SNUGPAK Softie 15 Sleeping Bag

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Apr 7, 2016
467
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suffolk
Unboxing pre rather than a re view?

I wanted a "winter" bag that was just a little lighter and more portable for rucksack usage than my army surplus M90, ( superb for canoe and car carrying?) which is a fabulous bag, especially at £48, but very heavy and bulky. I'm guessing the weight of the Snugpack to be about a third that of the M90, and certainly pulls down to about the same in respect of volume, and compared to the Dutch M90 bag, it seems lightweight and thin and flimsy, an illustration on how far things and insulation have come in 30 or 40 years. On looking closely it does seem nicely made though?

This was bought through OutdoorGB, who were very helpful when trying to select which model and spec. would be suitable.

At 6' 4", I ordered the extra long variant on Snugpaks advice, a choice not available with the Tactical 4, my original bag choice. Apparently the Tactical 4 and Softie 15, as far as stuffing is concerned are identically specified?
Anyway, it was more than long enough, but it made getting in a cinch as I don't have to shuffle and fidget to arrange a normal bag and hood to fit over my head (the M90 or large Arctic 90?)
The standard bag is 220 cm overall; the extra long version is 250 cm overall. The weight for the latter version is 2.7 kg
I also ordered an "Expanda" panel, and I'm glad I did, for without and wearing jeans and a sweatshirt, it was indeed, snug. Too snug. I am 106 kg 48" chest, 34" waist, 36" legs?
The expansion panel made a world of difference. Working out how to attach it initially, showed I had the problem solving skills a little less than a crow: but when done, you laugh at how simple it is....or how thick I am...............
Like the Tactical 4, the bag has a reinforced boot end, and lovely adjustable baffles around shoulders/chest if needed, plus the adjustable hood.
Good zips, two way with anti snag tape behind like the M90.
I also ordered a polycotton liner, as I don't want to wash the bag any more than essential, and I understood it tied into the bag to minimise movement (the M90 has a brilliant popper arrangement)......... but it doesn't attach in the Snugpak at all, which is a shame.

The bag comes complete with a lightweight compression bag.

All awaiting a proper test............
 
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Apr 7, 2016
467
96
suffolk
Well................ it was used/tested lasted night in a fair old frost, according to forecast maybe 3 deg below.....?
Before I go any further, it (Snugpak Softie 15) was perfectly warm enough and very comfortable...........

This is the first new bag I have owned since the 70s, when I splashed out what was a fortune on a couple of Blacks Highland synthetic bags, considered at the time., to be up there with the best down bags in warmth.....who know, but I still have them, but have been washed so many times in my ignorance, that they are only summer capable now?
The bags I have used in the last few years are surplus bags, based on the "bang for my buck" philosophy, and they have not disappointed: one a British Army Arctic 90, short zip, and following this, the amazing (and huge!) Dutch Army M90: so how does the Snugpak compare in use?
Know that the modern bag is HALF the weight and packs to HALF the size of the 30 year old M90.............

One of the winning factors with the Snugpak, and this model specifically, is that it is available in an extra long length, whether I needed that at 6'4" is marginal, but on Snugpaks advice I went for it and was glad I did, it makes entry very much easier without having to wiggle the bag up to ensure you can get into the hood.....in a one man tent, an old git doing that is not elegant! Another USP that Snugpak have is the "Expanda" panel as they call it, which makes the bag less....er, ...snug, should you wish. The cut of the bag across the shoulders is slightly more generous (in standard mode) than some competitors down bags (Alpkit 900 -80 cm against 70 something?) in any case, and I am large (I'm large, but no fatty and I still found the Snugpak too tight as standard across chest/shoulders). The panel is just lovely, and it gives ample room to move about if needed, and I like that. The excellent baffles at the shoulder can easily be pulled in on pull cords to prevent any cold coming in, in any case.The zips whilst perfectly good, are not quite as good at not snagging as the Dutch M90, but are 2 way.
The cotton liner, I was initially a little disappointed with, as I understood it tied in, but it does not, it's loose, like the one with my BA 90 bag, which is difficult to get into, and you get tied up in it. The brilliant Dutch bag has the liner attach with poppers, and works superbly.
It is dead easy with the Snugpak to get into the liner, why this should be, I don't know !!! .........And it doesn't...or didn't tie me up, I had no issues at all, and slept very well.


Snugpak receive some criticisms over their temp. claims; the Softie 15 is listed as Comfort -15, Extreme -20, and save their Antarctic bag , has their coldest rating. Whether I would want to be out in it at those temperatures is doubtful, but these things are so subjective. I slept on a MultiMat sim, and nothing else. I wore a rugby shirt and cheap lightweight cotton chinos (Aldi). No socks, no hat. Perfectly warm. All good :thumbsup:

(also on "Life in the Wilderness")
 
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