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Quilt vs Bag on Baker/Rainier (bonus question what Temp?)


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Parker Cunneen · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Nov 2017 · Points: 26

So planning a trip to Baker and Rainier for June. Doing an (overly expensive) trip with Alpine Ascent. Main reason is my partner is new to mountaineering/alpinism and they offer a “school” on Baker prior to Rainier. She will get a ton out of it and I am hoping they will push their typical training to accommodate someone like me with a fairly established skill set. 


Anyway they recommend a 0F sleeping bag. Sounds to me like OVERKILL and I don’t want to carry that weight. I am planning on bringing my 20 F Enlightened Equpitment Quilt and can layer up if I’m cold. My partner runs a bit colder so she is going to use my 10 F EE quilt that has a full zip conversion. Anyone out there think this is a horrible idea and I’m going to freeze or does this make pretty good sense. Obviously xtherm AND foam mattress below.


PS I have a hearty Hilleberg tent which does a good job locking in warmth too. 

  

ChrisMurphy · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Mar 2016 · Points: 0

I've used a 15 F bag, from Marmot, on both mountains and it's worked out great.  I plan on heading to Rainier again this summer, in late June, and will use this same bag



Parker Cunneen · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Nov 2017 · Points: 26
ChrisMurphy wrote:

I've used a 15 F bag, from Marmot, on both mountains and it's worked out great.  I plan on heading to Rainier again this summer, in late June, and will use this same bag



Did you use/find the hood necessary? Determining if the quilt (no hood) with a hat will be fine.

Markuso · · Fernie · Joined Jan 2016 · Points: 95

I used my Enlightened Equipment 20F quilt on Baker in May and Wedge Mountain in April.  On Baker I used a 3 season tent by myself, so no extra warmth from a second body.  I was fine for both.  I think I probably slept with my puffy on for both nights, and a toque for my head.  Used foam pad and my downmat for pads.

Nick Sweeney · · Spokane, WA · Joined Jun 2013 · Points: 661

I used a 20 degree bag on Baker and was comfortable with my usual tricks.  However, our campsite was only at 6000 feet... you'll be sleeping a lot higher on Rainier.

Allen Sanderson · · Oootah · Joined Jul 2007 · Points: 1,187

On Baker the camps are down in the woods at ~4k or at in the moraine at ~6k. Not high enough that time year to warrant anything more than a three season bag (~20F). On Rainier the camps are at ~10k or ~11k (Ingarham Flats). It can get chilly but if you have other layers you will be fine.

Chris C. · · Seattle, WA · Joined Mar 2016 · Points: 337

I use a 20F Feathered Friends Hummingbird on all of the Cascade mountains in the summer and love it.  Every now and then I'll end up sleeping with my baselayers and even an ultralight down jacket (Ghostwhisperer, etc), but it's no big deal and very comfortable.  

Alpine Ascents won't mess around though.  If you show up with gear they aren't happy with, they'll either have you rent it, buy it, or go home.  You are probably best calling them to get an idea of what they find acceptable.  Plus, if you are going to pay top dollar for a full service climb, why not take advantage of their office line and gear shop and talk to them? Heck, what are you even doing talking to us po-folk on the internet?    

Parker Cunneen · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Nov 2017 · Points: 26
Heck, what are you even doing talking to us po-folk on the internet?    

Because I wanted to make sure I had the right idea before I take on their over protective rules head on. Not looking forward to that conversation at all! 


How do you know they have that attitude? Anecdote or expierience?

Chris C. · · Seattle, WA · Joined Mar 2016 · Points: 337
Parker Cunneen wrote:

Because I wanted to make sure I had the right idea before I take on their over protective rules head on. Not looking forward to that conversation at all! 


How do you know they have that attitude? Anecdote or expierience?

Haha I am just joking with you, I've done plenty of guided climbs in my life.  (Enough that I'm friends with some companies' booking agents on Facebook, so maybe too many climbs at this point...lol)

I have not actually climbed with Alpine Ascents, but I have climbed with one of their guides in a international private setting and have heard from them directly and others that they are as strict as RMI, if not even a little more.  I have climbed with RMI twice in my life and can certainly say that they do not give climbers the option to bring gear that their company does not find certainly adequate.  I don't blame them either, I am sure the legal liability to bring random folks up a huge mountain is pretty crazy.  I also remember that when I climbed with RMI, there were a few "hot-shot" folks who claimed to have a bunch of experience under their belts.  The guides probably take people's past experience with a big grain of salt, because at least on my climbs with them, those people kind of sucked.

I am surprised to hear that they require a 0F bag though.  As far as I remember from when I did my first ever Rainier climb (guided by RMI), most other companies recommended 10F or something like that.  It could be that 0F would be the lower limit rating and 10-20F would be the comfort rating.  

jg fox · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jun 2015 · Points: 5
Parker Cunneen wrote:

So planning a trip to Baker and Rainier for June. Doing an (overly expensive) trip with Alpine Ascent. Main reason is my partner is new to mountaineering/alpinism and they offer a “school” on Baker prior to Rainier. She will get a ton out of it and I am hoping they will push their typical training to accommodate someone like me with a fairly established skill set. 


Anyway they recommend a 0F sleeping bag. Sounds to me like OVERKILL and I don’t want to carry that weight. I am planning on bringing my 20 F Enlightened Equpitment Quilt and can layer up if I’m cold. My partner runs a bit colder so she is going to use my 10 F EE quilt that has a full zip conversion. Anyone out there think this is a horrible idea and I’m going to freeze or does this make pretty good sense. Obviously xtherm AND foam mattress below.


PS I have a hearty Hilleberg tent which does a good job locking in warmth too. 

  

Parker are you going to be in the guide hut or in a tent on Rainier?  You mention you have a Hilleberg but guide services usually provide their own tents to clients.  If you are in that hut you are going to melt in a below freezing bag. If you are doing Rainier on your own, then nevermind the question.

When I was on Rainier, people in the guide hut complained of two things, being too hot and people snoring.

Parker Cunneen · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Nov 2017 · Points: 26

I am going on a guided trip but bringing my own tent so I don’t have to pay to rent. This guide service does not provide tents for free.


The complaint of being to hot is what I would like to avoid by bringing a cooler quilt

Pete Spri · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jun 2009 · Points: 286

I wonder if there will be many people that can give advice on quilt vs mummybag.  I camped at nisqually flats years ago, on snow, in a zero degree bag and was cold.  Take it for what it is worth:).

wisam · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jan 2012 · Points: 60

I usually bring a 15 degree quilt. 0 would be worst case scenario however I have both and would just swap them out in the bag a few days prior if the forecast looked cold.  

wisam · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jan 2012 · Points: 60

Sometimes bring down pants to hang out in camp depending on the trip and could layer that with a puffy coat if temps got colder than expected and I needed to supplementthe bag. 

jg fox · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jun 2015 · Points: 5

Ok bring the quilt. Keep a separate pair of long underwear for sleeping to keep day time sweat and moisture from chilling you. Have your puffy ready incase you get chilled.  Besides Mt Baker isn’t as cold as Rainier is.

I had a 5F bag in very late september. I was comfortable, June would be warmer.

Chris C. · · Seattle, WA · Joined Mar 2016 · Points: 337
jg fox wrote:

Keep a separate pair of long underwear for sleeping to keep day time sweat and moisture from chilling you.

This is a good point, but I would go a little further with it. Sweat management is super critical if you want your climb to be as streamlined as possible. The more you sweat, the significantly less effective you are. Clothing gets wet and chills more easily. Not to mention the fact that you need to drink more water and electrolytes, while still carrying the water weight now soaked into your clothes. Then you need to dry the clothes, which is either a pain or impossible. 

It’s always better to be a little bit cold than to be hot. Starting with one fewer layer than you think you need when you get going is the usual rule of thumb. Unzip as soon as you feel your body’s heat working up. I’d say I sweat a bit more than the average person, but I can still manage to get up and down Rainier without getting my baselayer wet at all. 

A lot of people bring thicker layers than what is optimal on their first Rainier/Baker climb. There are lots of people up there with heavy duty stuff that actually reduces their efficiency. Unlike the sleeping bag, the guides won’t send you packing if you’re layers are too heavy - I don’t think anybody has died of being too warm. You’re likelyhood to summit and do it comfortably is just lower. 

On the total flip side, the weather can get rowdy up there even in the summer. Being with a guided group, you don’t really have a choice but to go up. In that case, you’ll probably want a good bag and the proper additional layers to stay warm. 

Briggs Lazalde · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Sep 2017 · Points: 0
Pete Spri wrote:

I wonder if there will be many people that can give advice on quilt vs mummybag.  I camped at nisqually flats years ago, on snow, in a zero degree bag and was cold.  Take it for what it is worth:).

You say you camped on snow. Are you saying you didn't have a sleeping pad? I'm sure you did but if you did, what was it's r rating? Winter pad or summer pad? Ground insulation/underside insulation is probably the most overlooked part of overnighting. At least in my experience in outtings a with other people. Whether it be summer camping, wintering camping, hammocking, etc..  I always warn people and they always say they shoulda listened.

Jordan W · · NC · Joined Mar 2017 · Points: 30

The big guide services on Rainier aren't going to let a quilt fly, it's a liability for them. I've used a Feathered Friends Flickr20 quilt on Rainier and Adams in July and haven't had a problem, but last time I bought a 15*F mummy bag and was glad to have it on the Flats in early July. It was chilly that night.

Pete Spri · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jun 2009 · Points: 286
Briggs Lazalde wrote:

You say you camped on snow. Are you saying you didn't have a sleeping pad? I'm sure you did but if you did, what was it's r rating? Winter pad or summer pad? Ground insulation/underside insulation is probably the most overlooked part of overnighting. At least in my experience in outtings a with other people. Whether it be summer camping, wintering camping, hammocking, etc..  I always warn people and they always say they shoulda listened.

it was a full length thermarest if I recall correctly.  Nisqually is higher than Muir and on snow, so maybe that was enough.

jg fox · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jun 2015 · Points: 5
Chris C. wrote:

This is a good point, but I would go a little further with it. Sweat management is super critical if you want your climb to be as streamlined as possible. The more you sweat, the significantly less effective you are. Clothing gets wet and chills more easily. Not to mention the fact that you need to drink more water and electrolytes, while still carrying the water weight now soaked into your clothes. Then you need to dry the clothes, which is either a pain or impossible. 

It’s always better to be a little bit cold than to be hot. Starting with one fewer layer than you think you need when you get going is the usual rule of thumb. Unzip as soon as you feel your body’s heat working up. I’d say I sweat a bit more than the average person, but I can still manage to get up and down Rainier without getting my baselayer wet at all. 

A lot of people bring thicker layers than what is optimal on their first Rainier/Baker climb. There are lots of people up there with heavy duty stuff that actually reduces their efficiency. Unlike the sleeping bag, the guides won’t send you packing if you’re layers are too heavy - I don’t think anybody has died of being too warm. You’re likelyhood to summit and do it comfortably is just lower. 

On the total flip side, the weather can get rowdy up there even in the summer. Being with a guided group, you don’t really have a choice but to go up. In that case, you’ll probably want a good bag and the proper additional layers to stay warm. 

Just a caveat from what you a discussing. Unless you are climbing in winter, sweating is inevitable on Rainier during climbing season, hiking up a snow field or glacier in sunny conditions will get you sweaty.  Yes, by wearing lighter layers you can reduce it but it will happen regardless if you are moving.  

Wear uninsulated softshell pants and wear a sun hoody instead of a regular thermal top.  Keep a wind shell handy, it could probably replace your softshell.

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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