The dynamics of EEG spindle frequency activity (SFA; spectral power density in the 12.25-15.0 Hz range) and its relationship to slow-wave activity (SWA; 0.75-4.5 Hz) were investigated in long sleep episodes (> 12 h). Young healthy men went to bed at either 19:00 h (early sleep; prior waking 36 h, n = 9) or 24:00 h (late sleep; prior waking 17 h, n = 8). In both nights, SWA in non-rapid-eye-movement sleep (NREMS) decreased over the first three to four 1.5-h intervals and remained at a low level in the subsequent five to six 1.5-h intervals. In contrast, the changes of SFA were more variable and differed between the lower (12.25-13.0 Hz), middle (13.25-14.0 Hz) and higher frequency bin (14.25-15.0 Hz). A pronounced influence of time of day was present in the lower and higher SFA bin, when the dynamics were analyzed with respect to clock time. In both the early and late sleep condition, power density in the lower bin was highest between 2:00 and 5:00 h in the morning and decreased thereafter. In the higher bin, power density was low in the early morning hours and increased as sleep was extended into the daytime hours. The results provide further evidence for a frequency-specific circadian modulation of SFA which becomes more evident at a time when SWA is low.