I’ve owned many sleeping bags, from the very cheap department store bags that you use when sleeping on the floor of a friend’s house – nylon, nasty, not very warm and somehow inevitably brown – to the really rather nice down bag I had that kept me warm when sleeping in a ditch, and was allegedly good for -20 degrees C. I never tested it anywhere near that far.
I suspect that this rather lovely Therm-a-rest Antares down sleeping bag may well cost as much as all of my previous bags put together. It is a truly lovely thing. It feels soft, light, and inviting. Just looking at it makes me want to go to bed, now.
It is made from the most splendid materials known to man, and it purports to keep me alive and cosy down to ridiculous temperatures that I’m unlikely to find myself trying to sleep in.
We took the Antares and it’s sister mattress – the Neo-Air All Season – on a motorbike tour of Spain and France last summer. And because it was Summer, it was cold and wet and typically miserable for most of the time. The Antares is a big, puffy bag which filled most of a top-box on a bike (we didn’t want to crush it), but was worth every pair of trousers we had to unpack because of it. That said, it does come with a smaller stuff-sack for compressing it, but I’m really not a fan of crushing expensive down, so we didn’t use that.
I, you see, am cold at night. The Husband can throw on a T-shirt and sleep soundly under a flannel when I’m dressed top to toe in thermals, a hat and scarf and barely able to sleep a wink. But the Antares, and the Neo-Air All Season Mattress work effortlessly together and brilliantly to keep you snug and warm. I was toasty. He froze. Idiot.
That said, it’s not cheap. The £250 gets you the big, snuggly bag, but for that perfect combo you also have to part with some cash on the right mattress. Sure, other mattresses will fit, but the Neo Air one works best.
A very warm and snug sleeping bag, which reduces bulk by sacrificing its underside to the relationship with its sleeping mattress. Teamed with a decent mattress, it should result in a warm night’s sleep.