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I went for the whole pad/bag system and didn't like it because I don't sleep on my back. The pad is rigid to the bag it doesn't form with you when on your side. That was my 3 night big Agnes experience and I returned them both. Seems awesome though if you are a back sleeper.
 

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okay

I think the bags are good. What I didn't like was where you slid the sleeping pad into the bottom of the bag (there way of compensating for not having any insulation on the bottom of the sleeping bag). It made me feel trapped as the bag no longer will conform to how you want to move. I like to sleep on my side with my legs cured up. Can't do that very well with this system. As for warmth, they feel pretty true to specs. I would go to a store and try one out, you will know pretty quick if it's your style or not. Good luck. Atom...
 

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Pros and cons

I have a Zirkel (15 degree 800 fill) and a Cross Mountain (35 degree semi-rectangular synthetic). I'm a back sleeper and they work well for me. The Zirkel is incredibly compact and I love the fact that I can roll in it without the bag twisting with me. I'm about 6'4" and I also like their 76" pads as opposed to a 72. They mummy cut of the bag limits your pad options and one downside is that you really need a pad (cot alone won't work paco won't work with mummy style). The only other issue is that @ the lower end of the temp rating I'll occasionally get cold spots near where the pad and bag meet.
The cross mountain is not as compact due to it being synthetic, but it is a bit roomier due to the rectangular shape. One feature I love is that the Zirkel slides into the cross mountain for COLD weather camping (I've seriously sweated my ass off below zero). The cross mountain allows for more pad options, but I still think a paco would be sweaty below the nylon alone. I like them and think the quality is great but be aware of limitations like the inability to just toss it in a cot or couch or use it on a hut trip with bunks sans pad. Also beware the potential for cold spots where pad and bag meet.
 

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I have a Lost Ranger and I like it, but since I mostly river camp, the pocket pad system is pretty useless if you have a paco. a Paco or similar is too wide and thick to fit inside, so I end up just laying the one sided sleeping bag on top and sometimes cold drafts come in the gaps (wouldn't happen with the pad in but I don't want to bring two pads to sleep on. for lightweight camping, the pad pocket makes tons of sense and probably would make sense again if I ever go with a cot (as most use thermarests on top of the cot for heat retention) but after going to a paco, I have no interest in going back to a thermarest on the ground.

Quality and fill wise, they are as good as anything else.
 

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I would suggest going to golite.com/salesevents and going to one of the current outlet stores listed. You can get wholesale and try it out first.

Their down bags are awesome, but I would look at the synthetics too for an affordable choice.
 

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I have a Big Agnes Moon Hill 0 degree bag. I really dig the integrated pad because it keeps me from slipping off during the night. I can still roll in the sleeping bag and have even slept on my stomach.

She's a hot bag and the pad is plenty comfortable.
 

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I have been using a bunch of the big agnes products a ton for the last 4 years. I am not a fan of the integrated pad/ bag system, but they make plenty of normal bags as well. Just use your discount to get one of those and you will be happy.
 

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What about Lafuma or Marmot, and what is better down or synthetic?
I sold Marmot and other high end bags for 13 years, I don't have any experence w/ Lafuma. As far as down vs. synthetic, they both are good and both have pros and cons. If you get the syn bag wet, you will still be wet but it will keep you warmer thru the night and will most likley dry out in a few hours depending on the humidity. The only real prob w/ g/d is "if" it gets wet it will take days to dry and then will dry with clumps. You can launder the syn bag in a top loading washing machine and line dry it. I have done it 100's of times w/ rental TNF bags. You can wash g/d, but drying it is where it really gets tricky. It least to do a pro/factory job! I have a company called Mtn. mend do mine. I think they are still based in CO.? G/d keeps its temp rating longer than syn and can be "revived" over the years. Syn bags can not be revived, they just won't be as warm over the years gone by thus loosing loft/trapped dead air space. Of course there is low quality g/d/feather bags that suck, but when you are shopping Marmot, TNF, Mtn. Hardware, Big A ect. you have nothing to worry about. They are all quality. G/d bags are lighter in weight and just about half the size when stuffed into the stuff sack! G/d is more money though. I have 5 bags, 2 syn, 3 g/d, but if I could only have 1 it would be g/d. When I do winter Grand Canyon trips, I take my g/d bag. I stuff it into a H2O proof stuff sack that is the same size as the factory stuff bag that comes w/ it, then put it in my big dry bag w/ all my other stuff (double bagged as I would do w/ a syn. bag). If you have the extra $$$ and want to save space and weight go with a bag w/ at least a 600 and up "fill power" which means, what ever the fill power number is, say 600, means 1 oz. of goose down will fill 600 cubic inchs of space. It is a refrence for warmth per weight measurement. So 800 fill power would be warmer for the same weight as say 600 or any number that is less than 800 but will weigh the same, but it will cost more sense there is more down pod and less feathers. One last thing, if you are an average size person or bigger, I would highly recomend a semi-rectangular bag! They are getting harder to find in goose down last time I checked for some reason but they make them in syn also. It just gives you more room to move around than a "mummy" but not as large as a full rectangular bag. It gives you best of both worlds. I use mine in sub freezing temps and sleep great. Mosly unzipped.
Hopefully this will give you some insight and help you on your bag selection?
Good luck and stay warm!
 

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I owned a big Agnes. I'm not a fan. Burned a hole in my rest pad so I have spent several cold nights on my Paco pad in that thing. Not very comfortable. When I'm not freezing to death sticking to it. Not horrible for warm weather. Its really just a poor idea to take insulation out of the back of the bag so you can tell people it's lighter. I went with a wiggys hunter elite. Awesome bag. Extremely warm. Very functional when wet. It sucks moisture from the inside so if you have wet clothes in freezing temps just put them in the bag with you and theyre dry by morning. Look around at them. Good reviews. Paid about 150 for it. Made in grand junction, co
 

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Its really just a poor idea to take insulation out of the back of the bag so you can tell people it's lighter.

The reason Big Agnes and other bag makers take the insulation out of the underside of their bags isn't just to tell people they are lighter in weight. It is because the insulation on the underside of any sleeping bag with any type of insulating material is compressed by the person's body weight, and therefore becomes useless for insulating purposes. Removing the insulation from the underside does reduce the weight of the bag, but it is the weight of extra insulation that isn't useful. The pad you are sleeping on is what really provides you bottom insulation. I do agree that the pad sleeve on the Big Agnes isn't everyone's cup of tea.
I personally have switched to a top quilt instead of a sleeping bag. It snaps up around my feet, up to about knee level, but is open in the back the rest of the way up. It has a snap & cinch at the neck, so I can draw it in tight around my neck and shoulders when it's cold, or open it up for warm trips. It is down, and has a 20 degree temp. rating. I sleep on a roll-a-cot with a 2.5 inch thermarest. I have used this system down to 30 degrees and was perfectly warm & cozy. I will admit that I was skeptical about the top quilt idea, but so far it has worked great for me. I do agree with liquidphoto's post about the semi-rectangular down bag. I have a Kelty semi-rec down bag that I'll never part with.

KJ
 

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Good stuff.

It is because the insulation on the underside of any sleeping bag with any type of insulating material is compressed by the person's body weight, and therefore becomes useless for insulating purposes.
True/ Not True.
1) Depends on thickness of insulation.
2) Depends on the type of insolation.
Goose (yes) they pack-out and you lose worth, synthetic (no) it is not as warm as the top, but it still functions.
 

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I have their two person bag..... and love it.
We use it mostly for camping while on kayak trips but have used it twice now backpacking.

we also have 3 Marmot bags, 2 TNF bags and a REI 10 degree Down bag, when we are going together we bring the BA.

no complaints after a year.
 

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I have a Big Agnes Encampment + Big Agnes Insulated Air Core and love them. However, I'm a warm sleeper who hates mummy bags. I've never had trouble rolling over, etc... in the bag. They are definitely not good down to 15 deg as rated. But, I've slept in mine down to freezing and a bit lower and have no complaints. The air core takes a little effort to inflate, but is well worth it. It is far more comfortable and compact than any self-inflating pad I've ever slept on. I also like that the pad stays in place with the integrated sleeve on my bag.

Your best bet may be to go to REI or someplace similar and try out the Big Agnes with the insulated Air Core pad for yourself . . .
 

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True/ Not True.
1) Depends on thickness of insulation.
2) Depends on the type of insolation.
Goose (yes) they pack-out and you lose worth, synthetic (no) it is not as warm as the top, but it still functions.
It doesn’t matter if the insulation is down or synthetic or monkey poo, if it is compressed and has no loft you loose the ability to insulate and loose heat. Yes down will compress smaller then synthetic but laying on synthetic compresses all the loft too.(same with monkey poo) The problem with the Big Agnes sleeping bags is cold air coming in the gaps between the pad and bag, and since the area in the bag is larger it takes more body heat to warm the bag. Remember insulation doesn't generate heat.

I love the aircore insulated pads and have uses them with a closed cell pad underneath on -40 degree trips on Denali. I have also used it on Aconcagua, and in Peru and Nepal. I highly recommend them.
 

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Well.
I have a BA Zirkel size L and I love it. I bought it specifically because I am a side sleeper and am a wiggly sleeper. Used to be all tangled and twisted, but no more. I use any self inflating pad I want, but most times use the BA pad that it came with (got to love promo deals). I do use a BA AirCore noninsulated pad in the warm months and have used an Exped insulated mat in the sleeve and am pleased with both. I will agree with someone above, you have to wear something to bed or you will be stickin to you bag before you can say boo.
I still use a high end cold weather down bag for teens and down, but for late spring, summer, and fall, the BA bag does me well.
 

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It doesn’t matter if the insulation is down or synthetic or monkey poo, if it is compressed and has no loft you loose the ability to insulate and loose heat. Yes down will compress smaller then synthetic but laying on synthetic compresses all the loft too.(same with monkey poo) The problem with the Big Agnes sleeping bags is cold air coming in the gaps between the pad and bag, and since the area in the bag is larger it takes more body heat to warm the bag. Remember insulation doesn't generate heat.

Bingo !!!!!
That was my thinking.....loft and trapping of air in those fibers is what insulates, not thickness. Compressed insulation has no loft. It looks like BA is trying to improve the area where the pad sleeve and bag meet in some of their newer products.
KJ
 
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