The other week I got my old Vango sleeping bag out of its stuff sack and noticed the zip was broken. After 6 years of camping use, I’d completely forgotten it broke during a Cornish camping trip, and I needed a new one.
Now the summer camping season has arrived, I thought I’d write a handy blog post around summer sleeping bags for those of you looking for a new addition to your camping kit. My new sleeping bag is a Vango Planet 150, which is comfortable for temperatures ranging from 4 – 15°C – perfect for British summer nights 🙂
The trick with finding a summer sleeping bag is to look at the comfortable temperature range, and match that to the location you are planning on sleeping / camping.
The Planet 150 for example might be the best summer sleeping bag for me as I camp a lot in Britain, but certain places outside of the UK, or on higher ground in the UK, may have much cooler nights, possibly as low as -4 degrees, even in summer. As such, plan correctly, follow the tips below, and hopefully you’ll find the ideal summer sleeping bag option for your camping trip or festival.
Here are my picks of the best summer sleeping bags for 2017 (click the images to view on retailer site):
I must admit, Vango do make great sleeping bags. My last three sleeping bags have all been Vango, and they have all been excellent and lasted over five years each. This version is one designed for year round explorers who demand low weight and small pack size. It has a comfortable temperature range of between +7°C and -3°C. From £78.
This Mountain Warehouse Sleeping Bag is a great summer season choice. This sleeping bag is for much milder temperatures as it has a comfortable temperature range of between +5°C and +11°C. From £30.
The Vango Sennen sleeping bag provides quality and affordability in a mummy-shaped bag. It provides warmth, and a pack size that is ideal for first time campers, festival goers and DofE groups. It has an approximate comfortable temperature range of between +6°C and 2°C. From £46.
Whilst it doesn’t have the most inspiring design, the 300GSM is envelope shaped, allowing you to find that perfect sleeping position. It has an approximate comfortable temperature range of between +8°C and 0°C. From £35.
OMM are a great outdoors brand, with a superb range of backpacks and sleeping backs. Here I’ve gone for the 1.0 version, a lovely, snug, long sleeping bag with a temperature range of between +9°C and -1°C. From £150.
This Ayacucho sleeping bag is a great option for camping in milder conditions. It’s comfortable temperature range is between +6°C and 0°C. This summer sleeping bag is extra long, so perfect for those over 6ft tall. From £65.
This is a good option for those that don’t like mummy shaped sleeping bags and want more space around the feet. This summer sleeping bag also provides a double option, for those who want to snuggle up during the night. Temperature range is around +6°C, and has a comfortable limit of -1°C. From £29 (single and double).
The Karrimor Superlight 2 Sleeping Bag is ideal for spring and summer time camping. It is a two season sleeping bag that is comfortable around +7°C, and has a limit of +2°C. From £40.
And lastly – just for fun – I spotted this awesome Easy Camp festival sleeping bag online (£22). It also doubles as a coat using drawstrings at the bottom! 🙂
FROM SLEEPING BAGS TO LINERS
If you’re not sure if the sleeping bag you have is not going to be warm enough, then you have a couple of options. Firstly, you could put a sleeping bag inside another bag, thus adding another layer of warmth.
Another option is to use a sleeping bag liner. If the conditions are simply too warm for any type of sleeping bag, then a liner is a great option. I used a liner when I was in Colombia and Brazil because the temperature never dropped below 18 degrees – even at night.
Sleeping bag liners are also useful for hygiene purposes, for example if you’re not sure how clean your hotel/hostel/bunkhouse sheets are.
Sleeping bag liners come in cotton or silk, and pack down really small, so they are perfect for backpacking. Try one of these three options:
Lifeventure Silk Sleeping Bag Liner – £31.70
Lastly, don’t forget. even though it’s summer, you’ll still need some insulation from the ground, so make sure you pack a roll mat or self inflating camping mat to keep you comfortable and warm from the ground!
Happy summer camping guys!
Disclosure – Some of the links above include affiliate links. This means when the links are clicked and a product is purchased, I make a little commission on each sale. Just letting you know. Carry on 🙂
Prices last updated April 2020