I bought my GoLite Ultralite 800 Fill 1+ season quilt in March 2011 for shoulder season and summer backpacking and camping. I’ve used it since then for backpacking, hammock camping, car camping, and various other odd nights out away from home.
I never thought I’d be able to afford an 800 fill down sleeping bag and at first I was skeptical about having a quilt instead of a traditional bag. However, the light weight – just 1 lb 3 oz, tiny compressed size and excellent price $149.00 (October 2012), convinced me to give it a try. I am so glad I did.
In use it has proved to be very warm when it needs to be, and in the hotter weather it’s easy to just leave off the holding tapes (more about those in a moment) and pull it on in the middle of the night when I need it.
The quilt comes with two holding tapes which pass through loops on the side of the bag and go under your sleeping pad holding the sides down and keeping the quilt in place if you toss and turn. The tapes appeared rather flimsy, but in practice are just right for the job, and hold the quilt firmly in place on my sleeping pad.
The quality of manufacturing is excellent with no loose threads, and minimal loss of down. The breathable, waterproof coverings at the neck and feet do their job well. GoLite pride themselves on incorporating recycled materials where practical, though I can’t find a mention of the recycled content on the current bag – that may have changed since I bought mine.
For colder weather there’s a drawstring and fastener at the neck to keep out draughts and the foot box completely wraps around your feet keeping them cozy. I use the quilt with a Sea to Summit sleeping bag liner which adds another 2°-5° to its useful temperature range, which is quoted as 40°F.
The quilt came with a cotton storage sack and waterproof stuff sack. The stuff sack is well made and so small I’ve never bothered to try and compress the quilt further using a compression sack.
If weight isn’t a worry, or you only car camp, then save your money, this quilt isn’t for you. But for backpacking at this price and temperature range it is going to be hard to beat this quilt. Highly recommended.
Update after ten years’ use – December 2022
This quilt remains my go to quilt for anytime the temps are mid-thirties and up. I’ve often heard it quoted that you never regret investing in good shelter and sleep systems. I can only agree. This has proved to be a work-horse quilt on more trips than I can remember. It is still in great condition, and accidents or major technological innovations aside I have no plans to replace it.
Update after more use – May 2013
I love it and I’d still buy another tomorrow. It is lasting well with no obvious damage or wear. The loft is still great, and the down stays in place with no cold patches – a problem I noticed with Ginger’s 32° Montbell Super spiral bag. I should say that we are fairly easy on our gear even though we use it a lot. I’ve kept the quilt uncompressed in the Go-Lite supplied storage bag when not in use on the trail.
I’m a warm sleeper, with my NeoAir pad and my Sea to Summit liner I’ve spent a cozy night down to 34°F.
The tapes aren’t long enough to go around my 25″ wide sleeping pad, but that’s a minor point – I doubt the designers expected anyone to be going ultra light with such a wide sleeping pad. If necessary I can improvise something with the spare paracord I carry.
I’m fairly confident that wearing a base layer I could use this down to 32°F on a windless night. I need more opportunities to test it out. Unfortunately I don’t think I’m going to be seeing lower temperatures again until the fall.