I've over 30 years hiking experience but have always slept in a tent. Apart from a few nights a year when i have used a 'bomber', but heavy bivvy-bag with netting. A lot of my hiking is on wet, sometimes water-logged ground, and a dry pitch is sometimes impossible. Even a dry pitch can become flooded during the night. The security of a bathtub floor in a tent was welcome.
Last year i started using a tarp for the first time. I use a 10 x 10 tarp with plenty coverage, so rain isn't a problem. The usually wet ground is the problem. I slept in a Rab Quantum 250 bag backed up by clothing. I also started useing an ID e-Vent bag cover. The ID bivvy-bag took care of the wet ground problem.
Well it's now bug season so i'm trying to think of the lightest way to go. I'm expecting an Arc Specialist so that will replace the Rab bag. I have a MLD Bug Bivvy for protection from the midgies. I think i can create a bath-tub effect with the suspended bug-bivvy, so do i leave the ID bivvy-bag at home? It's my first time using a quilt so a bivvy-bag might be welcome for stopping draughts, as well as 'bomber' protection from sodden ground. Any suggestions welcome. Do i just have to accept that i can't go as light as a desert hiker and will always have to carry a fully waterproof bivvy-bag, just in case?