Why We Still Love Recon Bags After 3 Years – Long Term Review

There’s more to these bags that what we can show or say here. Full review at http://shwat.com/recon-bag-review/

For about three years of adventures now, I’ve been waking up inside a Recon sleeping bag.

Let’s be real here – can we agree that comfort is subjective? So any reasonable sleeping bag rating system must be based on something besides the subjective feelings. Essentially, bags are often rated for some temperature at which you won’t die from cold while inside the bag. That’s hardly a projection of comfort, and a bit of an over simplification.

In my experience, a base layer is a big deal. How heavy a layer? Well now we’re back to the subjective part. So I’m not going to list a bunch of stats like, “In the Recon 3 I was perfectly comfortable at this temperature, with that humidity level, and a particular level of base layer.”

Probably the biggest thing I noticed was how small these bags are when compacted in their compression bags. I may compress mine a bit more than the official stats. My unscientific take is that the Recon 2 takes up about the same space as a volley ball, the Recon 3 a basket ball, and the Recon 4 is just a little bigger. Granted, the shape is different, but you get the idea.

The insulation used in Recon bags also allows them to stay compact. DuPont® Thermolite™ Micro insulation is flat filled so you have even warmth all around. There won’t be cold spots due to uneven spots of insulation or quilting lines. The insulation won’t compress and squeeze warm air out.

Unpacked, the bags in the Recon line are all sized the same 86.5” long, 33.5” wide at the shoulders and 21.5” at the feet. The amount of insulation, however, is what makes the warmer bags bigger and heavier. To give you an idea, the Recon 4, rated for 14°F has double the insulation of the 23°F rated Recon 3. The insulation is made a little more effective by an ultra-thin barrier of pure silver anti-bacterial micro fiber.

The bottom layer fabric (the long piece that goes on the ground or your sleeping pad) is 210D Nylon and puts a waterproof barrier between you and the ground. The topside outer shell is lighter and Teflon coated to help repel dirt. This keeps the top outer shell cleaner, which means you stay cleaner when you unzip the center line zipper. The softer inner shell is made of 210T Ripstop Nylon.

Recon bags were originally designed for military use and remain in service around the world today. As such, they are slightly oversized and benefit from an internal foot baffle. Reinforced with 210D Nylon Oxford with PU2000mm waterproof finish to limit damage from boots, the baffle allows you sleep ready to go.

But what if you’re boots are dirty? Just wash your back and hang it to dry. Easy.

Ever notice how your cell phone, flashlight or GPS battery can run out of power a whole lot faster when it’s cold? Recon bags feature an internal pocket so you can keep those things inside, warmed by you, slowing the rate at which your battery dies.

Currently, the available colors include Olive Drab, Black and Coyote Tan. From lightest to heaviest, here’s retail pricing (though shopping around can save you some money): Recon 2, $149.95; Recon 3, $189.95; Recon 4, $209.95; and the Recon 5 that I’ve not tried, $239.95. It’s rated to -4°F. That’s chilly.

Want to know more? See our full review: http://shwat.com/recon-bag-review/ and ReconBags.com.

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Comments

Eric Ocasio says:

How tall are you?

Tom Olofsson says:

Thanks for sharing your experience

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