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WoolPRO Warmth as an Alternative to a Sleeping Bag Liner
One of the questions that comes up often is whether or not to buy/use a sleeping bag liner to extend the temperature range. I tried this a decade ago with both a fleece liner, and a silk one. They both got tangled up in my feet, and are not multi-purpose. What has worked well for me was wearing heavyweight natural fiber long underwear tops and bottoms. For most of the last decade I used midweight or heavyweight silk from Wintersilks. It was very comfortable, and nice and slippery against my sleeping bag so I could slide around easily. It was hard to maintain (didn’t wash well) and was not all that warm.
A few months ago I received a merino wool hoodie and long johns (Named: Helios Hoodie and Thor Bottoms) from WoolPro. I’ve been using them for several months in Arizona, Yosemite, the High Unitas of Utah, and this week in the Goat Rocks of Washington (that’s where the photos were taken). What I like about them:
- Much warmer than silk
- Easier to launder: they don’t want to shrink like silk does
- Equivalent “no stench” antibacterial properties
- The hoody is much warmer than just a long underwear top + stocking cap: it keeps the sweat and oil from the skin of your neck off of your bag/quilt.
The Helios hoody works particularly well if you are sleeping in a quilt, when you really need to keep your head warm.
I am sure there are some folks out there who are happy with their sleeping bag liners, I am just not one of them, and I suspect I am not alone. I like having the warm clothing for use on cold rainy days, and in camp during the evening – better to carry multipurpose clothing than a liner that is only good for one thing.
One last rant on the liners: the fleece liner was particularly bulky and heavy. It did add maybe 15 degrees of warmth, but it packed as big as my sleeping bag and weighed nearly as much. It was a lot cheaper than buying a new bag, but I abandoned it after one trip.
See full WoolPRO Men’s line HERE.