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Horizon Hound Down Review

A super portable and packable blanket that's affordable but lacks some durability
Horizon Hound Down
Photo: Amazon
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Price:  $65 List | $68.00 at Amazon
Pros:  Impressively lightweight, compresses small, great weather resistance, becomes a poncho, quite affordable
Cons:  Slippery material, thin-feeling, unimpressive durability
Manufacturer:   Horizon Hound
By Maggie Brandenburg ⋅ Senior Review Editor  ⋅  Apr 23, 2020
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58
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#7 of 10
  • Comfort - 30% 5
  • Warmth - 25% 5
  • Versatility - 20% 5
  • Packed Size - 15% 9
  • Features & Design - 10% 7

Our Verdict

The Horizon Hound Down blanket is a lightweight, super packable blanket that can be taken just about anywhere. It's an affordable alternative to more expensive options and is weather-resistant. It can also convert into a poncho and be worn around camp or home. Though it appears very similar to other competitors, it's lacking in some of the small details that affect durability and longevity. The seams and hems are a bit flimsy, and the poncho snaps ripped the fabric during our testing, leaving us with some questions about whether or not this blanket can go the distance.

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Horizon Hound Down
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Horizon Hound Down
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Price $68.00 at Amazon$51.73 at REI
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$40.16 at Amazon$29.95 at Amazon$80 List
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Pros Impressively lightweight, compresses small, great weather resistance, becomes a poncho, quite affordableQuite warm and puffy, fairly weather-resistant, comfortable, reasonably affordableSolid insulation, light and packable, compression stuff sack, large size, affordableVery soft underside, comfortable, simple stuff sack, reasonable size/weight, inexpensiveGood coverage dimensions, impressively light weight for synthetic, decent weather-resistance, sheds most debris
Cons Slippery material, thin-feeling, unimpressive durabilityVery large and bulky, a bit slick, not home washableNo cross-stitching, not weatherproofOn the small side, not super warm, not particularly technicalExtremely simple design/use, not particularly warm
Bottom Line A super portable and packable blanket that's affordable but lacks some durabilityA warm, cozy blanket for cold days, though a bit too bulky for serious travelDespite its unconventional look and feel, this blanket is warm, useful, and impressively affordableA solid, comfortable blanket for just about any casual useA "life-proof" option for casual outdoor use
Rating Categories Horizon Hound Down Alps Mountaineering... Snugpak Jungle Kelty Bestie REI Co-op Camp
Comfort (30%)
5.0
7.0
5.0
9.0
5.0
Warmth (25%)
5.0
9.0
8.0
4.0
5.0
Versatility (20%)
5.0
6.0
6.0
4.0
6.0
Packed Size (15%)
9.0
4.0
7.0
7.0
7.0
Features & Design (10%)
7.0
6.0
7.0
7.0
5.0
Specs Horizon Hound Down Alps Mountaineering... Snugpak Jungle Kelty Bestie REI Co-op Camp
Filling Type Down Synthetic Synthetic Synthetic Synthetic
Measured Blanket Size 50" x 76" 51" x 73" 62" x 74" 42" x 74" 52" x 68"
Compressed Size 2.1 L 11 L 3.5 L 3.5 L 3.3 L
Weather Resistance DWR treatment
(water resistance)
water resistant windproof & MicroDiamond
(light water resistance)
none DWR treatment
(light water resistance)
Weight 17 oz 40 oz 26 oz 24 oz 19 oz
Stuff Sack Y - roll-top Y - drawstring Y - compression Y - drawstring Y - drawstring
Exterior Material 20D ripstop nylon 20D nylon 100% polyester with Paratex antibacterial treatment 75 D polyester taffeta top
190T polyester pungee bottom
pertex (nylon)
bottom ripstop, top is not
Insulation Material 650-fill RDS duck down
(80/20 down/feathers)
TechLoft Silver (synthetic - resinated polyester fiber) Travelsoft (synthetic - resinated polyester fiber) 9.5 oz Cloudloft (synthetic) Polyester fibers
Manufacturer Temp Rating (F) Not specified Not specified 45°F Not specified Not specified
Pocket No No No No No
Machine Washable Yes - front load only No - commercial washer only Yes - front load only Yes - front load only Yes - front load only
Available Sizes One size only One size only Regular (tested), X-Large One size only 1-person (tested), 2-person
Additional Features Can become a poncho, has handles for wrapping around body or hanging, sewn through boxes hold down in place Sewn through in horizontal bars None Softer bottom layer, sewn through boxes hold insulation in place Corner loop to hang, sewn through in horizontal bars

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Horizon Hound Down blanket is stuffed with 650-fill RDS (responsible down standard) in an 80% down, 20% feather mixture. It comes in a few colors and one slightly larger, thicker size.

Performance Comparison


Poncho snaps let you wear this blanket and still stay active.
Poncho snaps let you wear this blanket and still stay active.
Photo: Maggie Brandenburg

Comfort


The Horizon Hound is made of 20D ripstop nylon that, like several others we tested, feels quite cool and slippery against your skin. It's so lightweight that it can easily fall off your lap or sleeping body. It does warm up quickly on your body but starts off with that slightly jarring cold feeling. The slippery fabric is also a bit on the "loud" side for a blanket. Five snaps turn this blanket into a poncho that you can wear with all the snaps closed against the cold or a few left open to free your hands for making dinner (or doling out high fives to your fellow adventurers). Measuring 50" x 76", it's a decent single-person sized blanket, though a bit on the small side among the competition. It's perfect for stuffing inside your sleeping bag on a particularly cold night or wrapping around your shoulders during a chilly fall tailgate.

As a super packable, lightweight blanket with a relatively low price...
As a super packable, lightweight blanket with a relatively low price tag, we enjoy carrying it as a backpacking blanket for the doggo.
Photo: Maggie Brandenburg

Warmth


Though it claims to have the highest amount of down filling of the down models we tested, it is by far the thinnest option, fully lofted, which affects comfort and warmth. In our heat loss insulation testing, it performed below average and inconsistently across tests. We think this is likely due to the extra space between layers that may or may not be filled with insulation. This patchy coverage gives erratic warmth and insulation, and presumably will only become more pronounced as the down continues to age over the blanket's life span. Unfortunately, it's not a blanket we'd be willing to rely solely on for any truly cold activity.

A thin blanket that doesn't quite provide enough coverage to keep...
A thin blanket that doesn't quite provide enough coverage to keep you warm in every condition.
Photo: Maggie Brandenburg

Versatility


The Horizon Hound is treated with a DWR finish that does an excellent job repelling water even when left to soak for prolonged periods. It also does a pretty solid job of blocking wind, though it isn't the most impressive of the bunch. Its wearability and low weight make it a versatile use blanket, from international travel to backyard hammocking. The slippery fabric sheds dirt and pet hair and keeps it cleaner-looking for longer. However, it loses a fair amount of credibility when it comes to durability. The edges and seams aren't particularly impressive or sturdy, appearing sloppy in several places on the one we tested. The snaps that create the poncho also need a fair amount of caution when using them. They're not located on seams or otherwise reinforced and can easily rip through the fabric with regular or rough treatment. In fact, ours did actually rip from normal use of the snaps during our several month testing period. Based on how easily this blanket broke and the lack of attention to detail in the assembly that we observed, we're just not convinced that this blanket is going to last through serious outdoor adventuring.

We appreciate being able to wear this blanket and still move around...
We appreciate being able to wear this blanket and still move around camp, making coffee in the morning.
Photo: Maggie Brandenburg

Packed Size


The shining glory of this blanket can be seen in how impressively lightweight and packable it is. It's the lightest blanket we tested and packs down into the smallest size. Based on this alone, it's a backpacker's dream; however, any durability concerns prevent us from being able to truly recommend it as a blanket that can handle the heavy use associated with backpacking. But if you don't mind taking a gamble on longevity, this 17 ounce blanket can be squeezed down into a space that's hardly larger than two liters, which is pretty impressive in our book! Its stuff sack is also a roll-top bag that can easily be used to help compress contents to fit into small spaces.

This blanket is the lightest, most compressible option we tested -...
This blanket is the lightest, most compressible option we tested - though it gives up some comfort and warmth to achieve that goal.
Photo: Maggie Brandenburg

Features & Design


Cross-stitching in both horizontal and vertical rows helps keep the down in place, and two "handles" let you hang it up to air out or store the blanket. It is machine washable in a front-loading washer on a delicate setting and can be re-fluffed with clean tennis balls in a dryer with a no heat setting. The Horizon Hound also backs their products with a one year warranty against defects in manufacturing.

Though the snaps are easy to use, they're not reinforced in any way...
Though the snaps are easy to use, they're not reinforced in any way and started ripping through the fabric of the blanket, as you can see here.
Photo: Maggie Brandenburg

Value


Compared to other down models we tested, this one is the cheapest. It offers a decent level of performance for the price, but we aren't confident about its longevity. However if you're ready to be careful with your camping blanket, the price of this option is pretty hard to beat.

Conclusion


We love the impressively small weight and tiny packed size. It's easy to travel with, and a good usable size for outdoor adventures; plus, the poncho snaps are always appreciated. However, we find it to be lacking a few of the creature comforts and durability features we'd like to see. Fortunately, it's one of the lowest prices for a down blanket, making it a decent choice for a little extra layer of warmth and protection.

Though it has a lot of good things to offer, the Horizon Hound just...
Though it has a lot of good things to offer, the Horizon Hound just isn't quite enough to be a truly amazing blanket.
Photo: Maggie Brandenburg

Maggie Brandenburg