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Mountain Hardwear Phantom 15 Review

This is a top of the line, lightweight unisex sleeping bag that comes in a size that fits women for anyone who can afford it
Mountain Hardwear Phantom 15
Photo: Backcountry
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Price:  $550 List | $549.99 at Backcountry
Compare prices at 2 resellers
Pros:  Lightweight, high-quality materials, comfortable
Cons:  Expensive, included compression sack is heavy
Manufacturer:   Mountain Hardwear
By Jessica Haist ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  May 14, 2020
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84
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#4 of 15
  • Warmth - 25% 8
  • Weight - 25% 9
  • Comfort - 20% 8
  • Packed Size - 15% 9
  • Features - 15% 8

Our Verdict

We have been waiting for years for Mountain Hardwear to bring back the Phantom Series for women. While that hasn't exactly happened, Mountain Hardwear has made the new, high-end Phantom 15 in a size "Short" or right around 66 inches in length, perfect for an averaged height woman, of someone around 5'5. We love the Phantom's high quality 850 fill down and super lightweight, compressible shell materials and think this bag is a great choice for lightweight, 3 season backpacking. Its price tag, on the other hand, is a little heavy.

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Awards  Editors' Choice Award Editors' Choice Award Best Buy Award Best Buy Award 
Price $549.99 at Backcountry
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$439.00 at Feathered Friends$549 List$330 List
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$190 List
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Pros Lightweight, high-quality materials, comfortableHigh-quality down, warm, lightweightHigh-quality down, warm and lofty, light, a top tier productComfortable, lightweight, excellent materials, not constrictingLight and compressible synthetic, keeps you warm when wet
Cons Expensive, included compression sack is heavySizing not for everyone, fabric is a bit noisyExpensiveComforter sometimes does not stay tucked inBulkier packed size, heavier, small fit
Bottom Line This is a top of the line, lightweight unisex sleeping bag that comes in a size that fits women for anyone who can afford itThis high-end bag will keep you warm and comfortable from Spring to Fall in all conditionsA high-tech, high-quality backpacking sleeping bag with more roomy dimensions than mostA great, high-quality choice at a relatively low price for those looking for a lightweight bag that doesn't sacrifice comfortAn inexpensive and versatile synthetic bag, this is an excellent choice for breaking into backpacking
Rating Categories Mountain Hardwear P... Egret UL 20 Sea to Summit Flame 15 Cloud 800 Cat's Meow
Warmth (25%)
8.0
10.0
9.0
5.0
8.0
Weight (25%)
9.0
10.0
9.0
10.0
7.0
Comfort (20%)
8.0
8.0
9.0
8.0
8.0
Packed Size (15%)
9.0
8.0
9.0
9.0
6.0
Features (15%)
8.0
9.0
8.0
8.0
7.0
Specs Mountain Hardwear P... Egret UL 20 Sea to Summit Flame 15 Cloud 800 Cat's Meow
ISO/EN Comfort Rating (F) 23 F 20 F (not EN rated) 15 F 26 F 22 F
Fill Type Goose down Goose down Goose down PFC-Free DriDown Heatseekerâ„¢ Guide synthetic insulation
Measured Weight (in lbs) 2.0 lb 1.7 lb 2.0 lb 1.7 lb 2.5 lb
Total Weight (oz) 32 oz 27.5 oz 31.2 oz 27.4 oz 40.2 oz
Fill Power 850 950+ 850+ 800 Synthetic
Women specific features This bag comes in a "Short" length, which is a standard women's size Extra fill in footbox and chest Women's specific fit - more insulation in key areas More insulation per square inch than men's version Women's specific cut
Fill Weight (oz) 20 oz 17.3 oz (medium) 22.9 oz 14.8 oz Unspecified
Material 10D nylon ripstop Pertex Endurance UL Ultralight 10D Nylon Shell 15d nylon risptop 20D Nylon Ripstop/taffeta
Neck Baffle Yes Yes Yes No Yes
Pocket No No No No No
Sleeping Pad Sleeve No No No Yes No
Zipper Length 59 in 62 in 56 in N/A 59 in
Shoulder Girth 58 in 54 in 60 in 59 in 58 in
Hip Girth 52 in 56 in 58 in 58 in 58 in
Foot Girth 44 in 38 in 40 in 39 in 40 in
Stuff Sack included? Compression sack and storage bag included Stuff sack and storage bag included Compression stuff sack and storage bag included Stuff sack and storage bag included Compression sack and storage bag included

Our Analysis and Test Results

This high quality, lightweight bag is what we ladies have been waiting for from Mountain Hardwear. It's cozy and lofty and is a great trail companion.

Performance Comparison


The Mountain Hardwear Phantom 15 in the short length is a great...
The Mountain Hardwear Phantom 15 in the short length is a great choice for a lightweight women's backpacking bag.
Photo: Ian McEleney

Warmth


Although the name of this bag is the Phantom "15," there is no temperature rating associated with this number. The Phantom has an EN comfort rating of 23 degrees Fahrenheit. From our field testing, we will say we think this rating is pretty accurate in comparison to the other products in this test. The Phantom has a relatively svelte shape with not a lot of space around your body for "dead", cold air to hang around. Because of this snug fit, we think this bag will keep you very warm on cool alpine evenings. We'd bring this bag with us on spring through fall mountain adventures.

Deceivingly, the Phantom's comfort temperature rating is actually 23F.
Deceivingly, the Phantom's comfort temperature rating is actually 23F.
Photo: Ian McEleney

Weight


This bag is one of the top contenders in terms of its weight, sliding in right at 2 lbs. It's lightweight shell materials, high quality down and slimmed down shape, and features make sure this bag won't be a burden on your back. We did find the included compression sack a little hefty at 3.2 ounces. Know there are other much lighter products you could purchase to cut down your weight even more.

Comfort


With its "Performance mummy cut," a tighter fit around the hips and shoulders, some may feel a little claustrophobic in this bag if they're not used to it. It is very roomy in the foot box, with plenty of room to move your feet around and stuff extra layers into. It is snug fitting around the hips, which is nice and may keep you warmer as that's a cold spot for many women, our testers included, get cold hips at night. The Phantom's hood feels a little claustrophobic because the inside baffle doesn't have a drawstring to cinch it down out of the way and the opening when zipped up all the way is quite small.

We think the Phantom is very cozy and comfortable, especially with a...
We think the Phantom is very cozy and comfortable, especially with a cushy sleeping pad and backpacking pillow!
Photo: Ian McEleney

Otherwise, this is a pretty cozy bag. It's high lofting down and soft sleek lining materials feel great and you'll feel bundled and cozy in this product.

Packed Size


Because of its very compressible 850 fill down and thin, lightweight shell materials the Phantom can be packed down very small. It comes with an included compression sack to help squish it as small as possible.

The Mountain Hardwear Phantom 15 comes with an included compression...
The Mountain Hardwear Phantom 15 comes with an included compression sack and packs down small.
Photo: Ian McEleney

Features


As with many of the high-end bags we've tested, the main feature of the Phantom is its high-quality materials. We love its lofty 850 fill down material, although it does not appear to have been treated with any water repellent coating like the other bags of this class have been. We're not super concerned with the lack of hydrophobic down as we hope our bag never gets soaked out there, but it is one feature that is lacking compared to other high-end products. The Phantom also has a good, anti-snag zipper pull, and interesting vertical baffle construction at the head of the bag to help keep the down where you want it in that area. We love the flashy color combo the Phantom comes in as well.

We like the Phantom's anti-snag zipper pull and it's flashy colors!
We like the Phantom's anti-snag zipper pull and it's flashy colors!
Photo: Ian McEleney

Value


As with many Mountain Hardwear products, this premium bag comes with a premium price tag. If this bag were not so expensive, we would more readily recommend it. As it is, it's one of the highest-priced bags in this review and slightly below the curve in terms of value with the rest of the high-end products we tested. Other bags have higher fill power down that have hydrophobic treatments, and cost the same.

Conclusion


We love the Phantom 15 "Short" and are so grateful that Mountain Hardwear decided to make a high-end sleeping back that is the right size for shorter people - including most women! If it has a slightly lower price tag we would not hesitate to recommend it to all our friends. It is definitely a great choice for any backpacking adventure and will keep you warm on cool spring and fall evenings.

Jessica Haist