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ScoutTN

Sleeping bag for a CS moving up to BS in the spring?

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Wondering if y'all have general recommendations? I know he needs something that will work for backpacking. He has a summer weight one now.

I'm headed to REI to ask a bunch of questions next week, but thought I'd ask the experienced scout peeps here first. 

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If he's really happy with his current bag, I'd hesitate to change until he grows out of it.

I've found that sleeping pads, fleece/wool blankets, caps, and scarves are my friend.

When he puts on a little weight and height, that's when the zero-degree bag makes a big difference. I haven't been able to beat (but have rarely been able to afford) Big Angus.

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I have been really happy with the SnugPak Basecamp OPS Navigator, it is a 19 degree bag, it weighs 4 pounds,  and you can pick one up for $36.  If I ever get cold in my sleeping bag I just cover my sleeping bag with my SnugPak Jungle Blanket. The Jungle blanket also keeps me warm sitting around the camp fire on cold nights and when it is in its stuff bag it makes a great pillow. 

Edited by cocomax
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I'm with qwazse, scouts change a lot in the next three years, so until he can get enough experience to figure out what he wants, I wouldn't get in a hurry. Backpacks are even worse, they grow out of those things so fast. Our scouts started selling their pack (cheap) to newer scouts so they could go up to the next step, which is typically an internal frame packs. New scouts do better with externals.

 Unless you have the funds and just enjoy getting that kind of stuff. And hey, I understand. Mrs Barry (and CPA) is telling me one of the motorcycles has got to go. I'm not sure why.

Barry

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8 minutes ago, Eagledad said:

Backpacks are even worse, they grow out of those things so fast.

The people at REI tend to be very helpful and knowledgeable.  

REI carries a number of really good internal frame backpacks that are fully adjustable, and can grow with your child.  I bought one last spring for my nephew's first Boy Scout backpacking trip, that after adjustments will last him for years.

As for sleeping bags, a lot of that would depend on where you are located.  We have 2, a summer weight bag that is very light and compact, and one that is rated to 10 degrees for those rare cold Jan/Feb nights here in FL. (coldest night in it this year was 27)

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If he likes the sleeping bag and it fits try getting a sleeping bag liner to help when its colder. You should be able to to get one for $10-$15 if you shop around.  Most are advertised as comfortable up to 50 degrees alone and add 15 degrees when added to another sleeping bag.  I sleep in my fleece liner all summer  on top of my normal sleeping bag.

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2 hours ago, MikeS72 said:

As for sleeping bags, a lot of that would depend on where you are located.  We have 2, a summer weight bag that is very light and compact, and one that is rated to 10 degrees for those rare cold Jan/Feb nights here in FL. (coldest night in it this year was 27)

I’m personally not a fan of internal packs for new Scouts because they haven’t got enough experience with backpacking style camping to pack an internal frame pack. Just about any old sleeping bag can be strapped to an external frame pack. Just about the time they learn how to pack, they are ready for a bigger pack.

Barry

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My boys use Osprey Ace backpacks and my oldest uses a Marmot Neverwinter sleeping bag.  We got one of the backpacks on Ebay and the sleeping bag off Craigslist. 

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We live in TN and the troop camps all 4 seasons.

Summer is super hot and humid, fall and spring a wildly variable. Winter temps avg 40-50 daytime, and 20 degrees colder at night.  

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Does "will work for backpacking" mean that they backpack frequently so bulk/weight are pretty important?  Or does it mean that they (might) backpack once in a while so you dont want to spend the extra on a super small/light bag that really wont be carried that much?

Alps Mountaineering stuff is generally a good value when purchased with their Hiker Direct discount prices.  THat is - stuff is reasonably priced and holds up well to the heavy use but is heavier and bulkier than I would want for frequent backpacking.

In addition to suggestions here, I suggest you talk to the adults and older Scouts in the Troop he will be joining.  They know best what kind of camping they do and what temperatures they will encounter at the places they go to frequently.  

 

 

 

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