I got a new sleeping bag today.

Some good mates and I are planning a road trip in the middle of next year. We’re doing it largely with stuff we already have, but there are a few odds and ends that I’m short. Until today, that included a sleeping bag. 

Today I got myself one.

It’s a Bush Baby Mummy 450G. 

The 450 refers to the density of the hollow fibre filling. 450 grams per metre. That’s pretty decent. It’s not the goose down that you find in more expensive bags, but at least no geese were brutalised in the making of the bag, and I think I may be allergic to down anyway. 

The mummy part is because of its shape. It’s 86cm at the head, and 60cm at the feet. So it’s tapered like a mummy. Get it? 😉

I love it. 

The zip opens on both ends, so if you’re getting too hot you can open the bottom and get some ventilation. The foot section has zip open flap where you can store some things. On the chest there’s another little storage pouch a bit bigger than a smartphone. 

At the top it has a cowl to keep your head warm. As well as two draw strings, one at the shoulders and one in the cowl, to tighten the openings so it stays toasty in the cold. 

The only drawback is that it’s only rated to 4 degrees Celsius. Although I’m not too worried about the rating. I’m a hot sleeper anyway, and if it does get cold I can always pull my pashmina around me before climbing in. I also love my pashmina. It’s a real Kashmir pashmina that I got in India. I’ll probably write an article on it soon too. 

Right now I’m getting ready to test my new bag. 

I’ll let you know how it goes. 

The camp bed experiment: part 2

The weekend away in the Baviaanskloof is less than two weeks away. I’m really excited, but Nadine is still very apprehensive.
Since my last experiment proved that my bed theory was severely lacking, I’ve thrown it out completely and started again.
My new theory is this: The bottom is a 120mm sponge mattress covered in a thick, heavy, woollen blanket. On top is a soft, fleece blanket first, and then another thick, heavy, woollen blanket over the top.

I tested the new configuration last night, and it’s wonderful. As expected, it’s warm and soft. It is less mobile because of the big and bulky mattress, but they provide enough softness and support for our hips. It is definitely warmer than the last configuration. Mainly because the sleeping bag is old and less effective now, but also because it has the thick, woollen blankets both below and above the humans.
One thing to consider is that I still tested it inside the house on the floor, and not outside in a tent. Although I did try to mitigate the difference by wearing only shorts and a t-shirt.

I’m happy with the camp bed as it stands now. Not forever, mind you, just for our Baviaans road trip later this month. In the future, when I’m not travelling with Nadine, I’ll use a better sleeping bag and revert to the 10mm mat.

Next item on the planning list is food…