Big Agnes Sidewinder SL 20 Review

September 9, 2023

By Nate


Are you looking for more details about the big agnes sidewinder sl 20 sleeping bag? If so, welcome to Trad Climbers. I hope that this review post will be of assistance to you.

An ideal sleeping bag for side sleepers is an essential addition to any backpacking kit, featuring more room than most lightweight models and with zippers designed to remain out of your way when turning over. Furthermore, its synthetic insulation padding provides additional support in hip and foot areas which serve as major ground contact points for side sleeping.

650-fill Down Insulation

The big agnes sidewinder sl 20 sleeping bag's 650-fill down insulation makes it highly breathable and lightweight while being exceptionally warm for its weight. Ideal for 3 season backpacking trips in spring, summer and fall weather conditions; consider pairing with an additional sleeping bag liner to increase warmth in temperatures below 20 degrees F.

The Big Agnes Sidewinder SL 20's ergonomic design makes it suitable for side sleepers. Its wide-cut spoon shape offers ample room to move around while minimising cold spots. Furthermore, its large hood can be tightened down to seal out drafts and other cold elements – it makes this sleeping pad an excellent choice for thru-hikers though not quite meeting “freezing winter” tests for use on backpacking trips through Rockies or Siberia.

Sidewinder SL 20 stands apart from most lightweight down bags in that it combines down and synthetic insulation materials for increased moisture resistance and efficiency. Filled with 650 fill power DownTek down, and enhanced with Fireline ECO–made of recycled polyester that features low denier weaving –for additional moisture management protection. This mix helps mitigate against potential down insulation losses caused by wet conditions.

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Sidewinder SL 20 has one advantage that stands out: it can be unzipped at both its footbox and hip areas for easier use by side sleepers who tend to wake up with numb feet and hips from pressure on either side of their bag. Nemo Disco models had previously dominated this market.

Jacket-style Hood

Big Agnes designed this sleeping bag specifically for side sleepers with a jacket-style hood to keep warm on cold nights and also features an insulated layer to help insulate it against temperature drop-off. Furthermore, its pillow barn keeps your head in place throughout the night – an especially welcome feature if compression caused by mummy bags causes discomfort for you; eliminating cold pillows or arm pits on cold nights!

Centered Zipper

Big Agnes designed this sleeping bag with the zipper positioned centrally, to facilitate side sleepers entering and exiting their bag more easily. Furthermore, its central placement helps distribute weight evenly throughout the sleeping bag for ultimate comfort for all types of sleepers.

Contrary to traditional lightweight down sleeping bags that rely solely on compressible down insulation, the Sidewinder SL 20 uses less compressible synthetic insulation in its hips and feet areas for additional padding and to cradle the sleeper more securely – helping prevent side sleepers from suffering numbness in their hips and feet which is common when sleeping side-on.

If you are a side sleeper, you likely know that your body only makes contact with the ground in two places: hips and shoulders. Unfortunately, many sleeping bags fail to take into account this specific requirement of side sleeping – leaving sore hips and shoulders by morning! But the Sidewinder SL was designed specifically for side sleepers; its even weight distribution helps minimise pressure points for maximum comfort during restful nights of restful rest.

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The Big Agnes Sidewinder sleep bag stands out from others due to its wide-cut spoon shape, which allows for effortless rolling and tossing without feeling cramped or restricted. Furthermore, its technical fit follows your movements during the night for added comfort and support.

The big agnes sidewinder sl 20 sleeping bag may not be the lightest on the market, but it still makes for an excellent multiday hiking and camping trip companion. Weighing 2 lbs 1 oz (regular size), its pack down size makes it simple for backpacking use; its stuff sack packs down into an easy 7.5x 8-inch size that packs down into its stuff sack easily – yet lacking pockets large enough to accommodate an inflatable camp pillow makes this an impractical choice for thru-hiking trips.


The Sidewinder SL 20 sleeping bag is an excellent choice for side sleepers looking for an enjoyable and restful night's rest on their backs. It has a centralized zipper, extra insulation in high pressure areas and technical fit to adapt as you switch sides during the night. Plus it sports an attractive jacket-style hood similar to that found on down parkas and jackets; though not the lightest specialized side sleeping bag around, this one packs down nicely into its small stuff sack for easy transport!

It also comes equipped with some great features, like an adjustable drawstring at the bottom and stuff sack with exterior loops for extra storage space. Ideal for Spring, Summer, and Fall use; heavier bags might be necessary if hiking through colder conditions.

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Another unique characteristic of this sleeping bag is its combination of down and synthetic insulation to maximize warmth in different areas. The main insulation used is water-resistant 650 fill power DownTek, while synthetic fill is added in the foot box and hip area for greater comfort. This combination allows the insulation to compress slightly without losing loft, ensuring an ideal sleeping experience.

Are You a Side Sleeper? If you know the discomfort of waking up with numb hips and feet from pressure points on the ground, lightweight down bags may not be your ideal solution. Down fills easily compress, leading to pressure on hips and feet from sleeping on hard ground surfaces; The Sidewinder SL offers relief by including layers of less compressible synthetic insulation in its footbox and hip area that cradle your body while cushioning feet and hips against hard ground surfaces.

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