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Bronco

Bivy Sacks for Mtneering?

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I am thinking a Bivy Sack could handle my fair weather mountaineering antics but, there seem to be a "shit pile" of designs and fabrics. I have looked at these manufactureres websites:

 

Bibler

Pika

Feathered Friends

OR

Integral Designs

Moonstone

Marmot

 

I have actually wrestled my way into a Bibler tripod, OR advanced bivy and a Bibler "hooped" bivy which cover the basic spectrum of designs.

 

The "clamshell" type Integral Designs South Col seems to be the way to go so far, $134.00 at the MEC and a nice compromise between weight, price, durability, and ease of entry for one of the "clamshells".

 

I avoided the bivys with the poles because of weight, price and ease of setup.

 

Anybody have anything else to add that I have overlooked?

 

Can any of you Kanadians confrirm the MEC South Col is actually the Integral Designs South Col?

 

Your Friend,

 

Johnny Come Lately

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2 black plastic garbage bags?

 

South Col is south col, right. Integ Designs makes em for MEC?? look on the catalogue. www.mec.ca.

 

I wonder if that website address mec.ca is confusing for Muslims or what? [Roll Eyes]

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I've got a Western Mountaineering bivy bag that's lasted for decades. It's very simple, and that's good, IMO. The MEC Micro Bivy is probably comparable.

Whatever you get, bivy bags are damp. The "breathable" fabric doesn't breath enough. And they pretty much suck in a downpour.

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quote:

Originally posted by freeclimb9:

Whatever you get, bivy bags are damp. The "breathable" fabric doesn't breath enough. And they pretty much suck in a downpour.

Combined with a small tarp I think I could survive a couple of nights.

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I bought a biv bag for cheap from LL bean a few yrs back. I have biv'd at 11,000 on Rainer in good weather, survived torrents and been fine in mists.

 

If they zip across the chest, it makes sitting up possible while waiting out the rain [Frown]

 

I have never carried a tarp/cover for mine as that kinda defeats the lite weight thing.

 

S

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there are some one man tents....(walrus is one) that are lighter than many of the bivy sacs....i have the micro swift and it has held up on quite the gammit of ranier and wet weather...i haven't been in a big storm on ranier or anything...but the thing is pretty tough....and it is cheap too....anyways....i dig it....it just sucks to set up when your budies all have bivies...

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If you want a cheap bivy bag and choose between Bibler and Integral Designs remember both fabrics are same and ID is cheaper. I ditched my Bibler for ID and think that I have seen some cool tents wich are not cheap http://hilleberg.com

 

Just shut up and get a bivy for now. Then get a single wall 4 season is my advice [smile]

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Hey Cpt. no offense, but are you sponsored by Jim Nelson? It seems you always plug his gear... [big Grin] Anyway, it is good stuff.

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I use the ID Unishelter and have never been let down. Weather being covered in snow at Rainier or stuck inside it for 12 hours during a down pour at Glacier Peak. The material on the inside walls always stayed dry. [big Grin] The horseshoe zipper makes it easy to enter and exit. Last month on St. Helens I had my boots and pack inside because of high winds (I have the Exp. length) there is a good amount of room inside.

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On the same topic, do you always carry a sleeping bag with a bivy sack or are there occassions when a bivy sack alone is sufficient?

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i've got the integral designs south col and its served me very well. its not too claustrophobic and has room for some gear as well. the fabric is pretty bomber but i've been lucky enough to avoid any major storms for some time now. definitely worth it especially at canadian prices.

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I have the Western Mountaineering's Fortress. I hate small places, and this one is big. Enough room for my stuff and to comfortably change clothing, etc. Not the best in rain, not sure what bivy would be.

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i have a bibler hooped bivy, but wish i would have went with the id south col. both use the same fabric todd/integraltex. the hooped bivy is great - once you are inside of it. due to the one fact it only has one half-moon zipper, the hooped bivy is difficult to get in/out of. the south col uses the same half moon zipper along with a ~20" size zipper. so, while it might not be as weathertight as the bibler (and only 2oz heavier) it is easier to cook in and get in/out of. if you want something very analogue, take a look at wild things bivy sack.

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quote:

Originally posted by Lambone:

Hey Cpt. no offense, but are you sponsored by Jim Nelson? It seems you always plug his gear...
[big Grin]
Anyway, it is good stuff.

What can I say.. He knows how to stock his store with plenty of lightweight items that other stores don't carry. I think he was the first one around with the stubai aluminum crampons, and the ID bivy sacks, and the Grivel Rambocomps, and the Grivel Air Tech axes, and the Sierra Designs Hercules Tent,and GoLite, and Ushba Pitons, and cheaper steel pitons by Camp, and off brands nobody else does and he demos gear to people. Therefore trying out stuff before you buy it. I believe in the lightweight approach and don't go to REI as much as some since they like to carry heavy shit.

 

[ 06-04-2002, 07:55 AM: Message edited by: Cpt.Caveman ]

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quote:

Originally posted by Cpt.Caveman:

......Just shut up and get a bivy for now. Then get a single wall 4 season is my advice
[smile]

But I already have a bomber EddieBauer tent that only weighs 16 pounds with no less than 5 fiberglass poles. I got several nice compliments on it when I took it up Mt. Adams south side a few years ago. "holy shit that is ahhh ahhh ahhh nice big tent haw haw haw!" Despite all the poles I woke up with the wind blowin' and the top of that sucker about 2" off my nose.

 

I really thought I hit the big time with my "lightweight" walrus 4 season tent at 8.5 pounds. It has served me well in some storms but sucks the big one if I have to carry it (purchased at REI) [Wink]

 

[ 06-04-2002, 10:41 AM: Message edited by: Bronco ]

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I have the south col. and it’s the bomb great for everything when going solo, but If u have a partner then it make no sense to carry a bivouac since the weight saving will be minimal at best maybe 2 to 4 oz not worth it when compare with a Bibler or alike if going with a partner invest in a lightweight high quality tent

 

[geek][smile]

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This Etheral Bivy looks like the best of the bunch except the price tag [Frown]

 

Any body use one? Less than 2lbs and pole supported headroom. neato! [smile]

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If you hate bivy sacks like I do, the one man version of the SD Clip Flashlight (called the Light Year) is a reasonable alternative, and while not as light as a bivy, it's reasonably light, and you can find them on sale for just over $100 sometimes.

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I've got a ID Unishelter Exp. Length as well, and I love it. At 2 lbs, 8 oz. and coupled with a Sil Shelter weighing in at 16 oz (combined weight 3lbs 8 ozs), it's lighter than most one man tents and works well in wet weather. There is lighter stuff out there (like the Hilleberg Akto one man tent weighing in at 3 lbs 7 oz packed weight (1 oz lighter than the sil shelter / ID Unishelter combination) and at comparable prices. The Akto goes for $340 and I got my Unishelter and Sil Shelter for $350 ... and the Akto is lighter. When I got my ID Unishelter I didn't know about the Hilleberg Akto .. If I had known about it, I probably would have opted for it instead .. it looks like a really nice tent! If you're thinking about getting a bivvy sack by itself (no tarp), I would advise against it ... getting in and out of bivvy sacks in wet weather gets you and your gear wet! If it were me, I'd spend the money and get the Akto.

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"At 2 lbs, 8 oz. and coupled with a Sil Shelter weighing in at 16 oz (combined weight 3lbs 8 ozs), it's lighter than most one man tents and works well in wet weather."

 

Basically for 1/2 pound more, and a lot more money, you can have a bomber and comparativley roomy tent.

 

1.89 KG (4LB 2.5OZ) = Bibler I-tent.

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then there is this tent ID Single Wall Which is tiny but, fits the bill at 3lbs 12 oz.

 

I have pretty much decided to go with a South Col from Pro Mountain Sports (1lb 8oz) cause Jim gets them with the "light floor" option. I'll maybe carry a 7 oz siltarp in questionable weather but still under 2lbs. and around $250.

 

Thanks for all the input.

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Orovox (sp?) is rumored to be making a ultra light weight bivy sack. It would be made out parachute type material ("just in case" type of bivy sack for cold conditions). Probably pack as small as a baseball and weight just a couple oz. Probably not very durable (guessing). But it would be nice to have to help keep the bag dry in the snow and keep the spin drift out.

I imagine they would not be popular in the damp NW.

Jedi

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this is the funniest review of a product I have seen yet. from www.outdoorreview.com

 

Summary:

I purchased one of these bivy bags for a gold prospecting expedition into the mountains and jungle of Ecuador. This was a rather regrettable decision, and I would advise anyone purchasing a bivy bag, to consider the terrain in which it will be used, carefully.

 

Anywhere in the tropics (and perhaps sub-tropics) a bivy bag is hot and allows little air to circulate. This can quickly result in headaches (in any temperature), especially if the bivy is zipped up to stop heavy rain from entering.

 

If attackers come into a camp, it can take a couple of minutes to get out of a non-hoop bivy, during which time a large rock can be brought down on your head.

 

Physical sickness (e.g. food poisoning, altitude sickness) while using a bivy bag, is a nightmare, as one will invariably end up sitting upright - half out of the bag - exposed to rain and insects.

 

Lying on the ground exposes a bag to swarms of insects. Some of which can eat through bivy bag (or tent) material, on their way to the main course.

 

There is little if any room to store any gear in a bivy bag during sleep, and so it is can be exposed to the risk of theft or infestation (especially boots!).

 

It isn't possible to cook in a bivy bag, and the smallest wind or rain can make using a (non-trangia) stove unuseable outside.

 

In some environments (e.g. temperate) a bivy bag is useful where weight and space is a critical factor. In temperate climates, attackers and insects are not so much of an issue. If you are entertaining the idea of a bivy bag for the first time, get one with a hoop, and you will surely be glad of this.

 

If weight and space is not a critical factor, consider the alternatives again. A lightweight tent, an army hammock, a mosquito-net tent, may offer a far more practical solution.

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