Phil's Hiking Resources

Sleeping Bags – PHD Hispar 400


Your choice of sleeping bag must be one of the major gear purchasing decisions you make. I must have at least 4!

There are two key types of sleeping bags and the difference is a clear balance between cost, weight, and warmth but even then things are not simple. Basically synthetic sleeping bags tend to be cheaper, heavier and fair better in very wet conditions. Down sleeping bags tend to be more expensive and lighter for the same warmth rating, but can suffer if they get wet. PHD give a thorough view of the pros & cons here….

For backpacking: where weight is of prime importance i use an ultralight PHD Hispar 400 down sleeping bag which uses the best quality 900 fill-power down. This has to be the best sleeping bag i’ve ever used in every respect. It weighs 770g and its warm as a very warm thing (good to -9) – its not cheap but then you get what you pay for when it comes to sleeping bags. PHD are a very small company but they beat the socks off the big guys.

For “car-camping”: i tend to use an Ajungilak 4 season synthetic bag which is easier to keep clean and not so important if it gets damp.

For real hard winter camping i use both – the down bag inside the synthetic bag, to get the best of both. This is not advisable for winter backpacking – were you might be much better off snowholeing with your sleeping bag protected with a nice light gore-tex bivi-bag.


Author: Phil Newby

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Author: Phil Newby