Some frigid temperatures on recent hunts left me wanting to find a really good winter sleeping bag which prompted this Feathered Friends Ibis review. When it’s really cold out and you want to keep hunting, hiking or backpacking, having the right sleeping bag is not only critical, but can keep you in the field and make it enjoyable rather than a miserable experience. While many may shy away from spending nights in a tent when temperatures drop well below freezing, having the right equipment, can make the trip manageable, even quite enjoyable.
I was able to test out this Feathered Friends Ibis EX 0 Sleeping Bag on multiple trips over this last winter and was once again super impressed with the quality, performance, and warmth of these Feathered Friends sleeping bags.
The Feathered Friends Ibis is the larger cousin of the incredibly popular Feathered Friends Snowbunting 0F, with the Ibis giving you a little extra room to move. Even though the Snowbunting is extremely popular, the folks at Feathered Friends will tell you that it’s not uncommon for users to find it a bit on the snug side, and wish they had given this Ibis a closer look. The comparison in size is the same one I’d make between the Lark 10F and Raven 10F bags (see our in-depth review of those bags here).
Feathered Friends Ibis Specs
The Feathered Friends Ibis Sleeping Bag is one of the more impressive winter sleeping bags you are going to find in the specs department, particularly for the warmth you get. Coming in at just 3 lb 1 oz for this 0 degree sleeping bag (with a 0 degree COMFORT rating-more on that below), you’ll be kept super warm in a lightweight package.
Here are some of the other specs for the Feathered Friends Ibis EX 0 Sleeping Bag:
The Sizing: Feathered Friends Ibis Review
The Feathered Friends Ibis Sleeping bag is the larger cousin of the Snowbunting, and it’s just cut wider for bigger folks or for those that want plenty of space to move around or to layer while using it. With that said, I didn’t find it to be oversized at all. I would describe it as a comfortably roomy mummy bag, but not too large to be inefficient. There is enough room to move around comfortably, but it’s still pretty snug.
You don’t want extra unused space in a sleeping bag that creates dead air that your body has to heat, so minimizing unused space while maintaining comfort is the trick, but ultimately it comes down to personal preference. If you can handle a true mummy bag, they are the most efficient, but can be extremely restrictive. I personally can’t do a mummy bag, so the Snowbunting wouldn’t be as comfortable for me. Personally, I found this Ibis to be the perfect blend. It’s not too big, but not so small that it restricts movement.
The Weight: Feathered Friends Ibis Review
When it comes to a cold weather sleeping bag, weight is less of a concern to me than when I am considering a sleeping bag or quilt for early season adventures. I’m simply not willing to compromise being warm for saving a few ounces when dealing with temperatures that drop below mid teens. The beauty of the Feathered Friends Ibis sleeping bag is that you don’t have to compromise the weight.
At just 3 lb 1 oz for the 0 degree sleeping bag with a COMFORT rating of 0 degrees, I can stay extremely warm AND keep the weight to a minimum. As with any cold weather gear, it gets bulkier the warmer it gets, but the Feathered Friends Ibis compresses down well beyond the 17L packed size that is stated on the Feathered Friends website. It will still take up a bit of space if you backpack, but it’s very manageable.
I was able to easily fit the Ibis sleeping bag, along with my Seek Outside Cimarron Tent and one of the Seek Outside SXL Titanium Stoves in my Initial Ascent IA4K backpack without any trouble at all. Sure, bringing cold weather gear for temps dropping to the single digits over night fills up a 4k pack, but it was very doable. Man, what a game changer it is to have hot tent like the Seek Outside Cimarron! If you haven’t yet, check it out!
Warmth: Feathered Friends Ibis Review
Testing for warmth was one of the most critical tests conducted during this Feathered Friends Ibis review. This is where the best sleeping bags are separated from just okay sleeping bags. As was the case with the 10F Feathered Friends Raven that I tested last year, I found the Ibis to be WARM. Feathered Friends does their sleeping bag ratings a little different than most companies out there in that the advertised rating is the comfort rating, not the lower limit or extreme rating that most advertise. Because of this, and my testing confirmed, when this bag says it’s a 0 degree bag, you’ll actually be comfortable at 0 degrees.
In a world of sometimes confusing ratings in the sleeping bag arena, this is a very welcomed rating system. What is advertised is what you get. No decoding if the advertised rating will barely keep you alive or if you’ll need to curl up in the fetal position all night to avoid hypothermia. It’s simple, straight forward, and most of all, accurate.
During my field testing for this Feathered Friends Ibis review, we hit overnight temperatures that dove into the low single digits, but this bag kept me toasty warm. I certainly wasn’t surprised by this based on my previous experience with other Feathered Friends sleeping bags.
Of course, as with any sleep system, you’ll need to make sure you use a good, high R-Value pad appropriate for the temps you will be in. Your pad’s R-Value can be a determining factor in whether or not you stay warm. While testing this Alpine bag, I was using the Sea to Summit Ether Light XT Extreme with an R-Value of 6.2, which was plenty warm enough for the conditions I was in.
Build quality: Feathered Friends Ibis Review
When you buy a Feathered Friends sleeping bag, you know you are going to get incredible quality with a ton of attention to detail. The Ibis is certainly no different as the zippers are #5 YKK zippers, and the draft collar is well designed so it does not snag when zipping it up. The act of zipping up the bag causes the draft collar to curl under and move out of the way, while still perfectly sealing out drafts.
Drawstring & Hood: Feathered Friends Ibis Sleeping Bag Review
The draw strings that the Feathered Friends Ibis uses are extremely well made and very durable. They are well placed and give you independent control of both the draft collar and the hood. This can be especially nice as it allows you to adjust the draft seal around your neck as well as how tight the fit is around your face. Both draw cords utilize a push button style clasp to make it easy to use the draw cord in the dark and easy to find when you need to loosen it up to get out of the bag.
The Feathered Friends Ibis sleeping bag also features super plush draft collar to seal out any frigid air. I’ve tested many, many sleeping bags and the draft collar that Feathered Friends features is probably my favorite. Not only do you get an independent draw string for the draft collar, but it also buttons together on the interior to ensure drafts don’t sneak in.
When you unzip the bag, you can see just how robust this draft collar is. It is inviting, extremely comfortable, and perfectly effective in sealing out the frigid air.
The combination of the draft collar snaps, highly effective draw strings, overstuffed draft collar, and 3D hood make for the perfect combination of warmth, comfort, and effectiveness against cold air.
Down/Materials: Feathered Friends Ibis Sleeping Bag Review
Just as you’d expect, the Feathered Friends Ibis sleeping bag is built with nothing but the best materials. 900+ fill goose down that is covered and protected by the waterproof and breathable Pertex Shield ensures that the precious down keeping you warm doesn’t get wet. Combine that with the super soft Perfex Taffeta that is crazy soft and comfortable and the no snag YKK zipper and this Ibis sleeping bag is simply built to handle extreme weather.
The Pertex Shield EX that is used as the exterior fabric is unique in that it is waterproof and windproof, unlike most other sleeping bags that feature a water resistant shell. Pertex Shield EX features a built in membrane as well as a DWR treatment to further prevent rain or snow from entering your sleeping bag. Because of this, it feels much more robust to the touch. It is quite different than that Pertex Taffeta used for the interior lining. Then again, I’d certainly rather have the exterior material be the tougher, waterproof material than trying to mitigate moisture once it’s entered your sleeping bag.
You might ask, “Why don’t you just put a water repellent down in the bag and go with a softer, lighter exterior fabric?” I actually asked them that question and they indicated that in their research, the application of a water repellent agent to the down shortens the life of the down, so they opted to protect the down using the Pertex Shield rather than treating the down. It was refreshing to hear that the reason the company made a certain decision about the build of their product was to extend the life and use of the product.
Footbox: Feathered Friends Ibis Sleeping Bag Review
The Feathered Friends Ibis Sleeping Bag features an oversized footbox designed to give your feet the space needed so your feet don’t push against the down, causing a cold spot. I found the footbox to be extremely comfortable, providing plenty of warmth. Like the rest of the Ibis sleeping bag, the footbox features horizontal baffles. The footbox of the Ibis seems to have some additional down as the footbox was extra lofty and extremely warm.
What I Liked: Feathered Friends Ibis Sleeping Bag Review
When it’s cold, you need a good sleeping bag. It’s just that simple. Most of us have probably over estimated the warmth of our sleeping bag and spend a few cold nights on the mountain, or more likely, we’ve take the advertised rating of our sleeping bag at face value and then found out the hard way that the rating wasn’t the “comfort” rating. That’s one of the things I love about Feathered Friends sleeping bags. Their rating system is straight forward and conservative.
A few other things that really stood out as exceptional about the Ibis sleeping bag were:
- Weight (for its warmth)
- Hood & robust draft collar
- No snag zipper
- Over-stuffed footbox
- Pertex Shield EX shell material
- Incredible warmth
What I Didn’t Like: Feathered Friends Ibis Sleeping Bag Review
It’s not often that we do reviews and have a hard time coming up with things we didn’t like about a product we test, but the Feathered Friends Ibis was one of those products. Really the only complaint I had was that occasionally the draft collar button would unintentionally come unsnapped. A little more robust button would easily solve that.
Also, the stuffed size of 17L is pretty large, but that is not a compressed size. If you put this in a compression sack, you can get that down a whole lot smaller. I do with it came with a compression sack as well to aid in making space in your backpack. So my only real “complaints” about the Ibis sleeping bag are:
- No compression sack included
- Large stuffed size
- Button came unsnapped occasionally
How to Store a Down Sleeping Bag
When it comes to long term storage, 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 off season, 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 in a closet
- Lay under your bed
- Store in the storage sack provided (shown above)
Hanging a down bag is my first choice, but not everyone has the space for 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 a bed. This allows the down to be fully lofted. Finally, storing it 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.
Picking the Right Sleeping Pad
Selecting the right sleeping pad is even more critical when camping in extremely cold temperatures, so make sure you get one that’s warm enough. A good high R-Value pad like this Sea to Summit Ether Lite XT Extreme, with a 6.2 R-Value will add a few degrees of warmth to most sleeping bags and allow maximize your bag.
Using a higher R-Value pad will ensure that you are getting everything possible out of your sleeping bag and is worth the few extra ounces if temperatures may be pushing towards the lower limit of your sleeping bag.
Check out our sleeping pad reviews for some great options!
Need a different temperature rating sleeping bag? Check out some of our other sleeping bag reviews!
My ratings for the Feathered Friends Ibis Sleeping Bag
Conclusion: Feathered Friends Ibis Sleeping Bag Review
So, after doing this Feathered Friends Ibis Sleeping Bag review would I recommend the Ibis Sleeping Bag? If you are looking for an insanely warm, high quality winter sleeping bag with all the bells and whistles, but one that is still extremely lightweight (relative to its warmth), then the answer is ABSOLUTELY YES! However, unless you need the warmth this Ibis sleeping bag offers, you will find yourself taking up a lot of space in your pack and overheating in this bag.
I found the best use of the Ibis bag to be when temperatures dipped below 25 degrees, but it really shined once temperatures dropped below 10 degrees. This thing is an incredible sleeping bag made for extremely cold weather. Don’t buy it hoping to use it when it’s in the 40s or above or you’ll end up overheating. If I need a cold weather sleeping bag, this one is most definitely at the top of my list my go to for winter hunting and backpackinng trips.
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