Monday, 27 July 2015 12:29

Nordisk Oscar +5 sleeping bag tested and reviewed Featured

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Nordisk have gained a strong reputation in the UK over the last few years with a string of lightweight and ultra-lightweight tents. The Oscar sleeping bag follows very much in the same mould as their tents and shelters, combining cutting edge materials with Scandinavian build quality to produce a +5° rated sleeping bag weighing just 500g.

The Oscar is rated as a 3 season bag, and amongst the lightest on the market, with an extreme rating of -6° and a comfort rating of +10°C. Made using an ultra-fine 7 denier rip stop nylon and an ECO friendly 100% recycled synthetic filling made of used PET bootles the bag is not only lightweight and compressible but uses minimal new resources for a more environmental footprint. The weight and use of recycled materials, however, are only the begining of what makes the Oscar unique. Unlike the vast majority of sleeping bags the zip on the Oscar lies straight down the middle on the front of the bag and comes with both an integrated stuff sack and an additional compression sack.

In use the Oscar is possibly under-rated at +5 and with just a base layer on provided enough warmth down to +2 in the Peak District. The Thermo Dry ECO insulation also has the advantage of providing insulation without requiring a large loft volume, making it particularly suited for use with a bivvie bagwithout the problems of condensation which can affect high loft down bags. Adjusting to a central zip takes a bit of getting used to but being a "side-sleeper" it definitely has its advantages once you've got the hang of it. The Oscar is also quite a large bag despite its minimal weight, with a full length of 215cm and shoulder width of 75cm. The combination of the shoulder width and central zip makes getting in and out of the Oscar possibly the easiest of any 3 season bag we've ever tried. The additional shoulder space also gives you more flexibility in adding extra layers if the weather takes a turn for the worse. With a synthetic fill the Oscar will retain the majority of its insulating abilities even when wet and to add to the warmth Nordisk have added extra insulation in the foot box. In practice you're unlikely to notice the additional foot box insulation unless you're over 5ft 9 as the Oscar is long as well as having a generous shoulder width, but in use the level of insulation is pretty uniform throughout with no noticeable cold spots when used on a 3 season inflatable mat.

Using the integrated stuff sack the Oscar will pack down to roughly 20 x 12 cm, with a few square centimetres available in your pack if you choose to use the seperate compression pack but we'd question whether it's worth it for the additional weight of an extra bag, straps and buckles. Packed in just the stuff sack the Oscar can be pushed into corners to fill dead space in the same way as a down bag and if you're the gram counting user attracted to a 500g bag we'd venture that those extra grams of compression sack are exactly what users are trying to lose in choosing the bag.

At 500g, well 502 on our scales, the Oscar is undeniably a lightweight bag and it looks and feels lightweight. Appearances can be very deceptive, however, and despite its apparent flimsiness we found the Oscar to be a solid performe from just above zero into the mid 20s. The central zip, although only half length, gives good ventilation options as the temperature starts to rise. The comparative lack of loft unrolled makes the bag a natural choice where contact with an outer shell will lead to condensation and at £190 it's actually very reasonably priced given its cutting edge technology. For the backpacker and multi-day trekker the Oscar will save bulk in your pack, save weight and has the flexibility to perform across a full 3 seasons.


  • extremely light weight - 500 g.
  • ultra small pack size 12 x 16 cm
  • packs into integrated smart packsack
  • including external compression bag
  • including mesh storage bag
  • ultra fine 7D nylon Rip Stop fabric – weighing only 20 gsm
  • high performance Thermo Dry Eco insulation.
  • filling is made from 100% recycled postconsumer bottles.
  • light weight YKK #3 center 2-way zipper.
  • hood draw cord operated from inside bag for easy handling.
  • increased insulation at foot box for heat retention.
  • ergonomic trapezoidal foot box construction.
  • cold spots reduced through optimized construction


Last modified on Sunday, 23 October 2016 11:44

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