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Am I being foolhardy?
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Jonathan Marshall

Locale: Bay Area
Am I being foolhardy? on 10/27/2007 19:43:23 MDT Print View

In the interest of further shrinking my pack, I propose to take for shelter on one-night summer backpacks to the Sierra only an ultralight 6 oz. bivy not fully waterproof) and for rain gear, just an emergency 2 oz. rain poncho. Naturally, I'll have to watch weather reports before going. Given that I'll only be gone one night, is this feasible or foolhardy?

Edited by marshallj9 on 10/27/2007 20:03:27 MDT.

Mark Verber
(verber) - MLife

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: Am I being foolhardy? on 10/27/2007 22:04:07 MDT Print View

I would not recommend a DWR bivy and 2oz rain poncho. Yes, the sierras are pretty dry, but you can get surprised by rain (at least I have) and the nights in the high sierras can drop down pretty low.

A much better option would be to take a poncho/tarp. You could easily get down to 8oz (your projected weight) with better protection when hiking and in camp.


Paul Tree
(Paul_Tree) - F

Locale: Wowwww
sounds OK on 10/28/2007 14:39:15 MDT Print View

Sometimes you can get unforecast rain, but for one night you'll survive and hike out wet. Any sleeping bag or pad?

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Am I being foolhardy? on 10/28/2007 18:08:33 MDT Print View

I'd second the suggestion to take a poncho/tarp and perhaps add a Gossamer Gear Thinlite 1/8" pad one of those Mylar emergency bags that weigh ~2.5-3 oz to climb into instead of a non-waterproof bivy bag-they're windproof AND waterproof. Both of these items together weigh about 5 oz. Assuming you also have adequate clothing and food, you should be OK for a night or 2. I'm not saying you will sleep like a baby, but you will more than likely survive. One further suggestion: pay real close attention to campsite selection, with an eye to shelter from wind and rain, and, if below treeline, the availability of vegetation(including pine boughs in an emergency) for insulation. Good luck!

Jonathan Marshall

Locale: Bay Area
Am I being foolhardy? on 10/29/2007 15:29:40 MDT Print View

Just to be clear, I certainly plan to carry a warm sleeping bag (albeit down, so I would be more vulnerable if it does rain). I just encounter rain so rarely on short outings, when I pay attention to weather reports, that I'm wondering about the risk factor of jettisoning a waterproof shelter.

Rick Dreher
(halfturbo) - MLife

Locale: Northernish California
Re: Am I being foolhardy? on 10/29/2007 15:55:10 MDT Print View

So long as you're not up there during thunderstorm conditions you'd be fine. I can recall more than one Sierra night when I never had to change out of my hiking shorts and slept halfway out of my bag.

Short of getting wet and hypothermic, the worst that might happen would be a sleepless, cold night. We've all had a few of those.

D.H. Bathon
(bathond) - F

Locale: North America
Completely, Utterly Off-Topic... on 11/07/2007 18:22:30 MST Print View

This is an interesting thread nonetheless...

Does anyone know of any WARM hikes that I could take my father, who is a first timer, on this December? I live in Georgia and he lives in Massachusetts, he has never asked to go camping with me before so I want to make it memorable, but I also want it easy enough that he will want to do it again.

A wilderness area would be preferable to some place more popular, touristy.

Any suggestions would be helpful, email me at or reply at my post here:

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: Completely, Utterly Off-Topic... on 11/07/2007 20:31:18 MST Print View

Southern states...Big Bend National Park in the desert, southern california, south florida?

David T
(DaveT) - F
. on 11/11/2007 09:55:51 MST Print View


Edited by DaveT on 11/19/2014 21:19:40 MST.

D.H. Bathon
(bathond) - F

Locale: North America
Woops... on 11/11/2007 18:48:35 MST Print View

Hey ya'll, apparently I offended some people by "shotgunning" this forum thread. My apologies, I mean to be a positive contributor to this forum, not obnoxious.

I might be doing it again by posting this apology, but I wanted to make sure everyone knew it was a mistake.