4 Of The Best Sleeping Bags For Everest Base Camp

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What Is The Best Sleeping Bag For An Everest Base Camp Trek?

One question we get asked alot in the office is “What sleeping bag do I need for my Everest Base Camp Trek?”

There are quite a few things to take into consideration when thinking about which sleeping bag you will need.

  1. How are sleeping bags rated? 
  2. What temperature sleeping bag should I get?
  3. Should I get a down sleeping bag or a synthetic one?
  4. Sleeping bag weight
  5. Should I buy one or hire one?

Let’s look at each of these points first before we look at specific recommendations.

How Are Sleeping Bags Rated?

Sleeping bags generally have two ratings; comfort and season.

A sleeping bag’s comfort rating will tell the user the temperature an average male or female will feel too warm, they are comfortable or they will be able to survive in a sleeping bag.

Everyone feels the cold differently, so you should only ever take these ratings as a guide. If you are someone that generally feels the cold more, then get a warmer bag. It is always easier to cool down than it is to warm up.

Sleeping Bag Comfort Ratings

Upper Limit – this is the highest temperature the average person can have a comfortable night’s sleep without getting too hot.

Comfort – The temperature the average adult can have a comfortable night’s sleep.

Lower Limit – the temperature at which the average adult can have a good night’s kip in a curled position.

Extreme – the temperature which an average adult can survive. Be cautious of this rating and if you are sleeping in extreme temperatures you should always make sure to be well within this rating.

Sleeping Bag Season Ratings

The season rating is to inform which time of year a sleeping bag is best suited. There are 5 seasons, with a 1-season bag being suitable for summer months, up to a 5-season which is for extreme temperatures.

1-Season Sleeping Bag – Ideal for summer nights where temperatures are generally above 5°C.

2-Season Sleeping Bag – Perfect for cooler evenings in Spring/Summer when temperatures are around 0°C – 5°C

3-Season Sleeping Bag – This sleeping bag is perfect for anywhere in the region of 0°C & -5°C

4-Season Sleeping Bag – Perfect for winter months when temperatures are down as low as -10°C

5-Season Sleeping Bag – These sleeping bags are for serious expedition use, when temperatures are as low as -40°C

What Temperature Sleeping Bag Should I Get For Everest Base Camp?

During your Everest Base Trek you are going to be staying indoors in traditional Nepalese Tea Houses. Now although these are indoors they are still going to be cold in the evenings.

The other problem you have is the temperature is going to differ quite considerably from Phakding at the start of the trek to Gorak Shep.

If I am honest on the trek I normally only find it cold once I get to Lobouche and Gorak Shep. For the rest of the trek I don’t find the evenings that cold. All of the Tea Houses also provide blankets in your room,  although these aren’t regularly cleaned they are fine to put over your sleeping bag if you are feeling a little chilly. 

I would advise you look at getting a good rated 3 season sleeping bag that has a comfort rating of at least  -5°C. I would also advise looking to get a bag that has a full zip, so if you get a little warm you can unzip the bag to cool off.

Should I Get A Down Or Synthetic Sleeping Bag For Everest Base Camp?

Sleeping bags are either Down (Duck or Goose) or they are Synthetic filled. Down will give more warmth and will generally be lighter in weight and less bulky. 

Although down provides better insulation qualities it doesn’t perform well when wet compared to a synthetic sleeping bag. 

Now as you will be staying in Tea Houses on route and not camping there is very little chance of it getting wet. If you also put your sleeping bag in a dry bag whilst it is in your Duffle bag this will also make sure it stays dry.

Sleeping Bag Weight For Everest Base Camp?

Your sleeping bag weight for your Everest Base Camp trek should be a huge consideration. When you are flying to Lukla you will have a weight restriction of around 12kg for your duffle bag. Some synthetic 4-season sleeping bags weigh in above 2kg. Whereas, my 3 season Down Sleeping bag comes in at just over 500g and compacts really small. 

Saving this weight on my sleeping bag ensures that I can have a clean t-shirt and a clean pair of socks every day that I am on the trail.

Should I Buy Or Hire A Sleeping Bag For Everest Base Camp?

If you are only going to do Everest Base Camp then there is no need to go and spend a fortune on an expensive sleeping bag. It would be cheaper for you just to hire one for your trek. Rab Outdoors offer this service and it ensures you get a really decent sleeping bag for your trip. If you are going to do several treks and continue with other Adventure Trips and expeditions then it would be a good investment to get a decent sleeping bag.

To find out about Rab Outdoors Hire Service just click this link.

softie 9 sleeping bag
Price Rating - £

Snugpak Softie 9 - 1500g

The first ever sleeping bag I bought aged 17 was a Snugpak Softie 9. They have a huge reputation in the outdoor industry especially amongst the military. 

The Softie 9 is a synthetic bag that is built to last. Although a little bulky compared to its Down rivals the Softie 9 offers amazing warmth to weight ratio and is also still made in the UK. 

This Sleeping bag really is value for money.

Price Rating - ££

AlpKit Pipedream 400 - 865g

This sleeping bag is filled with 750 fill power DownTek™ hydrophobic down which is 100% Responsible Down Standard (RDS) certified for improved performance in damp conditions.

It compresses down to a size of 19cm x 14cm and has a comfort rating of -4.2°C, so a perfect sleeping bag for the Everest Base Camp Trek.

At the Bucket List Company we really like Alpkit equipment and also what the company stands for, so check out their other kit as well.

Alpkit Pipedream 400
SKU ink enlarged
Price Rating - £££

Rab Ascent Pro 600 - 1190g

Warm and protective, the Ascent Pro 600 is ideal for cold conditions. It has a generous wide fit, ensuring a comfortable night’s sleep for the weary mountain explorer. Filled with 600g of 650FP duck down, it is a warm sleeping bag, with space to wear extra, bulkier layers inside if the temperature suddenly drops. 

With Pertex® Quantum Pro wind and water resistant outer and hydrophobic duck down, it copes well with wind, condensation, and damp conditions. Warm enough to deal with plummeting temperatures it’s a great all-round adventure, three season sleeping bag. 

Price Rating - £££££

PHD Hispar 400 - 790g

PHD equipment is at the top end of both quality and price. I love PHD equipment and have had pieces for years. Each item is generally made to order and you can customise your garment/sleeping bag. All PHD equipment is still made in their own factory in the UK and is used by many of the top high altitude mountaineers.

Ultralights for the mountains are the first words we put to the Hispar sleeping bags and it’s hard to find a better way to describe them. Starting with our superlight MX inner fabric and the pared-down design features of the Minim range, we have added some of the extra elements from the Baltoro/Diamir bags to bring these new bags up to mountain specifications, while keeping weight to a minimum.

The combination of this design with the exceptional quality of our 950 down almost sends the new Hispar range off the scale for warmth/weight performance.

The weights of the Hispar bags are graphic evidence of the effectiveness of this specific design. With the performance of our 950 down these bags deliver exceptional levels of warmth per gram.

I absolutely love my PHD Sleeping bag and have had it for over 7 years, it is still as good as new! The only mistake I made when getting mine was to have the ½  zip instead of the full one. I was trying to save on weight, but considering the difference I wish I had got the full zip as this bag is very warm and I cant open it up to cool off. When I get my next one I will definitely be getting the full zip option!

If you struggle with the cold then the PHD equipment is the kit to look at!

Hispar 400 Sleeping Bag

As I said earlier there are so many different options and most of this comes down to personal preference. These are some of the sleeping bags that I have used over the years and I am happy to recommend them as all good for the Everest Base Trek. But just have a think about how cold you get? Some people get colder than others and therefore you might need a warmer bag.

Don't forget...

Also don’t forget you can hire these as well if you don’t want to spend this money for your Everest Base Camp Trek.

Check out our Full Guide on What equipment do I need for Everest Base Camp

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