This is a review of the Ultra Lamina 15 degree bag from Mountain Hardwear.
I have used this sleeping bag a lot. Most of you can tell just by looking at the pictures. It is starting to look sorta pitiful. It has seen multiple section hikes and when Im not using it someone in my group probably is. Its been compressed a ton and has until recently been my go to bag.
Im going to be honest. I do not like this Sleeping bag. There are to many things I dislike about it to give it a good review. However I want to discuss the good things first. This bag has a great hood. Cinches really good and is very comfy through the night. I have the six foot version. I am 5’6. It is plenty roomy for me. I can sleep on my back, side or stomach without feeling restricted. It’s a nice looking bag. There are no cold spots in this bag. The insulation is consistent throughout the bag. I love not having to fret about the bag getting wet. One night on a section it got wet because I had the bright idea to put a trash bag around the foot area to keep water from getting to it. I woke up and the lower half was a little more than damp. It dried fast, kept its insulating properties and didn’t lose its warmth.
Another great thing about this bag is it packs down crazy little. I have yet to see another synthetic bag pack down this small. Its crazy. People say down packs down smaller than synthetic and that is very true. But this bag brings the competition between down and synthetic closer. That said I just purchased an EE Revelationx 30 from Tim at http://www.englightenedequipment.com and that quilt packs down 1/2 the size of this bag. You may be thinking, ” Yea but it is rated at 30 and the ultralamina is rated 15 so that makes sense that it packs smaller.” Wrong. The UltraLamina is not a 15 degree bag. It is more like a 25 degree bag. Here is were I begin the negatives of this bag.
I have never experienced such hate towards such a small object. A zipper. When I have to urinate and the zipper of this bag refuses to let me do so it is terribly irritating. When the mice in an AT shelter get at my hiking bag and I cant get out of my sleeping bag to get at those little peckers it is terribly irritating. When I wake up in the morning and it takes me 5-10 minutes to get out of my bag because of the zipper it is terribly irritating. Point made. The zipper is terribly irritating. It gets worse. I thru’ed Georgia’s AT in May 2013 and stayed at mountain crossings. I slept using this bag but it was warm in the hostel. Maybe high 60’s and due to the fact that the zippers (which are on both sides) only zip down 1/3 of the bag my lower body was super hot. Why couldn’t they use one zipper and make it 2/3 length rather than having 2 zippers at 1/3? It gets worse. this bag says its rated at 15. This is not true. Its good maybe to 25. I sleep just slightly warm when I have enough nourishment and when I used this bag in the teens my feet were frozen. March 1st 2013 near blood mountain temps dropped to about 18 degrees. I wasn’t terribly cold but I wasn’t warm. Yes, I used a pad. Yes, I was in a tent.
Conclusion: I give the Mountain Hardwear UltraLamina 15 a 4 out of 10. I do not recommend it. I have retired it. And I probably wont sell it. Its not versatile. It’s not warm. The bags temperature rating is at least 10 degrees off. However it is somewhat light 2lbs 10oz and packs down pretty small. Its definitely not worth the 260.00 it sells for. Do yourself a favor and buy a different bag. Last thing. This is not a Mountain Hardwear issue. They make great gear. I have another bag made by them that is exceptional and a rain jacket that is top notch. This particular item though, kinda sucks.