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Description

For such a cool cat, you look pretty darn warm.

You can encounter just about any kind of weather on three-season backpacking trips, so prepare for it with The North Face Cat's Meow 20-Degree Sleeping Bag. This synthetic-fill sleeping bag packs just the right amount of ClimaShield Prism and Apex insulation to keep you warm during cool nights on the trail and stand up to years of use.
  • Overlapping shingle construction eliminates cold spots by evenly distributing the insulation
  • ClimaShield Prism’s densely packed fibers trap more heat than standard synthetics and help the insulation retain greater loft despite repeated compressions
  • ClimaShield Apex’s fine-denier fibers reflects radiant heat back to you for a warmer night sleep
  • Vaulted footbed won’t constrict your feet and helps promote circulation to your lower extremities
  • Ergonomically shaped hood provides extra comfort, improves the bag’s warmth-retention, and reduces its overall weight
  • Internal draft tube pockets keep your snacks and batteries warm and within reach
  • Compression stuff sack (included) helps you minimize the bag’s size in your pack
  • Can be zipped to any other TNF bag with an opposite zipper

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Review Summary
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11 4
8 3
0 2
1 1
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The North Face Cat's Meow Sleeping Bag: 20 Degree Synthetic

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Here's what others have to say...

If the temp is around 30 degrees, would...

Posted on

If the temp is around 30 degrees, would it be warmer sleeping with long underwear on or just in boxers? I have heard that sleeping nude or in little clothing is what the bag is designed for but I've never done it. So 30 degree weather, sleep nude or in long johns?

Responded on

Yes, you're much warmer in that bag when you're just in your boxers. I do throw some wool socks in the bottom to keep my feet warm because there was a lot of room down there.

Responded on

Ian,
Bill is right that you are going to be plenty warm with just a baselayer or boxers on in this bag and more comfortable too. I would mention that sleeping in the nude has the added advantage of discouraging friends from asking to borrow your bag.

Best Answer Responded on

Hey Ian,

I'll partially agree with Bill and MD; it's boxers, a t-shirt, and sometimes a light pair of socks for me as well. Generally works pretty good, and during summer, I do occasionally pull out a Cat's Meow of my own. Although, the sleeping naked for more warmth is a myth . The EN 13537 sleeping bag comfort ratings are based on the sleeper wearing a thin base layer (ie: long underwear) and a hat, regardless of what that fill material is. Also remember that without a layer, your sweat and oils will be absorbed directly by the lining, and eventually, the fill material. In the case of down, that's actually kind of destructive in the long run. Hope this helps.

Responded on

FYI... Bag ratings assume that you are wearing a layer. Also, Phil is correct that sleeping in the bag nude will eventually degrade the materials.

5 5

Great bag

  • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I have used this bag late fall and also early winter and it performed well from below freezing to above.

5 5

Great Bag...ignore gender marketing...

This bag was perfect for my summer/fall camping and backpacking adventures. I'm not sure why people reported getting cold. Most nights I would go to sleep with base layers on and wake up a few hours later roasting alive. The temps were in the 20s and 30s...however, I do run hot in general. I was using a sleeping pad as well.

This isn't so much a complaint as it is a head's up for other females out there: check what length of bag you need and compare prices for men's and women's! I needed a long in the women's, which is more expensive, and that same length was a regular in the men's and the same price as the regular women's. So beware! Is there a difference between the men's and women's bag? Eh, probably not much more than the colors. It's worth saving yourself the thirty or so bucks TNF is charging for the long women's bag and just getting a regular men's bag. Silly gender-based marketing.

5 5

Quality Bag

  • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I've had mine for about 2 years now and I really like it. Its a bit long for me, I'm 5'6", but that gives me room to stuff clothes for in the morning or I will turn it under giving my feet a little more padding cause I like to use a short thermarest that doesn't reach that far. Over all the craftsmanship is great, I haven't had a problem with it yet. It stuffs down to a good size in its compression sack. My only issue is that when its used without a pad or in a hammock the insulation is compressed and the bottom of the bag looses alot in the way of heat retention and I get cold. But as long as its off the ground on a pad or I have something to block the wind it keeps me warm. In my opinion, 20 is at the low end, 30 you'll be comfortable, and 40 you will be nice and toasty. I have another 20 degree bag that keeps me really warm at 20 so I'm basing this off of that. I would recommend it, its a good bag, but remember its 3 seasons.

2 5

Not a fan..

I'm not entirely sure what made this bag not work for me. I took it out on a 25-30 degree night and slept awfully. I slept on top of a Big Agnes Insulated Air Core sleeping pad inside of a tent. I wore a basic base layer and wool socks.

I was slightly cold all night and never felt warm.

Responded on

Well it might of been because you didn't have anything between you and the ground except air. If you look at the specs of the air core pad it has an R value of 0 its meant for comfort not to keep you warm. On cold nights i would suggest a foam pad underneath your pad.

Responded on

That pad has an R value of 4.1. It could of still been the bag, but regardless i didn't like this bag.

4 5

Go to for 3 seasons.

I've had my Cat's Meow for about 9 years now. It's been on countless trips in numerous time zones, spending weeks in its cramped little stuff sack, but when I take it out, each time it provides the necessary warmth and comfort that a solid sleeping bag should have. "A" for TNF on this one.
Complaint (one and only?): The velcro "pocket" by the chin, is really quite useless.
Just make sure to love your Cat's Meow (don't leave it in the stuff sack for months on end) and it'll love you right back for years to come.

4 5

Cat's Meow, no problem

  • Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

I read some bad reviews of the Cat's Meow bag and wondered if some of these people like sleeping nude in freezing temps or something?
I figure if you're going to be out at freezing or below you'd be wearing long underwear at least in your bag a night.
I used it outside to watch the Geminid meteor showers on a cot with no foam pad under, but a thin blanket. I wore jeans and a sweater inside the bag and temps were just below freezing. I also had a military goretex bivy cover over the bag. After 3 hours I got a little chilly but not much, just enough to wake me.
Next I took the bag on a winter overnighter with temps ranging from just above freezing to just below freezing. On snow in a floorless tent. This time I had the military goretex bivy with a very thin closed cell pad and a lightweight thermarest pad both inside the bivy , under the bag. I wore 2 pairs of light long underwear, tops and bottoms, plus light fleece pants and a vest. I was very warm and had no trouble sleeping. So yes this can be a mild-winter bag if you wear some clothes in the bag. If you have to sleep nude or something, get an 800 fill goretex expedition bag and a mortgage for it.

I just recently purchased this bag and Im...

Posted on

I just recently purchased this bag and Im really happy with the quality. My only concern is that I should have purchased a long. I am only 5'8" but by feet press slightly against the bottom. I guess my question for you is, is it better to have a snug bag or should I have purchased the long so I had some additional space in the footbox?

Responded on

Hmmm... I'm 5'10" and I have extra room in the footbox. The more empty space you have in your bag, the more heat will dissipate and cool you off. If you're looking to be super toasty, then you want a more fitted bag.

5 5

So warm!

For the price you can't get a better bag! The compression sack it comes with is great, and with a little bit of work it can be compressed down to the size of a volleyball.

4 5

Grrr Baby! Very Grrrr!!!

I have used mine a few times now. Enough time and experience to write a review on it. Bag is rated to 20 degrees F. I would tend to disagree. Almost all the nights I was out in this bag, it was 40 degrees or colder, with the lowest temps dipping into the teens. 40 degrees is pushing it in this bag without wearing long underwear/beanie/& wool socks. Otherwise you are going to be cold. Not like curse the Gods cold, but waking up every few hours cold. Now I do not have a super duper awesome sleeping pad yet (soon to come), but with a mediocre pad this was the case. I will update when I get a good pad. Maybe that will change things. My only other complaint is the zipper. It does stick from time to time. And the velcro at the end of the zipper can scratch you if you don't have it closed right.

On the plus side, this bag is comfy, packs down relatively small, and just plain looks cool. On warmer nights the bag is a dream. Lofts up easy from being compressed. I like it a lot. It didn't loose a star on account of being cold, but more on the zipper and not living up to it's rating. My bag was used/tested by me in the Bighorns of Wyoming, and the Black Hills of South Dakota.

If you are looking for a great summer/mild spring fall bag, buy this. Now. Hurry up. Stop reading and buy. Get out there.

Grrr Baby! Very Grrrr!!!

How will the zippers match up between the...

Posted on

How will the zippers match up between the Women's Regular and the Men's regular? I know about doing the right zip, left zip thing, but since the sizing between men's and women's bags are proportionally different, how will this affect the pairing?

Best Answer Responded on

The women's will sit a bit further down from the men's. The zippers will mate at the bottom so that will be the anchor point. The problem with mating mummy bags is that as the zipper goes up you are left with a gap anyway near the heads since they arc away from each other. It will work but will be a bit awkward.

4 5

Great bag!

For the money, one of the best bags I've seen! Not as small as a down bag, but still plenty small to fit in my 48L bag, with ease! And built with the infamous TNF quality.

Great bag!
4 5

Nice bag, but more of a 30F than a 20F.

Good quality TNF bag. Sent it back after reading (more than a few) reviews that it was more of a 30F bag than a 20F. I did not test this my self but went for the 0F snow leopard TNF bag because it would be warmer for my needs. Great bag for summer- mild fall camping. Maybe not the best if you plan on being warm on a 25F night. If you read recommended use it is rated a 3 season bag, so if that is what you need I would say its a good choice.

I just got mine today... I got it for my...

Posted on

I just got mine today... I got it for my boyfriend who is 6'3 about 185lbs. I got inside and it feels pretty good on me, 5'5 135lbs but I'm worried its not wide enough for him?? I got the long size because it said for up to 6'6 tall men. Anyone out there have this bag who is his size?

Responded on

These bags are not meant to have a bunch of room to move around in. If he is a claustrophobic sleeper, you may want to consider a squared off Big Agnes bag (requires a sleeping mat 2.5 thick as well).

4 5

Nice but zipper concerns

Very good feeling bag. Slick, lightweight, compresses to the size of a volleyball. Haven't tested outside to designed temps yet.
Only concern is my zipper seems a little finicky. It seems to stick in the closed position, and wants to hang a little on the fabric. Might just be new, time will tell.

5 5

Great Bag

I've had this bag for about a year now and used it a few times, but the first real test came a couple of weekends ago when we were hiking on the AT in NC and a cold front surprised us. We were camping at about 4700 feet so we figured that it was going to be chilly. I went to bed with some polyprop underwear, an knit hat and socks. I was sleeping on an Exped Synmat UL7 (GREAT pad by the way!). I went to sleep a little on the cold side hoping that I wasn't going to get any colder, but it did. It got a lot colder. By morning my 100 oz Camelbak was frozen solid. The thermometer read 19F. But I was comfortable. Not really toasty warm, but not cold either. I know they rate bags as more of a survival guide temperature and not really a comfort level, but I wasn't uncomfortable at all. However, my brother, who was in a brand new 20 deg rated Kelty bag and dressed similar to me, said that he woke up several times during the night from the cold. He had a miserable night. He was on a thick foam sleeping pad of some sort. So while this isn't a perfect comparison it's about as close as I can get outside of a laboratory.

I'm very happy with my bag. I think that it will keep me warm even below it's intended temp rating. It's also quite lightweight for a synthetic bag and it compresses down to a nice small size; just about the size of a slightly elongated basketball. It comes with a great compression sack as well as a nice big loose mesh storage bag.

Lesson learned from this trip: Keep your water inside your tent and maybe it won't freeze solid in 5 hours!

5 5

Light and very warm!

I found this to be one of the lighter synthetic sleeping bags on the market, but also held it's own for warmth. The bag was immediately put to good use for a four day backpacking trip. It was extremely easy to stuff and very small once in the stuff sac. My sleeping bag before was a bear to roll, stuff, and get into my pack. I have room to spare now. Also for those of you interested, it worked fabulously zipped together with another TNF cat's meow. I really loved that instead of trying to make a fancy collar to prevent cold air from entering the bag, they just reduced the size of the head opening and made it more akin to the extreme mummy bags. I always hate wresting with those silly collars and drawstring systems in the middle of the night. Zip the bag all the way up to keep out the cold or unzip the bag to let in a little fresh air. Perfect!

how small can you compress it?

Posted on

how small can you compress it?

Best Answer Responded on

it comes with a 6.5" x 21" sack, but you can north face bags super tight almost half the size of the sack, i would look into a sea to summit compression or stuff sack

5 5

Light and warm

This bag weighs close to nothing and it's super comfortable. Bag did not gather any moisture while in my tent recently on a camping trip to the Adirondacks. Rain was plentiful outside and the bag held off all moisture. Compresses as advertised. Temps got down into 50's so can't attest to the true rating but I don't see it being a problem.

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