If you are looking for one of the highest quality sleeping bags on the market, look no further than the Feathered Friends Raven 10. Feathered Friends sleeping bags are some of the best down sleeping bags out there, and during our testing to put together this Feathered Friends Raven review, the Raven UL 10 excelled in every area. While the price tag is high, you truly get what you pay for in one of the best down sleeping bags on the market. In fact, this Raven UL 10 sleeping bag was so impressive, it earned our “Backwoods Best Sleeping Bag” award for 2020. See why below.
Make sure you know what that temperature rating means before you buy a bag. We discuss how the “EN Ratings” are determined for sleeping bags in our Basics of Selecting a Sleeping Bag article. Don’t get caught out there with a bag that you thought was rated for a much lower temperature than it really is.
Maybe the Raven UL 10 isn’t quite what you are looking for. Check out our Lightweight Sleeping Bag Reviews for some others we’ve tested.
Feathered Friends Sleeping Bag Naming Convention
Feathered Friends names their bags in a way I found a little confusing at first being that they offer such a wide variety of sleeping bags. Rather than offer a Raven UL 10 Wide or Raven UL 10 Regular, the name of the bag represents the size. Each bag is cleverly named after a bird, and the size is tied to the name. For instance, this Raven UL 10 is the wider version of the Lark UL 10 (each offered in both a regular and long version).
Additionally, each of these bags and many others in their lineup, are offered in both a UL fabric and a YF fabric so you have:
- Lark YF
- Lark UL
- Raven YF
- Raven UL
We’ll go into more detail on what makes them different later in this Feathered Friends Raven review, but basically the UL versions are a little bit lighter, but not quite as soft, and the UL versions are about $80 more than the YF versions.
Feathered Friends Raven UL 10 Specs
The Feathered Friends Raven isn’t the lightest weight sleeping bag we’ve tested. That distinction goes to the Sea to Summit Spark. However, the Raven UL 10 is more feature-rich as it’s not a minimalist style bag. This bag is a Cadillac of sleeping bags. You won’t want to leave your bag in the morning once you are in it. Here are the Feathered Friends Raven UL 10 specs:
- Total weight: 34.6oz
- Fill weight: 23.4
- Measurements: 64” / 58” / 40”
- Down: 950 fill goose down
- Shell material: 10D Pertex® Endurance UL
- Liner material: Flite 15 denier ripstop nylon
- Packed size: 11L
- #5 YKK locking no-snag zipper
Feathered Friends Sleeping Bag Down Selection
When you buy a Feathered Friends sleeping bag, you might have wondered why they don’t use a treated down like DownTech or others. Well, the Folks at Feathered Friends did their homework and decided to go with a water resistant shell rather than a water resistant down treatment. They found that the water resistant treatment reduced the life span of the down and made the down more susceptible to clumping. Untreated down lasts longer and doesn’t clump together, which causes cold spots more frequently, so they elected to go that route. I can say, after trying theirs and ones with treated down, I could tell a difference. The Feathered Friends sleeping bag had better loft.
Feathered Friends Raven Review: Zippers
Testing this bag for this Feathered Friends Raven review revealed a unique zipper design on these Feathered Friends sleeping bags. It’s what they call their “overlapping, dual webbing zip guard.” Paired with their massive draft collar, it really does a fantastic job of sealing out any potential drafts. I did find that the zipper function was a bit tougher than some I’ve used, but that’s a product of the no-snag design of the #5 YKK zipper. I’ll take that trade off every day of the week to make sure the zipper stays in place and doesn’t snag on the material.
Feathered Friends Raven vs Lark Fit
Given that the Raven and Lark are essentially the exact same bag, just sized differently, you might wonder which one would be the best fit for you. For reference, I’m 42 inches at the shoulders, and when my arms loosely hang down at my waist, the measurement is 52 inches. Feathers Friends recommends taking the measurement and adding approximately 10 inches in girth to the bag you select for optimal thermal efficiency. Here’s the difference between the two:
Raven UL 10
- Shoulder girth: 64”
- Hip girth: 58”
- Footbox: 40”
Lark UL 10
- Shoulder girth: 60”
- Hip girth: 56”
- Footbox: 38”
As you can see, the Raven gives you an additional 4 inches in the shoulders and 2 additional inches in the hips and footbox. It’s not a lot but it does make a difference. Being that I’m squarely between the two in sizing at 52 inches around my hanging arms, I decided to go with the Raven because I’m an active sleeper. If I wasn’t I probably would have gone with the Lark. The Lark would be a bit more efficient, but would be more likely to compress the down while moving around, causing cold spots.
Feathered Friends Raven Review: Hood / Draft Collar
As you can see, if the need arises you can really cinch down the hood and seal out all drafts. Of course, you can close off the hood only as much as you need it, but it gives you the ability to effectively work in the situation you’d face using this bag.
I really like the two different draw cords; one for the outside portion of the hood and one to cinch down the massive draft collar. The inner draft collar cord is an elastic cord to add comfort while the outer draw cord is a para-cord. They are both easy to use and intuitive while it’s dark if you need to make an adjustment as temps drive over the course of the night.
Feathered Friends Raven UL 10 Draft collars
As I mentioned above, the draft collars on the Feathered Friends Raven and Lark sleeping bags are second to none to ones I’ve tested. They are absolutely massive and feature an interior button so you can button upper and lower sections together before you use the elastic draw cord to seal out cold air around your neck.
Feathered Friends Raven Review: Footbox
The footbox on the Feathered Friends Raven UL 10 is trapezoidal in shape, offering your feet more room so you don’t compress any down, causing cold feet. With a shoe size of 11.5, I found this footbox to be very comfortable giving me plenty of room.
Feathered Friends Raven Review: UL 10 Material
As mentioned earlier, the Feathered Friends Raven 10 comes in both a UL fabric and a YF fabric. The UL fabric is a Pertex Endurance 15D shell fabric that is water resistant. 15D certainly isn’t the lightest fabric in bags I’ve tested (some have been as low as 7D), but it offers more durability and better water resistance because of that. This goes along with Feathered Friends’ sleeping bag philosophy of keeping the down untreated and protected by the shell fabric.
The YF model, features the Pertex Y-Fuse fabric as the shell fabric and a 20D Nylon Taffeta on the liner of the bag. It is a bit softer to the touch than the UL Pertex Endurance UL and more durable since it’s 20D rather than 15D. It also offers better down proofing and is more water resistant due to its Y-shaped filaments. Best of all, it is easier on the pocket book. Both are DWR treated. The Raven UL model will save you roughly two ounces, but cost you an additional $80. Both are awesome, so it comes down to what matters most to you.
Feathered Friends Raven Review: What I liked
Feathered Friends Raven Review: The Hood
There was SO MUCH to love about this Feathered Friends Raven UL 10 sleeping bag. You get an incredible 3D hood that is stuffed with high quality 950+ fill down. I love the shape and functionality and the well placed draw strings that effectively seal out drafts.
Feathered Friends Raven 10 Draft Collars
The draft collars on the Raven and Lark bags are absolutely amazing. As you can see in the pictures, they are so plush you seriously don’t want to leave your bag. The elastic draw string cinches around your neck and shoulders to keep all the warm air in the bag where it needs to be.
Feathered Friends Raven 10 Down
I don’t know, but there is just something different with this 950 fill down than any other bag I’ve tried. It’s as though every plume of down just reaches out and nestles around your body to comfort you at night. I’ve used a number of 950 fill down bags and quilts, and this one was just different.
Raven UL 10 Overlapping Zipper Design
Another thing that I love about the Raven UL 10 sleeping bag was the overlapping zipper design. No snags, no drafts, and easy to use.
Feathered Friends Raven Review: What I didn’t Like
Raven UL 10 Fabric
While there is a ton to love about the Raven UL 10, there are a couple of things that I don’t care for. I found the Pertex Endurance UL fabric to be a little bit slick, causing me to slide a bit more on my pad than the Pertex YFuse fabric. While not a huge deal, it can be frustrating sliding on your pad if your camp spot is on an incline
Raven 10 Draft Collar Button
If I moved around too much, I also found that the draft collar button had a tendency to unsnap on occasion. This is a small thing (I’m being REALLY nit-picky here) but a button that holds a bit tighter would be an improvement to me.
Raven 10 Zipper
While I love the no snag #5 YKK zipper on the Feathered Friends Raven 10, it operates with a little more difficultly than other zippers, but it’s a price I’ll pay none-the-less because of the no-snag feature.
Raven UL 10 Weight/Compactness
Finally, the Feathered Friends Raven UL 10 is a bit heavier and not quite as compact as other bags I’ve tested with a similar temperature rating. As noted above, you get a TON of features and a Cadillac of a bag, but it comes at a bit heavier weight and doesn’t compress down quite as much. At 34.6oz, you can certainly find a lighter weight bag, but you’d be harder pressed to find a better quality, more comfortable bag.
I’m more than happy to carry a little extra weight to ensure a good night’s sleep, but in some cases I elect for the lighter weight and go with a different bag to shave some weight. Even so, 2lbs is very light weight for an incredible 10 degree bag that performs down to its temp rating.
Feathered Friends Raven Price Point
Purchasing the Raven UL 10 or Lark 10 is one of those situations where you’d better be able to “buy once, cry once.” These bags aren’t cheap. You’ve got to shell out some coin to add a Feathered Friends sleeping bag to your kit. It’s absolutely worth it, but doesn’t negate the fact that they are spendy.
See how the Raven and Lark Compare
How to Store a Down Sleeping Bag
It’s easy to get home from your final adventure of the season, unload your gear, and throw it all in a storage bin for the winter, but make sure you properly store your down sleeping bag, as well as your insulated sleeping pad. Don’t leave that high quality sleeping bag in its stuff sack long-term as it could reduce the effectiveness of the down. Down needs to be lofted not compressed when stored, and should be stored indoors if at all possible.
Here are a couple of storage options to keep your down sleeping bag at its peak performance:
- Hang it in a closet
- Lay it out under your bed
- Keep it in the storage sack provided (shown above)
Hanging your down bag is my first choice, but not everyone has the space for doing that. Most bags come with sewn in loops to stick on a hanger. Second to that, I prefer to store the bag lying flat under my bed. This allows the down to be fully lofted. Finally, storing your bag in the provided storage sack is perfectly acceptable as well. The down is slightly compressed in those storage sacks, but nothing that will cause any damage to the down in your bag.
My ratings for the Feathered Friends Raven UL 10
Feathered Friends Raven Review Conclusion
Bottom line after doing this Feathered Friends Raven review: If you are looking for one of the highest quality, highest performing bags out there, you need to take a look at the Feathered Friends Raven UL 10, or any other Feathered Friends sleeping bag for that matter. The Feathered Friends Raven 10 and the Lark 10 is our pick for Backwoods Best Sleeping Bag in 2020. I loved the Sea to Summit Spark as well for my ultralight bag, and the Outdoor Vitals Summit is a very nice bag that is about half the cost, but at the end of the day, I’d grab the Raven 10 or the Lark 10 unless I need ultralight.
Don’t take my word for it though, go check them out for yourself and see what you think. Leave us a comment below on sleeping bags you’ve tried that you love.
Subscribe to Backwoods Pursuit to get our FREE Backcountry Gear Worksheet!!!
Dial in your gear list, calculate your pack weight, and lighten up your pack with this handy tool!