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Grüezi Biopod Wool Survival Sleeping Bag

The Biopod Wool Survival Sleeping Bag from Grüezi of Bavaria [© Mike Gormley]

The Biopod Wool Survival sleeping bag from Grüezi goes a long way to ensuring a comfortable night’s sleep wherever you may be, writes Mike Gormley.

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Over a good few years I have spent very many nights in sleeping bags, of various types and in very varied conditions, and I have to say this one right up there with the best I have slept in.

Biopod Wool Survival Sleeping Bag [© Grüezi]

To give this mummy-style bag from Bavarian company Grüezi its original name it is the Biopod Wolle Survival Schlafsack, which translates as Biopod Wool Survival Sleeping Bag. I have so far this year sadly not had all that many opportunities for camping but those times when I have been out the weather has been bad to atrocious; the last time particularly being one of Dartmoor’s ‘special weather’ nights! I am sure a good few readers, especially those who have spent time on the military training areas on the North Moor, will understand that one.

Drawcords are provided around the top to pull in to keep the heat in and the cold out [©MG]

To call a sleeping bag ‘feature rich’ might seem a little OTT but this one has lots of features and some that are a bit different and unusual. As the name suggests some of the insulation is made from wool, and why not as it keeps sheep warm and dry in all weathers. The wool content here is known as AlmWolle in German and is from alpine sheep. This is used in conjunction with a material made from corn starch and there is also a layer of polyester Synthdown. This all sounds quite complex but for us, the end user, I can tell you it works and works well.

Ventilation is well thought through on this bag ~ both the main zip and the toe box can be used to give lots of user control [©MG]

This particular bag model is designed for those who like to sleep under the stars so is resistant to the damp that comes with this. On the last occasion I used mine my tent was eventually overwhelmed and I had water running in. Fortunately I was also trying out an inflatable sleeping mat ~ I will review this in due course ~ but this kept me just high enough to be out of the water. This said, some of the sleeping bag did get wet but seemed not to absorb the water. This was a useful lesson as it did not become a soggy lump and I did stay warm and relatively comfortable during the stormy night. I was pleasantly surprised when I packed up in the early hours and was not faced with a heavy soggy ‘thing’ in the stuff sack. It dried out quite quickly and I am sure another night in it would have been fine.

The main zip is very well and thoughtfully designed to be very functional and non-snag [©MG]

As soon as I got to use this bag I noticed how ‘useable’ the zip is. I am sure you have been there. A jamming or sticking zip when in need of a midnight visit to a nearby bush can be a jaw-clenching experience and also a frustration when you want to get up and get going in the morning. The zip on this Grüezi bag, which has an extension tag for ease of operation, is more or less jam resistant in my experience. It is a side zip which curves around at the base so to open over the feet for better ventilation as required. It also works from the bottom as well as top so is good for controlled ventilation. The footbox area has a separated section with its own top zip. This allows for good foot mobility and means feet can be upright; a real bonus for me. This foot area has its own bug net to can be left open all night and the biting things will stay outside. This box can also work well to keep socks, gloves and tomorrow’s clothes etc. in to pre-warm overnight; bonus!

Tuck a fleece or mid-layer into the compartment at the back of the hood and you have an instant pillow [©MG]

At the top / head end you have lots of features to help you stay comfy and protected. The hood is multi-use; it’s a hood which can be drawn in around the head to keep you warm but there is ample capacity to add in a fleece or similar for added comfort as a pillow and to keep it warm for the next day. The big bonus is the included mosquito net, which packs away into the stuff sack; best to see photos of this.

The three anti-slip nubs thoughtfully placed on the base of the bag to help it stop sliding off the kip mat [©MG]

Here’s another thoughtful feature. The designers have clearly slid off their kip mats during the night; so they added three anti-slip nubs to reduce this problem. These have loops so you can also put a cord around for added security so bag and mat stay together. Talking security there are two pockets, one internal and one external, to stow items and they are large enough to keep safe and handy a phone, headtorch, wallet, keys and so on. Very useful and saves that frantic search of the tent on a dark morning looking for those small and important items.

You get two bags with this sleeping bag; a stuff / compression sack that has a separate compartment for the anti-mosquito hood and a large bag for long term storage which will also double as a kit bag. External tag loops are there to enable you to hang the bag for an airing or to dry out as necessary; much better than draping over a tent or fence.

In addition to a stuff sack this sleeping bag is supplied with a stowage bag which also makes a good kit bag to keep everything tidy when camping [©MG]
Technical details printed on the base of the stuff sack [©MG]

There’s lots about this sleeping bag that is good and much more than I have space for here. For sure this bag has been designed by people that use these things and so know what is required from experience… and it shows. UK distributors of the Grüezi range are ProAgencies.

Not the best of pictures but it shows testing under real conditions on a stormy Dartmoor [©MG]

[images © Mike Gormley unless noted]

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