Kids/Child Sleeping Bag ??

Mar 18, 2014
I have a 3 year old that I want to take camping more. I'm thinking he needs his own bag now. I'd prefer down since it's lighter and I might have to carry it if we do a backcountry trip at some point. I'm thinking around 20degrees is what I'm going for. Anybody have any experience with this that can point me in the right direction?

I'd like for him to be able to use this same bag up into his teenage years and get some use out of it. Do I just get him an adult size bag and let him use only 1/3 of the size for awhile?
Get him an adult women's bag. It will be slightly warmer, and usually you can find them on sale much more frequently than men's bags.
If you end up getting a women's bag I would plan to layer clothes underneath if you want to come close to the bag's rating. Regular women's bags are slim cut compared to men's bags and fit to 5' 6". Women's longs are usually a little larger girth wise and fit to about 5' 10".

A child that small is going to have a ton of empty space inside the bag to warm up. Even though women's bags are rated conservatively I'd plan on there being a solid 20F delta between what the women's bag is rated for and where your son is warm until he is much older.

I like the women's bag idea if you're looking for a long term investment where you only need to buy one bag until your son is an adult. I'm a shrimp so I actually use women's bags because high end bags are so much cheaper for women on sale than mens. I can't fit my shoulders into mountain hardwear women's bags and am less than impressed with them but really like my marmot helium 15 (about a men's 7F) and it fits fine albeit a bit snug.

Not a lot of great kids bags out there. For little ones stick with synthetic since they dry out quicker and are cheaper. Kids can be rough on bags and down isn't a wise option in my opinion.

Enlightened equipment makes a bunch of kids quilts that people seem to love. When my kids are a little older I'll be picking some up. Obviously they need to be used with sleeping pads. The protege is the synthetic model I've been looking at. All these quilts pack down small and are lightweight compared to the kids bags I've looked at.
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I noticed REI's kindercone bags will be on sale for their anniversary sale may 16th. Rated at 30 degrees and they "grow with your child". I can't speak to actuall performance or value as I don't have one but reviews seem decent. I am going to check them out for my little ones. May not be exactly what you are looking for but at $39 bucks maybe worth consideration a long with some warm pjs. :)
I've got a Kelty Woobie for my little ones. They love it. I'd probably say stay away from down for the little ones.

Go with a kids bag until they get a little older. The 1st cardinal rule of camping with kids is never ever ever let them be cold at bedtime. If they're warm they'll like it so much more.

A stepped approach is what I'm doing with my kids when camping. They sleep with my wife and I until they are about 1, then they're in the small kids bag (woobie), then when they outgrow that a womens bag, and one day they'll have a full size down bag.

Kids are hard on bags. Stick with the synthetic until they are a little older and better able to care for their own stuff.
I have a Western Mountaineering Highlight 5'6" I'd sell for a good price. Fantastic bag at under 1 lb.
Whatever bag you get, make sure it can either be secured to a sleeping pad or that the sleeping pad can be used inside the bag. My 3 year old moves all over the place when he sleeps and the first time I took him out he kept rolling off the pad and waking up because he got cold. I finally ended up just putting him in my bag. That's when a rectangular bag comes in handy.
I noticed REI also has the kids sleeping pads on their anniversary sale for $29.00. I think the code was ANNIV2014.
I have 3 boys ages 18 thru 12. I bought a North face Tiger kids bag way back for the oldest when he was just a little guy. It has now been used by all three of them and the only reason we are looking to get the youngest guy a new bag is that he has out grown the old hand me down. It is a synthetic (mostly because the little kids sometimes have allergic reactions to down) and it has been a GREAT BAG. Im not sure if North face still makes that bag but if they do I highly recommend it.
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