How Much Should Sleeping Bag Weigh for Backpacking?

By Robert Palmer

A sleeping bag is a must-have item for any backpacking trip, so it’s important to choose one that suits your needs. There are several factors to consider when selecting a sleeping bag, including temperature rating, size, filling materials, and weight. One of the most important considerations when selecting a sleeping bag is how much it should weigh for backpacking.

The weight of a sleeping bag can have a dramatic impact on your overall backpack load. Heavier bags are generally more comfortable and offer more insulation, but they will also add extra pounds to your backpack.

On the other hand, lighter bags are easier to carry but may not be suitable for colder climates. So when shopping for a sleeping bag, it’s important to find the right balance between comfort and weight.

Temperature Rating

One of the primary considerations when selecting a sleeping bag is its temperature rating. Different bags are designed with different insulation levels to keep you warm in different temperatures.

If you plan on camping in cold weather, you’ll want to look for a bag with an appropriate temperature rating. The higher the temperature rating of the bag, the heavier and bulkier it will likely be.


Another factor to consider when choosing a sleeping bag is size. Most bags come in standard sizes like short, regular or long length as well as adult or child sizes. It’s important to select one that fits your body size comfortably while still providing enough room so that you don’t feel claustrophobic while inside.

Filling Materials

The type of filling materials used in the construction of the sleeping bag can also affect its weight and bulkiness. Synthetic fillings tend to be heavier than natural down fillings and provide more insulation in wet conditions; however they may not be as compressible or lightweight as down fillings.


When it comes down to it, how much should your sleeping bag weigh for backpacking?

Generally speaking, your sleep system should make up no more than 25% of your total pack weight; this includes both your tent and sleeping pad (if you’re using one). For most backpacking trips, experts recommend that you look for bags that weigh no more than two pounds (900 grams). However if you plan on camping in colder climates or expect colder temperatures during your trip then you may need something heavier.


When deciding how much your sleeping bag should weigh for backpacking consider factors such as temperature rating, size, filling materials and total pack weight. Generally speaking aim for a lightweight sleeping bag that weighs no more than two pounds (900 grams) unless camping in colder climates where something heavier may be necessary.