Big Agnes is an American brand (Colorado) specializes in manufacturing outdoor equipment and more particularly tents, mattresses and sleeping bags.
In two words, Big Agnes designs products from reflections in the field by practicing engineers, for demanding practitioners!
We tested for you two of their products:
- The sleeping bag doubleKing Solomon (399)
- The soil eco-designed mattressInsulated Air Core Recycled (€79.50)
As its name suggests the King Solomon is a great sleeping bag; to be more precise, it’s a bag 2 people for a record weight of 2353 gr !
Its advantage is certain in comparison with two be combined sleeping bags: no separations at the level of the feet (due to the matching bags Mummy form), no thermal bridge created at the level of the closure that liaison between the two sleepers, an opening on each side of the bag to manage inputs and outputs or to regulate the heat in the bag by one or other of the sleepers and finally finished the gene caused by this closure of twinning which ends up in the back of the sleepers!
Own performance of this bag. This is a bag 3 seasons with goose down 600 cuin fill guaranteeing a comfort-9 temperature ° C and a temperature limit of-20 ° C.
The bag has two removable independent flanges and two pockets for drag pillows inside the hood.
Beyond these features, that make it a powerful bag, King Solomon takes technology that has made the reputation of Big Agnes, namely a ‘back’ devoid of lining but features two sleeves to insert mattresses of ground.
The lack of insulation under the sleeper’s body has many advantages:
- Weight gain
- High compressibility
- Price: there is less down than in a conventional sleeping bag.
In practice, this technical choice seems consistent. Down has the strongest insulating power when it is not compressed. In a classic construction, the feathers under the sleeper are crushed and lose their performance.
Came to it the ability to slide ‘in’ the bag, mattresses that provide comfort and insulation against the cold from the ground. A technical choice, guaranteeing a good liaison between the bag and the mattress. This could be a disadvantage (we think so) for a bag 1, becomes an advantage for a bag 2 places.
Once again, to use, when we’re sleeping alone in her purse, and we want to move from the “down” position to the position ‘on the side’, we would tend to spin with his sleeping bag on the mattress and not inside the bag (to avoid the air intakes at the level of the neck); the thing that would be impossible with a supportive mattress in the back of the bag.
In the case of a bag double, we quickly understand that it is not possible to turn with the bag… as a result, we can turn in the bag by being certain that the mattress will remain in place under the sleeper!
Precisely, quickly talk about this mattress “Insulated Air Core Recycled”.
The Air Core Recycled is an inflatable mattress (different from an auto-gonflant!) and built in base materials 100% recycled. The envelope is made from a dozen plastic bottles. Insulation Climashield HL Green is also 100% recycled, as well as the valve aluminum. Well seen!
From a performance point of view, its thermal resistance (R Value) is4.1 (IE comfortable up to about – 10 ° C). This value of R, the insulation over the mattress. In comparison, from Thermarest NeoAir All Season has an R Value of 4.9. One of the principles of Big Agnes has been to eliminate welds between flanges to avoid thermal bridges.
At the level of the weight, the regular (183 x 51 cm-> model tested) model displays 737 gr against 540 for the NeoAir but with a difference in price from simple to double, we’re generally ready to carry 200 gr more, right?
In practice, we were pleasantly surprised by the quality of the product. It seems resistant to abrasion and puncture, (a mark still on the durability of the valve). Comfort is present with its 6 cm thick (be careful not to over inflate) and the insulation is effective. Regret is just the size of the bag of the mattress; too much… which does not allow optimal compression…
Finally, be aware that comfort still has a price! It will cost you ready from 2 min to inflate your mattress and almost as much to deflate it. But after that, we can make sure that you can sleep like babies, at home, even on big rocks!
Come on, good bivouac!