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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I, for some reason, have decided that I need to go bike packing with my kids this summer. I have a smattering of backpacking gear that I can bring along. I have a bike with front panniers, handlebar bag and grabbed some anything cages for carrying more gear. I have 2 tents and small air filled sleeping pads for everyone but just realized I never considered sleeping bags.

What do people use for summer sleeping bags, especially if you camp with kids? I figure my wife and I could get by with just light blankets but what about kids? Worst case scenario is kids being up all night uncomfortable and them making them ride home.

Specifics would be kids (8 & 10), have hydration backpacks they could use or large hiking style backpacks.

Wife and I have gravel bikes with attachment points, some anything cages, aforementioned panniers, handlebar bags plus larger mountain biking style hydration packs.

Alternately we both have mountain bikes that can tow my BOB trailers but we kinda want to be a little more self sustaining.

I do have single frame bag that I have yet to test out.

Any input on sleeping bags would be awesome and any pointers/tips on making bikepacking with young kids successful would be especially welcomed.
 

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Use the BOB trailer and MTB. You won't be going fast or far. Find some kid's sleeping bags to be safe. REI might rent you some. I am a big believer in ultralight backpacking/bikepacking but loosen my stance quite a bit when I took the kids. Go more for the fun and adventure factors.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Use the BOB trailer and MTB. You won't be going fast or far. Find some kid's sleeping bags to be safe. REI might rent you some. I am a big believer in ultralight backpacking/bikepacking but loosen my stance quite a bit when I took the kids. Go more for the fun and adventure factors.
This got me looking and I found these: https://robertaxleproject.com/bob-trailers/

Gets my BOB on my gravel bike, which would be more fun than my mountain bike I suspect.

With the BOB the sleeping bag option is less of a concern as I have kids sleeping bags, they are just large, for bike packing.
 

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My kids (now 11 and 14) used Thermarest tech blankets. A bit heavy, but they can be used as a blanket or snapped up to form a sleeping bag. Mine are the older rectangular ones. I would stuff them in a compression bag with my quilt. If you have a BOB I don't see anything less sustaining about it. It does not drive itself. I have a Burley Nomand. If the kids are going you want the first time to be fun....frying pan, eggs, pancake mix, maple syrup, and the fixings for smores.
 

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I'd like to ask what the lowest temperature you'll encounter is.
I've done bikepacking with kids as young as 2, but I'm usually in the Rockies of Alberta, so it is rare that it does not get to freezing at night. When the kids were really young a snowsuit that was too big and kept their hands and feet warm was a good bet since kids are so prone to rolling. We sometimes went with a snowsuit inside a sleeping bag.
edit:
8 and 10-year-olds are usually capable of carrying something light maybe have them carry their sleeping bags since those are bulky, but not heavy.
I would avoid a trailer if I possibly could.
 

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For bikepacking in particular, it's not just the weight of gear that's important, it's the volume. Synthetic bags just won't pack down the same as down. So down bags are great if you can find them. Luckily, a good down bag lasts years if you take care of it, so you can justify getting your kids a full sized bag. I have found some great deals on down bags at REI garage sales. For my kids, I picked up two garage sale REI Igneos for about $250. It's a little pricey for kids gear, but they should last 10-15 years, so we're really talking about $25/year or less.

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