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Gadling gear review: Brooks-Range Alpini 30 sleeping bag
With this in mind, outdoor gear company Brooks-Range has recently introduced a new line of sleeping bags for warm weather camping. Their Alpini 30 is rated down to freezing (32ºF/0ºC), which is perfect for summer nights, offering versatility and comfort across a variety of climates and altitudes.
That versatility is important on warm weather trips, when you have the potential to experience a wide range of temperatures. The Alpini was designed with this thought in mind, as Brooks-Range has wisely included high-quality, bi-directional zippers that go a long way toward ensuring comfort on nights spent in the tent. Campers who need cooler air around their legs and feet will appreciate the ability to open the lower area of their sleeping bag, independent of the top, letting in fresh air as needed. On cooler nights however, they'll still have the option of zipping this mummy-style bag snugly around themselves, keeping them as warm as possible.
Brooks-Range has included a few other nice touches with the Alpini as well. For instance, they've built in an internal storage pocket that comes in handy for keeping small gear items, such as a headlamp or iPod, close at hand. The Alpini also comes with a high quality stuff sack for when you're traveling, as well as a large cotton storage sack for use back home. These may seem like simple things, but they are much appreciated over the life of the bag, which should last most people for years.
As you can probably tell from this review, I'm quite impressed with the Alpini 30 both in build quality and versatility, however this sleeping bag definitely isn't for everyone. I say that, because it only comes in one size and if you're over six feet in height, you'll find that it is too small to be completely comfortable. Taller backpackers and campers will need to look elsewhere for their sleeping options.
If you're using this bag, you'll also want to pay close attention to the temperature rating. The Alpini is a great option for three-season camping, spring through fall. But if you get caught out in colder than expected weather, you'll definitely have some uncomfortable nights. It is an excellent piece of gear when used for the temperatures it is designed for, but if you need something a bit warmer, you'll want to try out the Alpini 15, which is rated down to 15ºF/-9ºC.
If you're in the market for a good, high quality, well designed and built, sleeping bag for warm weather adventures, the Brooks-Range Alpini 30 should definitely be on your radar. It is perfect for camping trips from spring to fall and should serve well in that capacity for years to come.