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Mountain Laurel Designs eVENT Soul Bivy Review
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Maia Jordan
(maia) - MLife

Locale: Rocky Mountains
Mountain Laurel Designs eVENT Soul Bivy Review on 05/06/2014 21:17:57 MDT Print View

Companion forum thread to:

Mountain Laurel Designs eVENT Soul Bivy Review

James Marco
(jamesdmarco) - MLife

Locale: Finger Lakes
Re: Mountain Laurel Designs eVENT Soul Bivy Review on 05/07/2014 11:09:16 MDT Print View

Thanks, Ryan!

Jolly Green Giant
(regultr) - MLife

Re: Mountain Laurel Designs eVENT Soul Bivy Review on 05/07/2014 11:29:58 MDT Print View

One of my biggest gripes with using a bivy is vertical comfort as it is entirely too influenced by the type of pad I use. If I put anything other than a CCF pad, it is so tight on top from pad thickness that often I can't close the bivy. Course, I'm broad and very ogre-like, so this might only be relevant to those of us with an extra or missing a chromosome or two. Either way, sure would be nice to have a little wiggle room. One size doesn’t, and never will, fit all. I can also commiserate with the condensation issue. 20 and below with no wind is not good at all. 60’s and above in Virginia humidity is equally uncomfortable. I have a custom skunk-works bivy with a cuben bottom, waterproof/breathable cuben around the feet, and pertex from my knees to my head. Result – still lots of condensation.

Joel Benford
(Morte66) - M

Locale: Surrey flatlands, England
Care instructions? on 05/07/2014 12:07:47 MDT Print View

As a bivy romantic, I am delighted to read this review. :)

Are there any care instructions for the bivy, e.g. washing it like a jacket to keep the eVent breathing? And might they cause any issues for the cuben or seam sealer?

Andy Jarman

Locale: Edge of the World
For the chromosomally compromised. on 05/07/2014 16:54:36 MDT Print View

I love my Miles Gear Pico bivy. Granted its 5 ounces heavier than the ML Soul, but at half the price it includes full seam sealing, a hoop, and enough room to read a book inside. It is very roomy, big down bag, down mat, and a down jacket on and the fabric is hardly in contact with the bag around my torso (I'm 5ft 11" and weigh 220 pounds). No condensation to date, water tight in stormy conditions. I can bring my pack to bed with me when the rain is sheeting down outside and stow it in the hood - no tarp required. The eyelid style hood with the large hoop also creates a profile that sheds water and prevents puddles forming. Available in any colour, so long as its white.

Edited by AndyJarman on 05/07/2014 17:09:17 MDT.

Mike M
(mtwarden) - MLife

Locale: Montana
waterproof bivy on 05/07/2014 19:07:42 MDT Print View

thanks much for the review, I'm purchasing one solely for multi-day running adventures and the eVENT sounds like the way to go

for hiking I'll stick w/ a light pyramid shelter :)

Gordon Bedford
(gbedford) - MLife

Locale: Victoria, Australia
VENT Soul Bivy Review on 05/07/2014 21:47:30 MDT Print View

I have this bivy sack but haven't used it in a large range of conditions.
Past experience led me to add a semi-circle of fabric that covers the zip where my face is. This allows me to keep a good ventilation opening even in heavy rain.

I think the bivy sack is very good for the weight because
The wire keeps the fabric off my face and helps shedding water.
The large zip allows easy access
The netting keeps bugs away
The extra loops are useful for the reasons stated in the article
The eVent breathes well
The floor is waterproof

All the best,

Stuart .
(lotuseater) - F

Locale: Colorado
Re: Mountain Laurel Designs eVENT Soul Bivy Review on 05/07/2014 23:08:25 MDT Print View

This is the kind of review that keeps me renewing my membership each summer. I appreciate you taking the time to test the bivy in varied conditions, and sharing your impressions on standard sizing, eVent vs cuben floor, and seam sealing vs taping.

After a lot of deliberation I placed a custom order for an eVent Soul bivy last November in long, extra wide (82" shoulder, 68" foot girth) with full length zip and cuben floor. I bought it primarily for winter use under a tarp, and wanted enough extra girth to avoid compression of a winter bag. Total weight came in right at 16oz. The first time out I used it in a snowstorm that my tarp couldn't keep at bay, and it came through with flying colours. So far I've used it in temps ranging between 10-25F, and I haven't noticed any condensation on my bag or inside the bivy each morning.

Regarding seam sealing vs. taping, my understanding is that the latter would add about 4oz to the overall weight if it was offered.

Ron was great to deal with throughout the custom ordering process. I wouldn't change any of the specs if I were to order this bivy a second time. I appreciate the extra space on long winter nights, and the ease of access with the full length zip.

Eric Blumensaadt
(Danepacker) - MLife

Locale: Mojave Desert
Bivies haved their place... on 05/08/2014 00:33:51 MDT Print View

...mainly in snow shelters. And an eVent bivy is (IMHO) the best of the lot.

As for the need to seam seal it myself, that's a minor "rainy day project".

Thanks for this review. Glad to find another source for an eVent bivy.

John Abela
(JohnAbela) - MLife

Re: Mountain Laurel Designs eVENT Soul Bivy Review on 05/08/2014 01:32:52 MDT Print View


Excellent review.

Andy Dixon
(sideshowandy) - F
great review on 05/08/2014 04:14:27 MDT Print View

thank you

i have always loved bivys's and what they enable me to do.

for example i also love sea fishing for bass.

what other shelter allows me to scramble up sea cliffs and sleep out on ledges above the high tide mark? que amazing outdoor experiences!

Edward Jursek

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Review on 05/10/2014 09:39:11 MDT Print View

An excellent review from Ryan as usual. It is nice to see an in depth review of an actual UL product here at BPL. Please, more like this and fewer bike packing, pack rafting, heavy pack hunting articles!

Edited by on 05/16/2014 22:01:46 MDT.

Hk Newman
(hknewman) - MLife

Locale: Western US
MLD eVent bivi on 05/10/2014 10:25:17 MDT Print View

Timely as I've been thinking of returning to the single biv sack game for mostly solo (all the other shelters have had the Goldilocks problem of just bring a little off). Maybe a small cuben tarp for entry on a rainy day?

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Re: MLD eVent bivi on 05/11/2014 21:22:11 MDT Print View

I've been drooling over this bivy for years but at $355 it's just not going to happen.

Just In Time
(ArcturusBear1) - F
Re: Re: MLD eVent bivi on 05/11/2014 23:11:36 MDT Print View

Craig, why not make your own? I'm not sure about currently, but in the past i've seen eVent material for sale, and bivies are about one of the easiest things to make. Would tend to be substantially cheaper.

Dave -
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Up there
Re: Re: MLD eVent bivi on 05/11/2014 23:17:07 MDT Print View

Craig, for a smidge more weight, but much larger for a winter bag you could look at the ID eVent Micro Bivy


Jason Elsworth
(jephoto) - M

Locale: New Zealand
Mountain Laurel Designs eVENT Soul Bivy Review on 05/12/2014 01:00:39 MDT Print View

Ron Bell
(mountainlaureldesigns) - F - M

Locale: USA
Re: Mountain Laurel Designs eVENT Soul Bivy Review on 05/12/2014 13:00:25 MDT Print View

Curious what other colors would folks like as a Soul Bivy option?
We may be able to get a second color option by splitting the dye lot on the next order.
Some folks also adding their votes for a second color on our FB page- looking like stealthy woodland/nature colors in the lede.

Aaron Farmer
(aaronfarmer) - MLife
Colours for MLD eVent Soul Bivy on 05/30/2014 17:00:45 MDT Print View

Hi Ron,
Couldn't find your Facebook page, but I'd be very interested in a brighter colour for the top. I'm considering this as an alpine/emergency bivy, and visibility is valuable to me. Bright orange is appealing :-)

Erik Mueller
Re: Mountain Laurel Designs eVENT Soul Bivy Review on 02/09/2015 19:26:34 MST Print View

I have been looking into this bivy bag for a while now and my question is on the durability of eVENT vs. cuben for the bottom. Is eVENT a durable material? I am thinking of going with the eVENT for the floor but am concerned with leakage over time. Any thoughts? Also, what do you all think of sleeping pad placement...inside bivy bag or external to it? Any thoughts are greatly appreciated. Oh, I too would like to see an option for a hooped version.