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Owners Review - Garrett - Montbell U.L. Super Stretch Down Hugger #5

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  • gumbo_cole
    Hi editors/BGT/all. I have another owners review for you. Bring on the corrections. Thank you in advance for taking time to edit it. Garrett Owner Review –
    Message 1 of 7 , Dec 4, 2006
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      Hi editors/BGT/all. I have another owners review for you.

      Bring on the corrections.

      Thank you in advance for taking time to edit it.
      Garrett



      Owner Review – Montbell U.L. Super Stretch Down Hugger #5

      <IMG alt = "Montbell U.L. SS Down Hugger #5 Sleeping Bag" src
      = "ssbag.jpg">

      *Tester Information <to be linked to href below>
      *Product Information <to be linked to href below>
      *Location and Conditions <to be linked to href below>
      *General Overview <to be linked to href below>
      *Product Performance <to be linked to href below>
      *Summary <to be linked to href below>


      *Tester Information <href>

      <Insert picture of myself in the sleeping bag (align right)>

      Name: Garrett Cole
      Age: 23
      Gender: Male
      Height: 5'10" (1.78 m)
      Weight: 175 lb (79 kg)
      Email address: garrett_d_cole@...
      Home: Sidney, New York, USA
      Date: November 28, 2006

      Backpacking Background:

      As former President of my college's Outdoor Club I often spent
      weekends on the temperate Adirondack (ADK) Mountain high peaks and
      on Catskill Mountain trails. I have hiked many of the ADK high
      peaks during all seasons of the year. Most recently I hiked over
      1600 miles (2575 km) Southbound on the Appalachian Trail and plan to
      finish the remaining stretch of trail, from Atkins, Virginia to
      Springer Mountain, Georgia in the Spring of 2008. I subscribe to a
      light is right philosophy and try to keep my base pack weight around
      10 lb (4.5 kg) for 3-season trips, and 15 lb (6.8 kg) during winter
      excursions.

      *Product Information <href>

      Product: Montbell U.L. Super Stretch Down Hugger #5
      Manufacturer: Montbell
      URL: www.montbell.com
      Year of manufacture: 2005
      Manufacturer's listed weight: 1 lb 3 oz (539 g)
      Weight at first use: 1 lb 3.9 oz (564 g)
      Weight after approximately 120 uses: 1 lb 3.8 oz (561 g)
      Comfortable temperature rating: 42.8 F (6.0 C)
      Minimum temperature rating: 28.4 F (-2 C)
      Fill weight: 6.3 oz (179g)
      Insulation: 725 fill power goose down
      Shell fabric: 15-denier Ballistic Airlight™
      Lining fabric: 15-denier Ballistic Airlight™
      Maximum recommended user height: 5'10" (1.78 m)
      Inside shoulder girth: 53.2" - 70.9" (135 cm – 180 cm)
      Inside knee girth: 42.8" - 57.1" (109 cm – 145 cm)
      Stuff size: 4.8" x 9.5" (12.2 cm x 24.1 cm)
      Color: Ink Blue / Black / Grey
      MSRP: $225 (US)

      *Location and Conditions <href>

      I have used this sleeping bag during four months hiking on the
      Appalachian Trail (AT), a continuous footpath stretching over 2100
      miles (3381 km) from Maine to Georgia, and one October weekend
      outing in the ADK High Peaks. Sleeping temperatures ranged from
      below freezing to over 80 F (38 C). Night-time weather included
      beautiful star filled nights, severe thunder storms, snowfall,
      severe fog cover, steady rain, and anything else you could expect
      while out in the woods. This sleeping bag was used for roughly 120
      nights.

      *General Overview <href>

      The Montbell U.L. Super Stretch Down Hugger #5 (SS #5) is an ultra-
      light sleeping bag that offers several attractive features. These
      features have been fully utilized during my latest hike on the AT
      keeping this side-sleeper toasty warm.

      One feature unique to Montbell sleeping bags is the use of
      horizontal elastic stitching creating a flexible mummy bag that is
      able to stretch around individual body types. This feature improves
      thermal efficiency and allows for more wiggle room for unsound
      sleepers such as myself.

      Another unique feature is the built in draw cord on the horizontal
      stitching closest to the foot of the sleeping bag. This provides
      adjustment beyond the stretchiness of elastic stitching allowing
      users to fit the bag more snuggly around their ankles, again
      increasing thermal efficiency. Other uses of this feature include
      completely closing drawstring of the last baffle to accommodate
      shorter users, inverting the foot box inside the sleeping bag brings
      more insulation toward the feet, and the entire sleeping bag can fit
      inside the foot box eliminating the need for a stuff sack.

      In addition to those unique features, this bag has all the standard
      features of a well made down mummy bag. There are hood and neck
      adjusting drawstrings to custom fit around your head. There are
      also a few sewn in loops along the seams of the sleeping bag which
      would be convenient for hanging the SS #5 to air out or dry; I have
      never used these loops. There is a flap of nylon along the side
      which helps prevent zipper snags and to a small extent prevents
      drafts. The zipper opens at the head and the foot of the sleeping
      bag allowing for more ventilation on the user's feet during warm
      nights. Included with the sleeping bag are a lightweight stuff sack
      and a cotton storage bag.

      *Product Performance <href>

      I was extremely pleased with the performance of my SS #5 over the
      course of my AT hike. It proved to be one of my favorite pieces of
      gear for its low weight, versatility, durability, insulating
      capability and unique features.

      <Insert picture of packed sleeping bag>

      At only 19.9 oz. (564 g) the SS #5 is amongst the lightest sleeping
      bags on the market. Thanks to its 725 fill power goose down, it
      compresses to the approximate size of a water bottle. These aspects
      combined make it ideal for carrying during long distance backpacking
      trips. During my experience with the sleeping bag, I not use the
      stuff sack it came with. Instead, I put it in my backpack loose so
      that it would fill in the open spaces at the bottom of my Granite
      Gear Vapor Trail <to be linked to my OR>

      I really appreciated the features that allowed for the SS #5 to be
      more versatile than a simple rectangular sleeping bag. The stretchy
      horizontal baffles that give this sleeping bag its name worked
      wonderfully to reduce the amount of dead space in the sleeping bag
      that my body had to heat. In addition, on those nights when
      sleeping on the ground just isn't working out, the stretchy baffles
      make it easier to shift and roll around as they create a little give
      in the width of the bag. I did try out using the foot adjustment
      but because I tend to move around at night, when the foot adjustment
      was tightened around my ankles it felt like I couldn't move my legs
      at all. A good deal of that feeling probably came from my
      claustrophobia and may not exist for others. In addition with the
      foot adjustment feature, on hot nights when I slept only in my silk
      sleeping bag liner, I could pack the entire sleeping bag into the
      foot of the bag and cinch the adjustment closed to create a fluffy
      down pillow for my head.

      Over the course of using the SS #5, it proved to be extremely
      durable. After about 120 uses, aside from smelling of sweat (which
      could be washed out), the SS#5 shows no signs of wear. The durable
      water resistant (DWR) treatment on the shell of the sleeping bag has
      held up well. I have had no fabric or seam failures with this
      sleeping bag and will continue to use it as a warm weather sleeping
      bag.

      I do not know how to measure the effectiveness of the DWR treatment
      on the shell of the sleeping bag. But during the 120 nights using
      the sleeping bag, the SS #5 remained dry all but one night by
      keeping my pack lined with a trash compactor bag, and also using a
      pack cover. I was not willing to unnecessarily wet the sleeping
      bag. After nights of fog, mist and high humidity or multiple days
      of rain, the bag would feel damp to the touch, but it never soaked
      through to my body. I made one critical mistake by covering my
      sleeping bag with a tarp on a cold windy night when staying in a
      lean-to. I woke up halfway through the night to find that my own
      perspiration had wet the sleeping bag which reduced the SS #5's
      insulating capability. Adding to my discomfort the air temperature
      dropped just below the minimum temperature rating that night.

      Montbell uses a double temperature rating system for their sleeping
      bags. While this system creates some confusion, with a little
      investigation of their website, the double ratings are described
      clearly. The distinction is made on Montbell's website:

      The Comfortable Temperature range shows the temperatures in which
      you can restfully and pleasantly sleep 8 hours or more wearing only
      a thin layer. Use these ranges to select the best sleeping bag for
      your needs…
      The Minimum Temperature range shows the temperatures in which you
      can sleep in relative comfort for 6 to 8 hours."

      While using the SS #5, I've found that the comfortable temperature
      rating is accurate, but below it, I needed to add layers of clothing
      for warmth to be able to get a sound nights sleep. Below the
      minimum temperature rating, even with added layers of clothing,
      sleeping was very uncomfortable. Such outcomes should be expected in
      temperatures lower than the sleeping bag is rated. When
      temperatures expected are at or above the comfortable temperature
      rating, the SS #5 is my first choice of sleeping bags.

      The bag has continually lost down but the feather or two a week did
      not noticeably affect its warmth. In the first few uses, the SS #5
      lost an alarming number of feathers (3 to 5 per use), but after a
      week the feather loss rate significantly slowed. Using the same
      digital scale before and after the 120 uses, the SS #5 lost one
      tenth of an ounce (3 g), and I speculate this loss in weight to be
      down fill loss.


      *Summary <href>

      I have been pleased with the Montbell U.L. Super Stretch Down Hugger
      #5, for lightweight backpacking use in warm weather. I enjoy the
      special features of the sleeping bag which include the stretchy
      horizontal baffles to custom fit my body and allow for more movement
      during nights on trail, the foot adjusting cinch, the hood and
      neckline adjusting draw cords and the durable water resistant (DWR)
      finish on the sleeping bag shell. Carrying the sleeping bag is
      pleasant thanks to its low weight and volume. When stuffed the SS
      #5 is about the size of a 32 oz (1 L) Nalgene bottle, but packed
      loose, it seems to take up hardly any space at the bottom of my pack
      once the rest of my gear is loaded on top. It shed a few feathers
      in the first nights sleeping in it, but over the course of 120
      nights has lost only .1oz (3g), and remains my first choice in
      sleeping gear when going light when night time temperatures are
      expected to remain above the comfortable temperature rating of 42.8
      F (6 C).


      Here is a photograph of the Montbell Super Stretch #5 in use:

      <IMG alt = "Montbell U.L. Super Strech #5" src= "montbell.jpg">
    • chcoa
      PLEASE READ THIS EMAIL IN FULL. IT IS MOST IMPORTANT! Thanks for your Owner s Review. It has been added to the Owner Review Queue and will be picked up by an
      Message 2 of 7 , Dec 4, 2006
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        PLEASE READ THIS EMAIL IN FULL. IT IS MOST IMPORTANT!

        Thanks for your Owner's Review. It has been added to the Owner
        Review Queue and will be picked up by an Edit Moderator soon. Do
        not worry if nothing happens with it for several days. All our
        Editors are volunteers and your report will be subject to an
        official edit within fourteen days. If you have not had a response
        from an Edit Moderator via the Yahoo Groups list within this
        timeframe, please let me know directly at jdeben@....

        To assist in this process, if this is your first Owner Review we ask
        that you post only ONE Owner Review for edit at a time. Our
        experience is that it is more efficient for both the Editors and
        yourself, if you post your first review, have it edited, approved
        and uploaded before you post your second and subsequent reviews.
        This way we can work with you on addressing any standard BGT policy
        edits which you can incorporate into your second and subsequent
        reviews before submission.

        If you are new to BackpackGearTest.org, welcome to the community!
        The Editors will work with you, within their own time constraints,
        to get your first two Owner Reviews approved and upload in a timely
        manner. Once these first two Owner Reviews have been approved and
        you have submitted your Tester Agreement you will be eligible to
        start applying for Tests. If you'd like more assistance or guidance
        with the process you can request a mentor by sending an email to
        Jennifer P, the mentor coordinator, at (jennifer.pope@...).

        You may receive edits or comments from other members of the group.
        These edits and comments, while not official, should be considered
        carefully, and if you find them substantial, revise and re-post your
        review. Incorporating member edits and re-submitting to the list
        will usually result in a better review, as well as making things
        easier for the official Editor. Please put REVISED in the subject
        line of your re-submitted review, if you take this route or make any
        changes to your review BEFORE the review has been taken by an Edit
        Moderator.

        Additionally, it is important for you to monitor the Yahoo Groups
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        Editor has taken your OR and made the necessary edits they will post
        their comments to the list with EDIT in the subject line. Once you
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        If you'd like to keep track of the progress of your OR, the entire
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        If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to ask via
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        Regards
        Jamie DeBenedetto
        Edit Administration Manager
      • rayestrella1
        Hi Garrett, Really nice job on this one. It looks as if you have it in HTML already. You can go ahead and post it to the Owner Review Test Folder, and let me
        Message 3 of 7 , Jan 3, 2007
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          Hi Garrett,

          Really nice job on this one. It looks as if you have it in HTML
          already. You can go ahead and post it to the Owner Review Test
          Folder, and let me know when it is there. In the mean time here are
          the edits so far.

          Ray


          ***Height: 5'10" (1.78 m)

          EDIT: need a space between your numbers (5' 10")


          ***Backpacking Background:

          EDIT: can you try to tighten this up to 100 words or less please.

          ***Southbound on the Appalachian Trail

          EDIT: southbound (no cap)

          *Product Information <href>


          ***Manufacturer: Montbell

          Edit: according to the site it is MontBell America, Inc.


          ***Weight after approximately 120 uses: 1 lb 3.8 oz (561 g)

          Edit: this is not really a product spec. The listed and actual are
          helpful to people reading the review. The weight of it a year later
          could go in your observations if you think it important.


          ***Stuff size: 4.8" x 9.5" (12.2 cm x 24.1 cm)

          EDIT: What size is it actually stuffed?


          ***I have used this sleeping bag during four months hiking on the

          EDIT: during four months "of" hiking, or drop "during"




          ***One feature unique to Montbell sleeping bags is the use of
          horizontal elastic stitching creating a flexible mummy bag that is
          able to stretch around individual body types.

          EDIT: can you reword this to not say that they are unique? Sierra
          Designs had the Flex series in the early 2000's


          ***I made one critical mistake by covering my sleeping bag with a
          tarp

          Comment: been there, done that. Wet foot-box anyone?


          ***Using the same digital scale before and after the 120 uses, the SS
          #5 lost one
          tenth of an ounce (3 g), and I speculate this loss in weight to be
          down fill loss.

          Comment: after 120 uses and the fact that you say the bag smells of
          sweat, I would think that the bag would be retaining body oils which
          would add to offset weight loss.
        • gumbo_cole
          Ray, My owner review has been uploaded to the test folder. Thank you for editing it. Your attention to detail is incredible. Thanks again, Garrett ... SS ...
          Message 4 of 7 , Jan 7, 2007
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            Ray,

            My owner review has been uploaded to the test folder.
            Thank you for editing it. Your attention to detail is incredible.

            Thanks again,
            Garrett



            --- In BackpackGearTest@yahoogroups.com, "rayestrella1"
            <rayestrella@...> wrote:
            >
            > Hi Garrett,
            >
            > Really nice job on this one. It looks as if you have it in HTML
            > already. You can go ahead and post it to the Owner Review Test
            > Folder, and let me know when it is there. In the mean time here are
            > the edits so far.
            >
            > Ray
            >
            >
            > ***Height: 5'10" (1.78 m)
            >
            > EDIT: need a space between your numbers (5' 10")
            >
            >
            > ***Backpacking Background:
            >
            > EDIT: can you try to tighten this up to 100 words or less please.
            >
            > ***Southbound on the Appalachian Trail
            >
            > EDIT: southbound (no cap)
            >
            > *Product Information <href>
            >
            >
            > ***Manufacturer: Montbell
            >
            > Edit: according to the site it is MontBell America, Inc.
            >
            >
            > ***Weight after approximately 120 uses: 1 lb 3.8 oz (561 g)
            >
            > Edit: this is not really a product spec. The listed and actual are
            > helpful to people reading the review. The weight of it a year later
            > could go in your observations if you think it important.
            >
            >
            > ***Stuff size: 4.8" x 9.5" (12.2 cm x 24.1 cm)
            >
            > EDIT: What size is it actually stuffed?
            >
            >
            > ***I have used this sleeping bag during four months hiking on the
            >
            > EDIT: during four months "of" hiking, or drop "during"
            >
            >
            >
            >
            > ***One feature unique to Montbell sleeping bags is the use of
            > horizontal elastic stitching creating a flexible mummy bag that is
            > able to stretch around individual body types.
            >
            > EDIT: can you reword this to not say that they are unique? Sierra
            > Designs had the Flex series in the early 2000's
            >
            >
            > ***I made one critical mistake by covering my sleeping bag with a
            > tarp
            >
            > Comment: been there, done that. Wet foot-box anyone?
            >
            >
            > ***Using the same digital scale before and after the 120 uses, the
            SS
            > #5 lost one
            > tenth of an ounce (3 g), and I speculate this loss in weight to be
            > down fill loss.
            >
            > Comment: after 120 uses and the fact that you say the bag smells of
            > sweat, I would think that the bag would be retaining body oils
            which
            > would add to offset weight loss.
            >
          • rayestrella1
            ... Thank you Garrett. I can not find the review in the folders. Can you give me a link or file name? Ray
            Message 5 of 7 , Jan 7, 2007
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              --- In BackpackGearTest@yahoogroups.com, "gumbo_cole" <gumbo_cole@...>
              wrote:
              >
              > Ray,
              >
              > My owner review has been uploaded to the test folder.
              > Thank you for editing it. Your attention to detail is incredible.


              Thank you Garrett. I can not find the review in the folders. Can you
              give me a link or file name?

              Ray
            • gumbo_cole
              I m sorry Ray, http://www.backpackgeartest.org/reviews/test/OWNER%20REVIEWS/OR% 20Montbell%20U.L.%20Down%20Hugger%20SS%205%20by%20Garrett%20Cole/ I encountered
              Message 6 of 7 , Jan 8, 2007
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                I'm sorry Ray,

                http://www.backpackgeartest.org/reviews/test/OWNER%20REVIEWS/OR%
                20Montbell%20U.L.%20Down%20Hugger%20SS%205%20by%20Garrett%20Cole/

                I encountered an error while uploading it and just realized what
                happend tonight, there's the link to the review. The picture in the
                summary doesn't come up on my browser, if it doesn't open on yours,
                I'll just take out the picture all together.

                I hope I don't waste your time this time.
                Garrett


                --- In BackpackGearTest@yahoogroups.com, "rayestrella1"
                <rayestrella@...> wrote:
                >
                > --- In BackpackGearTest@yahoogroups.com, "gumbo_cole" <gumbo_cole@>
                > wrote:
                > >
                > > Ray,
                > >
                > > My owner review has been uploaded to the test folder.
                > > Thank you for editing it. Your attention to detail is incredible.
                >
                >
                > Thank you Garrett. I can not find the review in the folders. Can
                you
                > give me a link or file name?
                >
                > Ray
                >
              • rayestrella1
                Hi Garrett, Your review looks pretty good with the exception of the last picture. I can t get it to show. And the manufacturer s URL needs to be clickable.
                Message 7 of 7 , Jan 9, 2007
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                  Hi Garrett,

                  Your review looks pretty good with the exception of the last picture. I
                  can't get it to show. And the manufacturer's URL needs to be clickable.
                  Once you get it fixed (please check it in the test folder first) you
                  can put the final version here;

                  Reviews > Sleep Gear > Sleeping Bags > MontBell UL SS Down Hugger 5

                  Or;

                  http://www.backpackgeartest.org/reviews/Sleep%20Gear/Sleeping%
                  20Bags/MontBell%20UL%20%20SS%20Down%20Hugger%205/

                  Thanks,

                  Ray
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