Brian and Brad- I'm on the fence with leaving the bivy behind, I used it last weekend in north GA, same shelter and bag, low's mid to upper 20's, kept the front of the shelter open and one side pitched higher and had no condensation, I stayed very comfortable and warm all night. However, I'm willing to try just using a Polycyro ground sheet for one night and see how warm I stay.
Brad- good call on a second pair of gloves for the reason you mentioned, I have a pair of liners that I can take. I'm not keen on rain mitts, too much condensation from my experiences. I tried fleece mittens last weekend, nice for a short time, then became too warm very fast.
Rain pants vs rain skirt, for me it's easy, it's the skirt in rain AND wind. I've been using it for two years, the skirt is one of the most versatile pieces of gear I own. I used it last weekend while hiking in the cold wind and around camp, legs stayed warm and much easier to move/walk with the skirt
thanks for your input, keep it coming