The women's Laminina Z Flame can keep you toasty warm on summer nights in the high country and is a good pick for climates where you know the chances of getting soggy are high, like in the Pacific Northwest.
Barbara Bemis lounges in the Mountain Hardwear Laminina Z Flame below Mount Whitney.
The last synthetic bag we tested from Mountain Hardwear was the super high-quality women's UltraLaminina. When comparing the Laminina Z Flame to its predecessor, it is a step-down, and we noticed it was not as lofty or warm. That being said, it keeps us warm on summer nights in the alpine and seems to keep drafts out with its draft collar and warm hood. Mountain Hardwear has added extra insulation to the foot box of this bag, so our extremities stay toasty warm, and it has 5 oz more insulation than it's direct competitor, The North Face Cat's Meow Women's. The bag's draft collar seems to be in a strange place, much lower than where our necks are, sitting around our tester's shoulders — making it ineffective to keep drafts out from around our neck unless we scooted way down in the bag (but then our faces are covered up).
The Mountain Hardwear Laminina Z Flame is a budget synthetic sleeping bag that could be a good choice in wet climates.
All of the synthetic bags we tested in this review have a disadvantage in this category because they are all on the heavy side. The Laminina is no exception; weighing in at a hefty 55 ounces, it is on the heavy end of the spectrum compared to other models reviewed. The North Face Cat's Meow is several ounces lighter and is also a quality synthetic bag.
We like the Laminina Z Flame's soft liner material against our skin. The "comfort mummy fit" was a comfortable fit for someone under 5'8"; then it becomes a little snug (we recommend going with a size long).
Barbara, our 5'8 tester found the Laminina a bit snug but she still fit!
We like the bag's articulated foot box, which allowed our taller testers feet to lay comfortably and not pointed like in the Cat's Meow. If you're looking for a synthetic bag that is not the traditional mummy shape, check out the NEMO Rave for a more rectangular shape.
The Laminina's bright yellow lining material is too light and shows stains easily. We also think that the draft tube is located too far from the face opening and ends up around our shoulders, not neck.
This contender does not compress as well as a down sleeping bag like the Feathered Friends Egret UL 20, the Editors' Choice Award winner. It does come with a compression sack, which does a decent job of compressing the bag to a manageable size, but nowhere near its predecessor's the Ultralaminina's size.
The Laminina Z Flame has a small exterior stash pocket for stowing items that might be useful in the night time, like your headlamp.
We like the Laminina Z Flame's articulated foot box and wish that the Cat's Meow had the same feature.
The yellow liner color is nice because you won't lose your sock in a black hole at the bottom of the bag; however, the yellow color shows dirt very easily - it is too light and looks gross pretty quickly.
The Laminina's stash pocket is located on the outside and opposite side of the bag from the zipper - this makes it hard to access.
If you are planning a trip to a wet climate where you are afraid your bag might be getting wet, a synthetic bag like the Laminina Z Flame could be a good choice, as synthetic insulation will retain its loft when wet. For this reason, big wall climbers may reach for the Laminina Z. Otherwise, it is a heavy and bulky choice, and we would recommend going with a down sleeping bag like the Kelty Cosmic Down Women's.
The Laminina Z Flame is a good value at $179. It's far from our favorite bags, but its price tag is, too.
We wish the Z Flame had different diameter draw cords for the chin and hood so we could operate them more easily.
The unfortunate trend that we've been seeing is that manufacturers are cutting the high-end women's' bags out of their product lines and only providing budget options for women. This is the case with Mountain Hardwear's synthetic bags. The Laminina Z Flame is a decent synthetic bag for a screaming deal, but we wish the UltraLaminina was still an option for those of us looking for something lighter and more compressible.