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MLD Superlight Bivy
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Joe A
(dirtbaghiker) - M
MLD Superlight Bivy on 10/17/2013 19:41:57 MDT Print View

Ok, so, I have read a few reviews on here and I am posting this because I am wondering if there are any new users out there or if someone has any updated thoughts or info on MLD Superlight Bivy. I own a MLD Patrol Shelter(cuben), so I already am well aware of the quality of products from MLD. I am searching for a bivy to use with the Patrol Shelter in the coming winter months. I live in NY and I primarily backpack in NY, NJ and PA. For my 3 seasons I use a Bear Paw Wilderness bug bivy, which I love. So I have no problems useing a bivy, in fact I prefer a bivy and/or tarp instead of a tent.

b willi jones
(mrjones) - F

Locale: NZ,,, best place in the world !?
Re: MLD Superlight Bivy on 10/18/2013 01:19:52 MDT Print View

i had an mld superlight, and it was well made and a good size for me. when i ordered it, i was struggling on whether to get the full mesh head or the smaller window... went with the small window... found it a little claustrophobic.

i have since purchased a katabatic quilt, and with that, i decided to switch to the bristlecone bivy from the same maker. the mesh across the face is the perfect size in my opinion. i have since sold the mld bivy on.

the shelter i use with this is the cuben mld solomid, so really the bivy is just extra protection, and gives me some options. the weather here in NZ changes in the blink of an eye, but this set up hasnt let me down yet... although im in the midst of sorting out a hammock set up.

dont really know if this helps, but..

Joe A
(dirtbaghiker) - M
size on 10/18/2013 09:55:09 MDT Print View

thanks. I am 5-10 about 220-225 lbs or so. I was thinking of getting a regular size with the full net. The specs say the regular size is good for users under 6ft 1 and around 185 lbs. So I am kind of confused..I dont really want the larger size..users over 6 ft 1 and 185 lbs. I feel like that would be too much extra room. I am not fat by any means. I use a closed cell torso pad and a down or synthetic quilt. I would like to go with the regular size, but if I go cuben..cant return it if it really does not fit. So my other option is to save money and go with the Bristlecone Bivy and add an ounce or 2.

Dave -
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Up there
Re: size on 10/18/2013 10:02:24 MDT Print View

I am 6'1" and 215 lbs with wide shoulders. I had an XL version and using a 2.5" pad, sleeping on my side, I would push on the fabric. I would go for a Large, if it were me.

Chad B
(CenAZwalker) - F

Locale: Southwest
MLD Bivy on 10/18/2013 10:02:50 MDT Print View

I had a superlight bivy, size regular for a brief period. I'm 5'7", 165# and with a 20* quilt and Ridgerest, I fit with not too much room to spare. I think it would have been a bit tight girth wise if I tried a 2" inflatable. I ended up trading it and the person who got it said it was too tight for his winter bag and inflatable pad. I would have kept it if it would have had the full mesh hood, I just couldn't deal with the tiny half moon window.

Andrew F
(andrew.f) - F - M

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: MLD Superlight Bivy on 10/18/2013 10:11:10 MDT Print View

+1 for the Katabatic Bristlecone. I've had one for 2 years now and like it a lot. It is nearly identical to the MLD one in terms of features and quality of construction, except for the full net hood option. And it's cheaper and in stock...

Stephen Barber
(grampa) - MLife

Locale: SoCal
Call MLD on 10/18/2013 10:22:49 MDT Print View

Joe, just cal MLD, and talk to Ron. He could give you the best advice, and maybe even tweak one for you!

just Justin Whitson
Re: Re: MLD Superlight Bivy on 10/18/2013 11:28:44 MDT Print View

So far, i'm of the opinion that the best bivy is one that uses primarily mesh/netting on the top, except for the knee to foot area for use under a tarp.

I know some folks rely on a bivy for cold weather backpacking to add a little extra warmth and wind protection, but i don't think the condensation is worth it. The mesh/netting will block some wind and still help one's quilt to stay in place, but it's infinitely more breathable than any full or almost full fabric biviies, which i think overall is more important/a plus.

Also, lightweight mesh/netting doesn't cost near as much as the UL fabrics that weigh around the same.

Besides, if you're into multi-use and ponchos, just get/use a Frogg Toggs regular poncho, which in a pinch can provide more serious water and wind protection for the top of you when needed and still is fairly breathable.

Ron Bell
(mountainlaureldesigns) - F - M

Locale: USA
Re: MLD Superlight Bivy on 10/18/2013 12:38:57 MDT Print View

About a year or three ago we changed the bivy sizes. We made the Med the same as the old LG and the new LG the same as the old XL.

So, the new Med is kind of large and the new LG is very large. We can also do custom XXL, etc and Double/2P sizes too.

More info on the MLD SuperLight Bivy page.

History Note- We were the first to add the 1/2 moon net window and then the full head net tops with the DWR lowers to this type bivy. Other previous DWR Top and Foot bivys that a only a very few companies made at that time were solid DWR tops only- a few had extra zip in net hoods but those type tops fell out of favor fast as unnecessarily complicated, expensive and heavier.

Sean Nordeen
(Miner) - F

Locale: SoCAL
MLD Superlight Bivy on 10/18/2013 20:55:50 MDT Print View

As Ron mentioned that he's changed the sizing, so I can't comment on the current space inside. However, I've been using the same regular size MLD superlight Bivy since Spring '09. I'm 5'10" whose weight over those years has ranged between 160-195. I use it with a foam pad and 20Deg Quilt and never had any issues with space and I'm a side sleeper who constantly flips over during the night. At least in the mountains out west, I've never had any real condensation issues with the half moon netting as I've found the fabric very breathable. Though I only zip it completely up when the bugs are out or its cold.

On the AT in Maine in August of 2012, I did get some condensation, but that was more from me sweating too much in the humid conditions. Condensation would have been an issue no matter what I was using. But my camp towel was more than enough to remove most of it from my down quilt which I really shouldn't have bothered to even use at the time. The bivy likely would have been warm enough without it.

Edited by Miner on 10/18/2013 21:03:47 MDT.