There’s no shortage of companies that manufacture quality sleeping bags designed for your outdoor adventures. But only Therm-a-Rest has spent the last 40+ years pursuing the singular passion of providing a better night sleep in the great outdoors. The result? While you may not be sure what to expect from Mother Nature this weekend, you can expect a good night’s sleep with the Antares HD Sleeping Bag.
On Design and Performance…
Updated for 2015, the Antares HD offers maximum warmth with minimal weight for your three-season backpacking adventures. Now featuring Nikwax® Hydrophobic Down and a ThermaCapture™ lining for advanced, lightweight warmth, the Antares HD can handle just about anything from early spring to late fall. And the low weight of 1lb 15oz (2lb 2oz for the long version) won’t hold you back when you’re on a summer backpacking excursion.
When it comes to sleeping bags, comfort begins with the fit. Enter the Therm-a-Rest efficient Comfort Fit which ensures extra room in the torso allowing your shoulders, elbows and hips to move freely. For those of us with broad shoulders who tend to fidget in our sleep, it’s nice to know that the Antares HD accommodates that movement without leaving you feeling constricted.
Therm-a-Rest also updated the Antares with their new Zoned Insulation which pairs light-and-lofty 750+ down with a slender layer of sewn-through insulation to the bottom of the bag. This offers two primary benefits to the user. First, it helps reduce drafts when joined with your sleeping pad. Secondly, it makes the bag more versatile than the original Antares, freeing you up to put the Antares HD to good use as you couch surf your way to the mountains.
Admittedly when it comes to nights in the great outdoors, our greatest frustration has been the seemingly adversarial relationship between sleeping bag and sleeping pad. Sliding off your mattress or shifting the loft in your sleeping bag can cause you to lose thirty percent of your total warmth, not to mention hours of sleep. Thanks to Therm-a-Rest’s patent-pending SynergyLink Connectors on the underside of the Antares HD, you can pair the bag with a sleeping pad thereby transforming the two items into a singular integrated sleeping system.
While these flexible bands will fit any mattress (up to 25 inches wide), we paired the Antares HD with Therm-a-Rest’s EvoLite sleeping pad. Featuring alternating channels of foam and air, the EvoLite combines the high loft of an air mattress with self-inflating convenience. Like peas and carrots, the Antares and EvoLite were destined to go together. The SynergyLink Connectors keep the bag centered eliminating problems with sliding, twisting and cold spots. In other words, no more rolling off your pad in the middle of the night when your body desperately needs rest and recovery. You simply get the benefit of a superior night’s sleep in the backcountry.
Notes from the Field…
There’s a lot to love when it comes to the updated Antares. After a few adventures in the Sierra riddled with thunderstorms and pea-sized hail, we were especially thankful for the Antares hydrophobic coated down and DWR treated external shell. Thanks to the new Zoned Insulation, the versatility of the Antares has also been dramatically improved, making it a dramatic improvement from the first generation Antares.
However, despite the improvements, the Antares HD is still slightly heavier than some other three season bags available on the market. Additionally, there’s little doubt that this sleeping bag works best when paired with a sleeping pad. Partnering it up with a pad will increase your purchase price, which can be daunting considering that the Antares HD is already priced higher than bags with similar specs. That being said, we believe that the premium price point is matched with a premium level of performance that offered some of the most restful night’s we’ve experienced in the backcountry.
You work hard to find the perfect camp spot. Reward yourself for all that effort with the Antares HD sleeping bag. Paired with the EvoLite sleeping pad, the Antares HD ensures that you rest better at night so you can get up and do it all over again the next day.
*Gumption Gear Review received the items featured in this review from Therm-a-rest at no cost and receives no monetary compensation for this or any related review. The items featured were provided solely in return for our honest views and opinions.