10 Best Ultralight Backpacking Sleeping Bags6 min read

By Ben Griffin

Hiker Extraordinaire

Among all the expeditions we go on, the ones which we remember the most about are the best and the worst ones.

And today I will tell you about the worst trekking I ever went on.

The sole reason for the trekking to have become the worst of all the tours of my life was because I chose to take a heavy and unsuitable backpacking sleeping bag for the trekking.

The whole hike was said to last three days and two nights.

So I took a heavy bag thinking I will be able to carry it around with ease if it is just a matter of two or three days.

I have never been so wrong in my entire life! Not only did I tire myself with the burden but also ruined the overall trip for my friends by making them wait while I rested from all the fatigue and weariness.

It was then I swore that I will never repeat the mistake.

After the trip ended, the first thing I did was buy an ultralight sleeping bag and I have never had to face a similar, unflattering situation ever since.

You can choose to take heavy and unsuitable backpacking sleeping bags with you or you can choose from these ten best ultralight backpacking sleeping bags.

Why Backpacking Sleeping Bags Are Important?

I know the title for this section should rather be “Why ultralight backpacking sleeping bags are important?” Nevertheless, I will be talking about the importance of backpacking sleeping bags in an overall before discussing on the importance of ultralight backpacking sleeping bags.

The most important and common need for sleeping bag is that it provides you with a comfortable area to sleep on thereby saving you the trouble to sleeping on the ground.

It provides you with warmth, comfort and protection from wind, rain, coldness and insects.

It can be placed anywhere.

Your whole body will be invigorated for a rigorous hike if you enough goodnight’s sleep; sleeping bags make this possible.

With sleeping bags, you can adjust the temperature as per your requirement which is such a great advantage.

Also, you can keep your belongings inside the bag with you- if there is ample space or inner pockets- to safeguard them while sleeping.

Now let us talk a little about the importance of ultralight backpacking sleeping bags.

They are super light.

Hence you can carry them around easily.

Be it an uphill hike or a week long trek, with an ultralight backpacking sleeping bag on hand, you will never get tired while carrying this compact gear.

Almost all of the ultralight sleeping bags are easily compressible.

They can be condensed into a compact form which takes such less space in your backpack.

Moreover, the ultralight sleeping bags are made out of high quality soft materials which make them durable and soft to touch most of the times.

How To Choosing The Best Ultralight Backpacking Sleeping Bag

Before you rush out of the door to purchase a lightweight sleeping bag, there are a few key factors which you must keep in mind.

Just because a sleeping bag weighs less does not make it ultralight or a good sleeping bag for that matter.

Below are some few points which you want to consider before investing in an ultralight backpacking sleeping bag.


By the name alone you can guess that ultralight backpacking sleeping bags are lightweight.

For a backpacking ultralight sleeping bag to be a good bag, it must not weigh more than 1 pound for a summer bag and must be less than 3.5 pounds for a winter bag.

So choose the ultralight bag as per the weather which you anticipate to face.

Down insulation bags are very light weight compared to synthetic insulation ones.

Also, pay attention to how much weight you will be able to carry without any strain and purchase the bag accordingly.

You do not want the bag to tire you easily.


Just because a sleeping bag is thin and lightweight does not mean that its warmth can be compromised.

One of the major reasons why you purchase a sleeping bag on the first place is to be warm throughout the night, despite the season.

So make sure that your ultralight backpacking sleeping bag is able to provide you with the ample amount of warmth which you require.


Comfort is a pure subjective matter.

But in most of the cases, consumers will more or less agree on a sleeping bag being comfortable or uncomfortable.

By a comfortable ultralight sleeping bag, you mean the bag which will let you sleep peacefully and contently the whole night.

Go for the bag which is relaxing and cozy.

It should make you feel that you are sleeping at your own bed at home.

If it does not give you that experience, the bag may not be worth the purchase.


The temperature rating of a sleeping bag generally depends upon the outside weather, climate and even the clothes that you wear to sleep.

An ultralight sleeping bag must be able to provide you with enough heat in the harshest of the climates.

It is always a safe idea to choose an ultralight backpacking sleeping bag which will provide you with a little extra warmth than what you require.

For a more versatile sleeping bag, choose a sleeping bag with temperature rating from 10 to 50 degree Fahrenheit because it will work for all seasons.

Insulation Types

There are two major types of insulation: down insulation and synthetic insulation.

As aforementioned, down insulation bags are lighter than synthetic insulation bags.

The down insulation bags pack down small, are compact and compress easily.

The synthetic insulation sleeping bags are heavy.

They are bulky, do not compress as easily and are hard to carry around.

So I recommend you all to choose a down insulation bag whenever you purchase an ultralight sleeping bag.


A versatile backpacking sleeping bag will save you the money and effort of buying a different sleeping bag for every season or climate.

So it is always a good idea to choose a sleeping bag which is versatile in nature.

Some ultralight sleeping bags are versatile in nature and can be used in all three seasons while others may be a little inflexible.

Check the versatility of a sleeping bag and purchase one as per your requirement.


You need to extra careful when it comes to the fitting or the size of the bag while buying an ultralight sleeping bag.

Choose the bag as per your size.

However, remember that there must be space left in the bag to move around while sleeping.

But then again, because the ultralight sleeping bags have already compromised so much on weight and are mostly thin in nature, there must not be more than required space inside the bag.

Else, the sleeping bag will become drafty and cold.

Other Considerations

It is very important that your sleeping bag has the necessary accessories such as compression sack, compression straps, inside pockets, two way zippers, draft collars, foot compartments, smart features, sleeping pad sleeves, hoods, stuff sacks, etcetera.

One Response

  1. Cool article. I am hiking the Camino de Santiago in August and need something lightweight as there are a few overnight stays.
    My neighbor has the Suisse and it is very portable.

    Anyway, thanks again for the review.

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