With record-breaking cold temperatures putting Utah in a deep freeze this winter, camping is about the last thing anyone wants to do. But if you are an outdoor adventurer who laughs in the face of winter’s chill, then you’re going to need a warm sleeping bag. High Peak USA has a line of high quality, inexpensive mummy bags called the Alpinizmo Latitude. They come in three temperature ratings (20, 0, and -5.) I’ve been using the -5 version for a few months now on backcountry ski trips around the state, and found the bag to be very warm in both the truck camper and backcountry yurts.
The Alpinizmo® by High Peak USA line of Latitude sleeping bags boast the following features:
- Cozy Therm™ heat regulating technology for increased warmth and decreased weight.
- Tactel rip stop nylon shell
- Insulated with Cozy Loft™ Micro-X, a blend of solid and hollow fibers designed to add warmth but not weight
- Sewn-in draft tube and collar
- Anti-snag zipper band and hood
- Hook-and-loop closure at top of bag
- Hang loops at the bottom
- Snag resistant #5 YKK zipper
I admit, I never actually slept outside when temperatures got to -5 overnight. However, I did roll out the bag when temps were in single digits and the teens, both while sleeping in the “mobile yurt” of a truck camper, and on a recent (actual) yurt trip. When I first used the Latitude sleeping bag in the camper, I thought there’s no way a bag so thin and light could possibly be rated to -5. But that night, when temperatures dropped to the upper teens and we had the thermostat turned off, I got really hot while wearing just my base layers inside the bag. Luckily, I could unzip and dump some heat, but I remained overheated until morning.
Lesson learned, the next time I slept in the camper, we kept the thermostat off. Cold, cold air crept in, and I could tell the bag was going to get a good test based on how cold my face was outside the hood. Once again, I started out hot, but eventually the bag adjusted to my body heat (it least it seemed that way) and I slept totally comfortable the rest of the night.
A few weeks later at the Bunchgrass Yurt in the Bear River Range, I brought along the Latitude and didn’t regret it. The Bear Rivers are notoriously cold, and the two nights spent at the yurt were no exception. We used a small, potbelly stove to heat the yurt, but after everyone went to bed and the fire died down, the yurt got really cold, really fast. Once again, I started out hot and with the zipper undone, but it wasn’t long before I was freezing and had to zip up. But even then, cold crept in and I got the chills. So I cinched the hood, made sure the draft tube and collar were in place, and snuggled in. As soon as I got the bag dialed, I never again felt cold, despite temperatures in the low teens outside the bag.
So what makes the High Peak latitude bags work despite them being so thin? I figure it’s got to be the “Cozy Therm,” which is a fabric in the interior liner that, “radiates body heat to help regulate temperature while you sleep by allowing excess moisture to wick away.” It seems to work just as advertised. The bag is also great because it’s highly compressible. It comes with a compression sack for storage, and can be sucked down to a manageable size that fits perfectly in the bottom of my backpack. But the best feature of the Latitude -5 sleeping bag is the price. At only $158, you’d be hard-pressed to find a quality bag at this temperature rating for less.
My only gripe is with the zipper. No sleeping bag zipper is easy to use when you’re stuffed inside the bag, but I always caught the zipper in the fabric every time I used it. It’s pretty expected, and isn’t a big deal (unless you’re about to blow a bladder and need to escape now.)
Happy Alpinizmo High Peak USA Latitude -5 sleeping bag:
Warm, light weight, well built, affordable, highly compressible
Sad Alpinizmo High Peak USA Latitude -5 sleeping bag:
Issues with the zipper getting caught
If you’re looking for a warm, winter sleeping bag that won’t require you to drain the checking account, give the Alpinizmo by High Peak USA Latitude -5 sleeping bag a serious look. You may be able to find it locally at Recreation Outlet, or buy it online at Overstock.com