A good night’s sleep is crucial, not only for enjoying you camping holiday, but to maintain good health and general well-being.A good night’s sleep is crucial, not only for enjoying you camping holiday, but to maintain good health and general well-being.A sleeping bag or quilt will be amongst the more expensive and bulky items you will carry. It is no coincidence they are rated second to shelter as the most vital consideration before setting out into the back country. We look at the difference between a sleeping bag and a quilt and review the best on offer in 2017.Keeping WarmDuring summer, spring, and fall temperatures can vary dramatically. Even during the hottest day, nighttime temperatures can fall noticeably once the sun is down. It is important to have a sleeping set-up to cope with temperature changes in the night. Sleeping bags and quilts do not produce heat by themselves. Instead, they trap heat generated by your body and stop it radiating into the cold air outside. This is done by trapping warm air in pockets filled with down or synthetic material. Synthetic sleeping bags and quilts are generally more water proof than down. But don’t be fooled into thinking all is good to sleep out in pouring rain; all sleeping insulation performs poorly when wet. Vigilance is the key: keep your bedding in a waterproof stuff sack and find a dry place for the night.Sleeping BagsThe Pros:Completely surrounded, not so reliant on a quality sleeping mat.Most have hoods for neck and head warmth.Seals out drafts for restless sleepers.The Cons:Heavier and bulkier than a quilt.Underbody insulating material is flattened under body weight and no longer effective.Combination of zippers and velcro tags means a bigger chance for things to go wrong.The argument over which is more effective, sleeping bags or quilts, is one gathering momentum in recent years. No one product fits all. Some bodies generate a lot of warmth, while others feel the cold. As a rule of thumb there can be as much as a10 degree difference between women’s body heat and men’s. With this in mind, testing protocols categorize people into ‘cold sleepers’ and ‘warm sleepers’. It means most bags have a European Norm (EN) rating of two comfort levels: EN Lower Limit, and EN Comfort.Sleeping bags are more effective in sealing out drafts when the wind picks up. An important option for sleepers who toss and turn in their sleep and throw off quilt covers.Studies by the US military suggested 40 to 45 percent of body heat is lost by humans through their head. This has now been largely debunked, suffice to say, covering your head feels cozier on a cold night. Most of the mummy style and a small choice of rectangular style bags have a built in hood. For this review, we stick to three season sleeping bags with manufacturer’s ratings between 10 to 30 degrees Fahrenheit.<a href= “https://www.rei.com/product/896029/kelty-cosmic-down-20-sleeping-bag-mens?cm_mmc=aff_AL-_-145262-_-180150-_-NA&avad=180150_df38b9e5”>The Kelty Cosmic Down Sleeping Bag, Men’s</a>A slightly heavier bag at 2lb. 9oz. This bag is good value for the budget conscious. Insulated with water-resistant DriDown® it has quilted-through construction to prevent cold spots; an antisnag, double sided zipper and draft tube to hold in the warmth.<a href= “https://www.rei.com/product/112181/nemo-disco-15-sleeping-bag?cm_mmc=aff_AL-_-145262-_-180150-_-NA&avad=180150_ef3ba6e5”>The Nemo Disco 15 Sleeping Bag</a>A ideal bag for those who like room to move when sleeping. A variation on the mummy style, the Nemo is spoon-shaped gives room at the knees and elbows, a benefit for side sleepers. On those nights when the temperature is not as extreme ,Thermo Gills allow you to unzip the vents to let out heat, yet still preventing cold drafts from coming in.<a href= “http://featheredfriends.com/swallow-nano-down-sleeping-bag.html?avad=180150_ef3baa3d”>Swallow Nano 20 Sleeping Bag</a>The Swallow Nano 20 features continuous baffles allow you to move insulation where it is needed most. A successful combination between roominess, lightweight, and warmth.<a href= “https://enlightenedequipment.com/revelation/”>Enlightened Equipment Revelation</a>The ideal hybrid between a quilt and a sleeping bag. Enlightened Equipment products are made to order with a range of colors, lengths, and widths. <a href= “https://www.backcountry.com/western-mountaineering-ultralite-sleeping-bag-20-degree-down-wes0031?avad=180150_af3c9769&PubID=145262&PubName=www.cleverhiker.com”>Western Mountaineering UltraLite Sleeping Bag: 20degree Down</a>The best quality sleeping bag of the range. Ultra lightweight with a high thread count shell, and an impressive warmth-to-weight ratio. Comes with a high price tag, but as down lasts a long time, well worth the investment. <a href= “https://www.rei.com/product/110922/rei-co-op-magma-10-sleeping-bag-mens?cm_mmc=aff_AL-_-145262-_-180150-_-NA&avad=180150_ef3bca11”>REI Co-op Magma 10 Sleeping Bag-Men’s</a>Storing high quality sleeping bags is is worth careful consideration. While carrying one in a stuff pack is fine for travel, the Magma 10 comes with a mesh sack for breathable storage. A big plus for this bag the internal anti-snag zipper; a hybrid zipper path gives easy access along shoulders and torso. A foot box and toe box baffles give extra warmth to extremities. The Advantages of Sleeping Under QuiltsThe Pros:Lighter than traditional sleeping bags.A simpler design without complicated fasteners.Folds down into a compact space.Purchase price is generally less than quality sleeping bags. The Cons:Must be used in conjunction with a sleeping pad.Sleepers must wear head covering in colder climates.Allows drafts in windy conditions.Why Choose a Quilt?Quilts are increasingly popular with those on the road wanting a simple sleeping system that is light weight and compact. Adventurers such as bikepackers who have limited space in which to carry camping equipment discover quilts eliminate the un-necessary, yet provide insulation for a good night’s sleep.In mummy style sleeping bags insulation is distributed uniformly around the bag. Quilts have the insulation layered on top of your body making them roughly 20 to 30 percent lighter than sleeping bag equivalents. Quilts come in synthetic or down; however, as most who seek to use quilts want the lightest possible product, down is the superior insulation both for lightness and compact size.The shell material of quilts is either polyester or nylon. A low denier nylon will be lighter and generally more durable than polyester. As a rule, a good quality quilt should weigh less than 32 ounces. <a href= “https://www.backcountryedge.com/spark-2-top-quilt.html>Eagles Nest Outfitters Spark 2 Top Quilt>/a<Designed for hammock sleeping, it features a nylon ripstop shell to shed dew and moisture with a weather resistant synthetic fill.>a href= “https://www.thermarest.com/camp-quilts-and-tech-blankets>Proton Blanket</a>Hollow microfiber polyester insulation will maintain warmth and loft even when wet. The breathable shell fabric also sheds moisture.>a href= “http://www.bigagnes.com/Kings-Canyon-UL-Quilt-PrimaLoft_2>Kings Canyon UL Quilt>/a<Exterior webbing and shock cord loops helps the quilt stay in place. This quilt weight just 25 ounces and packs down to a tiny 5 inch by 5 inch stuff sack.>a href= “https://www.thermarest.com/catalog/product/view/id/16665/s/apogee-quilt/category/15/”>Apogee Quilt>/a<A good value quilt that has a perimeter snap loop system that can be pulled tightly about you when conditions turn rough. Also features an elastic footbox and full length draft tubes to prevent drafts.>a href= “https://www.thermarest.com/catalog/product/view/id/16662/s/corus-hd-quilt/category/15/”>Corus HD Quilt>/a<Great for free movement during the night, the Corus is packed with high loft Nikwax Hydrophobic Down for those concerned about sleeping in high moisture areas. An ideal three season Quilt. >a href= “https://www.thermarest.com/catalog/product/view/id/16674/category/15/”>Stellar Blanket>/a<A great all round blanket for daytrips or camping on the beach. The insulation is made from 100 percent, post-consumer recycled materials.