Bivy? What bivy?
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Chad Miller
(chadnsc)

Locale: Duluth, Minnesota
Bivy? What bivy? on 02/23/2011 12:02:11 MST Print View

I'm in the market for a bivy but want to pick your brains for some input.

I'm looking for a lightweight or UL bivy that will be used with a tarp for three season use. Obviously I'll want something that is breathable but water resistant (not waterproof).

In the past I tried using an Equinox Bivy but the thing was just too small for me. I'm 6'-2" tall and 250 pounds (imagine a shaved bear that goes backpacking).

What bivy would you folks recommend I look into purchasing?

Thanks everyone!

Evan McCarthy
(evanrussia) - MLife

Locale: Northern Europe
Re: Bivy? What bivy?" on 02/23/2011 12:25:26 MST Print View

If I were you I'd grab one of the new cuben-bottom MLD Superlights, size large. You'd be happy as a, what's the expression?, as a . . . backpacker in a bivy.

Steven Paris
(saparisor) - M

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Bivy? What bivy? on 02/23/2011 12:31:22 MST Print View

Take a look at the TiGoat Raven, a larger-sized version of their Ptarmigan bivy (which I have and like a lot).

Now about that shaved bear image floating around my head . . . .

Mary D
(hikinggranny) - MLife

Locale: Gateway to Columbia River Gorge
Bivy? What bivy? on 02/23/2011 12:54:13 MST Print View

Maybe a larger tarp, so that no bivy is needed?

Interesting post by Ron Moak on the PCT-L: http://mailman.backcountry.net/pipermail/pct-l/2011-February/046232.html
Here's a quote: "...a larger tarp that provides better rain protection you can eliminate the need for the bivy. Three ounces of additional tarp weight can eliminate the need for an eight ounce bivy."

I'd love to see comments!

Edited by hikinggranny on 02/23/2011 12:57:22 MST.

Chad Miller
(chadnsc)

Locale: Duluth, Minnesota
Re: Bivy? What bivy? on 02/23/2011 13:05:14 MST Print View

Thanks for all the replies!

As for getting a larger tarp . . . . well unless I want to go up to a very large tarp (at least 10x10) getting a larger tarp is't an option in my area. I rather liked sleeping in a bivy and am looking to find the right one, not get a larger tarp. ;)

Edited by chadnsc on 02/23/2011 13:19:59 MST.

Adan Lopez
(Lopez) - F

Locale: San Gabriel Valley
Re: Bivy? What bivy? on 02/23/2011 13:08:35 MST Print View

I too opt to skip the bivy in favor of a larger tarp. I dont know how sound an idea this is but that's what I'm doing for now. In my backyard my 8x10 tarp kept me dry in a pounding rain and I'm fairly confident with this setup now for all but wind driven snow. I dont have any condensation issues that come with the bivy and I have palatial space under my tarp. In really bad weather i could probably get a small tarp to make a door and still do without a bivy but I havent tested that. Any other folks doing this?

Chad Miller
(chadnsc)

Locale: Duluth, Minnesota
Re: Re: Bivy? What bivy? on 02/23/2011 13:15:48 MST Print View

I used to do that but with the need for a ground sheet, guylines, stakes, and a complicated pitch I've found that that a smaller shaped tarp and bivy are lighter and better protects me from the rain.

Don't get me wrong, I've been using an 8 x 10 tarp for years as my primary shelter an liked it but for where I backpack (northern Minnesota) a tarp and bivy combination is the way to go. At least for me that is.

Mike M
(mtwarden) - MLife

Locale: Montana
MLD superlight on 02/23/2011 13:21:25 MST Print View

superlight in large should do the trick, I'm 6' ~ 200# and the regular fits me fine (that's w/ a full length neoair and highloft bag), so a large should be just about perfect

my regular weighs 6.9 oz and that's w/ a full zip (very handy imo), the sil bottom is waterproof and the momentum top breathes very well, but still is very water resistant

I use mine w/ a small tarp and have been very satisfied w/ the bivy :)

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: Re: Bivy? What bivy? on 02/23/2011 13:23:05 MST Print View

I think you probably can't go wrong with a bivy from MLD, TiGoat, Katabatic or Oware, as long as the size is right. All make quality stuff.

My current favorite is the MLD superlight. Good elbow room and comes in large sizes. I know Katabatic has won some followers with its Bristlecone. They're also coming out with a larger bivy (for larger pads) in early April, so might wait for that.

Diplomatic Mike
(MikefaeDundee)

Locale: Under a bush in Scotland
Re : Larger Katabatic bivvy on 02/23/2011 13:50:41 MST Print View

My Bristlecone takes a Downmat 7 and a winter bag/quilt. The larger Katabatic bivvys must be for really big folk?

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re : Larger Katabatic bivvy on 02/23/2011 13:57:08 MST Print View

Aaron said they were making one that would accommodate the large-size Neoairs and other pads of that width.

Chad Miller
(chadnsc)

Locale: Duluth, Minnesota
Re: Re: Re : Larger Katabatic bivvy on 02/23/2011 14:04:17 MST Print View

Ooo that sounds nice!

Thanks for all the replies everyone! I think right now I'm torn between an XL-MDL Superlight or a larger Katabatic.

Now I just have to tell the wife I want to buy one. Anyone got any advice on how to do that?

Evan McCarthy
(evanrussia) - MLife

Locale: Northern Europe
Better to Ask Forgiveness Than Permission on 02/23/2011 14:09:11 MST Print View

That's my trick with the wife. It doesn't really work, but what the heck?

Chad Miller
(chadnsc)

Locale: Duluth, Minnesota
Re: Better to Ask Forgiveness Than Permission on 02/23/2011 14:15:05 MST Print View

I wonder if we could do a 'pay if forward' type thing. Someone calls another guys wife, explains how the husband really needs said gear and . . . ?

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: Better to Ask Forgiveness Than Permission on 02/23/2011 14:19:06 MST Print View

"I wonder if we could do a 'pay if forward' type thing. Someone calls another guys wife, explains how the husband really needs said gear and . . . ?"

Great idea! I'm not married, but I'm happy to call EVERYONE'S wives and explain to them, in my own inimitable way, why their husbands need gear and they just need to accept it. More than happy to!

You, of course, will have to deal with the aftermath.....

Chad Miller
(chadnsc)

Locale: Duluth, Minnesota
Re: Re: Re: Better to Ask Forgiveness Than Permission on 02/23/2011 14:21:47 MST Print View

PM sent to Douglas with my phone number! :P

Ron Bell
(mountainlaureldesigns) - F - M

Locale: USA
Re: Re: Re: Re: Better to Ask Forgiveness Than Permission on 02/23/2011 14:54:08 MST Print View

Sometimes we get orders with notes to email (to a work email) before shipping so they can beat the spouse to the mailbox...haha

Chad Miller
(chadnsc)

Locale: Duluth, Minnesota
Better to Ask Forgiveness Than Permission on 02/23/2011 15:33:13 MST Print View

I don't care about beating my wife to the mailbox. I care about her beating me after seeing the online bank statement.

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: Bivy? What bivy? on 02/23/2011 17:43:25 MST Print View

Ron is leaving out the fact that you have to add back at least 2 ounces for a groundsheet. And, the lightweight bivies are around 6 ounces, so that cuts down any potential difference to 1 ounce.

The bivy
1. adds warmth
2. resists condensation
3. protects sleeping bag from debris
4. keeps out bugs

Edited by jshann on 02/23/2011 19:31:28 MST.

Mike M
(mtwarden) - MLife

Locale: Montana
warmth on 02/23/2011 19:18:53 MST Print View

^ I think a lot of folks overlook that fact about bivies, they definitely add some warmth to your sleeping system and are a built in ground cloth, they also get rid of any pesty bugs