Monday, August 3, 2015

First Night in the As Tucas Down Quilt

I wouldn't normally write any sort of gear review after just one nights use but as many people have been asking about the As Tucas quilt I thought I would write a brief 'early opinion' following the first look post a few weeks ago. I camped up on Scafell summit last Thursday night under a tarp and with the quilt in a very roomy MLD superlight bivvy. The temperature was about 6 degrees C and it rained. The trip is described here.



So was I warm enough?
Yes, absolutely. I wore some very thin base layer leggings, a 100 weight fleece top and a beanie hat. If anything I was a bit too warm and could have left the fleece off. I didn't need to wrap the quilt around me like a cocoon. My feet were toasty.

Was it draughty?
I was in a bivvy bag so I didn't feel any draughts. Without a bivvy may have been a different story. I would have tucked the edges under me in that case.

Was it roomy?
Yes indeed. This was the single biggest difference between the quilt and a mummy bag. I could stretch out a knee or an elbow and turn over with ease. I am a side sleeper and tend to turn over lots. This is not an easy manoeuvre in a mummy bag as the bag turns with me so the hood ends up on top and I end up lying on the zip. In the quilt though I was laid directly on the mat and so could turn over without taking the quilt with me. This made for a notably more comfortable night for me. I did experiment with the 2 press stud fasteners. With both fastened it felt just like a mummy bag but with a bit more room. With just the lower one fastened the quilt was snug around hips but allowed plenty of torso room. My preference was to have both unfastened though. The large MLD bivvy didn't impede movement at all.

Any other thoughts?
Well I can confirm that the Shoeller fabric is at least water resistant as rain splash crept in around the neck of the quilt. Also, at some point I fell asleep with my head under the bivvy which resulted in much condensation which also wet the outer quilt fabric. The down stayed dry though and continued to loft well. 

So far so good then. I want to use it under the trailstar or a tent next, without a bivvy. I can then see how it copes with draughts.



 

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