REI IGNEO REVIEW: BEST BACKPACKING SLEEPING BAGS
The REI Igneo is a lightweight yet well-insulated product. It's been constructed with high-quality and durable materials, much like the high-end models on the market, but for an affordable middle-of-the-road price.
It features several layers all intended to protect the sleeper from harsh weather conditions. Duck down, which is just as soft as it is warm, is used for the bag's insulation. This down has been treated and is water-resistant so that it won't absorb and hold onto mildew-causing moisture in inclement weather.
On top of this, it features a double layer of durable nylon that has been designed specifically to repel water away from the sleeper and resist rips and tears on rough terrain. In harsh weather conditions, the bag's contoured hood ensures that little body heat escapes and keeps the sleeper warm. The Igneo features a mummy shape design that is intended to provide easier insulation and allows for the sleeping bag to be more lightweight and easily packed up tight.
The Igneo is an ideal product for backpackers, hikers, and campers who will be facing cold or wet weather conditions. We would suggest it to experienced backpackers who travel light but don't want to spend a lot of money. However, the bag's versatility makes it a pretty great sleeping bag option for just about anyone.
|EN Lower Limit||19 degrees Fahrenheit|
|EN Comfort||30 degrees Fahrenheit|
|Temperature Rating (F)||19 degrees Fahrenheit|
|Temperature Rating (C)||-7 degrees Celsius|
|Fill||700-fill duck down|
|Sleeping Bag Shape||Mummy|
|Fits Up To (in.)|
|Shoulder Girth (in.)||60 inches|
|Hip Girth (in.)||55 inches|
|Stuff Sack Size||8 x 17 inches|
|Stuff Sack Volume||14 liters|
The REI Igneo is rated for temperatures as low as 19°F or -7°C. However, it was given a comfort rating of 30°F and is recommended for use in temperatures higher than this. The duck down insulation keeps this bag exceptionally warm, especially compared to products of similar prices. In fact, it's warmth is comparable to products that are far more expensive.
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The design of the bag serves to make it even warmer. The mummy shape, while tight, is effective at keeping body heat in the bottom of the bag. Additionally, the bag's hood is contoured to remain tight around the head to keep heat inside during use. This model is considered a 3-season product, so we do not recommend it for use in extreme winter conditions, such as snow, ice, and cold temperatures that drop below the 19°F rating at night.
Weighing in at just under 2 lbs., the Igneo is an exceptionally lightweight model. This is a pretty remarkable weight when you consider how soft and warm the duck down insulation is. Compared to models in a similar price range, the Igneo weighs much less than its competitors. This is why we recommend this bag option specifically for backpackers who want to travel long distances with very minimal gear.
Its light weight will allow you to easily travel with the bag, even for prolonged periods of time, without being held back or losing strength and stamina. The construction of this sleeping back is fantastic, so you don't need to sacrifice on warmth, insulation, and durability to have a product that is also lightweight and easy to handle.
We find that the REI Igneo is exceptionally comfortable when it comes to warmth, dryness, and softness, but it may not be as suitable for backpackers who prefer a good amount of leg room. The duck down insulation creates an incredibly soft padding all throughout the sleeping bag. Even on some of the hardest and rockiest surfaces, this bag offers a comfortable and soft sleep through the night.
While many other waterproof bags on the market are constructed with rough or even grainy materials, the nylon interior of this bag is smooth and breathable. It won't irritate the skin, stick to sleepers throughout the night, or cause any itchiness. Because this model is mummy-shaped, the leg area tapers a significant amount. The fit isn't so tight that sleepers can't move at all, but it might be uncomfortable for anyone who likes a little extra wiggle-room.
While the REI Igneo packs down incredibly small on its own, the included stuff sack does not do an adequate job at keeping the bag compressed. It can be rolled up as much as three times smaller than the stuff sack, but it will simply begin unfolding when placed into the sack for compression. The over-sized stuff sack may come in handy for campers, backpackers, and hikers who wish to use the extra room for storage of other packed-down gear like jackets or tarps. Having said all of that, we want to point out that the included stuff sack is still relatively small compared to standard stuff sacks and may not be a problem for regular camping trips or short backpacking adventures. For extremely minimal and light backpackers, we suggest buying a separate and smaller stuff sack to keep this sleeping bag compressed as much as possible once it's packed.
For such a soft and lightweight product, the REI Igneo proves to be pretty tough when up against the elements. The ripstop nylon shell is incredibly resistant to tearing, which is nice because it can protect the delicate duck down insides of the bag. Even on rocky terrain or sharp brush, this shell can withstand a good beating. The soft down insulation holds up quite nicely over time, too.
Even after packing the sleeping back down repeatedly between uses, the down doesn't ever remain permanently flattened or lose its comfort at all. This product should last for years to come so that you can take it with you on all of your future adventures. You can increase the longevity of this bag by regularly hanging it up to air out, especially is moisture collected inside of the bag due to your body heat during the night.
The REI Igneo is versatile. Because it is rated as a 3-season sleeping bag, it can be used in many different climates. The contoured hood and insulation allow this model to be incredibly warm, while the full-length zipper and breathable nylon featured on this bag make it a great option for hotter nights, as well.
The light weight of the Igneo paired with its durability makes the bag great in just about any situation in which you would need a sleeping bag. It's ideal for backpacking trips but can also be used for comfortable car camping, family camping trips, day hiking, or simply sleeping under the stars at night. This is a unisex product and was designed for people of all shapes and sizes so that anybody can get use out of this versatile product.
One of this sleeping bags most impressive features is the water-resistant duck down insulation and the water-repellent nylon shell. This additional layer of protection from the elements sets the Igneo above competitors in its class and price range. Having a waterproof down insulating the bag from inside prevents absorption, which in turn also prevents the bag from growing mildew over prolonged use.
The waterproof nylon shell is extremely efficient at keeping rain away from the inside layers of the bag. If you're going to be sleeping outside where rain is likely, we highly suggest this sleeping bag as an ideal option. One thing that is worth mentioning is how the down reacts to moisture. While water won't cause any damage to the down and will evaporate quickly, the material does take on a musky smell when still wet. This usually isn't too strong and shouldn't be a cause of concern during use.
The REI Igneo is one of the most versatile sleeping bags on the market, so it doesn't come with very many limitations. The two things we would note are the possibly cramped leg space and its use in winter. Some users who aren't used to backpacking conditions, such as car campers, may not like the narrow leg area. Additionally, this is a 3-season model that is limited to summer, spring, and fall. It can be used in winter but won't prove effective at keeping you warm in temperatures below 19°F.
While this sleeping bag could be useful to just about anybody, we feel that it is best suited for minimal and lightweight backpackers. It only weighs 1.15 lbs. and packs down incredibly small, so it is easy to travel with for extended periods of time. We also feel that it is best used in colder climates. It can be unzipped completely in warmer weather, but the overall construction of the bag and its key features are designed to keep sleepers warm in cold temperatures. It makes a great product in areas that are hot throughout the day but have dropping temperatures at night.
Like we mentioned above, the REI Igneo is comparable in quality and design to many of its more expensive competitors. It outshines nearly every other option in its class and price range. We consider the Igneo to be in the middle-range a far as price goes, but we would call it a high-end product. For this reason, we believe that this model is a fantastic value and worth more than what you'll be spending on it.
REI sells separate stuff sacks of varying sizes, which we feel might be necessary to get the best backpacking use out of the Igneo. Buying a smaller stuff sack in addition to the sleeping bag will allow backpackers to pack down the bag to an even smaller and more compact size. The included stuff sack you'll get with the Igneo is unnecessarily large in comparison to the sleeping back rolled up on its own. For reference, the stuff sack that comes included with the Igneo is about three times as large as it needs to be to accommodate the bag's smallest packed-down size.
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The Marmot Hydrogen Down is considered the best when it comes to mummy-shaped sleeping bags. While it might be a better choice for people who desire more bells and whistles with their product, we feel that paying the higher price is unnecessary when the Igneo is so comparable. Both bags are down insulated, durable, and waterproof.
The main differences in these bags are the Marmot Hydrogen's internal stash pocket, hoops for hanging and air drying, and a second zippered layer for ventilation. If additional features and accessories are important to you, then the Marmot Hydrogen may be right up your alley. However, you'll get almost the same quality for a much lower price if you choose the Igneo.
The Western Mountaineering SummerLite 32 Degree is very similar to the REI Igneo but may be a better option for serious and advanced level backpackers who don't mind paying for a more expensive product. The reason we feel that this option is better suited for serious backpacking is that it weighs only 1.3 lbs., compared to the Igneo's 1.15 lbs., and comes with a smaller stuff sack. Keep in mind, though, that the SummerLite is not rated for temperatures as low as the Igneo is. If you plan on braving the cold weather on your adventures, then you should stick with the Igneo as your best option. Otherwise, the SummerLite is a great lightweight and compact alternative.
Last, we have compared the Igneo to the Kelty Cosmic Down 20, which is a better value and more affordable option. This sleeping bag is very similar to the Igneo but weighs 3 lbs., so it isn't as ideal for long-term backpacking. Instead, this option may be a good choice for beginning backpackers who don't have long distances to travel. Other than that, the down insulation, temperature ratings, durability, and comfort of the two sleeping bags are almost identical. If you don't mind a little extra weight, then the Kelty Cosmic Down 20 may be suitable for your needs.
In an age when everyone seems to be locked to their small blue screens, I am vehemently passionate about getting more people outside to enjoy the wonder of nature. I grew up with the outdoors on my doorstep, and when I headed off to university I picked a degree in geology that allowed me to spend a lot of time outside on field trips! Over the last 30 years, I have camped or hiked through the wilderness on 5 continents. I hope my posts are informative for both the grizzled veteran and the complete novice alike.