I got bored of slipping around on an Alpkit mat and eventually getting a numb bum... I also couldn't afford to buy a decent underquilt, neither do I have the expertise to make one.
What has worked wonders though, is an Exped UL down sleeping mat that I usually use for bivi camping (in small size) inside my Vango Viper 750 sleeping bag. It fits perfectly, and leaves just enough room at the end for a pillow should you want one. (I use an exped air pillow as it's amazingly comfy!)
Because it fits so well, the sleeping bag stays in one place when you turn in your sleep. (which I do often) I can definitely recommend seeing how well your mat will fit inside your sleeping bag for anyone that can't afford a decent underquilt!
Not to mention, my Exped down mat is less than 1/3 the size of my friends underquilt when packed. (although he hasn't bought a compression bag yet, so I might be retracting that statement very soon...)
Its not any cheaper than an UQ but you are in good company. Big Agnes designed their bags using the same concept.
I got my Exped mat for £40 ($63) on offer a while back, and was originally being used for bivy/tent camping; so I've found it's definitely saved me a few smackeroos in the bottom insulation department.
It's also actually really hard to find a decent UQ in this country, and the only decent ones I've seen around here are well over £100. ($158)
I must add though, I tried it with a sleeping bag that didn't have a boxed end for your feet, and as the exped mat is so thick I had absolutely no room to move them around or sleep on my back...
I was referring to Big Agnes Sleeping Bags being costly. They have no down in the bottom and opt instead for a sleeping mat sleeve.
Originally Posted by lucky5tar5
Ah, gotcha. My mistake.
I had a friend that used a big agnes in conjunction with a home made balloon bed once. Obviously, he didn't have much fun...