Why We Chose It: Great sustainable construction, good value
This might not be the lightest sleeping bag around but don’t let that put you off it as there’s plenty to admire here, particularly from an eco perspective. It also comes at the very decent price of just £125 – not bad at all for a sleeping bag with a -7 temperature rating.
Who’s The North Face Eco Trail -7 Best Suited To?
Unfortunately my testing period for this hasn’t coincided with any super cold weather so I can’t fully comment on the cold weather rating here (I’ll have to come back and update this review). What I will say though is that it’s been very comfortable for a couple of camps that dropped to around 1. To me, it seems like the kind of bag that would keep you warm enough throughout most of the year in the UK, though you’d want something a bit more serious for any gnarly winter mountain conditions.
At 1756g, there are certainly bags out there with a better warmth-to-weight ratio but only a few of them will be fully synthetic like this one – and none will have the same eco creds.
You can’t fault The North Face for their eco-efforts here. In fact, this is one of the most environmentally-friendly sleeping bags we’ve come across.
It’s made largely from recycled materials. The outer shell, for instance, is a 50D 100% recycled Polyester Ripstop, then there’s the fill which is a 100% recycled polyester shaped into tiny fibres. The North Face have also opted for a durable water repellent coating that’s completely free from any of those PFC chemicals that have been found to be harmful to the environment (and potentially to human health as well).
I’m a big fan of its long, curved zip. The idea behind it is that by curving it up and over the footbed, you can unzip your feet when you overheat and rest them comfortably on top of the bag. The tie-down loops which allow you to fix a mat to the bottom of the sleeping bag are a nice touch as well. I never really have an issue with space for my knees in a sleeping bag when my legs are bent, though I expect there’ll be people taller than me who’ll be grateful for the extra knee room you get here.