I loved a Decathlon bag

Marco pushing the limits of a Decathlon sleeping bag.

In the early days of ultralight backpacking, I bought a Decathlon sleeping bag. And I fell in love with it. Love is irrational, and this was no exception:

  • It was rather heavy despite its name: Ultralight S10.
  • It was bulky due to its synthetic insulation.
  • It was uncomfortable because it was really narrow.

I was embarrassed to include this sleeping bag in my public gear list.

So, why in the hell I bought it? Because at that time trying a quilt in Europe was almost impossible. Popular wisdom said that you can use an opened sleeping bag to get an idea of how’s sleeping in a quilt. So I bought a cheapo sleeping bag from Decathlon.

I only slept a couple of nights with this method. It was uncomfortable. And now I discourage it because by no means sleeping in an opened bag is similar to sleeping in a quilt.

Marco smiling in a Decathlon sleeping bag under a tarp.

However, I ended up using extensively this bag during that summer and autumn. In fact, I pushed it way beyond its limits, suffering really uncomfortable nights: I still shiver when I remember a -6 °C night (the bag was rated at +10 °C).

This bag was appealing because its synthetic insulation. It magically withstood moisture buildup during multi-day trips. Much better than an ultralight down sleeping bag. This is a huge advantage when you’re moving in uncertain weather.

Unfortunately, insulation was quite fragile, so after a season it was so crushed that the bag was unusable.

Marco contemplating the sunrise while wearing a Sestrals Poncho.

I started to dream about an ultralight synthetic bag. One with a compressible, but durable, insulation suitable for ultralight backpacking.

Then I tried a down quilt and loved the quilt concept.

And so the Sestrals Quilt was born.


PS. Summer is the best time to try a quilt. Or even better, a poncho.

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