Wednesday, December 04, 2013

Survival Basics

I inherited a Woods winter bag that was made in the 1950s.

It weighed over 40 pounds and had a down inner bag like a duvet that slipped between the layers of the waxed canvas outer bag. The inside surface of the canvas was covered with wool blanket (very scratchy).
The whole thing was 7ft long when put together and the downside was the weight. Used properly it would protect you at any temperature.

Woods rated the bag at -60 f  but even if that were hyperbole I can attest that it kept me warm and dry in -28c weather. All I needed was a sled to haul it.

Like many things of that era ... it was the quality of design and materials combined with decent manufacturing skills and quality control that made the sleeping dependable and rugged.

Today ... with seemingly endless standards and ratings protocols you can't rely on anything to do what it is supposed to do. Leaving us to ask the question ... just why the heck are we paying for all this crap when we were better off relying on manufacturers who cared what their customers said about the products ... and our own judgement.

Winter Sleeping Bag Temperature Ratings .... seem to be less than reliable.

The key take away from this hiking enthusiast magazine is that women need at least 10 - 15 degrees more protection than men. And everyone needs bags that are rated for lower temperatures.

That being said ... there was never a woman who complained about cold in my sleeping bag.



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