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Thread: Which Emergency Bivy
05-05-2012, 09:39 AM #1
Which Emergency Bivy
I have been looking into being better prepared to spend an unanticipated night somewhere. Weight is a big factor. In researching I cannot determine if these $15, super light weight "space blanket' based things are even worth getting. Maybe i would be better off just packing an extra waterproof, light weight poncho? I see a variety of prices and varieties for emergency bivies, but just can't find solid info on what is worth bringing along. I feel like some are akin to those cheap, prepackaged first aid kits that only have some small band-aids and a few pieces of cotton. Then again, I only want it for EMERGENCY situations to prevent hypothermia.
I would love to hear your input on this.
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05-05-2012, 08:12 PM #2
I carried one of those things in my pack for years, but I never needed it so now I haven't carried one for many years more...I figure the only time I would need it is for a big dayhike gone bad. Maybe I've just been lucky? There have been some epics where I got back to the truck right after dark...I always carry a kick ass headlamp if I know it's going to be a big day. All the people I know who've had a forced bivy were always less than an hour from the car. It got dark or they bonked.
If you get one, just make sure it has that reflective foil type interior. The "reflect the heat" type. Yeah, they're cheap and flimsy but if you're worried about it, it's better than nothing.
05-06-2012, 08:15 AM #3
Yes, I carry what is likely far too much weight. This is for day hikes, i.e. doing a canyon descent. However, reading some of the stories on Ice's site keeps me wondering if I am prepared. In the Navy we call it 'Operational Risk Management" fitting the hazard control effort to the risk. The likelihood of a bad event happening that would require a bivy is low enough that I don't pack everything i would want; but it is high enough that I have decided I should carry one. I just can't find good info on their performance which is why I asked the question. I do always pack a headlamp, water purification potential and/or extra water, knife, a lighter, and a light rain shell. Sometimes I have a small first aid kit and sometimes fleece. When floating in my drift boat I probably have much less risk of getting stuck for the night, but since I have tons of room I have mucho more "just in case" gear.
05-06-2012, 10:05 AM #4
One suggestion... get the bag style and not the blanket style. Being able to crawl inside and get out of the wind and rain is priceless.... plus you can always take out your knife and turn the bag into a blanket. I've done that a couple of times.
And the bags are less then $5 on Amazon.
05-06-2012, 10:09 AM #5
05-07-2012, 07:32 PM #6
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I've had bad luck with those "foil" ones. They just don't breath and the inside gets covered with condesnation. Although more expensive, I'd go with a breathable one. I've only had one unplanned bivy, but the first thing I did when returning was buy a breathable one.Utah is a very special and unique place. There is no where else like it on earth. Please take care of it and keep the remaining wild areas in pristine condition. The world will be a better place if you do.
05-07-2012, 11:07 PM #7
Yes, it is not breathable, as in it is waterproof. Lightweight ( 1.6 ozs ) and cheap $ 2.00. http://canyoneeringusa.com/shop/prod...6&cat=0&page=1
I do sometimes carry the Black Diamond Winter Bivy, which has become the Twilight Bivy, but it is 10 ozs and $150.00, so rather a different matter... but it works very well. http://www.blackdiamondequipment.com.../twilight-bivy
05-08-2012, 04:46 AM #8
I have a gortex sleeping bag liner that I use for snow camping. I guess it could be a nice, breathable bivy and it is about $150. but it is too big to pack along as a "just in case". I'm sure I wouldn't agree should I actual have an emergency night, but because of size it just isn't going with me. ........ But I am interested to see if some of you pack something similar or just the tiny ones.
05-08-2012, 06:44 AM #9
I carry one of the 2 oz x 2$ ones at all times - weeeeelll, most times. Fits 3-1/2 people.
05-08-2012, 07:23 AM #10
Have slept (or sort of slept) in various cheap Emergency Blankets/Bivys in varying situations and varying conditions. Not necessarily because it was an unintentional forced bivy, but I say "Don't leave home without your Emergency Bivy." Even a cheap $.99 emergency poncho has brought a smile to my face :-) Thanks Andy! :-) Last trip down to Escalante was 4 nights spent in the Adventure Med. Kits Emergency bivy. Memorial weekend last year brought some unusually windy and cool conditions and the bivy was my "snug as a bug in a rug" cocoon!
05-08-2012, 08:16 AM #11
I have a nice gore-tex bivy sack, and I take that along if I know there is a good chance I might be spending the night... the baked patato wrappers are for emergencies, they fold up to the size of a smart phone and weight much less. They are small and light enough there is no excuss not to carry one. And the day you need one you will be so happy to have it. I carry mine even on tourist hiking trails and have used it for dozens of items. I carry it in a small Possibles Bag with my knife, water purification tablets, pain killers, rape whistle and duct tape (energency bandaid and stitches).
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