My sleeping bag test went well last night and I learned a lot. Some I will share here, some must be processed a bit more. I used no extra clothing that I would not have on a snowy bike ride. Actually I would have had a couple more items but for the sake of testing I just wore the basics minus my Driclime top or lobster mitts. Consider it Arrowhead testing I guess. All clothing items except the Pullover were actually worn on a ride yesterday so they contained any residual moisture they would have in normal conditions. No vapor barrier stuff was used in this test as I wanted a baseline before really confusing myself. No hot water bottles, heat pads or other tricks were used. Low temperature last night was -4degF at my house. I did not spend the whole night out, rather slept until somewhere after 2:30 am, satisfied that A) I was in no danger of freezing to death and B) between the negative temperatures and first time nerves I wasn't going to sleep more than 1 hour at a time the rest of the night. Knowing that I threw my stuff into the warm bedroom and concluded the test for the night. It's still below zero now and the Pugs and I are headed off to work again.
Sleep Specific Gear:
Marmot Sawtooth 15 deg bag (600 fill)
Thermarest Full Length (summer thickness)
3/4 Length Cheapo Blue Foam Pad
Montbell UL Bivy
Smartwool Lightweight Wool Top and Bottom
Smartwool Lightweight Wool socks
Golite Reed Pants
Northface Diad jacket
Patagonia Micropuff Pullover
Pearl Izumi Balaclava
My cheapish 15 Degree (F) down bag will keep me warm *enough* down to at least -5degF with my normal winter clothes
Winter camping is wet in a bivy and the corallary...
2 nights out in said bag in a bivy sack without a VB is pushing it, 3 might be very cold
I need to order a full length foam pad