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Reviews > Sleep Gear > Sleeping Bags > Eureka Kaycee 0 Deg. Sleeping Bag > Test Report by Josh Cormier
Eureka! Kaycee Sleeping Bag
Test series by Josh Cormier
Initial report: 5-Jan-2010
Field report: 23-Mar-2010
Long term report: 18-May-2010
Personal biographical information:
I joined the Boy Scouts when I was 11 and have been camping and backpacking ever since. I like to do challenging trips ranging from week long to weekend in mountainous areas. I would classify my gear as mid weight although now I am trying to move more toward lightweight. I now go backpacking at least once a year in the Sierra Nevada Mountains as well as monthly car camping trips with the Scouts.
Product Information: (information taken from Eureka! website)
- Item Description: Eureka! Kaycee 0° F sleeping bag
- Zipper Side: Right
- Material: 210T polyester diamond ripstop shell
- Insulation: Rteq™
- Temp Rating: 0° F (-18° C)
- Fill Weight: 3 lbs. 1 oz. (1.39 kg)
- Listed carry weight: 4 lbs. 9 oz. (2.07 kg)
- Measured carry weight (including compression sack): 4lb 15oz (2.24 kg)
- Listed Dimensions: 82" x 32" x 21" (2.08 x .81 x .53 m)
- Measured Dimensions: 82” x 28”x 14” (2.08 x .71 x .36 m)
- Manufactures web site: http://www.eurekatent.com
- Year of Manufacture: 2010
- MSRP: $144.90
- Initial Condition: The item was received in new condition
- Package Includes: Eureka! Kaycee 0° F sleeping bag, compression sack, and literature on the sleeping bag.
Initial Report - 5-Jan-2010
The Kaycee is one of Eureka’s cold weather backpacking mummy bags. It comes with a compression sack to help minimize the space it consumes when packing. The standard features of the bag are double layer-off-set-multi-needle quilt construction, differential cut to prevent thermal leaks, insulated draft tube, a fully adjustable contoured hood, an inside ”stash pocket”, an external pillow pocket, a trapezoidal foot box, #5, 2-way zippers with self-repairing coils, zipper stiffener to prevent snagging, and a hook & loop zipper lock.
Upon recieving the sleeping bag, I saw that it was a regular with the zipper on the right side. I was somewhat surprised by this as I had requested a long version for trial. I have found that most regular sized sleeping bags do not give me leg room to stretch out in. I pulled the bag out of the compression sack and laid it out on my floor giving it a few minutes to loft. Once it was pretty well decompressed, I crawled in for a test fit. With the hood on and the bag zipped up there was still enough room for my feet and possibly some clothes at the bottom of the bag. I could still move my arms somewhat but there was not a lot of extra room. The bag is comfortable and has a good amount of loft to it (3-4”, 7-10 cm).
The zippers move smoothly up and down the bag and the pull on the top outside zipper is nice, if I can get my hands outside the bag. I found that once I completely zipped myself inside, I had a hard time getting a hold of the internal zipper to let myself out. A zipper pull on the inside zipper would be a welcome addition. The zipper stop is a nice feature that does a good job of keeping the zipper in place when I close it.
The inside pocket secures using a hook and loop closure and seem roomy enough to hold a few small personal items such as an MP3 player, and a small flashlight. I just need to be sure to remove them before I put the sleeping bag away.
The draft tube is an ample size for covering the zipper and trapping heat inside, it runs the entire length of the zipper and has a pretty good loft itself. There is also a chest draft tube to keep air from escaping near my shoulders and neck.
The foot box is long and there is enough room for me to put some clothes at the end of it to warm up for the next day. The two way zipper can be opened from the bottom to let some air exchange if I need to cool my feet off. When I get hot in my sleeping bag I like to actually stick my feet out of the opening at the bottom of the bag. It will be difficult to achieve with this bag since the lower zipper is a ways from the bottom of the bag. I have to pull my knees up and work my feet to find the opening.
I like the look and feel of this bag and I look forward to spending some time testing it in the upcoming months.
Field Report - 23-Mar-10
I used this sleeping bag on a 3 day 2 night backpacking trip in Ventana Wilderness area in Big Sur, California. The elevation ranged from 3000 – 5000 ft (914 – 1524 m) and the temperature ranged from 31 – 60 F (0 – 15.6 C). It was overcast most of the time with nightly fog. It hailed and rained for several hours one night during this testing period. The area was mountainous with thick brush and few trees. Due to a fire that went through the area a couple of years ago, there was lots of dead trees and brush.
I also use the sleeping bag on an overnight trip to Oregon. The elevation was 1100 ft (335 m). The weather was clear and cloudless with some moisture in the air during the night. The temperature fluctuated between 40 F (4 C) at night to 80 F (26.7 C) in the daytime.
I used this sleeping bag on a car camping trip and found it simple to pack and stow. However it was not until I took it on a backpacking trip that I discovered that the included stuff sack was completely useless to me. I have an internal frame pack that is typical of internal frame packs, narrow and long. When the sleeping bag was in its stuff sack and the sack was cinched up as tight as it would go, the compressed sleeping bag was about the size of a basketball. I like to pack my sleeping bag inside my pack to ensure it stays dry, but this is an awkward shape for an internal frame pack. I had to shove it into the pack with the compression buckles scraping the sides and snagging on things. Once the bag was in the pack, there was not enough space to fit the rest of my gear either next to it or on top of it. Trying to pull the sleeping bag out was another issue in itself as the buckle scraped the sides and again snagged things on its way out. I have been able to fit that size sleeping bag into my pack before, so I grabbed another stuff sack and tried again. This stuff sack was longer and narrower than the stuff sack that came with the bag. Once in the new stuff sack the sleeping bag and all my gear fit fine in the pack. As far as I’m concerned the supplied stuff sack is useless for backpacking. To make it useful it needs to be narrower and longer, in addition the compression straps should make it shrink lengthwise not make it wider.
In the morning when it was time to pack up I felt the foot of the sleeping bag and it was damp, however my feet had not been cold or damp during the night. When I slipped out to make breakfast the sun was coming up and I folded my sleeping bag in half leaving the foot box on the top. By the time breakfast was finished the foot box was dry and I was able to pack the bag back into its borrowed stuff sack.
I’m somewhat claustrophobic, so sleeping in a mummy bag is a challenge to me. I was able to zip myself into this bag for a while but the lack of space to move my arms and legs eventually got to me, and I had to open the bag. It was a cold night so I zipped the bag up to my chest leaving my arms outside the bag, flipped over and laid the hood over my head. With my arms outside my bag and either at my side or under the hood I was comfortable all night.
I slept in this bag on an overnight trip to Oregon; it was warm especially in a 0 deg bag. I opened the zipper half way and tried to stick my feet out of the foot vent by the footbox. The foot vent zipper is located about half way up my calf, making it hard to get my feet out. To make it more difficult I could not bend my knees far enough to get my feet close to the foot vent due to the fact that the sleeping bag is so narrow. I had to scoot higher in the sleeping bag till I could get my feet out and then scoot back down.
Long Term Report - 18-May-10
I recently used this sleeping bag on a 3 day 2 night car camping trip in Prunedale, California. The elevation was 92 - 150 ft (28 - 46 m). The weather was overcast with some moisture in the air during the morning and night. The temperature fluctuated between 49 F (9 C) at night to 60 F (16 C) in the daytime.
This sleeping is comfortable to sleep in, has kept me warm down to 31 F (0 C), and fits me lengthwise. I will continue to enjoy using this sleeping bag on my colder trips.
Below you will find a list of questions that I planned to answer after my test was complete and my answers to them.
Does the bag show signs of wear early on?
- No, the bag still looks as good as when I first received it.
Is it easy to snag the shell?
- I have not had any issues with snagging the shell with the zipper or anything else.
Do the seams hold well?
- All the seams still look like new
Does the zipper get stuck or zip in the sleeping bag material?
- No, I have not had any issues with this
Does the bag fluff consistently after each use?
- Yes, the bag fluffs pretty quickly after being removed from the stuff sack
Is the sleeping bag material resistant to the dirt and oils of a body in the woods all day?
- So far the bag appears to still be clean
Is the stuff sack strong enough to withstand the pressure of packing the bag without
ripping a seam?
- Yes, but the size and shape of the stuff sack makes it pretty much useless for backpacking
Is the stuff sack durable enough to withstand some abuse while protecting the bag?
Does the bag provide enough warmth for its weight?
- I was only able to test the bag down to 31 degrees but it was warm at those temperatures.
Compared to other sleeping bags rated at 0 deg that I have, it is an acceptable weight
Is the bag sized for a person without having wasted space?
- Yes, there is not much extra space in the bag to move my arms around
Are there features on the bag that are unused or unnecessary?
- I have not used the pocket, but it could prove useful if I completely closed the bag
Are there features that would improve the efficiency of the bag?
Do the draft tubes improve warmth and protect all the open areas?
- Yes, I can not feel any drafts near the zippered areas
Does the bag allow moisture to escape while protecting from outside moisture?
- It seems to, I have not woken up feeling wet from trapped moisture
Is the bag resistant to tent condensation, especially at the foot and head areas?
- Not resistant but dries out pretty quickly
Ease of Use:
Is it easy to put the bag back in the stuff sack, or does it become a wrestling match?
- Easy because the stuff sack is too large
Does the packed bag compress small enough to conveniently fit inside my pack?
- Not in the supplied stuff sack
This concludes my report series. Thank you to Eureka and BackpackGearTest for the opportunity to test this sleeping bag.
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