We had the opportunity to test quite a few of the Berghaus sleeping bags that are available from Blacks, Millets and Ultimate Outdoors. We’ve been trying out a number of Berghaus Elevation and Berghaus Transition sleeping bags for a while now, so here is what we’ve experienced.
We’ve had these bags for a while now, this is so we could test them in environments relevant to their temperature rating. Afterall, how can we tell you if the bag designed to keep you warm at 3 degrees works if we don’t go out in the appropriate weather?
We didn’t see much point in doing separate articles for each sleeping bag. The purpose of us writing about the bags is to help you to identify the right one for your needs, so lots of very similar articles would just be confusing (and a little boring). We’ve outline the features of each range below and then gone on to say where and when we have used them and if they were any good.
I will start off by saying that we have had NO bad experiences with any of these Berghaus sleeping bags. With the right bag matched to the right conditions and a thermally insulated mat where necessary, we’ve enjoyed very cosy camping sleeps. So let’s get on with it ;
Berghaus Transition sleeping bags
A range of synthetic fibre filled sleeping bags with 2-way anti-snag zip, internal security pocket. There is a wind tube running up the inside of the zip to prevent drafts and reduce heat loss. They have a pillow pocket in the hood so you can get a decent nights sleep without your pillow escaping from under your head. Internal collar with drawstring for helping keep your body heat in the bag.
They are all supplied with their own roll top stuff/compression sack.
- Berghaus Transition 200XL (2 season)
Weight – 1.93kg, Comfort rating 6 deg, limit 1 deg, extreme -14 deg.
- Berghaus Transition 300 (3 season)
Weight – 1.99kg, Comfort rating 2 deg, limit -3 deg, extreme -19 deg.
Also available 200, 200W and 200C;
W stands for womens, a mummy bag specifically fitted to women.
C range stands for comfort, with a more traditional rectangular shape (not mummy).
XL are for the larger camper or those that prefer a more roomy sleeping bag. I’ve tried the XL, and being almost 6 foot tall plus needing to loose a few pounds I can confirm that there is plenty of space in these bags. The other bags were more than adequate, but the XL offers more room so it’s down to personal choice really.
Berghaus Elevation sleeping bags
A range of mummy shaped sleeping bags filled with ethically sourced RDS down (Responsible Down Standard). The shell of the sleeping bag is made from rip-stop material to help reduce serious damage from small pulls and cuts.
They all have an overfilled hood complete with drawstring for tightening snug over your head and around your face. They also have a filled collar with drawstring for closing the gap between head and body. We’ve found that both of these features really help keep your body heat inside the sleeping bag.
There is a baffle (wind tube) running up the inside of the zip to further reduce heat loss, and outside is also a decent sized zipped pocket for storing your phone, torch or other item you need to hand (hip flask :o)
We had no problems (on any of the bags) with the zip snagging on any of the bag or the baffle, and there is a velcro tab at the top that shuts to prevent the zip from accidentally opening during your sleep. The zips are also 2-way meaning that you can open the bag from the bottom ideal if you need to get your feet out or have the bag partially open.
They are all supplied with their own roll top stuff/compression sack.
- Berghaus Elevation 200 (2-3 season)
Weight – 0.78kg / Comfort rating of 7 deg, limit 3 deg, extreme -11 deg.
- Berghaus Elevation 400 (3 season)
Weight – 1.05kg / Comfort rating of 4 deg, limit -1 deg, extreme -16 deg.
- Berghaus Elevation 600 (4 season)
Weight – 1.26kg / Comfort rating of 1 deg, limit -7 deg, extreme -25 deg.
So where have we used these bags?
Pembrokeshire – (In the Vango Rosewood tent). We used the Elevation 600 + Transition 300 (November 2018)
Long Mynd, Church Stretton (Wild camping in the Berghaus Cairngorm). We used the Elevation 600 – (February SNOW!!)
Bewdley, Wyre Forest (testing the Berghaus Grampian 2). We used the Transition 300 and Elevation 600 (Late March)
West Highland Way (96 mile hike, wild camping). We used the Elevation 400 (Mid April)
Derbyshire Bushcraft show (Testing the Kampa Brighton 3 tent). We used the Elevation 200 (Late May)
Delamere Forest, Cheshire (Hammock/wild camping). We used the Elevation 400 (Late May)
Blackwell, Bromsgrove (D of E hike). We used the Elevation 200 (Early June).
So which sleeping bag do you go for?
Well that depends on when, where and how you are camping. Many people who camp all year round have more than one sleeping bag.
So lets look at the Elevation 400 and the Transition 300 – These are both 3 season sleeping bags, one being down and the other synthetic, so which do you choose?
Berghaus Transition 300 - Comfort rating 2 deg, limit -3 deg, extreme -19 deg.
Berghaus Elevation 400 - Comfort rating of 4 deg, limit -1 deg, extreme -16 deg.
At the time of writing (June 2019), The Transition 300 was available for £30 (rrp £65) and the Elevation 400 was £144 (rrp £244) (both on offer).
That’s some price difference, so why would you ever choose the more expensive down bag over the cheaper and slightly warmer synthetic bag? The answer is below;
Pack size and weight - The down filled Elevation 400 has a significantly smaller pack size and is half the weight of the Transition 300 (1.05kg vs 1.99kg). That’s the reason why people will purchase a down bag over an equivalent cheaper synthetic bag. Down is by far the best insulator, so you need less filling and hence less weight and size.
When backpacking, available space and weight can be essential and there have been many times when we just haven’t had the room in our packs (or it would have been too heavy) for a synthetic bag and so down was the only answer.
So you could argue that we are not really comparing apples with apples. The Transition bags are brilliant value for money and have some excellent features that you don’t find on other sleeping bags. The Berghaus Elevation bags when compared with other equivalent down sleeping bags do really offer great value for money. TentLife have tested plenty of down bags, and for their cost the features and comfort level of the Elevation range does represent very good value for money (especially the Elevation 600).
Overall both sleeping bag ranges have delivered exactly what they said they would as far as comfort is concerned and we would certainly recommend these bags to our fellow campers and backpackers.
Caring for your down filled bag.
As you may or may not know, down sleeping bags should be stored in an uncompressed state between your camping trips. Keeping the down in a compression or stuff sack for long periods of time will affect how it ‘lofts’ and will reduce how effectively it keeps you warm.
The Berghaus Elevation sleeping bags come supplied with a mesh storage bag. The large mesh bag is supplied so you have somewhere to keep your Elevation when it’s not in use.