SNOWSHOE MAGAZINE GEAR REVIEW:

Sub-Zero Temps? No Problem for the High Peak Mt. Rainier Sleeping Bag

The majority of snowshoers in the world aren’t taking overnight trips into the backcountry.  But it’s always nice to have a cold-weather sleeping bag on hand for the right situation – especially on a hut-to-hut trip.  High Peak’s Mt. Rainier Sleeping Bag offers a waterproof, windproof solution for the snowshoer requiring a minus 20 degrees Fahrenheit rating.  

If there are sub-zero temperatures to contend with, the Mt. Rainier bag can handle it with enough comfort and breathability that’s expected from this type of gear.  

Cold weather camping is always tricky.  It requires an entirely different level of gear commitment.  If this is the plan, you should spare no expense on acquiring the right kind of tent and a warm, durable sleeping bag.  These are the two most important items that will allow you to take the necessary steps to be protected when the sun sets and freezing temperatures overwhelm.  

Although not a well-known brand, High Peak’s products are trusted by yours truly.  I reviewed the High Peak Sinnex Sport Adrenaline 75+10 Backpack over the summer and learned to appreciate the brand’s quality.  The company offers high-performance gear for decent prices, allowing the snowshoer on a budget to acquire what’s necessary to explore the trails and plan overnight excursions.  

I look for specific features in a cold weather bag: breathability, waterproofness, minus 20 degree Fahrenheit rating or lower, an easy-to-use two-way zipper, and a large hood that can be closed almost completely.  The Mt. Rainier Sleeping Bag possesses all of these options.  

It’s a sure winner with its Invista Thermolite Quallo fill material that offers the warmth required for snow camping.  Evidently, this is a seven-hole hollow fiber that works well with the bag’s quilted, double layer construction (both on top and bottom).  All features working together prevent “bunching” of the Quallo fill material – disallowing cold spots.  Adding additional warmth and durability is the Mt. Rainier’s 260T Invista Tactel soft nylon inner lining.  

At a forgiving 5.5 pounds, the Mt. Rainier has more than enough for the winter adventurer.  Its carry size is about 16 inches long by 11 inches in diameter.  When unfurled, the bag is an overall size of 34-inches by 86-inches by 22-inches, including a box-style foot area for extra room.  In fact, two Mt. Rainier bags can be zipped together side by side (just in case you want to share some body heat with a partner).  

Behind its waterproofing, the Mt. Rainier’s membrane allows air and water vapor to escape while keeping snow and water out.  It also features a deluxe stuff sack with a locking drawstring closure (fairly common on sleeping bags) and compression straps (very uncommon and helpful with packing).  

Additional features:

  • Two-way zipper with anti-snag tapes
  • Four-season sleeping bag
  • Five-year warranty against actual defects in materials and workmanship

For more information, visit http://www.highpeakusa.org/Mount_Rainier_20.html.