While manufacturers often list temperature ratings for sleeping bags by the EN standard (scientific method to determine warmth of a sleeping bag, red.), they rarely do this for quilts. Nevertheless, they do typically list the lower limit temperature (temperature at which an average adult male will be comfortable) which they determine through their own tests.
Here are our choices for the top 10 best backpacking quilts based on price, insulation, temperature rating, weight, features, versatility, sizing, and availability (see below for detailed explanations of each criteria.) All of these quilts are made and sold by so-called cottage manufacturers, which range in size from one-man shops to medium-sized businesses that employee dozens of people. All of them produce very high quality products that are significantly lighter weight and better performing than the quilts produced by mass-market gear companies like ENO, Therm-a-Rest, Kammock, Sea-to-Summit, and Sierra Designs.
The Nunatak Arc UL is a quilt designed for long distance hikers. It’s available in four different temperature ratings: 40, 30, 20 and 10 degrees, in a wide variety of lengths and widths, with or without a draft collar, with or without a pad attachment system, and several different outer shell and liner fabrics that emphasize breathability or water repellency. One of the unique options available on the Arc UL, is the installation of external snaps that allow you to layer a synthetic quilt with it for cold weather use. The Arc UL is also available with 900 fill power HyperDry goose down, treated or untreated. A basic, regular sized Arc UL 40 weighs 14.8 oz. Price Range: $290.00-$550.00.
WEIGHT: While gear weight is important, be careful not to sacrifice your comfort by selecting a quilt that won’t keep you warm in the conditions you need it to. In fact, insulation is usually the lightest weight component of a quilt, where the bulk of its weight comes primarily from the fabric used to make it. When choosing fabrics, consider their breathability and whether they have a DWR coating, which can be important if the foot of your quilt gets wet regularly If you plan on using your quilt heavily, consider getting a heavier inner shell fabric as this is where the greatest wear and tear occurs over the long-term.
INSULATION: High quality goose and duck down with fill powers of 800, 850, 900, and 950 provide excellent insulation by weight and are widely preferred by backpackers because they’re so lightweight. In addition to excellent compressibility, quilts insulated with down will last for decades of use if properly cared for. Some manufacturers only offer down that’s been treated with a water-repellent coating, while others prefer to offer it unadulterated. Down is naturally water-resistant so the jury is still out on whether “treated” down lasts as long and insulates as well in the real world vs. a testing lab. Regardless, with a little care and common sense you can keep a down quilt dry by carrying it in a waterproof stuff stack, picking good campsites that don’t flood in rain, and airing it out occasionally in the sun.
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How do rate the chevron style baffles on the loco libre ? I have a Hammock Gear with virtical baffles, and while I am a side sleeper the down seems to fall to the edges. I imagine the horizontal baffles suffer similar problems but in the other direction. I wonder what real world practice is really with the different baffle systems especially the chevron style?
A dazzling diamond print adds facets of beauty to a kid's room, dorm, or guest room. Composed of seven harmonious hues, and backed with a surprise gingham print, making it easy to mix and match with sheets. * 100% cotton: fabric is cotton cambric; fill is cotton batting * Hand-quilted around each diamond tile for added depth and dimension * Medium-weight fill * Quilt and sham are backed with pa...
The Loco Libre Gear Ghost Pepper is a down quilt made with a unique chevron style baffle, which limits the amount of down shift by catching it in the corners that the baffle forms every time it changes direction. This eliminates cold spots and means that the down stays on top, where you want it, so you can stay warm. The Ghost Pepper is available in a wide range or widths and lengths, color choices, insulation types, and foot box styles. You can even add a sleeping pad attachment system. This can all be very confusing for first time quilt buyers, but they are very patient and happy to explain “the why” before you buy. Some of the of the key options offered are 800 duck or 900 goose fill power water-resistant down, a draft collar, different taper styles, a drawstring vented or closed footbox, and added insulation. A basic Ghost Pepper 40 weighs in at 14.5 oz. Price Range: $154.00-$474.00
The Katabatic Gear Flex is a quilt that can used in a hammock or on the ground, coupled with a sleeping pad. Weight varies by temperature rating, but a standard-sized Flex 40 weighs 16.9 oz. It’s available with regular or HyperDRY waterproof goose down and comes with a sleeping pad attachment system to help prevent side drafts. The’ Flex also has a very desirable draft collar that snugs around your neck and prevents heat from escaping when you move around at night. The Flex footbox can be zippered closed and has a draw-string vent, or you can unzip it completely and use it as a blanket. Katabatic Gear has a well-deserved reputation for making quilts that exceed their temperature rating. Price range $260.00-$435.00.
An elegant approach to the printed whole-cloth quilt, this oversized paisley design with a tile-inspired border has the look and feel of a grand piazza. * A sophisticated ornamental print with just a hint of pop * Hand-quilted with a diamond pattern for added depth and dimension * The quilt features an artfully placed oversized paisley design in the center, with a tile-inspired border * 100% cotton...
EILEEN FISHER HOME BY GARNET HILL The shimmer of silk, the comfort of cotton. Subtle quilting adds slight texture, with increased tacking, placed just so, for refined drama. * Front is 70% organic cotton and 30% silk * Backed with 100% organic cotton voile * 200-gram recycled poly fill * Quilt and sham have quilting on front only * Quilt has denser tacking at bottom hem; Standard Sham has denser ta...
Quilting is often thought of as communal activity such as a quilting bee where woman gather around a quilt frame to quilt a bed quilt. With Amish quilts today two, three or four people may work together to make a single quilt, but instead of quilting together each takes on a one or more of steps in the quilt making process. The first step in the process is to select the quilt's design and select and purchase the fabrics to be used in the quilt. Second step is to assemble the quilt top. Third step is to do the quilting and the fourth step is add the binding and ready the quilt for sale. It is not unusual for a different person to do each step. But the most common practice is for one person to do steps one, two and four and another person to the quilting. Occasionally a single person will do it all. The reason for the division of labor is that the work involved in each of the steps is quite different. The ability and artistic talent to select fabrics is not common --better for someone with this talent to apply it to the making of many quilts. Piecing a particular quilt top becomes easier and the workmanship better after quilter has made a half dozen tops of that design. So it is best to turn to a woman who is expert with a particular design to make the quilt top with that design. Quilting usually is not specialized to a particular design or style of quilt and is less cerebral -- in fact it may be a great distraction from the problems of the day. Applying the binding and readying the quilt for sale -- which means finding and removing spots, finding then adding missing lines of quilting, requires attention to detail. The coordination of the whole process is usually done by the person selecting the design and fabrics. This person selects Amish and Mennonite friends to work with on each quilt. Each person working on the quilt works on it in their own home. All work is done in America.
ALSO OFFERED IN LOFTY WHITE DOWN Weight: Lightweight warmth Fill: Hypoallergenic Core-Loft® Shell: Long-staple cotton Our essential comforter — now offered in an energetic kaleidoscope-inspired diamond print with a coordinating sham. This layer is a go-to piece for every bed in the house. * Designed for down-sensitive sleepers, it is filled with hypoallergenic Core-Loft® (550 fill p...
While many quilts tend to be more traditional in styling, not everyone’s tastes run that way. With a patchwork feel done in more modern fabrics and colors, this quilt will fit in perfectly with more contemporary and trendy homes than the traditional patchwork style. It’s available in four color schemes, including black-and-white for people who love pattern (but not color) and three more colorful versions in blues, purples and reds. With the mix-and-match materials, it can easily set the tone for the room and work with a range of furniture and rugs. This medium-weight quilt set is 100% cotton and the basic version of the set includes two matching pillow shams, with options to add two or four additional pillows to further decorate the bed.