive but very technical and advanced sleeping bag:

Incredibly technical & advanced construction
Therm-a-Rest Polar Ranger Minus 20 Degree Expedition Sleeping Bag.

Product Name: Therm-a-Rest Polar Ranger Minus 20 Degree Expedition Sleeping Bag

Product Description: This is an expensive bag but it is very technical and specifically designed for the coldest Arctic conditions.

Brand: Therm-a-Rest

SKU: B07BJ5T2WX

  • Features - 9.8/10
    9.8/10
  • Design - 9.8/10
    9.8/10
  • Quality & craftsmanship - 9.8/10
    9.8/10
9.8/10

Summary

My overall rating is very high, but it is well-deserved. I would not rate the price, this bag is an investment and it is for experts.

Sending
User Review
8.93/10 (4 votes)

You might want to look around, there is lots of great outdoor stuff presented here in the site. Check these extra heavy duty camping cots for heavy people for off-ground sleeping, and also my list of impressive heavy-duty canvas tents for camping. For extreme cold a sleeping bag may not be enough so check these extreme cold weather camping tents and also sleeping pads for cold weather or these best self-inflating sleeping pads for camping.

Thank you for reading. Let me know if you have any question or comment, there is a comment box below.

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