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Everything (really everything) you need to know about hut sleeping bags and sleeping bag ticking!

Cotton hut sleeping bags and sleeping bag ticking - Alpin Loacker

In this blog post you will answer the following questions:

1.) What is a hut sleeping bag and what is it used for?
2) What kind of sleeping bags are there?What are their characteristics and how are they cared for?

Hut sleeping bag

The hut sleeping bag

  • made of cotton
  • From silk
  • from down
  • from microfiber and microfleece
  • from (merino) wool
  • from egyptian cotton
  • for children


3.) Overview heat performance
4) Which hut sleeping bag is the right one (for me)?
5) Conclusion

1.) What is a hut sleeping bag and what is it used for?

The hut sleeping bag, also called travel sleeping bag or sleeping bag ticking is a small and lightweight sleeping bag that comes in different materials. In the Alps, it is mainly used to stay in accommodation such as mountain huts or youth hostels.

In the mountain huts, there is no bedding in the mattress dormitories. Since your own comforter cover is heavy and also takes up extra space in your luggage or backpack, it is more practical to have a hut sleeping bag with you. A hut sleeping bag should be small and light and weigh no more than 700 grams.

On the one hand, the hut sleeping bag has a hygienic function, on the other hand, it fulfills the function of keeping you warm in the sleeping bag. As contained in the name of the sleeping bag ticking, it is used as a ticking, that is, as an inner sleeping bag in the conventional sleeping bag. The decisive reason for this is the washing of the sleeping bag.

For many it is easier to wash the small sleeping bag instead of the thicker down or synthetic fiber sleeping bag. However, this is only easier at first glance, because it always depends on what material the inner sleeping bag is made of and what kind of care your traditional sleeping bag needs. Keep in mind that down sleeping bags first after 60 to 80 applications should be washed.

You can find more information about this on our blog post Care recommendations down sleeping bag, ultralight down sleeping bag.


2) Which hut sleeping bags are there and what are their characteristics?

        • Cotton hut sleeping bag
Cotton hut sleeping bag


The modest cottage sleeping bag made of cotton is the most widespread. It is easy to use and easy to clean, as cotton can be washed in a washing machine from 40 to 60 degrees. Often in the upper part there is a built-in pocket into which can be inserted a pillow on the underside.

So one lies also in the head area on the own sleeping bag. Packed together, you hold a small package in your hand, which has a packing size of about 20 by 13 cm. The price starts for example for alpine club members at about 17 euros. On average, the cotton hut sleeping bag costs 20 to 25 euros. The weight ranges from about 270 to 500 grams.

        • Silk hut sleeping bag

Silk is the luxury option among cottage sleeping bags. The animal fiber fabric has many advantages. First, it is much lighter than cotton and significantly smaller in pack size. Secondly, silk is characterized by high strength and has an insulating effect against cold and heat and is particularly pleasant on the skin. Therefore, a cottage sleeping bag made of silk is also very suitable for a tropical and hot climate. If the silk sleeping bag is to be washed, it is worth first of all to take a look at the washing instructions. One way to wash the silk sleeping bag is the gentle wash cycle at 30 °C with a special silk detergent and low spin speed. The alternative to the machine wash cycle is hand washing. You can use a conventional bile soap for this. Silk sleeping bags weigh on average 110 to 160 grams.

        • Down hut sleeping bag

First of all: I'm not talking about microfiber sleeping bags with the same insulation, because the weight is significantly higher and they are therefore unsuitable for mountain tours. The pack size is also much larger, so that we are actually talking about a conventional sleeping bag.

The cottage sleeping bag made of down has gained a lot of importance, especially during the pandemic. Due to hygienic precautions on the mountain huts, the huts own blankets can no longer be used in combination with the own brought hut sleeping bags. The blankets of the mountain huts are completely cancelled.

Down hut sleeping bag


The use of the conventional thin hut sleeping bag is no longer possible, because it insulates too little. Even in summer, it can get very cool in the mountains at night, a simple cotton or silk sleeping bag would no longer suffice. This is where the down sleeping bag comes into play. The down hut sleeping bag is much smaller than its siblings, which are used, among other things, to survive frosty temperatures outside.The down, or more precisely the feathers inside the sleeping bag, which are responsible for the pleasant warmth, are literally as light as a feather.

Despite the insulation, the sleeping bag has a relatively small pack size. In about 25 x 15 cm, depending on the model. On balmy nights, you can even spend the night outside with the sleeping bag. The comfort zone here is about 12 - 17 ° C, depending on the model. Especially with this hut sleeping bag it is recommended to buy one in cocoon form.

With other forms, you have additional material, which is not necessarily needed and only drives the weight and pack size unnecessarily up. The down sleeping bag should be aired out after each use and in no case washed too often. The exact care of the down sleeping bag you will find on our blog post Care recommendations down sleeping bag, ultralight down sleeping bag. The weight varies greatly with down sleeping bags. Keep in mind, the lighter the better. A guideline you can stick to is about 500 grams.

        • Microfiber and microfleece hut sleeping bag

This cottage sleeping bag has many positive features. It is an all-rounder and versatile. Microfiber is comfortable on the skin, either on the cooler mountain hut or in the hostel in warmer climates. In addition, microfiber has the advantage that it dries very quickly. By microfiber in cottage sleeping bags is meant mainly polyster. In rare cases Lyocell. Because microfiber is so fine, the sleeping bag can be packed tightly.

Microfiber textiles are generally very resistant to lint and easy to handle. Here it is best to wash at 30 to 40 ° C in the delicate wash with similar colors. Be sure to note what the label says. Microfiber hut sleeping bags weigh on average 190 to 450 grams and are available in stores from about 20 euros.

        • The hut sleeping bag from (merino) wool
Merino wool sleeping bag


Cottage sleeping bags made of merino wool have the advantage that they are very comfortable on the skin and temperature-regulating. In addition, materials made of merino wool need to be washed less often, because the wool is odor-inhibiting. The pack size is about the same as cottage sleeping bags made of cotton. The weight is slightly above, about 400 to 600 grams. In terms of price, however, they are significantly higher, from about 70 euros they are on sale. Depending on whether the sleeping bag is made of 100% merino wool or a blended fabric, the care instructions also differ. Therefore, be sure to read the label and, if necessary, wash by hand, or if possible, in the wool wash cycle. Wool should generally never be washed hot and always with a very low spin rate.

        • The cottage sleeping bag from Egyptian cotton

Egyptian cotton is characterized by the fact that the individual fibers are longer than in conventional cotton. Therefore, they can be spun into a thin but strong yarn. It is therefore not only more resistant than other types of cotton, but also particularly soft and shiny. The fabric is much lighter than ordinary cotton and much more durable. Exactly these properties make Egyptian cotton so interesting in the outdoor area. The cottage sleeping bag made of this textile is much lighter and weighs on average 210 to 270 grams. In stores it is available from 25 euros.

Egyptian cotton can be washed at 40 degrees in the washing machine and dried at low temperature in the dryer.

        • The cottage sleeping bag for children
Of these, there are only a few models on the market. Mainly made of cotton and polyester (microfiber hut sleeping bag) which are up to 155 cm long. Whether you choose cotton or microfiber is not only a question of the properties of these materials, but also of taste. Do you prefer a natural fiber or rather plastic?

If materiality does not play a big role, you can decide on the basis of the respective positive properties, what comes into question for you. See cotton sleeping bag and microfiber sleeping bag.

3) Overview thermal performance

This section is short and concise so that you have an idea at first glance how the individual sleeping bags insulate. In addition, reference values here are often very abstract.

As already described the hut sleeping bag from down is the warmest. The weight difference in the other models is rather small, with the cottage sleeping bag made of merino wool and microfleece providing the greatest thermal performance after the down. The benchmarks of the other models are close to each other. Insulation is not a main feature here, which is why the numbers remain theoretical and are not an essential feature. The actual thermal performance also always depends on the processing and fabric of the material.

The respective materials provide an additional heat output of:

        • Cotton: approx. + 2.9 °C
        • Silk: approx. + 5 °C
        • Down: comfort zone at approx. 12 to 17 °C
        • Microfleece: approx. + 8 °C
        • Microfiber: approx. + 3 °C
        • Merino wool: approx. + 8 °C
        • Egyptian cotton: approx. + 3.9 °C

4.) Which hut sleeping bag is the right one (for me)?

To answer this question, you should ask yourself the following questions:

Hut sleeping bag for children
  1. Where exactly do I want to spend the night ?
  2. In which climate zone is this place, respectively which temperatures and humidity prevail?
  3. Are there additional blankets on site?
  4. How much space do I have in my luggage?
  5. Do I have to cover longer distances with it?
  6. Which material do I feel comfortable with?
  7. Is ease of care a criterion for me?

Unfortunately, I cannot answer these questions, but they should help you to make your decision easier. In principle, it is advisable to always use silk, microfiber or Egyptian cotton at high temperatures and high humidity. These materials dry quickly, are comfortable on the skin and very light, which makes them a good travel companion. You can wash them easily and quickly by hand, with ordinary soap.

The down sleeping bag is recommended if you are staying in a mountain hut and there are no additional options to keep you warm. It is light, warm and suitable for longer distances and in summer nights you can even sleep outside with it. So you kill two birds with one stone. If you use the hut sleeping bag as a Sleeping Bag Ticking and you also want to be cozy and increase the thermal insulation, it is advisable to use a sleeping bag made of merino wool or fleece. If the reasons are purely hygienic, it is sufficient to use a sleeping bag made of cotton or microfiber. Depending on which material is more pleasant for you personally. In principle, you can also resort to silk if you want to save weight and space in your luggage.

5.) Conclusion

As you can see, there are very different possibilities and combinations for a Hut sleeping bag to use. It is not only a question of functionality and price, but also personal preference. If you are still unsure, you can always turn to the respective customer service where you want to buy a sleeping bag.


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