Bergans Sleeping Bags
Posted: Mar 17 2014
So it was with this in mind that we have been looking at, and testing, some of the Bergans sleeping bags.
|Bergans Sleeping bag in serious action!|
As most manufacturers these days, they split it into two categories, Down and synthetic;
Bergans Down bags:
Bergans Arctic Ocean RRP £400I received a Bergans Arctic Ocean Down bag for testing on my Expedition training course this year. The idea was to test this bag in the normal conditions we encounter on the course....about -20C during the nights. However, thanks to the extraordinary winter we've had this year, the coldest it got down to was -5C! So, the test was restricted to the features of the bag.....rather than out and out performance.
|Bergans Arctic Ocena down bag....T-limit rating of -20C,|
Like everything from Bergans, these bags are well made. They use 90% pure down feathers and 10% small feathers. The fill power is quoted as 650+, meaning it's not the lightest as you'll need more down to achieve a given temperature compare to say a fill power of 800. However, it is not as expensive as bags using more fill power, and those bag cost big bucks! On the Arctic Ocean, Bergans use a fabric called Aqua-Breath, to increase protection from outside moisture, while allowing the bag to "breath". This means the body moisture can get out, making sure the bag isn't damp, while protecting the bag from condensation falling from the tent. Again, there are lighter materials out there, and when combined with a higher fill, make for a very light weight, warm bag. Bergans are not going after this market with their range.
The Arctic Ocean has all the features you'd expect of a serious down bag. There is a Fill channel around the opening, which can be cinched right down around the face.
The Arctic Ocean also has a very warm hood, and I think, with more challenging temperature, it would be super snug!
When it comes to opening and closing, Bergans have put on a YKK no. 5 zip. Apparently it's the most common zip used by most brands, making it possible to mate it with other bags. I have yet to try this.
The baffles down the side of the zip seem HUGE! There is absolutely no chance of heat loss through these bad boys! It also means that there is no contact with a cold zip during the night.
A common feature Bergans have put throughout their sleeping bag range is a Foot box, with extra insulation. More and more brands are doing this in recognition of your feet needing more insulation. Again, I can't really comment on how well it worked on the Bergans bag, but the theory is sound.
When you pull the Arctic Ocean out of it's compression sack, it feels heavy and really compressed. I was therefore very please to see it loft up to it's full height in a relative short time. I say relatively, because I wasn't actually timing it (I know, what kind of gear tester am I!).....I was too busy helping to set up the base camp tent. The bag lofted up very nicely, so my initially concerns where "put to rest".....so to speak!
|Leaving the bag to loft in the tent while I get busy!|
There is a mesh pocket within the hood section and so I thought I'd use it to dry my liner gloves over night (I can already hear the "smart" ones going......dumb idea!). Needless to say, after a very short time, I realsied that having a damp pair of gloves next to your head or face is not conducive to a good nights sleep. However, fortunately, there is another pocket just below the draft collar. This was a much better option, and by morning my liners where dry and warm! The pockets are both quite small, but a thin pair of liner gloves or thin socks will fit in.
Bergans Synthetics Bags:Bergans use a fiber blend consisting of spiral and silicon treated hollow fibers. These fibers are placed on top of each other to provide plenty of volume and room for insulating air. At the same time, the fibers remain taut, even after prolonged use. They have good compressibility and optimum insulation in relation to weight. The design used is called a "Shingle" design, which is a layering method where layers are placed on top of each other like roof tiles so as to prevent thermal bridging.
I'll be honest and say I have not yet had a chance to test these bags, but I have seen and handled one, and as you'd expect it's of the same high quality as the down bags.
The range goes from the Bergans Super light summer bag (RRP £70), to the full winter Bergans Rondane winter (RRP £170)
|Bergans Super Light synthetic fill bag (RRP £70)|
Specilaist Bags:Bergans have a waterproof down back for winter called the Rago Weatehrblog. Used by military types (apparently), it's a sleeping bag/bivvy all in one. Has a comfort rating of -8C and an extreme rating of -26C. They are available to special order.
|Bergans Rago weather block sleeping bag|
The Bergans range of sleeping bags are all very well made and competitively priced in their target market. They are not super light weight for the gram conscious mountaineer, who wants to spend big money on a bag, but they offer Scandinavian quality and detail.
Get in touch with us here if you'd like any more information, or if you'd like to order one.
The entire range can be found here