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Illumine 500 Sleeping Bag

Tech Talk: Bushbuck Illumine Sleeping Bags


Our Illumine Adventure Sleeping Bags are ultra warm, lightweight, duck down sleeping bags for everyday adventurers. They’re a great option if you’re looking to upgrade to a down sleeping bag, start camping in cooler climates, or if you’re just after a good all-round sleeping bag. These bags punch above their weight to deliver impressive warmth and comfort, as well as excellent value for money. Let’s take a closer look at some of the key features of the Illumine range and how it compares to our other sleeping bags.

Illumine 700

Illumine Tech Talk

The ‘Down-To-Earth’ Down Sleeping Bag

Our mission with the Illumine Sleeping Bag range was to create a high-performing, mid-range down sleeping bag that would suit the needs of most adventurers. We’d learned a lot from engineering our top-of-the-line Sierra Sleeping Bag range, which proved helpful in designing the Illumine bags. From the beginning, the Illumine was always going to be the “little brother” to the Sierra. We wanted it to be an excellent all-round down sleeping bag, but it also had to be more accessible than the Sierra range. This was an exercise in restraint. We had to decide what was essential to a mid-range sleeping bag, do our best to make those features as epic as possible, and avoid "over-speccing" it. In many ways, the Illumine are similar to the Sierra, but there are several key differences that allowed us to keep costs down, namely:

  • Illumine has duck down, Sierra has goose down

  • Sierra has higher down fill power (loft)

  • Illumine has side zip, Sierra has centre zip

  • Sierra has a more technical neck and zip baffle design

  • Sierra is slightly warmer than Illumine 

  • Sierra is slightly lighter than Illumine

  • Sierra has a more technical shape than Illumine 

While it’s helpful to compare the two, the Illumine are impressive down sleeping bags in their own right. It has many of the features and similar performance as higher-end bags at a much more accessible price point. That’s exactly what we set out to achieve with the Illumine. We’re really happy with the result and we reckon you will be, too.

Illumine Sleeping Bags: Technical Features 

Illumine Sleeping Bags

You can choose from two models of the Illumine Sleeping Bag: The Illumine and the Illumine Plus. The main difference being the Illumine Plus is packed with more down insulation, making it warmer for all-season camping. Let’s take a closer look at some of the key features.

Water-Resistant Shell

We’ve made sure the Illumine bags are adventure-ready, meaning they can take a fair amount of wear and tear and deal with a bit of rain and moisture. The Illumine shell is made from a lightweight, tear-resistant nylon fabric that’s been DWR-treated for water resistance. The shell is divided into individual down baffles, which helps to minimise cold spots and heat loss.

Down Insulation

The Illumine is filled with 500 grams of 700 loft, 90/10, hydrophobic duck down, while the Illumine Plus has 700 grams of down. The 90/10 ratio refers to the down/feather content. The down is ethically sourced and Responsible Down Standard certified, like all our down products. Hydrophobic down is resistant to moisture absorption and quick-drying, which is helpful if you’re exposed to rain, condensation, or your tent gets flooded.

Temperature Rating 

The Illumine is a 3 season bag with a Comfort Temperature Rating of 0°C and an Extreme Rating of -20°C. While the Illumine Plus is a 3-4 season bag with a Comfort Rating of -2°C and Extreme Rating of -25°C. With these ratings, you should be pretty cosy during a frosty night in a tent. The Bushbuck Test Team has used the Illumine in even colder temperatures and been toasty.

Sleeping Bag Design

  • Relaxed Mummy Shape: The Illumine has a classic mummy shape with a bit more wriggle room than our Sierra sleeping bags. The mummy shape is popular for adventure sleeping bags as it helps cut down on size and weight and provides excellent thermal efficiency.

  • Zip and Neck Baffles: The zip and top opening is where most of your body heat escapes. The Illumine Bags have down baffles around the neck area and along the length of the side zip that help to seal the warmth inside.

  • Size and Weight: The Illumine Sleeping Bags pack down nice and compact (think of a slightly larger rugby ball). The packed size is 300mm x 180mm and when it’s laid out flat it’s 2100mm L x 720mm. The Illumine weighs just 960 grams in the compression sack while the Illumine Plus weighs 1160 grams. Both bags are less than a kilogram without the stuff sack, which we're really happy with. They definitely quality as lightweight sleeping bags.

Well, that’s the nuts and bolts of our Illumine Sleeping Bag range. These bags really punch above their weight, delivering impressive warmth, comfort and performance for your adventures below the snowline.

Bushbuck Team Contributor
Bushbuck Team

The Bushbuck Team includes our staff, the Bushbuck Test Team, and the industry experts we work with on a regular basis. It's a way for us to speak as a brand while recognising that our knowledge, advice, and opinions come from real people who live and breathe this stuff. When we write an article or product guide, you can be sure we've tapped our team of engineers, product developers, designers, and adventurers to provide you with the most helpful, in-depth advice we can muster. The Bushbuck Team is all of our minds put together to help elevate your adventure.

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