When it comes to warmth in the woods there is no greater source than down. The most prohibitive feature of this amazing insulator has always been the fact that once it gets wet it is useless. Fortunately High Peak USA has launched a line of bags that has utilized a water repellent and windproof Cire nylon.
Rating: o°F Fill: 650 Down
Weight: 2lbs 14oz
Shell: Ripstop Nylon/Nylon
Packed size: 15.4" long 7" diameter
Although great strides have been made in synthetics and there are countless arguments for the limitations of down, namely the fact that it is useless when it gets wet. No one can argue with the fact that down has such an amazing heat retaining factor for the weight. Otherwise wouldn't geese and ducks have evolved to use something better?
The most prohibitive feature of down for most of us has been the price, it is hard to justify the soft luxurious warmth of down when it costs more than the rest of our gear put together! I recently took the High Peak Arete 0°F down bag which is part of their lightweight Alpinismo collection out for a night to see if this bag could compete with the bigger brands when it comes to detail and quality, and I am pleased to report that it can! Although the temps stayed a few degrees above 0°F I was actually HOT in this bag. Now this is a rare thing for me as I usually sleep a bit cold. The Arete is a great little down sleeping bag that has horizontal baffles and is full of features, from the ample draft tube and collar to the roomy yet well fitting cut this bag brings to the table just about everything you would want in a great sleeping bag.
These bags are warm enough to serve as a 4 season bag and the ability to vent from the foot or head allow plenty of tweaking to regulate temperatures. Inside the bag centered on the top is a small zippered pocket to be used as a stash spot but for me anything with any weight to it was just uncomfortable. Perhaps those folks that want to stash chap stick or a handkerchief could use it but for me it was left empty.
All in all I think this is a great bag and I have to agree that it is rated appropriately. So if you are in the market for a reasonably priced down sleeping bag feel free to check out the High Peak Arete from their Alpimismo line.