Thursday, 6 January 2011

Exped Waterproof Shrink Bag

Exped Waterproof Shrink Bag 22l

I've been using Sea2Summit Ultrasil roll top bags for a while now without any problems but I don't have one big enough to hold my Golite Adrenaline 0°f which is a pretty bulky sleeping bag. I checked the sizes available in S2S Ultrasil roll tops, reckoned on needing a 20l so I called at a local outdoors shop to get one. It turned out they didn't have any but they did have a good range of Exped roll top bags which I've used in the past. The guy showed me a 20l normal Roll Top but then showed me a 22l Exped Waterproof Shrink Bag.

The Shrink Bag is shorter but wider than a regular drybag, it opens along the long side rather than the top but it also has a 'purge valve' which when opened once the bag is rolled shut allows you to squeeze the air out. It fits really well into the bottom of my winter pack as it fills the corners of the pack with no wasted space but because it opens up so well it's really easy to pack sleeping bags, down gear etc as they don't need to be stuffed through a small opening.

Purge Valve

Wide Opening, Easy Packing

Rolled Prior to Purging Air


Obviously there are disadvantages, the longer opening may be less waterproof, there's always a small risk that the valve could open and there's the extra weight. The Shrink Bag in 22l weighs 170g against a 20l Sea 2 Summit Ultrasil Roll Top at 50g. I wouldn't use one for my summer down gear but when taken as a percentage of my total winter pack weight I don't mind.

Exped have a video showing the Shrink Bags in use, they're available in 3 sizes, 22l/Extra Small, 42l/Small and 95l Medium.

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