The Mont Kiandra and Spindrift are two sleeping bags regularly considered for 4 season and alpine camping trips. Both sleeping bags are rated from -9ºC to -15ºC, both sleeping bags are made from highly water-resistant and extremely breathable Hydronaute XT fabric, both are filled with super-high loft down (between 785 & 850), and they're within 100grams of each other in weight.
So how do I choose which is right for me? Read on...
The Kiandra Sleeping Bag
The Kiandra is part of the Tapered Rectangular Series which are often praised for their versatility across a wide range of temperatures.
The Tapered Rectangular series sleeping bags have full length side and foot zips allowing you to open them out flat in warmer conditions, and close them up in colder conditions.
In addition the Tapered Rectangular sleeping bags have continuous baffles (down chambers) from top to base. You can see the direction of the baffles in the seams across the sleeping bag, they start at the zip, run across the top, around the side to the base and finish on the other side of the zip. Continuous baffles allow you to distribute down according to the temperature; in warmer conditions move down from the top to the base, and in colder conditions move more down to the top.
The Spindrift Sleeping Bag
The Spindrift is part of the Specialist Boxfoot Series which are specifically designed for alpine and winter conditions. The Spindrift, and all Specialist Boxfoot, are less versatile than the Kiandra, but for that lack of versatility comes a significant increase in efficiency.
You will notice right away the narrow and very tapered shape, this is called Mummy shape. A Mummy shaped sleeping bag is the most efficient because it minimises unused space that your body must warm up.
You will also notice that they do not have a foot zip, rather they have a 'boxfoot'. A boxfoot provides significantly more efficient warmth because of 1) the lack of a zipper and 2) the down chambers underneath the soles of your feet when you're lying on your back. The boxfoot prevents the sleeping bag opening out flat, but makes huge improvements in warmth efficiency.
Another significant feature of the Spindrift is the vertical baffles around the torso. Rather than continuous baffles as seen on the Kiandra, the Spindrift's vertical baffles prevent down movement and maintain even down coverage around the entire torso. These vertical baffles are significantly warmer and more efficient in trapping warmth. You can see these baffles by the vertical seams on the chest (and base) of the Spindrift.
If you find it very hard to stay warm in sub zero conditions or if you're buying a sleeping bag purely for temperatures of -9ºC to -15ºC then the Spindrift will be your best option.
If you're buying a sleeping bag for occasional adventures in –9ºC to -15ºC but predominantly temperatures up to 0ºC or just above then the Kiandra will be a much better match.
At Mont we always suggest taking a sleeping bag that is rated to at least 5ºC below the forecasted weather, as it is much safer and easier to cool down if you're too hot, than to warm up if you're too cold.
If you need anymore assistance with your selection of a sleeping bag or any other equipment please do not hesitate to contact Mont today.