Method to get in Sleeping bag
I just finished some more experimenting while we have some warm weather for a change. I know most folks have switched to top quilts and such, or just using mummy style bags as quilts. But if there are any using a bag as a quilt and you approach the temp rating or you're exhausted and wet or both, the time may come when you need to get in that bag mummy style and zip up and cinch down the draft collar and hood. I remain convinced that this way of using a mummy bag, though a last resort, can easily add 15 to 25* to the warmth capability of any given bag. 2" to 4" of loft surrounding your head and neck while also sealing of drafts around the shoulders can add tremendously to warmth.
But first let me say getting in a bag with a HH is zero problem if you use the technique of simply sitting in the bottom entry, put ypur feet/knees/thighs in the bag, stand up and pull the hood up over your head and zip partly up, then sit back down and pull your feet up. You're done, and you're warm and it was quick and easy, assuming bottom insulation is taken care of. If this had only occured to me on my Wind River trip last Sept ( 23*), I would have saved endless thrashing only to give up and sleep cold using the bag quilt style. And saved me my initial bad impression of the HH SS. I might not have slept toasty, but I don't think I would have woke up shivering having to abandon the hammock the first night I used it. That was such a dusappointment! But the thing is, some might object to putting the foot of their down bag on the ground and standing on it. So then you have to use a ground cloth or pad, and I can just see the wind trying to blow that away.
So, as to the long running problem of getting in a mummy bag inside a HH, for those who insist on using this type of bag,here is what seems to be working for me, making it much easier ( with a little practice). I have been experimenting with my most difficult bag, a right zip mummy, a 15* rated NF Endurance, the bag I struggled with in the Wind Rivers.
1:I lay down in the hammock and pull the bag up beside my left side (rt zip bag) unzipped. I put my feet in and arrange the bag top over me quilt style, and put the hood loosley over my head.
2:then as I keep the bag in postion on top of me, I roll over either to my rt side or roll rt. almost to my stomach. This make it pretty easy to get the right top zipper side of the bag to stay where it belongs, to my right side. As I do this, the back side ( normal down side) of the bag automaticly falls in place on my back. With just a little more maneuvering I can pull the right (normally) down/ground side zipper well under my right side to meeet the upside(front side) zipper.
3: roll over on my back, zip up and cinch down and get warm. All of this now takes me maybe a minute or two and very little effort. As opposed to a time when I could not pull it off with 15 or more minutes of all out struggle. And all of this is easier with my slightly larger 5* left zip bag.
Quick summary: reverse normal procedure, and get in your bag after rolling over on your side or stomach! It's much easier (to me) to get in this type bag if only a very small amount of bag is under your side, rather than a large amount of bag trapped under your back in the wrong position. It might be even easier if you roll to your stomach after the bag top is in position, and then just roll back over onto the bottom of the bag which is now automaticly in proper position against your back with hood over your head.
Those who don't have quilts yet, try it out. You might like it.