XTM’s Dreamliner Merino Sleepsack is made of all Aussie merino wool. So Jon took it to the chilliest place in NSW – Kosciuszko National Park.
‘The world’s best sleeping bag liner’ and ‘100% Luxury’…
Some bold claims from Aussie company XTM about their Dreamliner Sleepsack. I thought I’d give it a run for its money on a winter expedition into Kosciuszko National Park.
Being an adventure junky can be conflicting at times. In order to get our regular nature fix, and stay safe and comfortable while doing it, we need to purchase gear. I hate purchasing new gear without putting some serious thought into what I’m buying and where it’s coming from. For me it’s important to find companies who are ideally local, stoked on adventure, make quality gear, and are sustainably and ethically focused.
Enter XTM. An Aussie company who are not only stoked on the mountains, but also boast being 100% carbon neutral, prioritise recycled or sustainable materials wherever possible, and have initiated a program to provide jackets to people who are homeless. Oh yeah, their gear must be pretty decent too – they supply the Australia Winter Olympic team with all their gloves.
So, with a winter camping trip looming, I was well chuffed to discover I’d be testing XTM’s Dreamliner Sleepsack – a merino sleeping bag liner supposedly capable of adding 7℃ of warmth to your sleeping bag.
On the drive up to Kozzie for our winter camping trip, I suddenly thought that maybe this liner was a bit heavy duty for this particular test scenario. The forecast low was about 2℃, with a little wind coming off the snowy slopes to add to the chill.
I’ve got a pretty decent goose down sleeping bag (rated at -2 for comfort), and I usually chuck a very thin silk liner in (more to help keep the bag clean than for added warmth). So I wondered if I’d be cooking that night with an extra 7° of warmth?
The simple answer is no. I was sooooo toasty warm and comfy. Let me state at this point that this was clearly not a highly scientific test… I’ve no idea what the actual temperature was that night (it was cold), or what the wind chill equated to (pretty bloody cold), or even exactly how many degrees of warmth the Dreamliner added. But hey, I was warm and comfortable winter camping in Kosciuszko National Park – that’s a win.
I think the merino wool is a clear winner for material choice here. The breathability of this wonder wool really helps regulate temperature, and I think that’s why I didn’t just overheat.
The other obvious benefits we all know and love about merino are that it’s odour resistant, flame resistant, still helps you retain warmth when wet, and is also quick drying. Oh and it’s a sustainable and renewable 100% Australian product. Boom.
The only thing I had to get used to was putting the liner back into its stuff sack. Wool’s compressible, but I’m used to stuffing down garments into bags which compress down quite easily. The liner just took a little more effort to get back into the baggie than I was used to.
Size and Weight
When I first got hold of the XTM Dreamliner, I thought, wow this thing is pretty big. Keep in mind my frame of reference is my lightweight silk liner, which is less than half the size and weighs only 150g.
The Dreamlier is designed for a completely different scenario, and provides a LOT more warmth than my other liner. It weighs in at 475g, and packs down to around 22cm long and 11cm diameter (plus it’s still squishy so will pack into a tighter space too).
The simple fact is if you’re camping in colder climates, you’ll always need heavier weight gear to keep warm, so the resulting package is actually not bad at all in return for the extra warmth it provides.
Now, if you already own a lightweight sleeping bag – one that’s rated to around 5℃ for comfort – then the Dreamliner becomes a very economical addition to your kit. It gives you a lot of flexibility – you could probably range from using just the Dreamliner as a simple sleeping sheet on hotter nights, all the way down to -2℃ degrees when combined with your existing bag. I haven’t tested this specifically, and it’s worth keeping in mind that 7℃ could be a bit optimistic, but it’s pretty neat!
Let’s face it – all this talk of temperatures, size and weight is no good if the liner isn’t comfortable. I mean, you have to sleep in it right? I’m happy to report that you can rest easy – literally.
This liner is snuggly and soft, and the odour resistant properties of the merino will ensure that a few strenuous days of adventuring won’t have you holding your nose as you crawl into bed at night.
The liner is also mummy shaped, which I found integrated with my mummy shaped bag nicely. It’s 1.8m long, so for shorter folk like myself, I could literally pull it up over my head if it got really frosty.
As I lay there feeling warm and fuzzy in my luxurious merino liner, I couldn’t help but feel even more warm and fuzzy about the fact that this is a product I’d be happy to buy, as it fits all my sustainable and ethical values for new gear.
The XTM Dreamliner Merino Sleepsack does exactly what it says on the tin. (Just kidding, it doesn’t come in a tin). It adds warmth to your bag, with all the added benefits of being 100% Australian Merino wool.
With an RRP of $149.99, it’s not the cheapest liner around. But as described, it could make a very affordable upgrade to your existing bag, saving you the cost of a new winter bag.
Jon was given this XTM sleepsack for testing and was allowed to keep it afterwards. He was allowed to say whatever the heck he liked about it in this review.