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Our camping experts researched over 50 of the best camping blankets before purchasing 12 to snuggle into. We spent months traveling and camping in the warmth of summer and the chill and bluster of winter. For each adventure, we trucked along our cadre of camping blankets to test side-by-side. In addition to assessing how each performed on cold nights, we measured insulative properties and packed size. Our thorough testing and research are designed to help you find the best camping blanket for your needs, while our recommendations are unbiased and can help you find a cozy option that will fit your budget.
Editor's Note: In August 2022, we updated this review with new products from Kammock, REI, Therm-a-Rest, and Kelty. This article was updated again on October 7, 2022, to remove a discontinued blanket from our lineup.
The Kammok Firebelly is a versatile all-star. It's great enough as a regular blanket: it has generous dimensions with a high loft while maintaining its compressibility. However, it's all of the other modes that take this blanket to the next level. The bottom can be snapped and cinched closed to create a cozy foot box for keeping warm while sitting around a fire. A full set of snaps on each side can also convert this blanket into a full-on camping quilt when paired with the included sleeping pad straps. It triples as a hammock underquilt and quadruples as a poncho with a zipper opening in the middle of the blanket. As a bonus, it also comes with a watertight stuff sack and a large long-term storage sack.
For an otherwise exceptional blanket, there are just a couple of characteristics that we wish were different. The inner liner is the same ripstop nylon as the rest of the exterior. It's soft but not exceptionally comfortable; it can get pretty sticky against bare skin. These excellent features come at a premium price, so this quilt is for those who know it will benefit from its versatility. Having said that, the Kammock Firebelly is one of our absolute favorites as a basic blanket and a multi-purpose insulator.
Fill Type: Synthetic | Machine Washable: Yes, front load only
REASONS TO BUY
Great for two people
REASONS TO AVOID
The Kelty Biggie lives up to its name. Its extra-wide and extra-long dimensions are designed to keep two people comfortably covered and make for a luxurious wrap for one. It has a soft underside that doesn't get sticky-feeling like other blankets. It has square baffles that keep the insulation in place and a nice weight to it for snugglers or sleepers that like this feature. Best of all, it's very inexpensive relative to the rest of the pack.
With such generous dimensions, this blanket is one of the heaviest and bulkiest that we tested, which somewhat limits its versatility. It comes in various playful patterns, which we think are fun but might not fit the style of some. It also doesn't have any meaningful water resistance and takes on a damp feel in heavy humidity. Even with these drawbacks, the Kelty Biggie blanket is great to have on hand for backyard cookouts or a kids' sleepover, and the value really can't be beaten.
Fill Type: Down | Machine Washable: Yes, front load only
REASONS TO BUY
Helpful stuff sack
REASONS TO AVOID
Very slippery and "loud"
The Rumpl Down Puffy is an impressively lightweight down blanket that ranks high for packability. It packs exceptionally well into its roll-top stuff sack, so you might as well take it along just in case, whether backpacking or traveling. Clips on the side easily turn it into a poncho, giving you hands-free warmth to cook dinner in comfort or tailgate for your favorite team. The micro-ripstop material and reinforced seams add durability to this featherweight blanket and do an excellent job repelling spills, rain, dog hair, and dirt. Handy corner loops let you stake it to the ground, making it a great picnic companion if you want to keep your bum warm and dry. Those same loops just as easily allow this blanket to hang for storage. It's also machine washable; if you get it dirty, just pop it into your machine at home.
This is one of the smallest single-person blankets we tested, although it is offered in several additional sizes. The material is quite protective, but it is also extremely slippery and easily slides off. Though we love the poncho option, the single clippable loop leaves your front quite exposed; this is great for getting things done, but you'll still need your hands to experience the warmth of a full wrap. Out of all the blankets we tested, this model is one of the most costly. The Rumpl is a well-rounded, durable, water-resistant blanket that's also compact, perfect for a backpacker or minimalist traveler.
The REI Camp Wrap is an excellent option for mingling in warmth. It has a snap around the neck with two tightness settings. We love being able to sit without having to make sure the blanket isn't dragging on the ground or about to slide off, and the dimensions are just large enough that even in cape mode, it still wraps around without leaving much exposed. If you want to get up and walk around, two hand loops at the side keep the blanket close to the body without having to hold it in place. To add to the cozy factor, it also comes with a hood for even more warmth.
The synthetic fill of the REI Camp Wrap makes it just a little less compressible than its down counterparts. It still packs down relatively small, but it's not our top choice for a backpacking trip. Though the interior liner is soft, it can stick to bare skin if you start to get too toasty. Even with these minor issues, this blanket has high functionality at a reasonable price, making it a great, versatile value.
This review began by researching 50+ camping blankets and choosing the most promising options. We purchased every model to put to the test both in the lab and in the real world. We pushed these blankets to their limits by measuring insulation prowess and wind resistance in the lab by taking each model outside in the wind and snow. We considered the comfort of their material, size, and weight and poured water on them just to see what would happen. Numerous dogs were also enlisted to test each model's warmth on cold winter days and their ability to withstand teeth and claws during playtime. We treated these blankets worse than we thought any "normal" blanket-lover would, so you don't have to guess about it before you choose your ideal cover.
Our testing of camping blankets is divided across five rating metrics:
Comfort tests (30% of overall score weighting)
Warmth tests (25% weighting)
Versatility tests (20% weighting)
Packed size tests (15% weighting)
Features and design tests (10% weighting)
This review is headed up by Senior Review Editor, Maggie Brandenburg and supported by Ben Applebaum-Bauch. An avid outdoorswoman, Maggie has guided backcountry adventures in all four seasons for over 15 years. She's spent a significant part of her life living outside on the trail, on the water, and in the true wilderness. As a global adventurer, she knows what to look for when seeking a piece of gear to bring along and isn't willing to sacrifice comfort or functionality when it comes to staying warm. Living with poor circulation while still adventuring to some of the coldest places around, like the Canadian Rockies, Midwestern plains, and snow-covered Iceland, Maggie has dedicated years of her life to chasing that warm feeling no matter where she roams. Ben is an avid backpacker who has hiked several of America's iconic long trails, snuggling up under a variety of bags and quilts over thousands of trail miles. Having spent almost two decades in northern New England, he knows a thing or two about staying warm in the cold.
Analysis and Test Results
We chose a variety of different camping blankets designed for the outdoors. These range from options that can easily pack into a backpack to bulkier models to keep in the trunk of the car. We score each based on five crucial metrics to assess each contender, including comfort, warmth, versatility, packed size, and features. This article compares and explores the nuances of each to help you find the best for your needs.
Camping blankets range in usage from luxurious extravagance to necessary bedding, and their spread of prices shares similar breadth. While many types of gear often correlate a higher price with better performance, we found no such relationship in these camping blankets. Some of our favorite blankets are among the least expensive and most expensive options we tested, and several fall right in the middle.
The Kelty Biggie, Kelty Bestie, and SnugPak Jungle all score well in our myriad of tests, without costing as much as many others, making them high-value commodities. On the other hand, the Kammok Firebelly and Rumpl Down Blanket perform very well and are extremely handy in specific situations that call for low weight and high compressibility, making them well worth the hefty investment.
A blanket that isn't comfortable probably isn't going to be one you'll want to use; thus, we weighted this metric more than any other. We considered fabric feel and weight, blanket dimensions, and coverage for various-sized people while sitting, standing, and lying down. We tested these blankets in various conditions, gathering opinions and input while camping, tailgating, watching movies, and hanging out in the great outdoors.
Our favorite blankets for sheer comfort are the Kelty Biggie and Kelty Bestie. While most camping blankets are made of slippery, swishy material to repel dirt, hair, and water, these two have a soft underside that's pleasant to put right against your skin. This softer side also keeps the blanket on your lap, rather than letting it slide right off with the slightest movement, like some we tested. It's great for hanging out on a crisp evening or napping in a shady hammock; we love how comfortable these blankets are.
Also notable for its comfort is the Zefabak Down. This blanket is thick and puffy, which gives an instant feeling of warmth and comfort. It doesn't have an incredibly soft underside, but its overall size and shape help keep them on your lap or around your shoulders. If you're a blanket user on the move, you'll likely appreciate the comfort of a blanket-turned-cape/poncho. The REI Camp Wrap snaps around you at the neck, leaving your hands free, while the Zefabak Down and Horizon Hound Down can be further snapped to keep you bundled even as you wander. The Kammok Firebelly is unique with a zipper opening mid-blanket that facilitates the poncho conversion.
While a wool blanket next to these super-slick, smooth options may not seem like the most comfortable choice, you might be surprised. Their extra weight is comforting to many people, and not all of them are as scratchy as your mom's old wool blanket you still have nightmares about from when you were a child (Anyone else? No? Just us?). The Pendleton Yakima is notable for being a surprisingly comfy wool blanket that's not abrasive to drape across your bare arms and one we enjoyed curling up in with a good book.
The second most important part of a blanket is how well it keeps you warm. We employed several tests to discern which models are better for your temperature than others. We started in the lab, using hot water to test the insulation capabilities of each blanket. Then we took them all into the real world to see how they perform. We laid on snow, stood in blustery winds, cooked winter camping meals, and nestled into chairs and couches.
Though you'd expect the thickest blankets to do best, and many of them are quite warm, absolute thickness is not the only factor that lends insulation and warmth to a blanket. The SnugPak Jungle and Pendleton Yakima are both impressive insulators, especially for their thickness — or should we say thinness. The Jungle blanket has a small size and relatively insubstantial synthetic insulation but performed very well in our lab testing and in the field. The Yakima holds its heat effectively in a controlled environment, trapping heat in its wool fibers.
The Zefabak Down is the thickest down blanket we tested. It is thick and lofty and does an excellent job holding in heat when you need it most. It's not quite as nice as the others we've mentioned, as its slippery material is a bit cool against your skin — at least at first.
As is true of many types of gear, a good camping blanket is one you can happily use in many conditions. We tested how each one performs in the wind, against rain, and in the face of dog claws and rocky grounds. We also did everything from reading books to tailgating to cooking meals (particularly the ones that can be clipped or buttoned to become a poncho) to figure out which ones can really do it all.
The Kammok Firebelly is the most versatile option we tested. It has several distinct 'modes', from regular blanket, to hammock underquilt, camping quilt, and poncho. It has good loft and decent light water resistance. Also scoring well is the Rumpl Down Puffy. It did not soak up water, even after letting it sit with a puddle on top for nearly an hour. It's also one of the most wind-resistant options we tested. Its material has a fine ripstop pattern with reinforced edges and a sturdy feel. On top of that, it clips into a poncho but leaves the front a smidge open, so you can stir the potatoes or play cornhole with your friends. The REI Camp Wrap is a great blanket that can also be used hands-free.
The other two blankets we tested (that turn into ponchos) are the Horizon Hound Down and Zefabak Down. They snap all the way down the front; when fully buttoned up, we felt a bit penned in, which could become problematic when you inevitably rip the snaps open. When unsnapping the Horizon Hound, our testing model ripped during this exact situation. The Rumpl, on the other hand, features a loop and clip design that is opened by pressing the clip release, so there's no worry of ripping the blanket in your hurry to pull it off.
Many of the camping blankets we tested come with claims about DWR treatment to repel water, wind-blocking technologies, and the power to shed every speck of dirt and hair that come in contact with it. However, not all of them lived up to their claims or our expectations. Models that repelled all spilled water during our testing include the Rumpl Down Puffy and Horizon Hound Down. The REI Co-op Camp very nearly repelled all of our spillages but did take up a little bit of water at the seams.
Similarly, the Zefabak Down repelled most water, but after the puddle was removed, the top layer of material was damp to the touch. The Kelty Bestie and the SnugPak Jungle initially resisted the water but ended up soaking the entire amount through several layers after a few minutes. Though both wool blankets, the Pendleton Yakima and Ektos Wool, obviously soaked up all the water we put on them, they both maintained a puddle for the amount of time it would take to grab a towel and clean it up. Wool also boasts the benefit of keeping its insulating powers even when wet.
Depending on what kind of use you're hoping to get out of your camping blanket, you might care about its packed size and portability. We weighed every model we tested. We also measured their sizes in the stuff sacks they came with and crammed each one into a compression sack to see how small we could make them. We considered the usability of each stuff sack and any features that might add to their versatility.
The apparent frontrunners in this metric are the two smallest down blankets we tested, the Rumpl Down Puffy and Horizon Hound Down. These blankets weigh barely more than a pound and can be squeezed into tiny spaces, making either of them solid contenders for a winter backpacking trip. Both also come with nearly identical stuff sacks that are narrow and thin with a roll-top that lets you compress them to a reasonably small size, even without a separate compression sack. This portability is ideal for travel where space is at a premium.
Though the SnugPak Jungle is heavier than we'd generally like for a portable option, it's also significantly larger than any other one-person camping blanket we tested and is the only one that comes with a true compression sack.
Features & Design
Though we assigned this metric the lowest weight, each blanket's features and design elements still impact the overall performance. We considered extra features like pockets, loops, and tie-downs, as well as those little things we noticed during testing that don't fall into any other testing area, like warranties and washability.
The Kammok Firebelly has a host of snaps, zippers, and extra included straps that enable its spectacular versatility. It also comes with a waterproof rolltop stuff sack. The Rumpl is the only model we tested with four corner loops for tying or staking down on a windy day or hanging up to dry. The Horizon Hound and REI Camp also have a loop for hanging your blanket. The Zefabak includes small pockets on the two corners that end up on the front of your poncho, which can be used to keep your hands warm — as long as you have relatively long arms to reach them.
When it comes to cleaning them, each blanket differs in how you can treat it. All but three we tested can be washed at home in a front-loading washer on a delicate setting and air-dried. Down blankets can have their filling re-fluffed in your home dryer on a gentle, no-heat cycle with a few clean tennis balls. There are a couple of blankets that require special care: the Zefabak Down (hand-wash, spot treatment only), and the Pendleton Yakima (dry clean only). Probably the most alarming blanket we washed at home is the Ektos Wool blanket, which sheds lint and color like crazy for the first several washes. We think it will probably last longer if you can avoid washing it as much as possible.
Plenty of camping blankets out there cover a wide range of comfort and warmth. Some are easier to take care of, and some require special treatment. Some are small enough to take backpacking, while others are versatile enough for cold-weather camping or lazy Sundays on the couch. No matter what you want your camping blanket for, we hope our thorough testing has helped you find the best blankie for your needs.
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