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Sil Poncho + Bug Bivy

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Sil Poncho + Bug Bivy

Postby trav867 » Mon Jan 26, 2009 2:35 pm

The recent thread about rain gear reminded me of something I've been looking at for next summer. Integral Designs and Sea to Summit both make an 8' x 5' silnylon poncho/tarp. I'm thinking of using that with the Outdoor Research Bug Bivy for a shelter/rain gear/ pack cover system that weighs about 2lbs and costs only $150. I'm wondering if anyone has used either of these products, and whether the poncho is reasonable to use as a primary shelter (bearing in mind this would be for summer use in the Sierra, and I always use hiking poles).

Here are some links:
Poncho:
http://www.integraldesigns.com/product_ ... cfm?id=728

Bug Bivy:
http://www.outdoorresearch.com/site/bug_bivy.html



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Re: Sil Poncho + Bug Bivy

Postby copeg » Mon Jan 26, 2009 6:57 pm

While not those specific brands, I've used that combo (poncho + bug bivy) with success in the Sierra in summer. The poncho provided limited coverage for a shelter and so just a note that you should be prepared for a bit of a splash factor (rain splashing underneath the sides). Not a big problem but worth mentioning. If you've never 'tarped' before, keep in mind where you put it (in general established campsites aren't the greatest spots to camp under a tarp during a heavy downpoor as the poor drainage will leave much of year gear floating in a puddle - trust me - I've had it happen). Also, I used a bug bivy similar to the one you show (mine was made by A16) and while it worked I did feel a bit claustrophobic inside. This being said the combo will work well, but bear in mind these take a bit more effort as well as a bit more tolerance than the standard shelter.
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Re: Sil Poncho + Bug Bivy

Postby rlown » Mon Jan 26, 2009 7:28 pm

For me, it depends on how many are going with me. If it's just me, a gortex bivvy sack works just fine. I don't like to bring my down bag for those trips, as condesation in the sack is bad.

If i have 3-4 people, we take two basic tarps and items to form them into a shelter if needed. Still less hefty than a tent. I've only had to deploy such a structure twice in the last 10 years due to late season thunderstorms. This is all based on late summer. Other more weather-prone times of the year, i'd heft the tent along.

Russ
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Re: Sil Poncho + Bug Bivy

Postby BSquared » Mon Jan 26, 2009 8:14 pm

I'm extremely happy with my TarpTent. They bill it as a light-weight alternative for those who aren't quite comfortable with a tarp but find a whole tent (with rain fly and all) to be too much. I've used it both in Vermont (humid) and the Sierras (dry), had very little problem with condensation, and been delighted with its bug-proofness.http://www.tarptent.com/ Of course, it doesn't double as a poncho...

-B2
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Re: Sil Poncho + Bug Bivy

Postby hikerduane » Mon Jan 26, 2009 8:20 pm

Third try.

Lost another reply. I was talking with Alameda Frank on one trip I was with him and some others on, he is into UL and keeps up with current gear. He said the ponchos like the Gatewood Cape from SMD was pretty minimal, even for him. trailblazer summed things up pretty good. I want to get a set up sometime when things get better to give it a shot.
Piece of cake.
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Re: Sil Poncho + Bug Bivy

Postby rlown » Mon Jan 26, 2009 8:24 pm

I think the solution to the problem depends on group size. most of what i've seen on this thread is pretty solo. is that true?

Russ
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Re: Sil Poncho + Bug Bivy

Postby trav867 » Mon Jan 26, 2009 11:01 pm

Thanks for all the responses- this setup is for solo trip. Trailblazer answered most of my questions, namely, is an 8 x 5 tarp large enough to sleep under. The tarptent looks like a great option too though.

Honestly, I'm not sure what I'm looking for. It seems like every trip I find unnecessary gear, and on my last trip this year, I really felt that my REI solo tent was overkill. There are many makers of both poncho tarps, and bug bivys, so I'd love any suggestions one way or the other.
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