Last spring I needed a new down sleeping bag, and after some research decided on the Big Agnes Pomer Hoit. I already had the synthetic Farwell, which I liked for car camping, and also allowed me to experience the unique bag/pad combo that Big Agnes uses. For those who aren’t familiar with it, here’s how it works: Instead of creating a bag with insulation all around, their bags have insulation on the top and sides, and then you use an integrated ground pad for the insulation on the bottom. The bags are designed so that the pad slides into a sleeve, which also means you can’t roll off it during the night, which is nice.
So back to the bag at hand, I got the Pomer Hoit because it’s down, which means it compresses well, and it’ll keep you warm to 0 degrees, so they say. Over the course of the last year, I’ve used it quite a bit, from car camping to big walls, and I have to say, I like it a lot, with one minor issue. First, it’s pretty light at two pounds eleven ounces, and I can get it pretty darn small in my stuff sack, which makes it a nice choice for alpine climbing or big walls. I also like how it’s held up over the year, and I haven’t noticed any wear and tear problems.
The only part of this whole Big Agnes system that I’m honestly still not sold on is the pad thing. On one hand, it’s great not to roll off your pad at night, and it makes for super comfy sleeping. I do have to say, however, that I don’t think it’s as warm as a standard bag. On a few cold nights in Indian Creek last fall, with temps in the low twenties, I could feel cold coming in the bag between the pad and the insulation on the sides. And this is supposed to be a 0 degree bag, so I imagine if it was actually that cold, it wouldn’t be comfortable.
That being said, overall I think it’s a well made product that performs adequately most of the time. I’d recommend checking out the Big Agnes system for it’s uniqueness, plus they are a local Colorado company that is constantly trying to come up with new innovations for their gear.