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Chad_A

Recommended Bivy Sacks?

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Well, my ailing Big Wall Bivy has been dealt it's final blow (move expensive to fix than it's worth), so I'm looking for a lighter bivy sack.

 

The original idea was to buy a BD Winter Bivy for colder/drier outings, and to take the Big Wall in when the forecast wasn't guaranteed to be dry. Now, I'm guessing the best bet is to get something somewhere in between the two.

 

Any recommendations? I've seen the Integral Designs online, as well as the Wild Things sack; the ID piece looks nice, as it has a partial zipper on the side. If anyone has used either of these (or has another recommendation that I haven't thought of), please let me know. Thanks!

 

 

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Ok layzy now. ID Bugaboo. Love it!!!! eVent works great. Would never use a bivi sack in bad conditions however. Worst I would ever use it would be cold, little snow and slight wind. Have a tent for anything worse.

 

Two thumbs up for the eVent matterial.

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Chad

 

I have a Wild Things bivy and an OR bivy... you can borrow either one and try them out. Get me a shout...

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Mountain Hardware rocksack -- it's worked pretty well for me. It's light, and has a nifty little window in the hood for natural light and so you can look around. It has two tie-in points which I've used for arm holes. It does get some condensation inside, but I've never been in a bivy that didn't.

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I would look at the Integral Designs Unishelter, eVent version. It's (relatively) light, the most breathable, and is the only one with a vent that still works during heavy rain. It's also a lot longer than most at 98".

The Bibler ToddTex tents/bivies come with or without FR treatment (Fire Retardant). The FR-treated versions are even heavier and less breathable than the non-treated versions, so it's a big step down from eVent fabric for weight and breathability.

 

 

Unishelter:

http://integraldesigns.com/product_detail.cfm?id=776&CFID=8742553&CFTOKEN=98144808&mainproducttypeid=1

 

Tripod Bivy:

http://www.bdel.com/gear/tripod.php

http://www.bdel.com/gear/detail/tripod_detail.php

 

Hooped Bivy (the Big Wall is the same bivy with an added tie-off):

http://www.bdel.com/gear/hooped_bivy.php

http://www.bdel.com/gear/detail/hooped_bivy_detail.php

 

Other Bivies. I looked at most of these at Marmot and each one had issues I didn't like, but they may work for you. Be careful to check each bivy to ensure it will seal out heavy rains for many hours, and still allow some venting. The Unishelter has the best venting system because of the little stovepipe tunnel vent works even in heavy rain.

Also check to make sure it's easy to seal the bivy from the inside. One of them, (I think the Salathe but not sure right now) was almost impossible to seal from the inside because of a difficult-to-use velcro strip design.

 

Salathe:

http://integraldesigns.com/product_detail.cfm?id=683&CFID=8742553&CFTOKEN=98144808&mainproducttypeid=1

 

South Col (eVent version):

http://integraldesigns.com/product_detail.cfm?id=693&CFID=8742553&CFTOKEN=98144808&mainproducttypeid=1

 

Bugaboo:

http://integraldesigns.com/product_detail.cfm?id=694&CFID=8742553&CFTOKEN=98144808&mainproducttypeid=1

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I picked up a Winter Bivy last night from a pal who isn't using his too much these days, so I'm covered for now; but eventually, I'd like to get one of these:

 

bsre.jpg

 

The South Col looks like it has everything, except tie in points. I really like the fact that it has a side zipper to help ease the entrance/exit. It's mid weight; heavier than a Winter Bivy, lighter than a Big Wall.

 

Thanks much for the input, everyone, and John, thanks for the offer. I don't know when I'd be able to get to you to borrow one (out of town lots these days for work at Astoria), but I'd be interested to hear which one you prefer and why ;)

 

-Chad

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I love my winter bivy. but I would not bring it if rain was in the forecast (or even a possibility). But for a little extra wind/warmth and light to moderate snow showers, it works fine and it is hard to beat the weight (9 oz).

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I have found that if you sleep on your side or stomach, then most sacks don't work well. You end up breathing right into the material. The OR sacks have a zipper that runs around the side allowing you to breathe out the side, hopefully keeping the condensation down inside the sack. Not made of good event though. Prolly some kind of goretex stuff.

 

If you had the bigwall sack then you must be a back sleeper.

 

can't wait to hear all the people defend there gear. :)

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Looks like Mountain Laurel Designs makes a lightweight bivy with an eVent top. I've only ordered a silnylon tarp from him before (several years ago) and thought his workmanship was good, but haven't tried this product yet ... looks like 6-8 week lead time, and you'd have to seam-seal it yourself.

 

Presently I have an OR basic bivy - goretex w/bug netting, about 20 oz. It works ok ...

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I have the eVent south col, and the winter bivy. As you probably do/will, I use the winter bivy in AK, (cold dry) conditions and the south col when i can expect liquid precip. My only complaint about the S. col is that it lets blown snow or rain in at the junction of the side zip and top zip. Lay with your head to the wind whenever feasible. (eVent is da bomb!)

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Just bought the new OR sack (aurora). its got gortex respiration on top, w/a hydroseal bottom. I haven't had any problem with condensation, and I usually sleep on my side.

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Just bought the new OR sack (aurora). its got gortex respiration on top, w/a hydroseal bottom. I haven't had any problem with condensation, and I usually sleep on my side.

 

Is condensation less if you usually sleep on your back or on your front?

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I have actually been looking at the aurora, so keep me updated on how it does for you. What would you guys suggest for someone who wants the lightest, and smallest packing sack, but good in the rain.

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It's usually worse if you sleep on your stomach, because then all the moisture is forced down onto the non-breathable floor material, instead of the breathable roof material.

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if you guys can get your hands on the OR micronight bivy, it is extremely light and packs down very small... I have heard good things about it on backpackinglight.com but everyone seems to be sold out. I am calling OR tomorrow to check on it.

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Looks like Mountain Laurel Designs makes a lightweight bivy with an eVent top. I've only ordered a silnylon tarp from him before (several years ago) and thought his workmanship was good, but haven't tried this product yet ... looks like 6-8 week lead time, and you'd have to seam-seal it yourself.

 

Presently I have an OR basic bivy - goretex w/bug netting, about 20 oz. It works ok ...

 

That sack looks like the bomb! Definitely where I would be headed if in the market.

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